I am a lifelong New Castle County resident growing up in Woodcrest; I attended St. Matthews School, St. Marks and graduated from Wilmington High School in 1983. In my early 20's, I served as vice president on the Pleasant Hills Civic Association. We were successful in lobbying our elected officials to find a solution in diverting the tractor trailer traffic off of MacArthur Drive. I worked for a union electrical contractor for 12 years; I was hired as a receptionist and worked my way up to office manager. My responsibilities consisted of day-today operations, including the management of accounts payable/accounts receivable, which ran into the millions of dollars. As a result of a shift reduction at General Motors, we decided it would be best for our family for me to resign from my job and stay at home to raise our two children. My husband had worked nights and I had worked days; as a result our children were able to stay at home with us.
Being a stay-at-home mom gave me the opportunity to be involved in my children’s school from day one. I began helping in the classroom and regularly attended PTA meetings. I quickly learned what an important role parental support plays in the schools and have been active in my children’s schools ever since. I started out serving as PTA Treasurer, volunteered weekly for the HOST reading program; I eventually was elected PTA President four times serving four-one year terms at Forest Oak Elementary School. My daughter Casey entered Conrad Schools of Science for 6th grade where I was elected Vice President of the PTO. I have served on Conrad’s Building Leadership Team for the last 5 years. I have served on many committees throughout the years: Program Assemblies, Teacher Appreciation, Family Nights, Fundraiser, and Membership, in which I was recognized by the State PTA. I was a co-leader of my daughter’s Brownie Troop and then became a leader of her Girl Scout Troop.
I was co-editor of a blog Fix Red Clay, which focused on issues concerning Red Clay School District. It provided the community with a place to share their opinions and concerns about the Red Clay School District and gave me a valuable insight into how the public really felt about our school system and our district.
In 2009, I was asked to run for District E school board seat against a sitting board member and I won. I served on the board for over three years; serving one year as vice president. I served on the following board committees: Board Policy Committee, Community Financial Committee, and Communications Committee.
With the closing of General Motors, my husband had worked there for 29 years to the day, and my children entering into high school, I took the opportunity to return to the workforce. I enrolled in a real estate class, took the state and national exam and held a Delaware license (May 2011) working as a real estate agent with Keller Williams and then Berkshire Hathaway Hockessin Office. In 2018, I decided not to renew my real estate license, it was a hard decision to make, but the demands of my state representative job were increasing every year.
In November 2012, I was elected to the House of Representatives serving the 19th District. I am Vice Chair of the House Education Committee and a member of: Housing and Community Affairs, Health and Human Development, Labor, Veterans Affairs Committees. I Co-Chaired the Enrollment Preference Task Force which was created by my first bill, House Bill 90. I served on the Animal Welfare Task Force and I am a member of the Delaware Healthy Mother and Infant Consortium. In September 2016, I was appointed to the Every Students Succeeds Act Advisory Committee. To view all of the awards or committees I have been assigned to, see Committees/Task Forces and Awards tab at the top of the page.
In July 2013, I attended the Emerging Leaders Program held at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia for four days. I was nominated by the Speaker of the House and applied for a grant through The State Legislative Leaders Foundation (no cost to Delaware taxpayers). There were participants from almost every state.
Other legislation that I sponsored early on was House Bill 320 (Freedom of Information Act pertaining to minutes being published) and House Bill 337 (uniformity in the timing of school choice applications). To see other bills that I have sponsored see the Sponsored Legislation tab at the top of the page.
I was re-elected in 2014 and 2016, I will serve the 19th District for two more years. Legislation that I have worked on House Bill 12 (funding Basic Special Education Kindergarten through 3rd Grades). To view all legislation that I have introduced, see Sponsored Legislation tab at the top of the page.
I was named 2015 Delaware State Education Association Legislative Friend of Education and received the 2015 Progressive Democrats Delaware Bob Stachnik Progressive Courage Award. October 2016, I received the 2016 Elected Women of Excellence Award. In 2018, I received the 2018 the State Council for Person with Disabilities Life Conference Award.
In 2016, the Delaware SPCA (Stanton) announced that they were closing their doors for good. I worked with a group of advocates to keep the SPCA open. In October 2016, the SPCA Board President announced that they would be reopening the Stanton SPCA. I have served on the board for the last two years, I was elected Vice President and was recently elected President.
The volunteer and elected positions I have held and currently hold and my experience as a longtime education activist, clearly demonstrate my commitment to quality public schools and fiscal responsibility. I carry with me 28 years of ongoing personal relationships with elected officials, educational professionals, teachers, parents, students, and community members.
I have been married to Carl for over 20 years and have two children, Casey and CJ.