Last night, I had the honor of going to Running Start’s Young Women to Watch Awards. Running Start is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that trains young women to run for office. I first got involved with Running Start last fall, as an intern. In that role, I was not only able to learn the inside workings of a political non-profit in DC, but I was also exposed to a plethora of passionate, young, successful women in politics. This exposure, as well as the fact that I was working at an organization whose mission is dedicated to getting more women involved in politics heavily influenced my decision to run for office. I was invited to speak at the Young Women to Watch Awards, alongside Jessica Smith and Allyson Carpenter; both of which are Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners as well. Being able to share my story, and hearing how other women reflect on their own experience getting involved in politics was incredibly powerful.
On a more personal note, both of my parents flew in from Miami, Fl to be there for me at this event. This was my first time be acknowledged at an event for being a DC elected and I was so appreciative that they were able to share that with me. I have always had unconditional love and support from my family, and I truly believe that my drive to succeed stems from my desire to give back to them. This event was a fundraiser, at the National Museum of Women in the Arts. DC politicos, elected officials, donors and young professionals alike were in attendance. My family is not politically active, and we have never gone to fundraising events unless they were PTA fundraisers at the school were my mom works. As a family, we were a little out of our element. However, I knew we belonged where we were- after all, I was being honored as a woman to watch! Being able to share experiences like these with my parents, who have always unconditionally supported and loved me was the most rewarding thing I have ever done. I’m so grateful both to Running Start for opening up the door to the world of politics for me and my family for making me confident enough to walk through it.