State Representative, District 20 – Utah State Legislature

What is your title and what role do you play within your organization?

State Representative, District 20 – Utah State Legislature

  • Utah State House of Representatives, 2009-current
  • Chair, Economic Development and Workforce Services Standing Committee
  • Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee
  • Public Utilities and Technology Standing Committee
  • Co-Chair, Women in the Economy Commission
  • Governor’s Education Excellence Commission
  • State Workforce Development Board
  • Martha Hughes Cannon Caucus, Co-Founder
  • House Economic Development and Workforce Services Interim Committee
  • Public Utilities and Technology Interim Committee

What boards do you serve on?

  • Real Women Run, Organizing Committee
  • KUED, Board of Directors
  • Intergovernmental Roundtable, Chair
  • Safe Harbor, Board of Directors
  • Utah Voices, Advisory Board
  • Bountiful Communities That Care, Board of Directors
  • Professional Republican Women
  • Davis County Republican Women

In what other ways are you involved in the community?

  • Volunteer pianist, LDS Conference Center and Joseph Smith Memorial Building
  • School volunteer
  • Church volunteer
  • Community choir member

Tell us your most rewarding professional experience.

Air Quality continues to be a top priority for my constituents since my election in 2008.  In 2015 I passed, after several years of working the issue, a significant piece of air quality legislation allowing Utah to create state-specific rules that exceed the federal EPA.  Our state experts can now use Utah data to strategically target policies to gain the most impact in cleaning our air.  This was a big win for clean air and took years of collaborate work with advocates, industry, and community members.

What do you see as the biggest challenge women face in business today? What is your recommendation to resolve that issue?

Women are making great strides in both business and government, however, there continue to be opportunities for improvement.  Utah has one of the lowest percentages of women serving in elected office in the U.S.  Several boards I serve on have this as a focus, by providing training, education, and mentoring for women interested in running for office.  Through my work as Co-Chair of the Women in the Economy Commission I have been involved in helping working women and families achieve greater economic stability and independence.  My background as a marriage and family therapist has been built on my commitment to strengthening families, and my legislative priorities often revolve around issues that directly help working parents and families.

What motivates you?

My faith, a wonderfully supportive family, and a genuine desire to make a difference in my community are all things that both motivate and inspire me.

What pearl of wisdom or tip would you share with young female professionals?

The importance of overcoming the fear of stepping up, taking a risk, and making your voice heard.  Every day, women make a difference, and most of those difference makers are regular women, Mom’s, daughters, PTA volunteers.  Everyday women that have stepped up to use their skills, passions, and abilities to serve their community. Don’t wait to be asked by others, step up and serve. It will change your perspective and change your community.

Education:

B.S., Home Economics Education, Brigham Young University

M.S.W., Brigham Young University

M.S., Marriage and Family Therapy, Brigham Young University