Representative Kyrsten Sinema
2016 NASW National Conference Speaker
U.S. Congresswoman (AZ-9)
In the Arizona where Kyrsten Sinema grew up, strong schools and tight-knit communities meant opportunity for future generations. The hard-working middle class could get ahead, and government was there to help ensure that there was opportunity for all who were willing to work hard and play by the rules.
Sinema knows firsthand the struggles families face. As someone whose family at times faced serious poverty growing up, she knows what it means to struggle just to meet the most basic needs. For three years, her family lived in an old gas station – a rectangle building with no electricity or running water.
Luckily, her hard work in school paid off with a full-ride scholarship to college. She also saved money by earning over 60 college course credits at community college while attending high school.
After college, Sinema became a social worker helping struggling families. She soon realized that the problems they came to her with – poverty, homelessness, job loss, abuse – were common to so many families, and that solving these problems meant thinking bigger than one family at a time. It required fighting for real change to rebuild an America that works for ALL Americans.
So Sinema went back to school and started working at the grassroots level to help people access our leaders and talk about their needs. She helped them argue for better schools and fought to ensure that the services we fund were actually helping the people who need and deserve them. Her feeling was that if she could help these struggling people change the circumstances in which they live, instead of just giving them a food box and trying to help them find a place to sleep for a night, that she had done her job.
Because she believes that everyone should get the same shot and that the system should not favor those at the very top, she ran for the legislature and won.
There she worked to pass tough immigration laws, securing funding for our vets, working to provide business incentives for job creation and fighting back against attempts to gut basic health care for kids, cuts to services for the elderly and dramatic drops to school funding.
Sinema brings passion and knowledge to the causes she fights for – and a unique ability to win. In 2011, Kyrsten was lauded by the Arizona Republic for her “remarkable” ability to “partner with Republicans in both the House and Senate” to pass legislation while remaining “a staunch defender of key Democratic priorities.”
Sinema is committed to helping our country return to the values that make America great—the same values that have guided her life so far: hard work, access to public education, fairness and opportunity. Sinema takes her passion and talent into the 114th Congress, serving Arizona’s Ninth Congressional District. She has been to appointed to House Committee on Financial Services.
Named third most bipartisan member of the House of Representatives and the most bipartisan Democrat in the new 2015 Bipartisan Index, U.S. Chamber Spirit of Enterprise Award Recipient (2016), and Friend of the National Parks Award Recipient (2015).