Florida Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services
Nikki Fried is the first woman elected to this position and is currently the only Democratic statewide elected official. She won her post in 2018, during a cycle in which Republicans won the governorship and one of Florida’s two Senate seats. Last month, Fried acknowledged that she is considering a run for governor in 2022. Fried is a native Floridian, born and raised in Miami and a graduate of the University of Florida, where she served as student body president, and the University of Florida College of Law. Prior to serving as Florida’s Agriculture Commissioner, she was a public defender for the state’s 8th judicial circuit court. She then worked as a foreclosure defense lawyer and a lobbyist before opening her own lobbying firm in 2016, where she advocated for at-risk children, the Broward County School Board, and expanded access to medical marijuana.
Nevada State Legislator
As the first Latina to serve in the Nevada State Senate, Yvanna Cancela represents that state’s 10th district, which includes the Las Vegas Strip and parts of East Las Vegas. In her speech at the Democratic National Convention, Cancela highlighted the importance of state legislative elections this year due to future redistricting efforts. Before joining the Nevada State Senate, Cancela was the political director for the Culinary Workers Union, giving her strong ties to the powerful Nevada labor movement, and serves as executive director of the Immigrant Workers Citizenship Project. When Ruben Kihuen was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2017, Cancela was selected to represent his former seat. Born in Phoenix to Cuban immigrants, Cancela grew up in Miami before graduating from Northwestern University. In the summer of 2009, she interned for former U.S. Senator Harry Reid.
Georgia State Legislator
Georgia State Representative Sam Park is the grandson of refugees from the Korean War, attended Georgia State University and has represented Georgia’s 101st district since 2017. He was the first openly gay man elected to Georgia’s state legislature, and the first Asian American Democrat elected to the state’s General Assembly. He serves as Deputy Whip of the Georgia House Democratic Caucus and Vice-Chair of the Gwinnett State House Delegation. Park was inspired to run for state office following his mother’s terminal cancer diagnosis and is an advocate for Medicare and Medicaid expansion. Park represents a seat in Gwinnett County, in the Atlanta suburbs, which he flipped in 2016 with a narrow win. Park won reelection in 2018 by double digits, when Democrats gained 11 seats in the state House. During his convention address, Park chose to focus on COVID, as Georgia has the highest rate of new cases in the country, according to the White House Coronavirus Task Force report. He noted that the Gwinnett County Public Schools plan to bring students and teachers back to school during the coronavirus pandemic without proper safety mechanisms in place.
Penn. State Legislator
At 30 years old, Malcolm Kenyatta is one of the youngest members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly, and the only Black and LGBTQ person elected to the state’s legislature. Kenyatta is a North Philadelphia native and graduate from Temple University, which is located in the 181st district that he represents. In his national address at the Democratic National Convention, Kenyatta appeared alongside his fiancé Matthew Miller and emphasized his personal connection to Joe Biden, who was an early supporter for gay marriage. Before representing the 181st district, Kenyatta was a community activist, political consultant, and was elected as a representative to the Democratic National Convention in 2016. During his convention speech, Kenyatta focused on the struggles of service workers in 2020 and has built a strong record of support for racial justice initiatives.