Candidate Column: Meghan Lukens for Colorado House
My name is Meghan Lukens, and I am running to be the next representative of state House District 26, which now includes Routt, Moffat, Rio Blanco and Eagle counties. I am honored to be running in this beautiful district that I have called home since 2003. As someone who grew up in, lives in and works in the district, I have deep-rooted connections within the community. House District 26 is filled with such wonderful, hard-working people, many of whom I have known my entire life, and we need a strong advocate in our state legislature.
My education and teaching experience led me to run for office. I graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder and have my master’s degree in Leadership in Educational Organizations with a principal’s licensure. As soon as a position opened, I returned to Steamboat to teach social studies in the Steamboat Springs School District.
As your future representative, my goal is to get common-sense results for our community. Therefore, my campaign is focused on the interconnected issues that impact people in our communities every day: the economy, the environment and education.
In relation to the economy, in our district and in many parts of Colorado, our high cost of living makes it challenging for locals to thrive, especially with the increase in housing prices. This is a true crisis in Colorado. As a person living off a teacher’s salary, I understand the struggles of affording to live in our communities. I look forward to addressing the affordability issues by prioritizing the affordable housing crisis and the early childcare crisis, as both are contributing to our workforce shortage.
My environmental priorities include addressing our 22-year megadrought by supporting Western Slope water and advocating for wildfire mitigation and prevention efforts. Environmental action and green energy create jobs and make economic sense for our district. I am fortunate to have grown up in Colorado, the most beautiful state, and therefore I am dedicated to maintaining our beautiful public lands and addressing climate threats.
As a teacher, I understand that in order for our democracy to be successful, it is imperative we have a quality education system. However, Colorado consistently ranks lowest in comparison to other states when it comes to supporting education, so much so that teachers are struggling to afford to live in our beautiful state. It is crucial for the legislators at the state Capitol to support Colorado’s students and teachers, especially in rural districts, by fully funding public schools and their programs.
Given that the Supreme Court has overturned Roe v. Wade, it is more important now than ever that we elect pro-choice candidates to all levels of government. In this election, reproductive rights and freedoms are on the line, and I am the only pro-choice candidate in this race. Reproductive rights in our state must be protected, and I am the candidate who will protect them.
I have a wide range of support from those fighting for a better future. Conservation Colorado, Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado, EMILY’s List and the Colorado Telecommunications Association are among the organizations that have endorsed me. I have also been endorsed by leaders including Gov. Jared Polis, Sen. Michael Bennet and state Rep. Dylan Roberts. If you would like to see more of my endorsements, you can do so at MeghanLukens.com.
The people in our communities are unique, and we need a unique representative like me. We support each other. We have diverse interests. We are proud to live in our towns. We walk through the grocery stores, and we know people on every aisle. We get rowdy at every home football, volleyball and hockey game. We mountain bike hard, and ski even harder. We have this endless sense of adventure in each and every one of us. We get involved in our community by being on boards, coaching and civically participating. We volunteer and donate at our many nonprofits. We celebrate the Olympics like no one else can because we see our friends and family members competing. I know that we do all these things because, for most of my life, I have called these communities home.
House District 26 needs a leader who can rise above polarization and negativity. That leader is me. I am running to help people in HD 26 and get results for our communities. Education unites us, so let’s send a teacher to the Colorado State Legislature.
Meghan Lukens is running for District 26 in the Colorado House.
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