If you get excited about big picture questions and issues facing your state, you enjoy fast-paced work, and you love to see your impact, then you should run for your state legislature!
The state legislature is made up of state representatives and/or state senators. Members of the state legislature represent their home districts at the state capitol and serve on committees to ensure the effective governance of the state. Members of these committees examine, research, investigate, and vote on legislation that relates to the committee’s purpose, such as agriculture, transportation, or education. Last, but certainly not least, state legislators uphold the system of checks and balances by providing oversight to the state executive branch (governor).
The state determines the age and residency requirements necessary for someone to run for the legislature, but here are some general skills that will help you succeed in this role:
- Ability to articulate a vision and action steps to get there
- Comfort with negotiation and collaboration
- Strong oral and written communication skills
- Ability to organize and prioritize work
- Willingness to travel back and forth to the state capitol
Did you know: in 2020, 2,161 of the 7,383 (29.3%) state legislators in the United States are women. 520 of these women are serving in their state senates, and 1,641 are serving in state house or assembly seats. Since 1971, there are 5 times as many women serving in state legislatures. We still need more women in office, and we think YOU should run.
- If you’re thinking, “Well, maybe, but…” hold your buts because you need a pep talk. Check out our 26 Common Barriers to Running for Office!
- Get all of the details about what a State Legislator does, what’s required, what they get paid, and more in our Public Office Profile Suite.
- Ready to run for office? Download our Step by Step Guide for Getting Started Running for Office.
- All of the above? Join the She Should Run Community where you have all the connection, inspiration, and information you need to consider and prepare for run for office.