Personal biography

I am a native Nashvillian born the oldest of five children who all attended Nashville public schools. I have three sisters and one brother who are either small business owners, teachers or administrative personnel. My father was a Metro police officer who established the Metro Youth Aid and Vice Squad divisions of the Metro Police Department and my mother is retired from the Metro Trustee’s office.

I am very lucky to have two great children, and a great daughter-in-law. My son, Ricky, is a teacher and coach in public school and his wife, Carrie, is a reading specialist in public school. My daughter, Summer, has a degree in social work and is currently working in the public school system. My granddaughter, Bailey, is 8 years old, beautiful and wise beyond her years. My grandson, Aidan, is a precious, fearless 4 year old boy. Since my political career began my family has been its backbone. Everyone in the family helps with the signs, phone calls and election day.

Political biography

I served as a Metro Nashville Council Member for eight years and during that time I also served as a member of the Metro Nashville Planning Commission. I have served seven terms in the General Assembly and I have been on committees that I feel seriously affect the lives of average working people, women, children, education and healthcare. I serve on Children and Family Affairs as committee Vice-Chair, Chair the Domestic Relations Committee, Member of Family Justice Committee, Health and Human Services Committee, Public Health Committee, Professional Occupations Committee, Consumer and Employee Affairs Committee, and am Chair of the Select Committee on Children and Youth.

I have served as the Davidson County Delegation Chair for two terms. I am a member of the Tennessee Economic Council on Women, Exchange Club Board Member, Nashville Women’s Political Caucus; Davidson County Democratic Women, and a volunteer for C.A.S.A. (Court appointed special advocates). I am a member of the Committee on Housing Solutions for Mental Health and Vice Chair of the Tennessee Coalition Against Domestic Violence Board. I am also a Mom, Grandmama, and every once in a while I’ll plant a flower or listen to a book on CD in the car just to think about something that has nothing to do with anything important.

I have been fortunate to receive awards for my leadership in the General Assembly from: Here is a list of my sponsored and co-sponsored bills. I have taken very strong stands on women and children issues and take great pride in being considered by some as one of the strongest voices for women in the Legislature. I am especially proud to be the House Member that other Members feel they can rely on for information and honest facts regarding children issues. Children’s advocates come to me with difficult issues so I can help them do what is best for children in Tennessee. I have always done and will always do everything I can to make lives better for the average working man and woman.