100 years ago, after decades of fighting for equality, white women won the right to vote with ratification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Unfortunately, it would be decades longer before all women, including Black, Latina, Asian, and Indigenous women, also won this right.

To achieve suffrage, women had to appeal to the all white, male Congress and State Legislatures. New York women, however, have a history of taking matters into our own hands. In 1918, more than a year before Congress passed the 19th Amendment, two women ran for the NYS Assembly and were elected – Ida Sammis, an influential suffrage leader, and Mary Lilly, the first woman admitted to practice law in the State of NY. Sammis focused on labor legislation to protect women; within the first two weeks of being seated she sponsored a bill that became law. Lilly focused on protecting children’s rights, abolishing the death penalty for minors, and speaking up for incarcerated women. Their boldness and intelligence were a threat to others who worked to ensure their defeat at the next elections.

What does this have to do with the June 23 primary election for the 125th District in the State Assembly?

Simply put, women have had to fight for seats in the State Legislature and we’re not about to stop now. NY State prides itself in being a progressive state, yet only 32% of the Assembly seats are filled by women, and 30% in the Senate. We can and must do better.

We believe Anna Kelles is the best candidate in this race. She has the skills, knowledge, relationships, and record to prove it. Especially in this historic moment of growth and change, we are proud to support a candidate who will help our state government become less exclusive and more welcoming to all.

Anna’s boldness and intelligence on the issues and needs of the residents of the 125th Assembly district are exactly what we need in the Assembly. Her voice is strong – an asset that is required in order to get resources to our district and secure necessary protections for our most vulnerable citizens. She will push in Albany for universal health care, affordable childcare, new green jobs, affordable housing, and more.?

Anna’s relationships throughout our community run deep. For example, she helped organize the Emergency Food Task Force and Food Hub in response to COVID-19. As a Tompkins County Legislator, she authored immigrant rights protections that were adopted, and has fought for living wages, additional childcare funding, and stronger support for affordable housing. These are just a few examples of her deep thinking around policy, and her commitment to implementing it, to benefit the people.?

Where Anna sees a problem, she analyzes the problem and then jumps into action. We need her energetic, fact-based, proactive approach in Albany, working for all of us. We, the undersigned, ask you to visit https://www.kelles4ny.com/ to learn more, and then vote for the best person to represent us in the 125th District – Anna Kelles.?

  • Martha Robertson
  • Judith Ashton
  • Colleen Boland
  • Laurie Damiani
  • Zillah Eisenstein
  • Josephine Gibson
  • Belisa Gonzalez
  • Leni Hochman
  • Susan Lang
  • Enid Littman?
  • Linda Mack?
  • Sally McConnell-Ginet?
  • Davi Mozie
  • Barbara Platek
  • Beth Prentice
  • Robin Rosoff?
  • Deborah Streeter?
  • Valerie Sykes
  • Maddy Walsh?
  • Karen Yearwood
  • Sharon Ziegler

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