Erica Abel (R), Kent
Erica teaches third grade at Marshall Elementary, a National Blue Ribbon School in Byron Center. Erica is the Student Council leader and promotes engagement and learning by organizing community events. She received her Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Huntington University, where she also studied Communications. Erica has her Master's degree in Literacy Studies from Grand Valley State University, and attended summer institutes at the Teacher's College of Columbia University. She is a founding partner of Whimsical Writer's Club, Inc., as well as the author of Minna and the Canine Club, a children’s book series. Erica attends Grace Community Church.
Nyjai Black (D), Wayne
Nyjai is currently the Network Engagement Manager for the Michigan After-School Partnership. Nyjai was born and raised in Detroit, MI. She received her bachelor’s degree in Public Policy with a minor in City Development from Michigan State University in 2020. While at MSU Nyjai studied abroad in Australia and New Zealand. She was guest speaker/panelist for MSU political-science classes informing students about civic engagement. Nyjai is the former Communications Director/Finance Operations-Manager for Duggan for Detroit.
Lisa Brayton (R), Kalamazoo
Lisa was recently elected to the Portage City Council for a 4-year term. She is passionate about community service and is interested in Public Safety, the fire department and EMT services. She graduated from the University of Detroit – Mercy as an undergraduate and has a degree in science and dental hygienist from University of Detroit – Mercy School of Dentistry. She has worked in the dental/healthcare field for 35 years and currently works with her husband at Dr. Daniel J. Brayton DDS. Lisa volunteered for the GOP and served as secretary from 2019-2021. She has volunteered on several political campaigns, attended numerous fund raisers, and believes in encouraging people to run for all levels of government.
Jessica Brutzman (R), Grand Traverse
Jessica is an Associate Real Estate Broker with Berkshire Hathaway Home Services of Michigan. She received her Bachelors from Spring Arbor University in Organizational Management. Jessica is a proud military spouse. She currently serves on the Grand Traverse County Parks and Recreation Commission, the City of Traverse City Coast Guard Committee. As well as serving as a Board Director for Aspire North Realtors and is a member of the Realtor Political Action Committee.
Sarah Burch (D), Washtenaw
Sarah is a Senior DEI Consultant with Plante Moran for their campus recruitment team. She is a single mother, activist, and grass-roots organizer and previously worked in student engagement and is a scholar at the University of Michigan. She’s currently pursuing her second Master’s degree in the School of Education, with a concentration in Educational Equity, Justice, and Social Transformation. Sarah is committed to elevating the needs of marginalized groups through civic engagement. Currently she serves on the committee for Power of the Purse, through United Way of Washtenaw County.
Tom Curtis (D), Ingham
Tom is currently the Deputy Director of State Affairs for the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). He previously served in the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) in public health, policy/legislative services, and Medicaid. He has also served as an elected school board member. He currently serves on the Ingham Health Plan Board providing healthcare coverage for the uninsured. Tom received his Master’s degree in Public Administration from Central Michigan University.
Brittney Ellis (D), Oakland
Brittney is currently a municipal attorney at The Kelly Firm. She is the elected Vice-Chair of the Oakland County Conservation District and dedicates her time to ensuring Oakland County Residents have access to natural resource information and technical assistance. Brittney is also a member of the OCBA Municipal Law Committee. She earned her B.A. in Environmental Studies from Lake Forest College and her Juris Doctor from Michigan State University College of Law.
Emily Henderson (I), Ingham
Emily is a government affairs consultant with RWC Advocacy, a bipartisan government affairs law firm based in Lansing. In her current role, Emily lobbies on behalf of clients with a significant focus on state-level health and human services issues. Prior to joining RWC Advocacy full-time in 2020, Emily served as a legislative and regulatory affairs intern for the firm. Her initial hands-on experience in government affairs was as an intern in Washington D.C. for Johnson & Johnson’s Federal Government Affairs team. Emily received her Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from James Madison College at Michigan State University.
Elaina Huizenga-Chase (R), Kent
Elaina currently serves as a project manager for road construction for the MDOT. She has worked for the department, first for 4 years as an intern, and for the past two years as project manager. Elaina received her bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering as well as Business Minor from Calvin University in 2020. Elaina passed her Fundamentals of Engineering exam in 2021. In addition to her profession, Elaina has experience as a Walker City Planning Commissioner from 2018 – 2019, and currently serves as the Third Ward City Commissioner, first appointed in 2019 and elected in 2020. In her spare time, Elaina enjoys spending time with her husband and family, hunting and gardening.
Jordan Jorritsma (R), Ottawa
Jordan is currently the Legislative Director for State Senator Curt VanderWall. He previously served in this role for State Representative Greg VanWoerkom. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Economics from Calvin University. Jordan previously served as the campaign coordinator for Congressman Bill Huizenga during the 2020 election cycle. He is a member of Harderwyk Ministries in Holland and volunteers at Camp Roger in Rockford where he worked as a counselor in college.
Abby Klomparens (D), Ingham
Abby currently serves as Legislative Director for State Representative Christine Morse. After completing her bachelor’s degree at Grand Valley State University, Abby worked as a legislative and campaign intern for Senator Winnie Brinks before accepting a full-time position in the Michigan Legislature in 2019. In the past, Abby has served the Holland community as a board member for the Macatawa Area Transit Authority Board, Holland Museum docent, and a member of the League of Women Voters. In her spare time, Abby enjoys fostering homeless pets, and assisting Next Generation Women as a volunteer social media coordinator.
Taylor Lawrence (D), Genesee
Taylor is currently the Legislative Director for State Representative Kyra Harris Bolden of the 35th House District (Southfield & Southfield Twp). He earned his B.S. in Political Science from Eastern Michigan University. Taylor has previously managed a State House race while also serving in multiple roles for Congressman Dan Kildee and State Senator Jeremy Moss.
Ashley McBride (D), Oakland
Ashley is currently leading the Community Engagement division at Oakland County as Community Engagement Manager. She received her Juris Doctor from University of Detroit Mercy and her Bachelor's degree in Political Science from Wayne State University. Ashley has worked as the Legislative Policy Director for State Representative Kyra Harris Bolden, as a Law Clerk in the Third Judicial Circuit for the Hon. Leslie Kim Smith, and practiced Immigration Law. She serves on the Executive Committee of the Northern Oakland County branch NAACP and is an active member of her church where she has organized feeding the homeless and providing mentorship for young girls.
Mitchell Moore (R), Ingham
Mitch is currently the Legislative Director for State Representative Mark Tisdel. He previously worked for former Representatives Mike Webber and Daniela Garcia. He earned his BA in Political Science from Albion College and his MA in International Peace & Security from King's College London in the United Kingdom. Mitch has interned with the U.S. Department of State, working at the U.S. Embassy in Lusaka, Zambia (Africa).
Scott Nagy (D), Schoolcraft
Scott is currently the Information Technology Manager at Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital in Manistique. He graduated from Central Michigan University with a Bachelor's degree in Political Science and also earned his Master of Science in Administration with a concentration in Public Administration from CMU. Scott served the constituents of the Upper Peninsula as an intern for former 38th District State Senator Tom Casperson. As a Yooper, Scott enjoys year-round outdoor recreation activities and has coached a variety of youth sports over the last 15 years.
Gary Ringer (D), Wayne
Gary serves his community as a Detroit Firefighter. That experience and exposure lead to local and national recognition for his leadership in addressing environmental health disparities and environmental justice within neglected communities. As a Culture of Health Leader, with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, he collaborates with residents to advance health and equity. Gary is currently Director of Community and Economic Development at Joy Southfield CDC. He recently partnered with the Association of Black Psychologist, Inc. to assess the mental health needs within the African American community regarding the effects of the pandemic.
Brittney Rocha (R), Kent
Brittney is currently a Policy Advisor for the Senate Majority Policy Office focusing on Transportation & Infrastructure and Joint Committee on Administrative Rules. She received her Juris Doctor and Mater of Laws in Taxation from Western Michigan Thomas M. Cooley Law School. Brittney has worked for State Senator Jim Stamas, State Senator Wayne Schmidt, and State Representative Mary Whiteford. Brittney is a currently licensed to practice law in the States of Michigan and Indiana.
Jack Schroeder (I), Oakland
Jack is currently the Constituent Services Director for State Representative Shri Thanedar in the Michigan House of Representatives. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Social Relations and Policy from James Madison College at Michigan State University, with an Additional Major in Psychology. Jack previously worked as a Regional Field Director for a campaigning firm, CADC-LLC. He currently serves as co-chair of the Community Violence Action Group at Science Policy Network-Detroit. He is also an active volunteer at the Children’s Center in Detroit where he provides educational support for grade school students.
Emerson Silvernail (R), Kent
Emerson currently works as the Legislative Director for State Senator Mark Huizenga. He graduated from Calvin University with a double major in both Political Science & Interdisciplinary Studies in Business, Sociology, & Philosophy. During his studies, he served his peers as Student Body President and interned in Congress. Emerson previously ran for Byron Township Trustee and now represents his community on the Kent County GOP Executive Committee.
Eric-John Szczepaniak (D), Kent
Eric-John serves as President of the Michigan Center for Civic Education and on the Kenowa Hills school board, the body’s first LGBTQ+ member. A collegiate baseball umpire, he has directed three Little League programs. He is the youngest-ever recipient of the President’s Award from MASB, the highest honor bestowed upon a Michigan school board member. He holds a B.A. in Public & Nonprofit Administration from GVSU and studies Election Administration through the University of Minnesota.
Jason Towler (I), Washtenaw
Jason is currently a Special Education Teacher and Michigan Rehabilitation Services liaison for Washtenaw ISD. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Special Education from Eastern Michigan University and Master’s degree in Educational Administration from Concordia University. Jason has been President & Legislative Liaison for the Michigan Transition Service Association and a founding member of the Michigan Interagency Transition Team. He is active in the community supporting homeless, adjudicated, and disabled adults with life skills.
Marcelis Turner (R), Wayne
Marcelis is currently a senior at Wayne State University double majoring in urban planning and political science with focuses in urban sustainability and African studies, and cyber security certifications from Cisco through Automation Workz Institute. Marcelis ran for state representative at the age of 24 in 2018 for Michigan House of Representatives District 7 winning the primary and losing the general election. He is an active member in the communities in Detroit, Hamtramck and Highland Park having worked with multiple churches, non-profits and coalitions to address crime, housing, water, food and economic issues plaguing urban communities.
Don Ufford (R), Oakland
Don is currently a science and technology policy fellow in the Office of Advanced Manufacturing at NIST in the U.S. Department of Commerce. He received his B.S. in engineering from South Dakota State University, his MS from Purdue and his MBA from the University of Michigan. Don was an engineer and global leader in the automotive industry for over 30 years with assignments in Japan and Germany. He is an active member of his church, Michigan scouting, FIRST Robotics and the SCORE business mentoring program.
Mai Xiong (D), Macomb
Mai was elected in 2020 to serve a 2-year term on the Macomb County Board of Commissioners. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design from the College for Creative Studies. Mai is the designer and founder of the modern Hmong American clothing brand Mai&Co. She was born in a refugee camp in Thailand in 1984. Mai and her family sought asylum and were relocated to the United States in 1987. Mai currently serves as a board member of the Macomb Food Program and volunteers for the Center Line Lions Club.