Class of 2020 Endorsed Candidate: Bride Rose Sweeney
Bride Sweeney is running to be a trailblazer for women and young people in government. As one of the youngest members in the Ohio legislature during her first term in office, Representative Sweeney was selected to serve on the Finance Committee, responsible for overseeing Ohio’s $70 billion budget and was successful in passing two pieces of legislation. When re-elected, she will continue to work relentlessly to make Ohio a better place to live, work, and retire with dignity.
Meet The Candidate
1) In your interview with the Endorsement Committee, you shared a personal life experience that led you to the decision to run for office. Can you tell our members a little bit about your journey to filing as a candidate?
I would not be in my current position, as the youngest democratic lawmaker in the entire General Assembly or the first woman to ever represent the 14th house district, if it wasn’t for my mother and the last conversation I ever had with her. My mother passed away 5 years ago and she made me promise that I would never let anyone make me feel less than myself and to challenge myself to take risks and live the life I wanted. When I met the other candidates running for this seat last election cycle, I knew in my heart that I was the most qualified person for the position and it was that promise to my mother that propelled me into taking the giant leap into actually running for office at the age of 25.
2) Many of you cited a specific person whose strength was an inspiration to you. Can you tell me about a woman who has had a big influence on your life and inspired you to become a leader? What lessons did she teach you?
My mother was one of 13 children growing up. After high school she had a school counselor tell her that she was not smart enough for college and going would be too great of a burden for her parents. So my mom went to x-ray tech school to earn a certificate and began working right after school. She ended up being so good at her job that she became the head of her department, and was the only department head that didn’t have a college degree. She decided to fulfill her life long dream of earning a college degree and went back to school while still working full time and raising 4 children. She realized she was not only very capable of attending college but she exceeded at it. That’s the value she instilled in me, to find the inner confidence to live the life I wanted and to do so with dignity and grace.
3) Some of you are military veterans, some small business owners, some professionals, some mothers and grandmothers, some homemakers. How did one of these experiences shape who you are as a person and a leader?
I worked in the Ohio Senate right after college, first starting as a Legislative Service Commission Fellow then moved up to a variety of positions within the Ohio Senate Democratic Caucus. This time cemented my desire to want to make a career out of public service. I had a front-row seat to a government, I believed, passed harmful policy for my community back home, and more often than not a legislature that failed to act on good policies to make Ohio a better place to live, work and raise a family. I saw first hand the dramatic impact of not having enough women in places of power and I know that experience has led me to where I am today.
4) The Matriots PAC has a bold goal to see 50% of all elected offices in Ohio held by women by 2028. What is your vision for Ohio in 2028?
Ohio 2028, we will look back and say “Wasn’t it crazy that women only made up 22% of the State Legislature?!” as we chuckle at how absurd that notion was. All while celebrating our victories of the past like finally passing common-sense legislation such as paid family leave and equal pay for equal work.
5) Tip O’Neill famously said that “all politics is local.” What are the top-two issues your community faces today?
1. Unaffordable, Accessible, and Quality healthcare
2. Voting access, especially in a global pandemic. No one should have to choose between risking their life and voting in our elections.
6) Now for fun: Tell us something personal about yourself. It can be a hobby, your favorite food, a funny pet story, something we might not know about you that you would like to share with our members.
I absolutely love to travel and explore new places. Before taking office I traveled to India solo and it was one of the most thrilling, scary, exciting experiences of my life.