Michela Skelton and family

My name is Michela Skelton, and I am ready to be the representative for Missouri’s 50th House District.  The citizens of the 50th House District need someone who will hear all of their voices and stand up for them in Jefferson City.

I grew up in rural Alabama in a place that didn’t have fences to keep people out, but to keep horses and goats in. My brothers and I spent summer afternoons with other neighbor kids wading in the creek, fishing in the pond and climbing trees. We went to church dinners on Wednesdays and spent countless spring and summer nights cheering on little leaguers with the whole town.

When my father retired from the military after 20 years of service and moved us to suburban Indianapolis a part of me was lost. I finally found it again when I moved to Boone County with my husband five years ago to raise our children. I am proud to again live in a close-knit community rooted in shared values like hard work, family and a love for nature. I’m thrilled my children will live a life close to the land where we swap eggs from our own chickens for honey or fresh goat milk from the neighbors.

Growing up in a rural community instilled values and lessons that continue to shape my life. The community was always there to celebrate the good times and help lift you up in the bad.

Service and hard work have been a part of my identity since I was a child. My parents met when they were both serving in the Air Force. Their work ethic and commitment to family and community helped push me forward. I began my own working life at 15 as a page at the local library, and continued working through getting my Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Master’s degree in Public Administration and Policy Analysis from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

During graduate school, I had the honor of meeting with a distant cousin — former U.S. Rep. Ike Skelton — in his Washington, D.C., office. One of the highlights of my life was having the chance to talk with Congressman Skelton about public policy, my desire to go to law school and my admiration for his service to the people of Missouri.

After working in both the private sector and the federal government, I went back to school again, this time for a law degree from Washington University in St. Louis. While in school, I interned at a nonprofit fighting against housing discrimination. I worked with broken families and hurting children as a guardian ad litem. I made time to volunteer with Big Brothers Big Sisters so I could make a difference in the life of at least one child and continue to do so today.

Our first child was born my last semester of law school. After graduation, I looked for a job that fit both my passion for public service and my desire to be an active and engaged parent. I found what felt like the perfect fit as an attorney for the Missouri Senate.

Working for the non-partisan Senate research office, I drafted dozens of bills for senators on both sides of the political aisle. I gained invaluable legislative experience and got a firsthand look at what it takes to get a bill from concept through committees and floor debate and on to the Governor’s desk.

But I also saw just how broken the system can be, how the deck is stacked against working families and everyday Missourians. Working for the Senate opened my eyes to the true level of dysfunction in our state government. The needs and desires of lobbyists, big-money donors and out-of-state special interests almost always won out at the expense of citizens and local communities.

I want to serve as the representative of the 50th House District because I believe everyone should have a chance to get ahead. But right now millionaires, billionaires and big business are buying our government. I want to be the voice for everyone who is working hard and facing unending obstacles and those altogether left behind by our corrupted system.

I am ready to stand up and fight for you and for our community. My door and my heart will always be open.

michela skelton