Out of the Blocks: My First 10 days on Capitol Hill

September 27, 2011

Picture from http://writeontrackla.com/

“More than ever, women are leading or running for office in many of the world’s largest nations, demanding that representation inch closer to parity.”

The battle call is clear.

From Argentina to Germany, from India to Australia and from Liberia to Thailand, women are running for and winning elected offices  increasing their political participation on a global scale.

No matter whether they serve as prime ministers, parliament members or presidents, these courageous people had to get their start somewhere.

Thus, when I began my fellowship on Capitol Hill as a Walmart Star Fellow, it was not only my commitment to answer the call, but to get a Running Start.

Unfortunately, my readiness to serve did not prepare me for the fast-paced life of a Hill staffer.
I have written thank you letters to Israeli and Palestinian officials, drafted talking points for a policy conference and answered phone calls from many frustrated constituents.

My internship has given me golden opportunities. I attended the Congressional Black Caucus’ Annual Legislative Conference where Barack Obama made his passionate marching call to black leaders. I also learned a great deal in my first briefing on a bill intended to use stem cells on stroke victims. Moreover, I have got to work with some really phenomenal people, my congresswoman being on the top of that list.

Watching history happen in real time in the place decisions are made is definitely a privilege; it is also a big responsibility.

I must be ever mindful of every word that I say and my tone of voice when speaking with callers. I have become a very patient listener, because I know that I represent my congresswoman and indirectly the U.S. government.

After spending 10 days on “The Hill,” I have learned more about the legislative process than I ever could have sitting in a government class.

What an exciting way to start my life after college.

I’m answering the call. Will you?

Star Fellow: Kindall Johnson
In the Office of: Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson (FL-17)

Graduate of: Florida A&M University
Degree: B.S. in Public Relations, Minor in Arabic

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.