- About the YEO Network
- Front Line Leaders Academy
- Strategic Partnerships
State Representative Dwight Bullard
"Why I ran for office"
I decided to run for office when I noticed that there would be a gap in leadership in my community. My parents, a long time ago, had instilled in me a desire to serve and it was that desire that led to my initial run in 2008. Coincidentally, there was also a senator from Illinois running for higher office that made the desire to run that much greater. Those three things combined to open my eyes to elected public service.
My greatest challenge and success, thus far, has been reshaping the discussion on education in the Florida House. Challenging, because I never imagined it would be this difficult. As the nation moves towards a more conservative and less inclusive model for education, I have tried to keep Florida more enlightened and progressive. Successful, because I have been able to bring my work as a schoolteacher and directly influence legislation. It has made all the difference in the world being able to present a practical perspective to the education discussion.
Currently, I am excited to be working on two pieces of legislation that came as a direct result of meeting with other YEOs. I have introduced legislation to strengthen existing anti-bullying legislation in schools, by better defining cyber bullying and including emotional hurt as a category. The second piece of legislation is a Florida DREAM Act, which gives in-state tuition to undocumented students. I am thankful that PFAW and the YEO Network have given me the chance to see how legislation like this has worked in other states.