Breaking Barriers: The Links, Inc. Celebrates Women of Color in Kansas Politics

By Trish Svoboda

The Topeka Chapter of The Links Incorporated will host “It’s Our Time Kansas!” – A Celebration of Women of Color Candidates. This event will highlight four women of color running for State Legislative seats in Kansas. The State Senate candidates are ShaMecha King Simms and Stacey Knoell, and the State House Candidates are Brooklynne Mosley and Jessica “JP” Porter.

The Links, Incorporated is a global, non-profit, and non-partisan corporation with a membership of 17,000 professional women of color. They are spread across 299 chapters in 41 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, and the U.K. As one of the oldest and largest volunteer service organizations in the nation, it encompasses women dedicated to enhancing, preserving, and ensuring the cultural and economic survival of women of color, with a focus on African Americans and those of African descent.

Running for political office as a woman of color frequently involves challenges that are not typically seen across racial and gender lines. Chairwoman Jeanna Repass of the Kansas Democratic Party said that women have always had to fight against a glass ceiling, and politics has been a particularly difficult ceiling to break through. She said the glass ceiling is more like a cement block, necessitating unified support for Women of Color candidates. She highlighted the importance of organizations like the Links in promoting Women’s empowerment and advancement opportunities.

It’s Our Time Kansas! Will be presented at the home of Leslie Fleuranges (5729 SW Postoak Drive Topeka, KS 66610) from 6:00 – 7:30 PM (speakers program at 6:30) and will include light refreshments, and remarks from each of the featured candidates, Chapter Vice President of the Topeka (KS) Chapter of The Links Incorporated Topeka Kimberley Brown, former YWCA Northeast KS CEO Kathleen Marker, with special guest Jeanna Repass.

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