JUST A POOR KID FROM ELOY
I come from a family of farmworkers and grew up in Eloy, Arizona. At a young age, I worked along side my parents in the cotton fields in the hot Arizona sun. But despite how hard my parents worked, they still found it difficult to make ends meet, and we often found ourselves on government assistance programs like: food stamps, AHCCCS, and Section 8 housing. My siblings and I were the kids on free lunch at school.
I make it a point to talk about growing up in poverty and sharing the struggles we experienced, because it's a story that often isn't told. Yet, it's the story of so many families still struggling to get by in our District. This is a reflection of the failed elected leadership that has represented our District for years.
I was the kid who wasn't supposed to make it out of poverty. See, kids like me aren't expected to go to college or get good paying jobs. Kids like me aren't supposed to aspire to be more or do more. Kids like me certainly aren't supposed to run for office - and kids like me rarely do.
At seventeen, I answered the call to serve my country and joined the US Navy. I served one enlistment, honorably, before answering the call to serve again – this time as a US Marine. Over my 20-year military career, I served in three combat environments across Iraq and Afghanistan. I’ve been entrusted to lead hundreds of Marines in various leadership positions and situations. I've also had the honor of making Marines and Marine Officers as a Drill Instructor. I’ve served my entire adult life, holding leadership roles among both service members and civilians.
As a poor kid from Eloy, I’ve never forgotten my roots or the challenges I've overcome that place me here today. I fought my way out of poverty, I fought to protect our Constitutional rights, and now I stand ready to fight for the people of Arizona, as you next State Senator in District 11.