Arizona State Senator Jamescita Mae Peshlakai will resign from her position in the Arizona Legislature and accept a role in the Biden administration, according to a letter she submitted to Senate President Karen Fann and Minority Leader Rebecca Rios.
While complete details of her new job have not been released, she is expected to join the Department of the Interior, working for Secretary Deb Haaland who was the first Native American woman to assume the title.
In a similar manner, Peshlakai was the first Native American woman elected to serve in the Arizona Senate.
“Our democratic republic is a true treasure, and I will miss serving with my colleagues, staff, and all those who make the work we do at the state legislature possible. My dedication to public service will never end nor will my work for the people of Arizona. It has been the honor of my lifetime to have served the people of Arizona and I am immensely grateful for the experience,” she wrote.
— Coconino County Democrats (@CoconinoDems) December 22, 2021
Before being elected to serve in the Senate, Peshlakai also served in the Arizona House of Representatives.
Multiple elected officials in the legislature have announced their departure in recent months. For example, State Reps. Charlene Fernandez and Arlando Teller also accepted positions under President Biden.
Fernandez and Teller will serve within the U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Transportation, respectively.
“I have had the opportunity to represent working families, teachers, farmers and so many more who have taught me the great need for continued action across our state. I will continue serving those communities, with the same Democratic values, in a new capacity as I move on to a new chapter,” Fernandez said in her resignation letter.
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