Susan Ruiz

Kansas House of Representatives, District 23

Susan was one of the first two openly LGBTQ members of the Kansas Legislature

Biography

Susan Ruiz is the first openly lesbian woman ever elected to the Kansas House of Representatives. Accomplishing this feat in ultra conservative Kansas had first time Democrat candidate Ruiz facing an incumbent, multi-term Republican. Ruiz won her race with 52% of the vote.

She represents District 23, Johnson County KS, including Shawnee, Lenexa, and Overland Park. Her proudest legislative accomplishment was co-introducing an amendment to the Kansas Non-Discrimination Act adding sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression to the current law. However, the Republican leadership stalled the bill in committee. It will be reintroduced next year.

A native of Houston, Texas, Ruiz is the daughter of a Mexican born immigrant father and a Texas born mother, giving her a unique perspective on multicultural issues. A licensed clinical social worker, LSCSW, she also holds Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Social Work from Our Lady of the Lake University, San Antonio, TX.

As the first openly lesbian legislator in Kansas, Ruiz has gained national attention having been featured in the Washington Post twice, and she has won recognition from other publications such as Dos Mundos, a bilingual newspaper in Kansas City, Missouri. She was featured during Women’s History Month as a Latina making history. She was included in Go Magazine’s 100 Women We Love: Class of 2019, and recently received the “You Go Girl” award from the Greater Kansas City Women’s Political Caucus.

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