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Mary Brown Boren running in SD 16

Olivier Rey / Red Dirt Report
Mary Brown Boren is running for State Senator District 16 seat.
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NORMAN, Okla. – Mary Brown Boren has announced her candidacy for the Oklahoma Senate in District 16, a seat currently represented by term-limited Democrat John Sparks who will finish his last term on November 20, 2018, after 12 years in state legislative chambers.

Boren, 51, grew up in Tipton, Oklahoma. In 1992, she married Nathan Boren, a native Normanite and currently a doctor at the Goddard Health Center in Norman Campus. They have three children, one daughter, 16, and two sons, 19 and 22. Boren’s family are active members of the Alameda Church of Christ in Norman.

A licensed attorney, Boren is also a certified school counselor and is currently finishing her Masters of Education at the University of Oklahoma.

Boren has a rich professional career in various domains even if she mostly focused on advocating for education, healthcare and employment opportunity. She worked among other at the Oklahoma State Department of Education, Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, Office of the Governor and the Norman Public Schools.

As often observed the past couple of years in Oklahoma, Brown Boren decided to run for state senator due to mismanagement of the current Republican majority at the state level and her profound belief in democracy.

“Lawmakers do not reflect the goodness of Oklahoma,” Brown Boren said during an interview with Red Dirt Report. “They are assuming that Oklahomans are not trustworthy.”

Asked how a lawmaker should act, Brown Boren believes they should be honest, good pedagogue, inclusive, sociable, accessible and compassionate. She insisted that legislators should especially listen to minorities' views. 

“If you have a solid character you are more likely to be trusted,” she said. “Then people trust democracy more.”

If elected, Boren will still be in the minority party in the Senate, therefore limiting her power as a lawmaker. However, she thought that her duty will be to represent all the people of the Senate District 16 and not only the people who voted for her.

“You are representing the people in that district,” Boren said. “You have to stay very connected to your constituents.”

Boren also thinks that the minority party should have a clear vision to create a good program for Oklahoma and not only be in opposition to the majority party.

“The minority party can be the voice of conscience,” she added.

Boren wants to be close to citizens

Due to the urgency of the situation, Brown Boren said her first priority is to fix the state budget that takes its roots in the economic crisis of 2008, adding, “We never fully recovered.”

Such as in a family budget she believes the state should first stabilize its funding to offer a long-term vision.

“Right now, it is chaotic, not stable,” Brown Boren said, adding instability generates a waste of money.

Secondly, Boren would like to remove unfunded mandates made by lawmakers, to tell schools what they have to do. She added as the mandates are unfunded it forces schools to cut other programs to fund the new mandates.

“It happened to me when I was a school counselor,” Boren said, noting only mandates that are fully funded should be accepted.

To complete her agenda, Boren likes to give the floor to the constituents of her district, particularly with regards to healthcare and economic situations.

“Whatever we do as a state economically, I will always ask ‘how this does make our families stronger?’” she said.

In response to why people should vote for Brown Boren, she said, “I will listen to what my constituents want. I have the experience to advocate and be successful in getting things changed.”

Visit here to learn more about Mary Brown Boren's campaign.

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About the Author

Olivier Rey

Olivier has traveled in 20 countries on six continents before landing in Norman. Native French...

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Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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