Alum kicks off her state campaign

Newswire photo by Ryan Kambich | Xavier alum Brigid Kelly (right) kicked off her re-election campaign on Monday, giving a speech about women’s rights next to Mayor John Cranley (left).

A Xavier alum and a current undergraduate will be hitting the campaign trail close to home in 2018.

State Representative Brigid Kelly graduated from Xavier in 2005 and currently represents Norwood and parts of Cincinnati surrounding the university in the Ohio House of Representatives.

She kicked off her re-election campaign for Ohio’s 31st District on Monday at MadTree Brewing Company in Oakley. She gave a speech about women’s rights and consumer protections after being introduced by Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley.

Kelly, a former union representative from Norwood, was first elected to the Statehouse in 2016 and has climbed the ranks quickly. She was named assistant whip for the Democratic party in the House of Representatives in December and she sits on five committees.

She worked on a number of legislative endeavours during that time, most notably introducing bipartisan legislation to repeal Ohio’s “pink tax” on feminine hygiene products. She was elected to serve on the Norwood City Council prior to that, just one year after graduating from Xavier.

She will not be the only member of the Xavier community involved in this race. Her campaign manager, Alex Hale, is a senior Philosophy, Politics and the Public major who has worked with Kelly in the past.

At the kickoff, Hale explained how he got the nod to direct such a large political campaign.

“Initially, during my sophomore PPP campaign (a requirement for graduation from the program) I was placed with Bob Kelly, her father, and through that I was introduced to Brigid and immediately really liked her,” Hale said. “From there I started working a little bit on her primary (campaign) but mainly on her general election (campaign) in 2016.”
Hale went on to discuss his optimism for the campaign to come throughout the next 11 months.

“We feel confident,” Hale said. “In general we hope that Democrats turn out to vote and that it will be a ‘wave year’ for Democrats, especially as a reaction against President Trump. We are very confident and hopeful that she’ll be able to serve again and continue serving the people of Ohio who have already placed a great deal of trust in her.”
When asked what it was like to be an undergraduate running a political campaign, Hale cracked a smile. “It’s really an honor,” he said. “It’s particularly nice because I’ve known Brigid for a long time…It’s just a real honor to be in this position and to have these connections. I’m just grateful.”

The 2018 general election will take place on Nov. 6.

By: Ryan Kambich ~Copy Editor~