Rep. Brittany Pettersen, D-Lakewood
Brittany Pettersen is in her third term representing House District 28, which includes most of Lakewood. She is chairwoman of the Education Committee and a member of the Public Health & Human Services Committees. She is also the House majority whip, making sure members are present for votes.
In 2017, Rep. Pettersen successfully sponsored compromise legislation to resolve one of the most contentious issues in public education funding: the allocation of state dollars for traditional public schools and charter schools. The new law ensures that funding is allocated based on equity and student need and not type of school, and creates greater transparency and accountability for charter schools.
She also sponsored a new law making the PSAT the preferred standardized test for ninth-graders, eliminating the controversial PARCC test.
Rep. Pettersen’s third major achievement of 2017 was a new law to address the opioid epidemic, directing the state to study the feasibility of providing residential and inpatient substance use disorder treatment as a part of the state’s Medicaid program. Currently, the program only offers emergency treatment.
Rep. Pettersen has a long record of helping Colorado’s students and working families. Her education portfolio includes bills to increase the number of preschool slots in the state and provide incentives for aspiring preschool teachers; put $30 million into new tuition assistance programs to help more Colorado students go to college; make it easier for Coloradans to put their income tax returns into a college savings account; help homeless kids to attend college and high school dropouts to complete high school requirements at a community or junior college.
She also sponsored a slew of bills to help working families find quality affordable child care, allowing parents to stay in the workforce and pursue a career.
Rep. Pettersen has nearly a decade of experience working for candidates, issues and nonprofits. Before running for office, she worked for New Era Colorado – a nonprofit dedicated to engaging youth in state and local government.
She is a fourth-generation Coloradan and has lived in Jefferson County nearly her entire life. She put herself through college and became the first in her family to graduate from college.
She and her husband, Ian Silverii, live in Lakewood.