Janet P. Buckner is in her third term representing House District 40 in southern Aurora. She is Speaker Pro Tempore this legislative session. She also sits on the House Education Committee and the Health & Insurance Committee.
Among her many accomplishments, she sponsored and passed a remarkable bipartisan piece of legislation that allows Community Colleges to offer Bachelor of Nursing completion programs. In this single piece of legislation, Rep. Buckner expanded educational opportunities for Coloradans and addressed the critical nursing shortage that Colorado faces.
In 2017 Rep. Buckner sponsored four significant bills to: allow parents to take unpaid time off from work to attend their children’s parent-teacher conferences and other academic events; establish the Colorado Secure Savings Plan to allow Colorado workers to conveniently save a portion of their earnings for retirement; halt life-changing expulsions of young children from preschool through second grade; and require background checks for doctors, nurses and other healthcare providers authorized to prescribe controlled substances. Rep. Buckner also successfully passed a bill to renew and expand the organ donation and awareness program in Colorado.
In the 2016 session, her first, Rep. Buckner hit the ground running with a bill to ensure that companies that contract with the state guarantee that their employees receive equal pay for equal work, then followed with the original version of her parental involvement bill. The two bills were deemed so important that the former Speaker of the House, Dickey Lee Hullinghorst, made them the first bills formally introduced in the session.
Rep. Buckner was elected handily in 2016 after being appointed in June 2015 to serve the remainder of the term of her husband, John, who died during his second term.
The new Rep. Buckner retired in 2007 after more than three decades in medical sales, training doctors and other hospital personnel as well as other sales representatives. Early in her career she worked for several years as a speech and language therapist.
She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in education from Ball State University in Muncie, Ind.
Rep. Buckner has lived in Aurora since 1975. She has three grown children: John W Buckner II and his wife Erin, Jennifer Buckner Cobb and her husband Floyd, and Joy Buckner; and three grandchildren.