Veteran and former PTA President Michelle Rylands announces her campaign today for State Senate in the 31st legislative district. The seat, currently held by right-wing Republican Phil Fortunato, is being considered in this fall’s special election following former Senator Pam Roach’s election to the Pierce County Council.
The mother of two children in Auburn Public Schools, Michelle knows how vital a high-quality education is to the children and families in the district and across the state.
“Our schools should not be funded by raffles or carnivals or box tops. We should not have to fund basic activities and supplies through charity. It is up to our state to fund basic education and I’m tired of watching the Republicans and Phil Fortunato play games with our children’s future,” Rylands said of her decision to run.
After serving in the United States Army as a Military Police Officer, Rylands has been dedicated to improving schools since her eldest son entered kindergarten nearly a decade ago. Since then, she has gone from classroom mom to PTA President, overseeing and coordinating the work of PTAs across the Auburn School District and the state of Washington.
Additionally, Rylands and her husband, a federal law enforcement officer, owned DASH, a local oil and vinegar business that employed over 10 people. They shut the business down in 2016 to focus on their family and respective careers in law enforcement.
“Both in the military and in business, there is no kicking the can down the road. Results are expected and the bottom line is the bottom line, plain and simple. It’s time that our State Senate have leaders who can work together to get things done, rather than bicker over partisan ideology. I’m ready to get to work for our kids and for our communities,” Rylands continued.
Rylands currently served at a communications center for a local law enforcement agency. She is the former President of The Auburn Council of PTAs, a proud Teamsters member, and is a new member of the American Legion in Auburn. She enters this race with the endorsement of Sheriff John Urquhart.
Rylands and her husband live in Auburn with their two sons, Colin age 12 and Chase age 10.