Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Assemblywoman Goerlitz– Rosary's Girls State Representative

As she sat in the boardroom late at night, she put the finishing touches on the city's strategic plan. Kailey Goerlitz '15 served on the City Planning and City Theme Committees as a part of her role at California Girls State. This rising senior was chosen to represent Rosary High School at the 71st session of the California Girls State. This prestigious leadership program
of the American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) is designed to increase awareness and knowledge of governmental processes while learning about the duties, privileges, rights and responsibilities of citizenship. 

California Girls State began in 1940 with 125 girls in attendance. The attendance fees were only $15.00 fee per girl, and the ALA operated with only a $500.00 budget for the entire week. After the 1941 session, Girls State was in recess due to the war years 1942-1945.  It was back in full force in 1946. Today, the ALA provides scholarships to Girls State delegates.

Kailey balanced multiple elected positions during the week as she was later elected by her city to serve as an assemblywoman. She was responsible for passing bills that would benefit the state. Kailey says it was challenging to be open to others' ideas and to vote for the benefit of the state rather than her own personal biases.

Girls State, which took place at McKenna College in Claremont, provides an outstanding, unique, and coveted educational opportunity for the young women of California that instills the basic ideals and principles of American government. Being surrounded by 500 confident, strong, and passionate leaders from around the state served as an inspiration to Kailey to always stand up for what she believes in. "It was very interesting to hear what issues the other girls at Girls State cared about, such as the environment, the tenure system, and gun control."

Kailey plans to bring back an understanding of what issues other students her age are passionate about and to spread awareness in the Rosary community. "I really learned to listen and accept other people's ideas and I learned how to unite people together and cooperate to get bills passed. It's very important that other people my age really get involved and educated on what is happening in our government now because in a few years, we are going to be the people making changes."

Although the week is focused on learning and leadership, there are plenty of opportunities to network and socialize with the attendees. "I made so many friends that I know I will cherish for the rest of my life." 

Kailey will serve at the Editor in Cheif of the Yearbook Staff next year. She is a member of CSF, NHS, French Club, served as a Red & Gold fashion captian, and was a part of the varsity golf team. She hopes to participate as a Red & Gold captain again this year and will join the Mock Trial team.

Some past Girls State citizens/staff include:
  • Nancy Brown Park: American Legion Auxiliary National President 2013-2014
  • Jane Pauley: Broadcast Journalist
  • Ann Richards: Former Governor of Texas
  • Jessica Mitchell: VP of Design/Director of Apparel for Liz Claiborne
  • Barbara Cubin: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Wyoming
  • Michelle Johnson, Brigadier General : First Female Wing Commander, U.S. Air Force Academy and current deputy director of the Joint Staff's War on Terrorism, Strategic Plans and Policy Directorate at the Pentagon
  • Connie Morella: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Maryland
  • Terri Utley: Former Miss U.S.A. 1982
  • Kate Shindle: Former Miss America 1998, Actress, Singer, Dancer
  • Jennifer Dunn: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Washington
  • Michele Jackman: US Army Service Award, the “Civilian Service Medal” and government agencies trainer
  • Sandra Dorsey Rice: Vice President, Emma Bowen Foundation
  • Jessica Carroll, 2nd Lieutenant: Tennessee National Guard Airman of the Year for 2009
  • Becky Skillman: Lt. Governor of Indiana
  • Connie Lawson: Indiana Congresswoman
  • Erika Dunlap: Miss America 2004; participant on Amazing Race 15
  • Lynne Cheney: Wife of Vice President Richard Cheney
  • Stephanie Herseth Sandlin: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, South Dakota
  • Kaye Bye: 2-time US Women's Hockey Team medalist (Gold 1998, Silver 2002)
  • Leeza Gibbons: Talk show host and reporter