Thanks for visiting my webpage! My name is Chris Kennedy, and I’m honored to serve as the State Representative for Colorado House District 23. I have completed two terms in the State House, and I won re-election in 2020. I am humbled by the support from so many of you who have elected me.
I grew up in Colorado Springs and felt very fortunate to have a loving and supportive family, a great public education, and many opportunities to enjoy Colorado’s natural beauty through camping trips in the summer and ski weekends in the winter. After college, I moved to Lakewood, and over these last fifteen years, it has truly become my home. I married my wife, Kyra, in May of 2020 in a small ceremony in our backyard. We love living here with our two dogs, two cats, two goats, and six chickens.
I stayed in Colorado for college and attended the University of Colorado at Boulder, where I received my Bachelor of Architectural Engineering in 2002. While I enjoyed the work of solving problems as an engineer, I had grown increasingly concerned about political issues facing our state and nation and felt I could no longer stand on the sidelines. I started volunteering and taking night classes in political science, and I ultimately left my engineering job to devote my career to solving public policy problems instead. After working for leaders like Max Tyler and Ed Perlmutter, I decided to run for office myself.
I ran for reelection in 2020 so I could continue to learn so much about the people of Jefferson County – their daily lives, their hopes and dreams, and their concerns and fears. Campaigning in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic proved to be a new challenge. I’m continuously committed to developing creative ways to engage with my community safely.
The 2017 and 2018 legislative sessions proved to be big adventures as my colleagues, and I grappled with the numerous challenges facing Colorado and achieved many bipartisan successes. I focused on lowering the cost of health care and addressing the opioid crisis. Read my 2017 end-of-session report here, my 2018 end-of-session report here, and my legislative profile here.
In the 2019 session, I was honored to have been elected by my colleagues to serve as Assistant Majority Leader and to have been appointed by Speaker KC Becker to serve as Chair of the Committee on State, Veterans, and Military Affairs. We had an incredibly productive legislative session that you can read about here.
The 2020 session was unlike any other. About halfway through the session, the COVID-19 pandemic became a public health crisis in our state, and we were forced to suspend the session while facing numerous uncertainties. As the public health crisis continued and the economic crisis grew, it became clear that we would have to abandon most of the existing bills and refocus our work to respond to the crises. While trying to manage a devastating budget deficit of over $3 billion, we were also called upon to end excessive use of force by law enforcement officers. In the end, we passed a package of COVID-19 relief laws, a groundbreaking police accountability law, a tax reform law that will fund education, among other significant policies. Read my 2020 end-of-session wrap-up here.
Even in these times of great uncertainty, it is truly an honor that I get to wake up every day and work for a better future for all of us. Looking back on all of the opportunities I had growing up, I am more committed than ever to make sure that our communities are supported in these unprecedented times and that the next generation has every opportunity to pursue their own American dream.