Senator Lena Taylor to Speak on Campus

Jan 25, 2016 | Kristi Lynch

On Monday, February 8, the University of Dubuque’s Office of Multicultural Student Engagement (MSE) will host Wisconsin State Senator Lena Taylor, who will speak on Commitment to Education as a part of the MSE Speaker Series.  The presentation will begin at 7:00 p.m. in Blades Chapel on the University of Dubuque campus.  The event is free and open to the public. 


Senator Lena Taylor is serving her third term in the Wisconsin State Senate, representing the 4th Senate District, which includes the Village of Shorewood, portions of Wauwatosa, Glendale, and the north/northwestern portions of the City of Milwaukee. She was first elected to the Wisconsin Assembly in 2003. In 2004, she was elected to the Wisconsin Senate. Senator Taylor became the fifth African-American and only the second African-American woman to serve in that legislative body.  In 2012, she became the first African-American woman to be appointed co-chair of the Joint Committee on Finance and only the second African-American to hold the position.


In past sessions, Senator Taylor served as the first African-American to chair the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee expanding the committee’s work on criminal justice reforms and implemented the first ever “State of Justice” tour, holding committee meetings across Wisconsin. Senator Taylor also served as the co-chair of the powerful and influential Joint Committee on Finance, becoming the first African-American woman to hold that position and only the second African-American.


Having graduated from Rufus King High School and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Senator Taylor was shaped by the city of Milwaukee and has dedicated her life to giving back to her community. After earning a law degree from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, she practiced as a public defender in Milwaukee, and eventually opened Taylor and Associates Law Office, a general practice firm.  Senator Taylor still holds free legal clinics in conjunction with Greater New Birth Church in Milwaukee for those in need. Currently, Taylor practices with Pitman, Kalkhoff, Sicula & Dentice.


A life-long Milwaukee resident, Senator Taylor still lives in the block she grew up on. Reaching out to children and young adults struggling with the same choices that she herself faced growing up in Milwaukee, Senator Taylor frequently visits schools, youth development programs, and churches, spreading her message of responsible decision making, commitment to education, social and economic justice and ambitious pursuit of dreams.


The Office of Multicultural Student Engagement established the MSE Speaker Series to raise awareness and promote learning about cross cultural experiences, diversity, and equality as well as encourage personal affirmation, empowerment, and academic success. The Series compliments the University of Dubuque's Mission by helping to build a community where diversity is appreciated and Christian love is practiced.