2018 - Sen. Lela Alston

Lela Alston has represented central and east Phoenix, and south Scottsdale in the legislature since 2011. She strongly believes in public education and she credits Arizona’s kindergarten through university educational system for making the difference in her ability to help others. During her current tenure in the Arizona House, she worked to pass bipartisan legislation giving healthcare to 30,000 children whose parents do not receive insurance through their employer. She also fought to restore funding for public schools that provide career and technical training to students.

In 1976, Lela was elected to the Arizona State Senate for the first time. For eighteen years served on the Senate appropriations committee, and focused her support on programs designed to strengthen the education system and improve health care for children and families. Lela’s professional training and personal upbringing resulted in her being an advocate for children and families, an advocacy she continues today. Her tireless efforts, in cooperation with others, over a period of several years resulted in the creation of the ASU West Campus.

A Phoenix native, Lela Alston attended Adams/Grace Court Elementary and went on to graduate from Phoenix Union High School. As a young wife and mother of two, Lela attended the University of Arizona where she earned her bachelor’s degree in three years. She later received her master’s from Arizona State University while teaching full time in the Phoenix Union High School District. Lela was elected to the PUHSD Governing Board in November of 2008, continuing her service to Phoenix students and families after teaching in the district for 34 years. She continues to serve on the PUHSD Governing Board as an at-large member.

Professional recognitions she is most proud of include being chosen as an Honorary State Firefighter, receiving the Girl Scouts’ 2002 World of Children Award and the naming of Lela Alston Elementary school in the Isaac District.