TOPEKA — The initial 20-plus members of the new Kansas Complete Count Committee, established by an executive order from Gov. Laura Kelly to help promote the 2020 U.S. Census, are largely based in Topeka or representing official agencies.
Southwest Kansas has two residents on the committee, but other regions don’t have a resident on the committee.
That is expected to change.
Committee Co-Chairman Brian McClendon of Lawrence said additional members will be announced soon “and they will be very diverse geographically and demographically.”
“We’re earmarking people who have a good feel for people out in their community,” said co-chairman Joyce Warshaw of Dodge City.
Representatives of groups or faith-based organizations who work with immigrants, for example, are expected to be added to the state’s committee, which is allowed to have up to 50 members.
“I am confident that by our first meeting there will be a geographically diverse group of members from every region of Kansas,” said Kansas Department of Commerce Deputy Secretary Patty Clark, in a statement.
The first meeting for the new committee has not been set, but Warshaw said she hopes it will be before Sept. 1.
McClendon is a Democrat who ran for Secretary of State last year. Warshaw is a Republican and vice mayor of Dodge City.
Kelly’s executive order, signed in April, specified 18 agencies, boards or commissions that should have a representative on the Kansas Complete Count Committee. The first group of committee members and the entity they are affiliated with are:
Doug Boline, Department of Education; Stacey Tweedy, a Garden City resident, Department for Children and Families; Janis DeBoer, Department of Aging and Disability Services; Elizabeth Saadi, Department of Health and Environment; Delia Garcia and Tyler Tenbrink, Department of Labor; Heather Landsdowne, Department of Agriculture; Eric Norris, State Library; David Toland, Department of Commerce; Kathleen Smith, Department of Revenue; Lindsey Douglas, Department of Transportation; Scott Schwab, Secretary of State; Eric Davis, Kansas Office of Information Technology Services; Emily Kelley, a resident of Manhattan and a regional employee of the U.S. Census Bureau in the U.S. Department of Commerce;
Lisa Garcia-Stewart, Hispanic and Latino American Affairs Commission; Kenya Cox, African American Affairs Commission; Perry Wiggins, Governor’s Military Council; Reggie Robinson, Kansas Board of Regents; and Eric Rohleder, Veteran’s Affairs Commission.
The Kansas Native American Affairs Office also is to have a representative and its executive director, Chris Howell, will be joining the census committee, Commerce’s Clark said.