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Connie Lawson serves as Indiana's 61st Secretary of State. Secretary Lawson was appointed by Governor Mitch Daniels on March 16, 2012. Governor Daniels called her the obvious choice because of the local and state elections experience she brings to the office. Prior to serving as Secretary of State, Lawson served in the Indiana Senate for sixteen years and as Clerk of the Hendricks County Circuit Court for eight years.
In 1996, Lawson began her tenure in the Indiana Senate, where she accomplished significant legislative success. Respected across the aisle, she quickly earned the admiration of her colleagues and made history in 2006 when she was selected as the first woman to serve as Majority Floor Leader in the Indiana Senate.
During her term as a state senator, Lawson chaired the Local Government and Elections Committees and the Joint Rules Committee. In that time, she authored legislation designed to have a lasting, positive impact on Indiana. She championed local government reform efforts and authored a bill to reduce nepotism and eliminate conflicts of interest. She also helped lead the state’s redistricting process. Thanks in part to her efforts, Indiana was one of the first states to complete work on its new legislative maps.
Lawson also successfully ushered another important reform – moving school board elections from Indiana’s Primary Election to the single ballot General Election, where turnout is much greater and more voices are likely to be heard on important education matters. She also helped make voting in those elections easier with her legislation giving all Indiana counties the option to conduct elections with vote centers using fewer polling locations at more convenient locations instead of traditional and more costly precinct voting sites.
In addition to government reform, she’s been a tireless advocate for stronger awareness of health issues such as cervical cancer, lupus and youth suicide prevention. Her efforts were recognized in 2012 when she received Mental Health America of Indiana’s Lifetime Achievement Award and the Indiana Association of Rehabilitation Facilities’ Career Recognition Award for her efforts to help raise awareness and improve the lives of disabled Hoosiers.
Before joining the Indiana Senate, Lawson served as Hendricks County Clerk of the Circuit Court. During her tenure, she was named elections administrator of the year by the Indiana State Election Board and clerk of the year by the Indiana Clerk’s Association, both in 1993. The Association of Indiana Counties awarded her a similar award in 1996. She also served as president of the Indiana Clerk’s Association and chair of the groups’ legislative committee.
In 2012, Lawson received the Zup’s Imagination Award for her service to United Way of Central Indiana and was inducted into the Danville High School Hall of Fame for her contributions to society.
As a public servant, Lawson has been a true inspiration to women in government, an agent of change for Indiana counties and a determined advocate for the prevention of diseases that would rob us of our loved ones. In addition to her public work, she and her husband Jack own Lawson & Company, an auctioneer and real estate company.
Download high resolution image of Secretary Lawson here.