Metro Women's Leadership Summit

Assemblywoman Shavonda Sumter

New Jersey General Assembly, 35th Legislative District

Assemblywoman Shavonda Sumter

Majority Conference Leader Sumter entered the Legislature in 2012 and by her second term in office she was appointed to Deputy Speaker. When Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman was elevated to Congress, Shavonda was tapped to serve as the Majority Conference Leader and continues to do so under the leadership of Speaker Craig Couglin. As the Majority Conference Leader, Shavonda is an integral member of the senior legislative Democratic Majority leadership responsible for the orderly caucus discussions on the agenda each session.

She received her Master's in Business Administration from the Fairleigh Dickinson University Silberman College of Business. Her undergraduate studies in Political Science were completed at Kean University. The opportunity for her to excel was a result of the generous funding support of state programs, such as the Education Opportunity Fund, and corporations that financed her education. Shavonda has been employed as the Director of Behavioral Health Services for Hackensack UMC Mountainside for the past 10 years. She prides herself on hard work that her parents Charles and Bonnie Williams instilled in her.

Shavonda currently represents the 35th District that includes parts of Bergen and Passaic County. She is the Vice Chair of the State & Local Government committee, a member of the Labor & Public Safety committees. She recognizes that her legislation transcends her district and impacts the 9 million people in the state of New Jersey. She is a staunch advocate for job growth, women's health, voting rights, civil rights, and criminal justice reform.

Shavonda is a leading legislator in the State of New Jersey. She has been recognized by the Auditor, as the most "Prolific" Legislator for having the most bills signed into law from both houses. In addition, she was nationally recognized by EMILY's List as a rising star. She credits her success to having spent nearly two decades working the halls of Trenton to impact policy changes.

Shavonda has proven to be a thoughtful and pragmatic leader within the state of NJ. She has been married for 20 years to Kenneth; together they have two children, a daughter, Tyler and a son, Kenneth.

She continues to work hard with a purpose because to whom much is given, much is required.

Breakout Session

December 31, 6:00pm-6:00pm
Why You Should Run for Office
Women remain vastly underrepresented at all levels of government, and yet serving in elected office is one of the most important ways to have an impact on the issues you care about. Panelists will share their own experiences running for and serving in office, including their perspectives on the difference women make in all levels of office and their advice for participants seeking to become public leaders in their communities.