Top 100 Women of Impact: Debrah Mitchell

Debrah Mitchell

President, Arkansas Democratic Black Caucus

About me: I am president of the Arkansas Democratic Black Caucus, an auxiliary of the Democratic Party of Arkansas. I’m a big advocate for voter registration and engagement, traveling the state educating people on the power of voting. I also recruit and support candidates for political office, especially Black candidates. My goal is to empower people who look like me to run for office and change the political landscape. With my faith and positive outlook on life, I’m hopeful that my work can bring positive change to Arkansas. My husband Dennis and I have been married 35 years, have two kids and one mighty grandson.

Lives in: North Little Rock • Works in: Little Rock

Best Career Advice: Let your work speak for itself, and don’t let your fear of failure hold you back. As a change agent, I’m willing to take risks and do the work instead of just talking about it.

Lesson Learned the Hard Way: Being able to accept people for who they are instead of trying to change them or expect more from them was a big lesson for me. 

Proudest Moment of Impact: As a result of my voter registration efforts, I’ve not only been asked to set up voter registration tables at community events, but I’ve also inspired people to get their kids, coworkers and church members registered, too. In addition, I’m honored when people ask me for advice and guidance if they’re thinking of running for office. 

Call to Action: More people should know that Arkansas is a non-voting state. It’s crazy how many people are eligible to vote, but aren’t registered or won’t take that short step to the ballot box. Our state is last in the nation for voter registration and turnout, and we’re one of eight that doesn’t allow online registration. As the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “A voteless people is a powerless people.”

What Keeps Me Motivated: I’m motivated by young people who stand up to injustice, fight for a just community and, of course, those who get excited about registering to vote and going to vote. I’m also inspired by the brave people who run for office. 

A Women’s Foundation of Arkansas Initiative

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