Pleasant Hill's Emerie Martin, fifth-grader, and Oregon Secretary of State Shemia Fagan. PHOTO PROVIDED

PLEASANT HILL – Local student Emerie Martin last week was chosen to be Oregon’s next governor – kid governor, that is.

Martin, a fifth-grader at Pleasant Hill Elementary School, captured the attention of Oregon Secretary of State Shemia Fagan after hearing Martin’s three-point plan to combat animal abuse in Oregon. 

Martin was selected from numerous candidates across the state by Oregon fifth graders, and Fagan visited Pleasant Hill Elementary last week to congratulate Martin in person. 

Secretary of State Shemia Fagan congratulates Emerie Martin at Pleasant Hill Elementary last week. PHOTO PROVIDED

The Kid Governor program was started by the Connecticut Democracy Center in 2015 to introduce Civics Education to fifth graders. In 2017, Oregon became the second state in the nation to implement the program. Oregon Kid Governor is open to all fifth graders in Oregon and those interested create a 1-to-3-minute video explaining why they should be kid governor; what their leadership skills are; what community issue is important to them; and a three-point plan to address the specific community issue. 

Of the 17 contestants, a panel of independent judges narrowed the pool of candidates down to seven. Once the seven candidates were finalized, fifth graders from schools across the state voted and selected Emerie as Oregon’s next Kid Governor. Martin is Oregon’s fifth Kid Governor.

Martin

“More than 2,200 students registered to nominate and vote for a candidate in this year’s election,” said Fagan. “I support this program because it gives a real-life civics education to young kids. The free program provides toolkits, lesson plans, and exciting Oregon specific education tools celebrating Oregon democracy.”

Martin’s one-year term will begin in January 2022, with her inauguration at the Oregon State Capitol.

More info: or.kidgovernor.org.