Connect with the GOP:

press releases

Republican National Committee Announces Five New Rising Stars

- January 23, 2014

 RNC Spotlights Women Leaders, Including State Senator, State Representative, CRNC Chair, Aide to Florida’s CFO, and Conservative Activist 

WASHINGTON – Today at the RNC Winter Meeting in Washington, DC, Chairman Reince Priebus and Co-Chairman Sharon Day announced five new RNC Rising Stars.
The Rising Stars Program was launched at the last regular RNC Meeting – the Summer Meeting in Boston, Massachusetts.

The program spotlights and promotes Republican individuals who are new voices in the Party. They are prominently featured on and given a national platform to share their unique perspectives.
Chairman Priebus and Co-Chair Day announced the next five Republicans to be named Rising Stars and joined them for a panel discussion in D.C.:

  • Chelsi P. Henry, Cabinet Aide to the Chief Financial Officer of Florida
  • Alison Howard, Conservative Activist
  • Alex Smith, National Chair of the College Republican National Committee
  • Kimberly Yee, Arizona State Senator
  • Monica Youngblood, New Mexico State Representative

“These new Rising Stars are an impressive group of leaders who have had a tremendous impact on our party and who I’m certain will play major roles in shaping our party’s future,” said Chairman Priebus. “I look forward to working with Chelsi, Alison, Alex, Kimberly, and Monica to share their stories—and to share our party’s message of freedom and opportunity.
“We launched the Rising Stars Program to highlight the incredible talent in our party on a national platform and to a national audience. It’s also gives us the chance for us to learn from these individuals and their success as we work to grow our party.”
“I’m thrilled to see this all-women slate of Rising Stars,” said RNC Co-Chairman Sharon Day. “Each is already an accomplished woman in her own right. With young leaders like these, I know our party’s future is bright.”

Click here to visit the Rising Stars webpage.
Biographies of the New RNC Rising Stars:
Chelsi P. Henry (@chelsiphenry)

Chelsi P. Henry serves as a senior aide to the elected Chief Financial Officer of the State of Florida. In 2012 at the Republican National Convention, she was highlighted in National Journal, National Review, TvOne, and MTV, among others. She was a speaker at CPAC 2013, selected for Red Alert Politics “30 under 30,” and recognized as one of BET’s ten “Republicans to Watch.” Chelsi is a serial entrepreneur and says she is a perpetual optimist when it comes to the Grand Old Party. Chelsi holds a J.D. from Florida Coastal School of Law and an undergraduate degree from the University of North Florida.
Alison Howard (@alisonhoward1)
Alison Howard is a conservative activist who speaks on pro-life and pro-family issues. Alison has appeared in radio and TV outlets across the country, including The Sean Hannity Show, Fox and Friends, and NPR. Her work has been featured in National Review Online, The Blaze, and Alison currently serves as communications director for Concerned Women for America and regularly represents CWA at colleges, high schools, and conferences around the country.  She graduated with honors from Liberty University with a bachelor’s degree in communications and a minor in psychology.
Alex Smith (@AlexandraCSmith)

Alex Smith is National Chair of the College Republican National Committee and the first female chair in the organization's 120 year history. She is a native of Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, and is a graduate of The Catholic University of America, where she graduated magna cum laude with a degree in politics. She formerly served as National Co-Chairman during the 2012 cycle, and as Chairman of the D.C. Federation of College Republicans. Before becoming involved at the national level, Alex served as a chapter leader for the Catholic University College Republicans. She is currently a student at Seton Hall University School of Law.
Kimberly Yee (@KimberlyYeeAZ)
Kimberly Yee represents Arizona's 20th Legislative District and is the first Asian American woman elected to serve in the Arizona legislature. She is Chairman of the Senate Committee on Education, and serves as a member of the Committees on Health and Human Services, Judiciary, and Elections. She is the former chairman of her legislative district's Republican Committee, and was elected as a national delegate at the Republican National Convention in 2008. Prior to elective office, she worked for State Treasurer Dean Martin and in the U.S. Department of Justice. She also served as a member of Governor Schwarzenegger’s cabinet and on the State Board of Education under California Governor Pete Wilson. Kimberly currently lives in Phoenix with her husband and young son. They own a small business. Kimberly earned a bachelor’s degree from Pepperdine University and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Arizona State University.
Monica Youngblood (@MonYoungblood)

Monica Youngblood is serving her first term in New Mexico’s House of Representatives. Monica serves on the House Labor and Human Resources Committee and House Voters & Elections Committee. She is a voting member on the Science Technology Telecommunications Committee and the Tobacco Settlement Revenue Oversight Committee. Nationally, Monica serves on the board of RSLC’s Future Majority Project, and she was named as one of GOPAC’s 2013 Emerging Leaders. She is a native of New Mexico and was raised by a single mother in Albuquerque. At 19, Monica became a single mother. Determined to end the cycle of poverty, she set out to give her daughter a better life. Monica runs a successful real estate business and contracts as a marketing consultant. Monica and her husband Chris have two children between them, her stepson, Corey, and her daughter, Mariana.

The first four Rising Stars, announced in summer 2013 were:

  • Karin Agness, Founder and President of the Network of enlightened Women (NeW)
  • Scott G. Erickson, Heritage Foundation Writer and San Jose Police Officer
  • Marilinda Garcia, New Hampshire State Representative
  • T.W. Shannon, Speaker of the Oklahoma House of Representatives


Previous post

RNC Elects 2016 Convention Site Selection Committee

Next post

MEMO: DNC’s Attacks on Life and Adoption
Republican National Committee

Connect With Us

Republican National Committee

Follow GOP

Chairman Reince Priebus

News & Videos
  • 310 First Street SE, Washington, DC 20003
  • 202-863-8500

Paid for by the Republican National Committee. Not Authorized By Any Candidate Or Candidate's Committee.

Paid for by the Republican National Committee.
Not Authorized By Any Candidate Or Candidate's Committee.