+ − Contact Information
Phone: (614) 466-3100
Fax: (614) 719-6944
77 South High Street14th Floor Columbus, OH 43215
+ − Biography
Born and raised in Akron, Representative Emilia Sykes grew up in a politically active and socially conscious family.
From an early age, Sykes understood the importance of public service. Her parents, Vernon and Barbara Sykes, have dedicated their lives to giving back to their community. Both served as elected leaders, and instilled in Emilia the value of giving back to those in need. Seeing her parents make positive changes for the Akron community was inspiring, and set an example she continues to emulate. Sykes’ parents emphasized the importance of education, which continues to be a major part of her life today.
Sykes graduated magna cum laude from Kent State University with a B.A. in Psychology. Four years later, she earned her J.D. with a Certificate in Family Law from the University of Florida Levin College of Law. The same year, she earned her Master of Public Health from the University of Florida College of Public Health and Health Professions.
Rep. Sykes has been a strong advocate for women’s rights and safety. While in law school, she spent a year volunteering with the Intimate Partner Violence Assistance Clinic, where she created a public health campaign to educate high violence communities, particularly women and girls, about domestic violence and how to form relationships. She worked directly with victims of sexual and partner violence, helping them with safety planning and finding the social and legal services they needed. In her academics, Sykes was equally dedicated to social justice issues, completing research projects on women’s access to Plan B in North Central Florida and investigating major issues at crisis pregnancy centers in Ohio.
As the Administrative Staff Advisor at the Summit County Fiscal Office, Sykes worked to establish a county land bank that will repurpose vacant and abandoned property. Previously, at Community Legal Services in Akron, Rep. Sykes offered access to quality health and legal services to people in need. While working with other local organizations to find solutions to health issues, she brought creative solutions to the problems that low-income citizens face. By working directly with individuals in need, Sykes has seen first-hand the necessity of a robust social safety net, good schools and access to job training.
Rep. Sykes will continue to be a passionate voice for her community as a member of the Ohio House of Representatives, and she is eager to find new ways to improve the quality of life for her constituents in the 34th district.