The Council of State Governments this week announced its inaugural 20 Under 40 Leadership Award recipients, and among those recipients was Grayson County native District 18 state Rep. Samara Heavrin.

According to a press release from the Council of State Governments, with applications from esteemed and accomplished public leaders from across the country, these 20 elected and appointed officials represent their states and territories with hard work and a dedication to public service.

The CSG 20 Under 40 Leadership Award recognizes the outstanding work of 20 up-and-coming elected and appointed officials from across the country who not only exemplify strong leadership skills but have also demonstrated a true commitment to serving the citizens of their state/territory.

Recipients demonstrated the ability to engage officials across party, departments, branch and/or state lines in meaningful ways to advance the common good for their state or territory, provided exceptional leadership to a state project, committee, chamber, commission or special group and served as a champion of change, seeking to enhance the lives of all constituents within important policy areas.

“I am truly honored to receive this award,” said Heavrin. “As the youngest woman ever elected to the Kentucky General Assembly, I am proud to be recognized at the national level for my hard work and dedication during my first legislative session.”

The 20 leaders receiving awards were:

• Sen. Sean Bowie, Arizona

• Rep. James Coleman, Majority Co-Whip, Colorado

• Rep. Sonya Harper, Illinois

• Rep. Samara Heavrin, Kentucky

• Deputy Executive Manager Artemio Ricardo Hernandez, Guam International Airport Authority, Guam

• Sen. Sara Howard, Nebraska

• Policy Director Gordon Larsen, Office of the Governor, Utah

• Rep. Ryan Mackenzie, Pennsylvania

• Rep. Ryan Martinez, Assistant Majority Whip, Oklahoma

• Rep. Lauren Matsumoto, Minority Floor Leader, Hawaii

• Sen. Jeremy Miller, Senate President, Minnesota

• Rep. Joe Moody, Speaker Pro Tempore, Texas

• Sen. Joe Nguyen, Washington

• Rep. Tram Nguyen, Massachusetts

• Sen. Emily Randall, Washington

• Rep. Dylan Roberts, Colorado

• Sen. Blake Tillery, Georgia

• Rep. Carlos Tobon, Deputy Majority Leader, Rhode Island

• Sen. Bryan Townsend, Majority Whip, Delaware

• Sen. Tony Vargas, Nebraska

To learn more about the CSG 20 Under 40 Leadership Award, visit

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