Hon. Margaret (Peggy) Kerns In Memoriam (1941 - 2020)
Colorado State Representative (1989 to 1997)
Colorado State Representative Peggy Kerns, author of the first charter school law passed in Colorado in 1993.
A former Aurora City Council member, the Democratic lawmaker served in the Colorado House of Representatives from 1989 to 1997, including two years as the first female minority leader. President Bill Clinton appointed her to be deputy assistant secretary for the Office of Intergovernmental and Interagency Affairs at the U.S. Department of Education. In 1999, Kerns became the first director of the Center for Ethics in Government of the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), housed at the organization headquarters in Denver. There she became a national expert on state ethics laws and for 16 years gave presentations, trained lawmakers and wrote frequently on government ethics before retiring in 2015. Peggy served on the National Charter Schools Founders Library Advisory Committee and recorded several oral histories in 2019 around Colorado’s pioneering charter school story, before her death on November 14, 2020.