June 26 2008
TERRE HAUTE - Hoosier Girls State delegates selected a governor from Schererville and a lieutenant governor from McCordsville Thursday (June 26) at Indiana State University.
More than 660 high school girls from throughout Indiana are taking part in Hoosier Girls State, the annual exercise in democracy and civic involvement sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary.
Shloka Kini was elected governor while Kristen Franklin was elected as lieutenant governor of Hoosier Girls State.
Kini, a Lake Central junior, first heard about this event from her U.S. history teacher and decided to give it a try.
"This is my first real experience with politics," said Kini, daughter of Ranjan and Nivedita Kini. "I have always been interested in national politics and this was an opportunity for me to get involved."
Kini decided to run for governor because she wanted to be as high in office as possible. With education as her main focus, she thought this would be a step in the right direction. Now that she has been appointed governor, she will oversee all bills from the senate and place other girls in the office which is most appropriate for them.
"I want to talk to the girls, really listen to them," said Kini, "and decide what placement will fit them best."
As far as plans for the future, Kini has yet to decide on a college or major.
"No matter what I decide to do, I want to be able to make a difference in the world, no matter how big or small it may be," said Kini.
Franklin, who is a junior at Mt. Vernon High School and daughter of Frederick Franklin and Karmen Owens, said she originally came to Hoosier Girls State because of her mother.
"My mother was the first black woman to ever have been elected governor at Hoosier Girls State," said Franklin. "After I got here I decided to run because I love speaking in front of large audiences and I wanted to see what would happen if I did run."
Franklin's major campaign issues revolve around education and violence in school. In order to get elected, she went floor to floor and spoke with girls individually to get them interested in her campaign.
After she graduates from Mt. Vernon High School, Franklin has her hopes set on attending Purdue University with a major in chemistry, minor in biochemistry, and someday becoming an anesthesiologist.
The 67th session of Hoosier Girls State is designed to educate a select group of young women in the duties, rights, privileges and responsibilities of citizenship. Through creation of a fictitious 51st state the girls take part in a government exercise that will educate them on the structure of politics and government.
Others selected to office are:
- Secretary of State Hannah Drummond of Indianapolis, daughter of Jeff and Kerri Drummond and attends Ben Davis High School.
- Auditor Megan Wesner of Medora, daughter of Tony and Anita Wesner and attends Brownstown Central High School.
- Treasurer Danelle Narkowicz of North Liberty, daughter of Debbie and Ken Gundrum and Dan Narkawicz and attends John Glenn High School.
- Attorney General Sequoia Murray of Greenwood, daughter of Daniel and Bridgette Murray and attends Greenwood High School.
- Superintendant of Public Instruction Jennifer Shelton of LaPorte, daughter of Fred and Ronda Shelton and attends LaPorte High School.
Contact: Director Kenya Ostermeier or Assistant Director Karen Lowe at 237-7890, 237-6611 or 237-2295.
Writer: Jennifer Spector, Indiana State University, media relations intern, at email@example.com or 237-3773.
Cutline: Kristen Franklin, 2008 Hoosier Girls State lieutenant governor, and Shloka Kini, 2008 Hoosier Girls State governor. ISU staff photo
Hoosier Girls State delegates selected a governor from Schererville and a lieutenant governor from McCordsville Wednesday (June 26) at Indiana State University.