Cortez, Lei Lani

Republican – Legislative District 24 House

Phone: (602) 418-1917

Email: [email protected]


Facebook: Lei Lani Cortez

Address: 1546 W Encanto Blvd , Phoenix, AZ 85007

Age: 67. (03/26/47, Phoenix, AZ).

Arizona since: Birth

Occupation: Consultant, sr. business analyst/project manager, Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station (APS), May 2012-Sept 2012 and 2008-10; consultant, project manager/business analyst, Wells Fargo Bank, Feb 2011-Apr 2011; consultant, sr. business analyst/project manager, SRP, May 2010-Feb 2011; business consultant, Wells Fargo Bank, 2007-08; consultant, project manager, Wells Fargo Bank, 1999-2006; vice president of operations, Digital Concepts, Inc., 1997-99; business consultant/project manager, Six Sigma Tech Consulting, 1993-97.

Marital: Married

Children: 3

Education: Master’s degree, education, University of Phoenix, 2010; B.S., management, University of Phoenix, 2009; certified Six Sigma Lean Green Belt, ASU School of Engineering, 2008.

Political experience: None.

Interests: Educational child advocate for children with disabilities. All work is pro-bono to the families.

Two biggest issues: Job creation. The government must create an atmosphere that entices the creation of good paying jobs but must not increase public sector jobs at this risk of losing private sector job creation. Taxation at all levels must be revisited and revised where necessary. New business start-ups must be made easier and less costly and “fast-tracked”. Education needs to be geared toward the needs of employers, to provide a local workforce with the skills needed to fill the business needs. In other words, barriers must be removed to create jobs and kick-start our economy. Education is a necessary component to the social and economic well-being of Arizona. The concept of a college or university education must be balanced with a healthy vocational educational environment. Not everyone is desirous of jobs requiring a college degree. Society requires trained workers in numerous vocational areas who are not necessarily receiving vocational training required to succeed.

Budget priorities: What are the no-nonsense budget parameters? No-frills until we get our arms around the necessary government spending how much money is needed. Where will the needed funding come from. Balance the revenue and expenditures to eliminate possible overspending or underfunding.

Fiscal philosophy: I am a fiscal conservative.

Common Core: We need standards in place to measure the progress of our students. Rather than implement a whole new methodology to measure standards, we should have analyzed the implemented standards and identified what worked well and where we needed improvements and then focus on changing and improving the standards saving school districts and the state millions of dollars. As it stands, we are bankrupting our school districts by implementing new methodologies for measuring standards every 5 to 10 years. Instead of the money going down to the teachers and classrooms, it is going into the textbook companies pockets. The majority of parents I have discussed this issue with have voiced their displeasure with the Arizona College and Career Ready Standards (Common Core), and they feel they were not included in the discussions. Teachers also have been impacted, especially special education teachers, where the Common Core Standards for their students is like putting a square peg in a round hole.

Gifts to elected officials: I agree reforms are needed, but I would be doing an injustice to try and sum up my response in a 100 words or less.

Transparency in government: I believe transparency is of the utmost importance. People what to know why government does what it does and why. Constituents what to know that they are being listened to, and they want a forum to ask the hard questions. They want accountability.

Pro-life / pro-choice: I personally am pro-life, but I am not running to judge other.

Public policy advice: I do a lot of networking with a number of very intelligent individuals, then I do my own research before coming to any conclusions on any issues.