BELOIT—Longtime educator and Beloit resident Wanda Sloan wants to highlight the importance of voter participation, while fighting against voter suppression and partisan redistricting.

Sloan recently was elected to the State Governing Board of Common Cause in Wisconsin (CC/WI), the state’s largest nonpartisan political reform organization with more than 7,700 members and activists.

She currently serves as an independent consultant on issues of race relations, diversity/inclusion, and cultural competency and is the state youth advisor for the Wisconsin NAACP.

Sloan spent over three decades as an adjunct faculty member at Blackhawk Technical College and as a minority student advisor. Although she’s technically retired, don’t expect her to slow down any time soon.

“I’ve always focused on being an advocate for voting rights and education,” Sloan said. “It seems like the right to vote is becoming something that you have to overwork for and not something you can take advantage of on your own time.”

Sloan called voter suppression “very real,” also stressing that redistricting issues and community engagement to educate residents is needed to help people understand how local races could shape their daily lives.

“Local elections impact your daily life,” Sloan said. “Most people don’t think about those things and if you only vote every four years, your life changes and things are impacted greatly by decisions that are happening right here.”

Current Chair of CC/WI and former State Sen. Tim Cullen said Sloan’s experience was second-to-none.

“Wanda Sloan brings a wealth of experience and expertise in community building and in connecting people to bring about inclusion and active participation in the community and in the positive functioning of our local and state institutions. These are the very fundamental building blocks of our democracy,” Cullen said.

Sloan has a MS degree in Public Administration and a minor in Business Administration from Cardinal Stritch University and is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Rosa Parks Activist Award at national, regional and local levels. She is currently a member of the Beloit NAACP, serving as the State Youth/College Advisor. She is also a member of the Beloit League of Women Voters and the National Affirmative Action Association.

Sloan joins Common Cause in Wisconsin Board Members: Tim Cullen of Janesville, Penny Bernard Schaber of Appleton, David Deininger of Monroe, Mike Drew of Milwaukee, Kristin Hansen of Waukesha, Bill Hotz of Brookfield, David Martin of Muscoda, E. Michael McCann of Mequon, Calvin Potter of Sheboygan Falls, Robert Schweder of Princeton and Roger Utnehmer of Wausau. Sue Conley of Janesville and Kriss Marion of Blanchardville recently resigned from the CC/WI Board to run as partisan candidates for the Wisconsin Assembly, which is required by CC/WI by-laws.