As a descendant of Scandinavian immigrants who led wagons across the plains to Utah and as the daughter of an Air Force officer, the values of patriotism, service, and heritage were ingrained in Jessica while in her youth. “Learning to adapt and solve problems were hallmarks of my military upbringing; I benefited from the diverse experiences I had in my childhood,” said Jessica. “Yet, the quality of life I have today – what we share together – comes on the backs of the sacrifices my ancestors made when they came to this State. I hope my efforts to preserve our heritage and to promote our community’s long-term stability and quality of life will honor those who came before me.”
In 2019, Jessica was involved in efforts to encourage others throughout Utah to run for public office and felt compelled to do so herself. “I knew I had something to offer during a critical moment for Mapleton,” she notes. “It was intimidating, but I felt compelled to learn as much as possible and be part of the solutions.” With rapid growth already on the horizon for Mapleton in key southern areas of the community, Jessica’s experience in strategic planning, communication, and leadership would come in handy.
Jessica was elected to the Mapleton City Council, beginning her term in 2020. A challenging year worldwide brought unique opportunities to the legislative role. Regarding this time, Jessica notes, “Despite the expedited learning curve, I absolutely loved the meaningful work with the Mayor, staff, Council, and community.”
Three-and-a-half years later, Jessica is once again throwing her hat in the ring to continue the work she loves and to see through her commitment to Mapleton. “In these brief years, we have made key investments that will ensure Mapleton is prepared for growth while simultaneously preserving – and elevating - our service-minded, friendly culture, our scenic views and open spaces, and quality of life.” Jessica continued, “My epitaph should read, ‘She cared and she got stuff done.’ – and, since I’ve already bought my plot in the Mapleton Cemetery, I’m hopeful to have a lifetime in Mapleton to continue proving it.”
Jessica has served as the Council liaison to Public Safety for two years and, previously, as the liaison to Parks and Recreation. Her additional responsibilities have included state-level legislative advocacy as a board member of the Utah League of Cities and Towns, where she works to support effective policy and preserve cities’ rights to govern in ways that support the interests of their own citizens.