Brookfield East Class of 1976
A Senator and a Spartan; 1976 Brookfield East graduate, Leah (Papachristou) Vukmir, has been serving Wisconsin as an elected official for 14 years. After receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing from Marquette and a Masters from the University of Wisconsin, Leah began her career in nursing- never anticipating she would get into the world of politics.
Shortly after the turn of the century, issues in education, medical care, and the well-being of children drove Leah to run for public office. In 2002, Ms. Vukmir ran for the state assembly and secured the seat, succeeding Scott Walker. She held the seat for 8 years until defeating opponent Jim Sullivan for the Wisconsin 5th District Senate seat. She holds the State Senate seat to this day, and works part-time helping in home-based healthcare to continue to do what she loves.
“One of the keys is to find what you love, and I had quite a few influential teachers that helped me do that,” stated Vukmir. She praised her East teachers and veteran principal Jerry Stern, for pushing her to new heights and helping her reach her potential.
The Senator believes that co-curriculars are equally as important as academics; being involved in drama, musicals, forensics, and choir gave her the experience and practical knowledge to be able to speak on the assembly and senate floors and do her job each day.
As the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions, the senator cited her Brookfield East Alumni Achievement Award as one of the merits she was most honored to accept. She also indicated that she was thrilled to become the national chairperson of the American Legislative Exchange Council in recent years.
Senator Vukmir is still active within her Brookfield East peer-group, staying in touch with friends and even helping to organize their class reunions. “My time at East is something that I think back on fondly, it shaped me into who I am. I recently moved back to Brookfield after raising my family and it was wonderful to finally come back home.”
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