Senator Sandy Pappas


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Senator Sandra Pappas represents District 65 in St. Paul. Born in Hibbing, Pappas completed her undergraduate studies at Metropolitan State University in St. Paul, where she is former adjunct faculty. She also has an MPA degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

First elected in 1985 to represent District 65B in the House of Representatives, Pappas was later elected in 1990 to the Senate, where she has served since.

Throughout her legislative career, Pappas has advocated for human rights. She’s fought fervently for women, children and other vulnerable groups carrying proposals to prohibit trafficking of persons; to make higher education affordable for individuals brought into the state as children; to provide emergency contraception for sexual assault victims; to establish licensure for midwives; and to promote responsible sex education programs in high schools.

In addition to her legislative duties, Pappas is Vice President of Women Legislators’ Lobby, a project of women’s action for new directions, and serves on the advisory committee for the Office on the Economic Status of Women and the board of World Without Genocide. Previously, she served as a member of the Legislative Commission to End Poverty in Minnesota by 2020, as treasurer of the World Hellenic Inter-Parliamentary Association and as chair of the Social Justice Committee at Congregation Shir Tikvah Synagogue.

Pappas enjoys reading, exercising and spending time with family and friends. She is married to Neal Gosman and they have three daughters and 18 grandchildren.


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  • On Facebook

    "By believing women, supporting training and resources, and having these important conversations, we can change this culture."

    -Senator Pappas, today at the Sexual Harassment Rally in the Rotunda
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    Senator Pappas Statement on Sexual Harassment:

    I'm very disappointed in the described behavior by my senate colleague Dan Schoen and by Representative Tony Cornish.

    Senator Schoen has been a strong supporter of policies relating to women and girls. However, that does not excuse unacceptable and offensive comments and behavior on a personal level. This behavior has no place in our legislature, or anywhere else.

    Senator Schoen, Representative Cornish and other "so inclined" male legislators must take responsibility for their actions. We must all work together to change the culture that has made sexual harassment so pervasive in our society and ensure that everyone is respected in the workplace.

    I want to also applaud my sisters who bravely "blow the whistle" on offensive and sexist behavior. By sharing your stories, we have the opportunity to hold people accountable for their actions.
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