Rep. Dr. Ponka-We Victors-Cozad (Tohono O’odham | Ponca) is a Distinguished Fellow at Advance Native Political Leadership. In this role, she will help recruit more Native people to run for office by building new strategic partnerships with tribes, nonprofits, educational institutions, Native leaders, and others. Dr. Ponka-We Victors-Cozad is completing her 6th term in the Kansas House of Representatives and is the first Native American woman to serve in the Kansas Legislature. She is a member of the Tohono O’odham Nation of Arizona and Ponca tribe of Oklahoma. Dr. Victors-Cozad earned a graduate degree in public administration from Wichita State University and doctoral degree in education from Creighton University. She has been honored with various achievements and awards like most recently the 20 under 40 award from the Council of State Governments award and the Leadership for Public Purpose award from Creighton University.
In the legislature, she served on the transportation budget, veterans, child support enforcement and collections, state-tribal relations, and transportation committees. In 2021, she was appointed by Governor Kelly to the Kansas Oklahoma Arkansas River Commission. Rep. Dr. Victors-Cozad has been successful in passing good legislation and is a longtime advocate for undocumented students and families, domestic violence victims, tribal sovereignty, education, safety, and the environment.