By: Yessica Ramos
The importance of leadership, evaluating the value of our experiences, and leading a well balanced, sensible yet exciting life are all principles that President of the Colorado Senate, Dan Pabon, advocates in the youth. Dan Pabon is a state representative from house district four, and came to talk to the students participating in the Youth in Government program, for what could be one of his last times. He is finishing up eight years of service, to the Colorado House of Representatives.
He grew up in Colorado, in North West Denver also known as the highlands area and went to school at Holy Family, now located in Broomfield, from preschool through high school. While attending Holy Family he became very involved in student government and later in his senior year of high school, he became the vice president of his class. After highschool Pabon enrolled at University of Colorado and studied mechanical engineering but there was still a part in him that wanted to do something with public service. This led him to later serve as an ambassador for the University of Colorado to the legislation advocating for college students.
Although he studied mechanical engineering, he decided that his “public service bug had not gone away.” So he went to law school, reason being that he “believed the law is thes best way to serve people”. In his last year of law school he was elected as class president. Pabon addressed that the things he said and did are not to brag, but rather to inform those who show potential for strong leadership skills, that involvement is key.
Throughout all of his experiences he wanted to create a change, and he knew that “change starts at home.” This inspired him to run for state representative and eight years later he was elected on November 2, 2010. He went into office on January 12, 2011 and became one of the youngest members in the house of representatives at the time, only being 32 years old. Pabon has overcome personal challenges and has still been able to serve his community.
Representative Pabon also talked about how the Colorado Youth in Government is an extraordinary experience as he stated, “It’s also very encouraging to see you here participating in this magical place, I call it magical because I think there is such a mystique associated with government how laws get made, how do they get implemented, who makes them, and why do they do these things.” He later stated, “there’s a magic that many people have associated with what is done here.” Colorado Youth in Government are real people, trying to solve real problems that affect people like us, the future.