My name is Kent Lester and I’m a common-sense Democrat running to bring old-school American Values back to Washington for the people of Texas’ 31st Congressional District.

I was born in Hampton, Virginia and grew up as an Army brat as the son of an infantryman. I was proud to follow my father’s footsteps into the US Army and am a proud graduate of West Point. I served 20 years as member of the military and 8 years as a public educator in Central Texas schools. I’ve been happily married to my wife Brigid for almost 20 years and have been a proud resident of District 31 for just as long. We’ve seen off 5 children through public schools and communities here in Central Texas and have since dedicated our lives to building up the future of the communities in our District. I’m looking forward to using my experience to bring a fresh perspective to Washington for the people of the 31st and I’ll need your help to do it.

Growing up as a military brat, I’ve spent most of my life around those who serve. My father spent 30 years as an infantryman and I knew from an early age that I wanted to follow in his footsteps. I joined the Army through the US Military Academy at West Point, where I received my degree in Political Science as a proud member of the Class of 1980. And from there, I served my own 20 years in locations around the world, from Panama and Bosnia to right here at home at the Great Place--Ft. Hood. Even after retiring as a Lt. Colonel in the Army Quartermaster Corps, my connection to our veterans, and our active-duty men and women in uniform runs deep. I’m the proud spouse of a disabled veteran and a member of the first class of women to graduate from West Point and the father of a combat veteran that served in Iraq and a proud member of the US Air Force. The issues that affect military families are close to my heart and that's why I will stand firmly to support all of them in Washington.

After leaving the military, I still found myself driven by my passion to serve. So I got to work in our communities right here in District 31. I spent 8 years as an educator in Texas public schools teaching high school World Geography to students in Belton. My children all graduated from public schools in District 31 and I’ve been proud to take personal investment in the futures of those that were born and raised here. Even after retiring as a teacher, Brigid and I have made a point of ensuring the development of our community. We are strong supporters of the Austin Children's Shelter and the Austin SAFE Alliance. We also serve on the Developmental Council, The Women of Hope, the Illuminate Austin Committee, and the Belton Educational Enrichment Foundation. District 31 deserves someone that intimately knows the costs of building our community in Washington and I look forward to bringing that perspective to Capitol Hill.

I understand the values that drive Central Texans and I know that at the core of those values are our families. Brigid and I have had 5 children that attended and graduated from schools here in Central Texas and have since moved on to serve their country and their communities--and have children of their own. Our grandchildren, and yours, all deserve to enjoy the same freedoms from fear that my generation took for granted. Freedom from fearing that illness will put them into debt, free access to a good public education, and freedom from the constant threat of climate change. It’s time we guarantee our nation’s future a better one, and it starts by taking it into our own hands.

I am passionate about Central Texas. District 31 is a vital area that captures all that is good about Texas and our country. We live here and are a community. We connect with our businesses, schools, stores, events, churches, neighborhood organizations, kids, sporting activities, law enforcement, and many other things.  We acknowledge the needs that serve the greater good of our society: supporting affordable health care, reducing income inequality, and ensuring our tax dollars are intelligently appropriated.

I want to ensure that our children live in a world guided by sensible public policy that leaves no one behind. Our District deserves a voice that will bring that to you, and that’s why I’m running for Congress.

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