Election Office recognized for best practices in youth engagement

Published on June 14, 2022

Kyla Esparza and Michael Abbott at Wyandotte County Election Office

The Wyandotte County Election Office has been recognized by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) with a Clearinghouse Award for Best Practices in Recruiting, Retaining, and Training Poll Workers. The award was presented to Kyla Esparza, Program Coordinator of Election Workers, by EAC Commissioner Ben Hovland, for her work in developing a Student Election Mock Vote Program that brings the voting process to the local schools of Wyandotte County.

"I am very proud of the work Kyla Esparza and my staff do on a daily basis," said Election Commissioner Michael Abbott. "Working with the community and the students is very important to me and this office."

The Wyandotte County Election Office partnered with Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools and Wyandotte High School to host a mock election to help students understand and learn more about the process. The Election Office also recruits student election workers, providing training and creating teacher-student teams at different polling stations across the county. 


"I think it is important for the youth to get involved with elections because they understand the process at a younger age," said Kyla Esparza. "It is exciting to see them excited to work in democracy."

The program, launched four years ago, started with eight students but has grown to twenty students regularly participating. Several students have participated more than once, helping the Election Office key important positions to support our elections.

Learn more about becoming a Student Election Worker here.