By: Jen Russon
She can’t vote until 2020, but that doesn’t stop Madison McEwen, a junior at North Broward Preparatory School, from doing everything in her power to educate those who can about the amendments on the ballot.
This month the teen, representing the Broward League of Women Voters appeared with personalities from Miami’s iHeartRadio and other South Florida stations, to break down the 12 amendments on the ballot in plain English.
“What was so cool about her getting to read the amendments for iHeartRadio Miami is, they brought in all these personalities as she went over each amendment. So there’s tons of people who heard it,” said Madison’s mother Liz McEwen.
Madison said her passion for politics comes from knowing that each and every well-informed vote can make a huge difference for the country. She said that even though she’s not eligible to vote due to her age, she is doing everything in her power to get others to vote.
“I am passionate about reaching the youth as my audience because we are the future, and if we want to see a change for future generations, we need to start now by voting,” said Madison.
At 16, she is among the one of the youngest members of Broward League of Women Voters. The nonpartisan organization encourages informed and active participation of citizens in government and works to increase the understanding of major public policy issues.
For Madison, helping the organization achieve its mission has centered around attending meetings and voter registration events, as well as encouraging people to learn everything they can about the issues on the November ballot.
She said that since some of the amendments are bundled with multiple issues, a careful breakdown of what each amendment means, can be invaluable to voters before they head to the polls or vote by mail.
In her 15 minutes with iHeartRadio Miami, Madison discusses each of the dozen amendments on the ballot, which would have been thirteen if Amendment 8 had not been removed.
Her effervescence and smooth articulation of the amendments show a head for civics that could, she said, lead to studying political science at the University of Florida, which she hopes to attend someday. For now, the League volunteer is thinking she will major in engineering.
As a volunteer at a local hospital, working in ER and dispatch, Madison said she loves connecting with patients. The teenager also has been selected to join the youth cabinet for Congressman Ted Deutch.
The McEwen family have a long history in Broward County. Her father, David, graduated from Boyd Anderson High School in Lauderdale Lakes. Her mother, Liz, graduated from Marjory Stoneman Douglas in the first class of seniors to ever graduate from the Parkland high school.
Liz said that the political activism shown by her alma mater, the March for Our Lives and voter registration efforts created by Douglas students, have inspired the whole McEwen family. Together, they are getting out the vote and are encouraging everyone to use their voice on Tuesday, November 6.
Jen Russon is a freelance writer and English Language Arts teacher. She has published two novels to Amazon Kindle and lives in Coral Springs with her family.