Affie Ellis

Affie Ellis

Wyoming State Senator

Never let the odds keep you from doing what you know in your heart you were meant to do.


By Roadtrip Nation

Affie Ellis


My road in life has been direct.
I grew up in Jackson, Wyoming, as the youngest of four children to my parents, who are full Navajo.
As a teenager, I would help my mom clean motel rooms as a summertime job—seeing the extra wealth the guests had made me curious about how my own life would turn out.
I did an internship in high school with the Wyoming legislature—I discovered that I really enjoyed the political process, and used that passion to guide the rest of my career choices.
I went to the University of Wyoming and earned my degree in political science and American Indian studies.
After graduating, I worked for a senator who represented Wyoming and sat on the U.S. Senate Committees on Indian Affairs and Energy and Natural Resources—two issues I wanted to hone in on.
I earned my law degree from the University of Colorado Law School—during this time, I was appointed to serve as director of congressional and public affairs for the National Indian Gaming Commission.
After law school, I was appointed to serve on the Tribal Law and Order Commission.
In 2016, I ran for the Wyoming Senate and won—I currently represent southwest Laramie County and am the first Native American to serve in the Wyoming Senate.
Keep following my journey


High School
Political Science and American Indian Studies
University of Wyoming
University of Colorado


Wyoming State Senator

I represent southwest Laramie County, Wyoming, in the U.S. Senate.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Accomplishing Goals

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for everyone

Search for networks that are like you and want to discuss your ideas. It's not only about creating a relationship with someone—you also want to keep growing those relationships. They can open doors for you. When people ask me for a favor, I say yes because I want to help them. I'm not expecting anything in return, but I know that saying yes also means I get to meet new people and that any new network channels created in the process are opened.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:

Political Science and American Indian Studies


The Noise I Shed

From Society in General:

"Who's raising your kids? Don't you feel guilty for being here?"

Challenges I Overcame

Racial Discrimination
Gender Discrimination

Interviewed By

Forever Frontier

Forever Frontier

Young adults from Wyoming explore the state’s strengths