September 25, 2022

State Rep. Carney Honored as 2021 National ‘Rising Star’ by Millennial Action Project

On Dec. 9, Connecticut Rep. Devin Carney (R-23rd), second from left, and Arkansas  Rep. Jamie Scott (D), second from right, received the 2021 Millennial Action Project’s (MAP) Rising Star Awards from Layla Zaidane, President & CEO of MAP at a ceremony held in Washington DC. At the same event, Kansas Representatives Nick Hoheisel (R), left, and Brandon Woodard (D), right, accepted the Cherisse Eatmon Collective Impact Award on behalf of the Kansas Future Caucus for which they serve as Co-vice-chairs. Photo by the Millennial Action Project.

Award Recognizes Two Lawmakers — One R, One D — For Transcending Political Polarization Through Public Service

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Last Thursday, Dec. 9, in Washington, D.C., the Millennial Action Project (MAP), the largest nonpartisan organization of Millennial elected officials in the U.S., presented the 2021 Rising Star Award to Connecticut State Rep. Devin Carney (R-23rd) and Arkansas State Rep. Jamie Scott (D). Carney’s District includes the Towns of both Lyme and Old Lyme.

The annual Rising Star Awards highlight young leaders—one Republican and one Democrat—and their contributions to the State Future Caucus Network (SFCN) over the last year. This is the fourth year that the award has been presented.

The Awards recognize lawmakers, who have embodied MAP’s mission to transcend political polarization through their public service and taken initiative in shepherding bipartisan legislation that addresses priority issues in today’s political climate.

The MAP elaborated on this saying in their announcement of the awards, “This year’s awardees went above and beyond to build relationships with their colleagues across the aisle. Their exemplary leadership and collaboration is a model of American democracy at its best. We applaud and thank them for their dedicated public service.”

Both Rep’s Carney and Scott are co-chairs of the Future Caucus in their respective states. 

Immediately after receiving the award, Rep. Carney said in a Facebook post, “[I am] so incredibly honored to receive the Millennial Action Project’s Rising Star Award tonight in DC!”

He added, “As a millennial legislator, I have worked hard to push policies that can make Connecticut a better place to work, go to school, and raise a family. I’m proud of the friends and positive relationships I have made on my side and across the aisle, which is what MAP is all about.”

In a press release issued by MAP prior to the awards ceremony, Rep. Carney said, “I’ve always placed tremendous effort in supporting good public policy, regardless of where it originates from, so I’m incredibly honored to receive the Rising Star Award from my peers at the Millennial Action Project for my work in promoting their mission of transcending political tribalism.”

He continued, “Despite the polarization that seems to be overplayed in the news, I firmly believe there is so much more that unites us politically than divides us, particularly among younger generations. I hope more young people get involved in public service; it’s amazing what you can accomplish when you put your name on a ballot or actively support a cause or organization.”

Carney concluded by expressing thanks, “to MAP for all of their amazing work and this distinguished recognition.” 

In the same press release, Rep. Scott said, “I am honored to be chosen by the Millennial Action Project and I love that we share the same mission to find common ground with our adversaries. In my service to the Arkansas legislature and as a young woman of color, I have led by example to build relationships across party and demographic aisles to wage inclusive efforts to pass meaningful legislation.”

She added, “I believe our generation needs to be the change we have been waiting on. Our generation owes a great debt to the ones that came before us. I cannot think of a better way to repay that obligation than by working across partisan and racial divides to solve the great challenges of the 21st century. It is time to reunite these great states of America.”

The Cherisse Eatmon Collective Impact Award, recognizing an outstanding state caucus for their future-focused leadership and political bridge-building, was presented to the Kansas Future Caucus. The Kansas Future Caucus is led by Co-chairs Rep. Tory Arnberger (R) and Rep. Rui Xu (D); and Co-vice-chairs Rep. Brandon Woodard (D) and Rep. Nick Hoheisel (R). 

Rep. Rui Xu commented in the MAP press release, “Winning the 2021 Cherisse Eatmon Collective Impact Award means a great deal to me, both because of who it honors and because of the work we’ve done in Kansas to turn down the heat politically and show people what bipartisanship looks like.”

He continued, “While there are many issues we disagree on, we have all worked hard to become friends first and then use that friendship to try to understand each other better, which in turn has made us better friends. It’s an honor to serve with Reps. Arnberger, Hoheisel, and Woodard and it’s an honor to receive this award.”

Layla Zaidane, President & CEO of MAP, congratulated the awardees, saying, “We believe we can create a more inclusive, effective, and representative democracy if we can support the next generation of political leaders. The legislators recognized are living proof of how young people can transform how we do politics.”

She said, “The Rising Star Award and the Cherisse Eatmon Collective Impact Award honor those leaders for their commitment to building a better future together, while shifting the narrative about what is possible in our democracy.”

The Rising Star Awards reception was held at the Colada Shop in the District Wharf of Washington, D.C., where awardees were joined by a community of MAP leaders, supporters, and members of Congress in celebration of their accomplishments. 


  1. Charlotte Scot says

    I have always been a fan of Devin’s. However, his refusal and the refusal of all local Republicans to speak out against their Party’s obsession with perpetuating the disproven 2020 election fraud claims has soured me on him. I am not affiliated with a political party but I will speak out whenever our democracy is threatened. Local Republicans have not condemned the Jan 6 attempt to overthrow our democracy and they don’t seem to take a stand on anything they deem might lose them any “Trump” votes. To me, it shows a lack of values and courage and a fear of the truth. I can no longer support any of them. (If I have missed their statements, please correct me.

    • Paula Sadlon says

      “The Awards recognize lawmakers, who have embodied MAP’s mission to transcend political polarization through their public service and taken initiative in shepherding bipartisan legislation that addresses priority issues in today’s political climate.”

      The writer unfortunately missed the tenor of the award and sought to insert unnecessary and irrelevant criticism.

      Congratulations Rep. Carney.