Rep. Allen Buansi, D-Orange, is one of the newest House members thanks to Rep. Verla Insko’s decision to step down early. Orange County Democrats waited to see the results of the primary before appointing Insko’s replacement, and Buansi – a Chapel Hill Town Councilman – won a close race against Chapel Hill attorney Jonah Garson. Buansi had an endorsement from UNC Chapel Hill basketball star Armando Bacot.
What are the current and past jobs you’ve held outside of politics? I am currently a municipal lawyer. In the past, I have been a civil rights lawyer, high school football coach, a research assistant and a YMCA front desk clerk.
Why did you run for state legislature instead of another elected office you might have considered? Previously, I served on the Town Council for my hometown, Chapel Hill. I have also been a civil rights lawyer and a municipal lawyer for much of my legal career. My service on the Town Council and as a lawyer brought me face to face with the challenges folks face every day. Folks have given me insight into how their lives can be improved, from the local level to the state level in our businesses, neighborhoods, schools and families. The state legislature is uniquely positioned and has the power to help improve lives in every town and county. I want to bring my past experiences to this body in the service of helping out folks who are struggling with healthcare, education, housing and jobs, so we can be a truly affordable, accessible and inclusive North Carolina.
If you could enact a single piece of legislation into law today, what would it be? If I could enact a single piece of legislation, it would be a clear plan and deadline in the next three years for fully and comprehensively funding public education under the Leandro state court decision. This plan would pay public school teachers, administrators and staff what they are truly worth. It would fund much-needed school repairs across our state. This plan would provide every child in North Carolina with the resources and support they need to succeed. Quality public education is critical to securing our children’s future and the future of our state.
Where do you most enjoy taking an out-of-town visitor in your district? I most enjoy taking visitors out on a stroll across UNC-Chapel Hill’s campus and through downtown Chapel Hill and Carrboro.
What is your favorite hobby outside of work? Spending time just hanging out with my family, especially my wife and children. Walks and going to the playground are the favorite activities right now.
Who do you most admire, and why? My mother. She is a renaissance woman, who sparked my love and appreciation of history. She also encouraged me and created opportunities for me to help others to get what they need and deserve. I would not be doing what I am doing without her love, guidance and support.