But after being the victim of racist hate mail while attending undergrad at Rhodes College and watching Black people face inequalities in the criminal justice system, both careers became a calling she had to answer.

Today, Crockett is making waves as the outspoken and passionate lone Black freshman Democrat in the Texas state legislature. In her first year in the state House of Representatives, Crockett proposed more than 60 legislative bills — many of which she drafted herself — that tackled criminal justice reform, loosening drug laws and expanding voting access. Though none of them passed, she hasn’t given up.

Crockett said she came into office determined to advocate for vulnerable Texans and refuses to be silenced by more senior colleagues who don’t always agree with her.

“My intent was to make sure that my constituency absolutely knew their voices were being heard,” Crockett said. “I never intended to sit on my hands and let falsehoods go unchecked.”

Crockett has emerged as one of the faces on the frontlines of a fight to protect voting rights in the Lone Star State. And she’s been battling Republicans alongside other women of color from the Texas legislature.