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About Kissy

Kissy Coakley has officially declared her candidacy for the Minnesota State House, representing District 49A. Her campaign prioritizes enhancing community safety, providing mental health support, combating domestic violence and substance abuse, maintaining a robust education system, improving healthcare choices, addressing climate change, and ensuring affordable housing. As the founder of Kissy’s Stay Put Services, Coakley brings a wealth of experience and a commitment to positive social change. Holding a B.A. in Criminal Justice from Metropolitan State University, she has been a fervent advocate for criminal justice reform, focusing on rehabilitation and empowerment rather than perpetual punishment and incarceration.

With over 15 years of experience as a Domestic &  Sexual Violence Advocate and a Re-entry Case Manager for several nonprofits, Coakley has been dedicated to addressing the disparities and injustices within the criminal justice system, particularly those affecting women. Her passion for understanding clients’ unique circumstances and combating the criminalization of women in the justice system led her to establish Kissy’s Stay Put Services in 2020, a nonprofit aimed at tackling these critical issues.


Coakley's political career includes her election to the Minnetonka City Council in 2019, where she made history as the first African-American woman to serve. Her work on criminal justice policy reform through the Second Chance Coalition and leadership in TakeAction MN’s Justice 4 All Campaign has contributed to significant changes, including the amendment of hiring policies by Target Corporation to ensure fairer criminal background checks. Currently serving her second term as a City Council member for Ward 4 in Minnetonka, Coakley has been instrumental in advancing initiatives related to Criminal Justice, Mental Health, Affordable Housing, Generational Wealth Building, Transportation, and Climate Change. Her efforts have led to the establishment of a sustainability commission, a new pathway to homeownership program, and a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Commission, among others.

A resident of Minnetonka since 2008 and a proud parent of three, two of whom graduated from Minnetonka High School, Coakley’s commitment to her district and to criminal justice reform is unwavering. Her leadership roles in the Take Action MN Justice 4 All Campaign and contributions to national movements for fairer hiring policies and criminal background checks underscore her dedication to fostering a just and equitable society.

In addition to her political and advocacy work, Coakley is a change agent and leader in her community. Through Kissy’s Stay Put Services, she provides crucial support to victims of domestic abuse who have been criminally charged. She also owns and operates Kissy’s Kitchen Catering and actively participates in several task forces for the League of MN Cities, focusing on improving local economies, transportation, and housing, further demonstrating her multifaceted approach to community service and development.

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