Youth Development

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We must provide a high quality and globally competitive education for all Iowans to increase job
​readiness and opportunity.

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Iowa State Representative

Ras Smith

District 62 - Waterloo, Elk Run Heights, Raymond, Evansdale


We must ensure safety in our homes and equity in the justices system as well as protect access to crucial healthcare for all Iowans, rural and metropolitan.
Call Me: 515-281-3221
Ras Smith was born in Waterloo, IA to L.C and Belinda Smith.  As a youth, he was often his mother’s tagalong to protest and attend meetings with community leaders and other civic venues.  In 2006, Ras graduated from Malcolm Price Lab School. He then attended Wartburg College where he studied Fitness Management and played football.  Ras later graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in Exercise Science. Ras is currently finishing his Master’s degree in Leisure, Youth and Human Services at the University of Northern Iowa. 

As a member of the community Ras has been active in mentoring youth, faith based outreach and community based exercise initiative.  As a part of youth outreach, Ras served as a volunteer football coach at East High School, while serving as the strength and conditioning coach. Ras has also been a volunteer for the Salvation Army and the Northeast Iowa Foodbank.  With an emphasis on youth development and reducing barriers to youth success, Ras was invited as a speaker at the African American Conference for Children and Families for two consecutive years, presenting on the topic of racial microaggression. 

Professionally, Ras has worked with the Juvenile Court system and for Four Oaks agency providing youth counseling and assisting troubled youth in being rehabilitated to pursue a more positive future.  Most recently, Ras has served as the Site Coordinator for the nationally recognized non-profit organization, Communities In Schools.  In this role Ras works to provide “wrap-around” services for at-risk youth at George Washington Carver Academy.  
1007 E Grand Ave, Des Moines, 50309
515-281-3221 •

This is my vision for our community and our state.

My vision for this district and state is an infrastructure that provides our young people with the skills and support that empower them to reach for the stars.

An educational system that ensures that the tools are given to all children regardless of socioeconomic status, the color of their skin, or their primary spoken language. Policy that protects our most vulnerable populations so that they can have the quality of life for which our ancestors died. 

A health care system in which rural and metropolitan areas can receive comprehensive and effective care. Legislators that are no longer blind to the fact that gun violence isn't a second amendment issue; it’s a moral issue for our country. 

And a justice system that does not disproportionately jail people of color, those who have committed nonviolent crimes, and those who suffer from drug addiction. A justice system that protects our law enforcement officials by fostering and encouraging meaningful relationships with the citizens they serve.

Meet Ras



We must devise and implement a framework for youth that is engaging, promotes excellence, and infrastructure that assist youth in becoming successful adults.