The Democratic member of the House was raised to give back to her community. She did not chase a career in politics, it found her.
Kansas State Representative Ballard spent the past 19 years serving her district.
To the 62-year-old, voters are best served when she knows their needs.
So, for nearly two decades, she's called five voters a night, to learn what issues are on their minds.
The democrat is running for re-election with a platform that values public service. Education, public programs and tax cuts are her highest concern.
"I always feel honored and blessed that my constituents would believe in me enough and trust me, because I have proven in my leadership that I will represent them to the best of my ability," she said.
If re-elected, Ballard said she will vote for legislation that protects mental health services and guardianship programs like meals on wheels. Which is currently about 20 percent of the state's budget. She says recent tax cuts are a step backward.
“If all your money is tied up in education and social service, other parts of the budget do not have those kinds of funds," she said.
Ballard works closely with representatives across the aisle. She says she has nothing but the upmost respect for her colleagues.
"The State of Kansas is very diverse, we're urban, we're rural, small, large and you have all these legislatures that represent a very diverse population of people," she said.
In addition to her time as a representative, Ballard served on the Lawrence School Board for eight years. And, she is the president for the National Black Caucus of State Legislators.