Experience as immigrant leads to Carmel City Council run for at-large candidate


The first 13 years Sara Draper lived in the U.S. were a bit more uneventful than she would have liked, as the terms of her visa prevented her from finding a job, continuing her education or even opening a credit card in her own name.

So, after becoming a U.S. citizen in 2013, she was extra motivated to serve and be involved in ways she couldn’t before. A native of England, Draper has long been interested in politics and has entered the race for an at-large seat on the Carmel City Council.

“I really want to give back. This country has given me so much,” Draper said. “I feel I have the skills, and I’m ready to serve.”

Draper joins Jake Madore as Democrats who have filed to run for three at-large seats on the council in the municipal election this year. Rich Taylor, Matt Snyder and incumbent Jeff Worrell have filed to run for the seats as Republicans. Candidates may file until Feb. 3.

Professionally, Draper has experience in market research and finance. Her volunteer work includes serving as a guardian ad litem to advocate in court for abused and neglected children, and she has served on the building and grounds committee for the Village of WestClay neighborhood association. She is a graduate of Oxford University and speaks five languages.

Draper said she supports much of the work Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard has done as the city has grown and redeveloped during his 27 years in office, and she doesn’t want to see “drastic change” in how the city is run. If elected, she said she will aim to listen and represent all of her constituents, regardless of party affiliation.

“I want Carmel to be an inclusive, diverse city where everybody’s voice is heard,” Draper said. “I want to represent everyone in a transparent and accessible manner.”

Draper and her husband, Bob, moved to the U.S. in 2000 and relocated to Carmel seven years later. They worked with a Hamilton County law firm to adopt their daughter, who is now a senior at Lawrence University in Wisconsin.