I know what it’s like to struggle.

My family struggled with paying off student and mortgage loans, credit card debts, and paying for our household needs.

And I was not the only one.

Almost every kid in my neighborhood, every family I knew struggled. My parents had to work more than one job to make ends meet and sacrifice to get more education in order to provide for the family. That was just how life was and we accepted it. I accepted it.

Today, I am a doctor. BUT out of all my friends from my neighborhood, I am one of the few. And that is not right. It is wrong for only one or even a few people to make it out of a poor neighborhood and have a better life.

Everyone should have a better life… a successful life… a happy life. No adult or child should have to live believing or accepting that their life cannot be better.

I will protect us by fighting to change the laws that take away our rights, threaten the safety of our women and children, and deprive our families and communities of being healthy and thriving.

I will fight for EVERY zip code to have better education, training, and resources to prepare for a better life.

I will fight to provide EVERY person and EVERY neighborhood with easy access and equal opportunities to succeed.



You can read more about the issues key to Dr. Olysha’s campaign here.


Olysha Magruder was raised in rural Ohio by a preacher and a teacher, who taught her the importance of community and taking care of your neighbors. Her family understood how important education is for everyone – and that it is equally important to care about the community and provide opportunities for all to live the “American Dream.”

Olysha devoted her career to the field of education. She worked for the School Board of Alachua County as a substitute teacher, an aide in an ESE classroom, and a classroom teacher. She was a member of the Alachua County Education Association (ACEA). She moved into higher education and worked at the University of Florida and Santa Fe College, where she brought her love and passion for teaching to the faculty at these institutions.

Olysha currently works remotely from Johns Hopkins University as an instructional designer. She has taught in and fought for public schools. And she knows Florida education. She holds a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts and a Doctorate in Education from the University of Florida, as well as a Master’s of Arts in Media Studies from The New School. As a mother and educator, she understands the challenges that regular citizens face when dealing with the government.

Dr. Olysha is a longtime resident of North Central Florida. Both she and her husband, Jim, are proud Gator alumni. They met in an art class on the UF campus and the rest was history go Gators!

They live in the Porters Community of Southeast Gainesville with their three-year-old son, Jules. They also are “pet parents” to two dogs and two cats. 

Olysha and her family spend long afternoons at Depot Park, cooling off at the Dwight H. Hunter Pool, and visiting the beautiful natural parks and springs in North Central Florida.