Nikiya Dodd started her political career on the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors from 2010 through 2012. As a county supervisor, Dodd led the County Board on the decision to separate the House of Correction from the Sheriff’s budget. The separation resulted in the implementation and restoration of inmate treatment and diversion programming for non-violent offenders. These changes increased evidence-based decision-making practices while saving millions of taxpayer dollars.
She also led the fight for voters’ rights by opposing Voter ID law. She eased voter access to the polls by passing an initiative that, temporarily, allowed thousands of Milwaukee residents to receive a free birth certificate, including the elderly and young adults. Dodd was also a member of the Wisconsin State Senate, representing the 6th Senate District from 2013-2017. She did not seek re-election.
During the 2013-14 legislative session, Dodd pushed for an increase in the minimum wage, access to job training, and affordable healthcare. She also put forth initiatives to repair Milwaukee's foreclosure crisis and reform Wisconsin's broken criminal justice system and mental health system.
In April 2014, Dodds' bill to create the Milwaukee County Emergency Detention Pilot Program was signed into law. The program put the authority to initiate emergency detentions into the hands of qualified mental health professionals, rather than solely in the hands of the police. The law is intended to mitigate risk in a mental health crisis situations.
Dodd graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with a bachelor’s degree in community education and a master’s degree in adult education. She and her husband, Anthony Dodd Sr., live on Milwaukee’s northwest side with their 3-year-old son Anthony Thomas Dodd, Jr.