I grew up in Fairlawn and graduated from Pulaski county High School where I was the first girl enrolled in auto mechanics. I worked two jobs to pay my way through Virginia Tech and through graduate school in California. I spent eleven years in Yakima, Washington where I gained work experience in health and human services including aging and long-term care, mental health, substance abuse, and legal aid. My grassroots organizing efforts led to the designation of “All American City” for Yakima.
I returned home in 1999 with a whole new appreciation of our beautiful New River Valley and equipped with new skills that have allowed me to help thousands of people in southwest Virginia gain access to healthcare. Our community is important to me. I believe my passion and determination combined with decades of professional experience will allow me to continue to improve the lives of citizens at our state and local levels.
The strong partnerships I have created over the last 20 years with Virginia’s Employment Commissions, New River Community Action ‘s Head Start, CHIP, public schools and many others have allowed me to address the challenges in our region and celebrate our successes. More importantly, these strong community connections have created opportunities to bring in much needed grant money and other resources.
I have been in your homes, churches, job sites and neighborhoods helping you navigate a complex and unfair health care system. I take your issues with me on long drives to Richmond to make sure your rural and often neglected voices are heard. I want to continue to fight for you and your family, but I need your help this time; I need your vote.