The Eleanor Roosevelt Award is presented annually to members of our community whose work and service to the people of Coconino County embody the ideals of Eleanor Roosevelt. The award winner will be announced at the Roosevelt/Kennedy Dinner on March 30.
In her day, Mrs. Roosevelt was told to “attend to her own knitting,” but she refused. For decades, she wrote a daily newspaper column, traveled to spread FDR’s message, and pushed FDR’s administration toward more progressive policies. Truman appointed Eleanor Roosevelt to represent the United States at the first United Nations meeting. Though she never held elected office, Mrs. Roosevelt was viewed as a tireless defender of the average American.
She said, “I see it as our duty to comfort the afflicted, and to afflict the comfortable.”
It is with Mrs. Roosevelt’s example in mind that the Coconino County Democratic Party honors the following nominees for the 2019 Eleanor Roosevelt Award:
After the 2016 Election, Helene pulled together a diverse group from the Flagstaff Community to form a local chapter of Indivisible, Flagstaff Indivisible, which she continues to host in her home. In the 2018 Election Cycle, Helene led the Flagstaff-area effort on behalf of the Outlaw Dirty Money Campaign. Helene is an elected Precinct Committee Person and contributor to Democratic Party causes.
Patty Hansen has been a fierce advocate for voting rights since she began her career in elections over 31 years ago. She views elections as the way to determine the will of the governed and therefore a critical feature of a democracy. She has worked vigilantly against voter suppression efforts, whether on the state level (such as voter ID laws) or the national level (such as the elimination of pre-clearance rules).
Patty has worked for Coconino County since 2003, and she has served as County Recorder since her election in 2012. Patty is the past president of the Arizona County Recorder Association, and she continues to work closely with her recorder and election colleagues on a variety of issues. She currently serves on the Arizona Association of County Officials Board of Directors. She is seen as a leader nationally and has been invited to serve on committees for the Election Center and the federal Election Assistance Administration.
Patty has always striven for exemplary customer service. In January, Anne Worthington, a temporary election staffer, submitted an article to the Daily Sun under the title “Election staff work hard to protect votes.” The writer’s goal was to “outline why Coconino County voters are represented by very competent leadership.” She praised the dedicated public service of the staff and volunteers.
Patty also inspires other elected officials and aspiring elected officials to develop their platforms and run, serving as a mentor, friend and resource. She works hard on her own time to help the next generation of elected officials to take their stand. She is absolutely dedication to the principle that the sanctity of the vote is at the core of democratic values.
Gail Lowe is a citizen who donates her time and money to a raft of good causes in Flagstaff including, but not only, the Literacy Center, Coconino Community College, and the American Association of University Women.. She’s always helping friends and neighbors, and is active in the Unitarian Church. She’s exemplifies the person who lives the ideals of a good Democrat in her every day life.
The winner of this year’s Eleanor Roosevelt Award will be announced at the 19th Annual Roosevelt-Kennedy Dinner on March 30 at Little America Hotel. Featured speakers for the evening are Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman. Tickets are available through March 22.