Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Celebrating the women of the House!

Almost twenty years ago, President Clinton began the tradition of issuing a presidential proclamation every March in honor of Women’s History Month. Last week, President Obama issued his proclomation celebrating the contibutions women have made to our country. You can read the full proclomation here.

Washington state has a proud history of female leadership. In 1976, Washington elected Governor Dixy Lee Ray. Governor Ray was the fifth female governor in the United States, and only the second who wasn’t a wife or widow of a previous governor. Patty Murray became Washington’s first female senator in 1992. Finally, Washington became the first state to have both a female governor and two female senators in 2005.

Currently, 45 of Washington's 147 legislators are women. That equals out to about 30 percent, which makes us the 8th best state in terms of female representation.

18 of those 45 women call the House Democratic Caucus home. They come from places like Vancouver, Anacortes, Puyallup, Tacoma, and Seattle. They are nurses, teachers, veterinarians, former school board members, and attorneys.
They include a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, a former defense intelligence analyst at the Pentagon, an accomplished guitar player, and a powerlifter. They are mothers and grandmothers - and have cats with names like Astrophe.

In the legislature, they are leading the fight to protect our priorities - providing for our schools and building a better future, quality and affordable healthcare, opportunity and skills for the real world, and investing in businesses and jobs for a secure middle class.
We appreciate the contributions this diverse group of women bring to our caucus every month of the year. However, in March we will take a little extra time to celebrate the women at the table, the struggles they overcame to get there, and the men who helped them along the way.
Read this story in Spanish.