- Hometown: Broomfield, Colo.
- Role: Manager of visitor services at the Colorado Capitol
- Years of legislative service: 18
“People may come in angry, but I can help ensure that by the time they leave, some of them have a better understanding of, and appreciation for, how their state government works.”
Why did you choose to work at the Legislature?
I’m fascinated by the legislative process, and in my job, I have a ringside seat—the governor’s and lieutenant governor’s offices are on the first floor of the Capitol, the state House and Senate are on the second floor, and the lobbyists and the general public are everywhere. It’s a bonus for me that the Colorado State Capitol is the grandest building in the state, with extensive use of Beulah rose onyx that’s found nowhere else. The view from the Capitol dome, with downtown Denver framed by the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains, is worth the climb—99 stairs from the top of the elevators or 200 stairs from ground level.
What skill or talent are you most proud of?
In these hyperpartisan times, many people enter the Capitol with an agenda and an ax to grind. I’m good at defusing situations that could turn confrontational. People may come in angry, but I can help ensure that by the time they leave, some of them have a better understanding of, and appreciation for, how their state government works.
What’s the best advice you were ever given?
My first boss in the Legislature—Marilyn Eddins, a much-beloved and long-serving chief clerk of the Colorado House of Representatives—told me: “What you do for one, you must do for all.”
Who or what inspires you?
Maira Kalman, whose books uniquely combine prose, photography and illustration. She ignites my artistic senses. Every time I pick up “The Principles of Uncertainty,” I want to run outside with my camera or my sketch pad.
What’s one thing you love about your state?
Colorado is one place where the great outdoors are truly great. Hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, paddleboarding, camping, cycling – I could go on and on. The best musical events are also outdoors, at the famous Red Rocks Amphitheater.
What are you currently reading/listening to/watching?
Whenever I can, I’m watching or listening to the proceedings of the Colorado General Assembly, which is in regular session from January to May. I feel I owe my visitors an up-to-date, nonpartisan summary of what’s happening in the House and Senate. When the Legislature is not in session, I’m an avid consumer of novels. My favorite author is Alice Hoffman. The novels and shows I stream transport me away from the daily grind. Right now, I’m into “Ted Lasso,” “Ginny & Georgia,” “Poker Face” and “Shrinking.”
This interview has been edited for length and clarity. Use the email icon above to suggest a staffer for the “Staff Snapshots” series.