Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus Coordinator Melissa Turley will step down on June 30, 2015. Turley has worked with the leaders of the caucus since 2007 to provide support and leadership for women in the Wyoming Legislature as well as aspiring female leaders across the state. Turley’s primary focus has been the planning and production of statewide Leap into Leadership events. Now in its eighth year, Leap into Leadership strengthens civic engagement and leadership in the equality state. Among the more than 1,000 alumnae of local and statewide Leap into Leadership events are the Wyoming State Auditor Cynthia Cloud, Wyoming Superintendent of Education Jillian Balow, a number of legislators, and leaders and elected officials in cities and towns across the state.
Rep. Mary Throne, Chair of the Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus, said “Melissa has dedicated herself to empowering women in this position and others, and today there are dozens of Wyoming women who have run for office, joined boards and increased their leadership capacity thanks in some part to her hard work.”
Turley will begin as the Executive Director of the Teton Village Association in July. Her work will focus on strong administration as well as working to help complete Teton Village as a pedestrian friendly, world-class resort community that retains the character of Wyoming and is the best fit for Teton County. “I am so grateful for the opportunity to advance women’s leadership in Wyoming,” says Turley, who is committed to ensuring a seamless transition. The Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus leadership has already retained an interim coordinator on a consulting basis.
The nonpartisan Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus promotes women in the Wyoming legislature through support and leadership development. The Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus is sponsored by The Equipoise Fund.
Run Baby, Run!
Celinda Lake and Kellyanne Conway, two of the nation’s most noted pollsters framed issues important to women voters and candidates for 250 guests, including Governor and First Lady Mead, legislators and local and statewide elected officials at Leap into Leadership on February 27, 2014. Lake and Conway, co-authors of the book “What Women Really Want,” spoke of changing demographics such as the rise of single mothers, and their impact on elections in America.
“We never thought we could elect a woman here”
In addition to these national experts on women in politics, Leap into Leadership also offered leadership workshops, breakfast with State Auditor Cynthia Cloud and a roundtable discussion of women in Wyoming politics to prepare for the 2014 election season. The roundtable discussion featured Leslie Petersen, candidate for Governor of Wyoming in 2010, Fremont County Commissioner Keja Whiteman, Evanston Mayor Joy Bell and former Superintendent of Public Instruction Judy Catchpole.
“We never thought we could elect a woman here,” people said to Joy Bell, the first woman elected mayor of Evanston, Wyoming. Bell ran for the position because she thought she could do things better. “It’s the best job I’ve ever had,” she says.
Hosted by the Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus, a project of The Equipoise Fund, in partnership with the Wyoming Women’s Foundation, Leap into Leadership aims to increase women’s leadership at all levels. Leap into Leadership alumnae currently serve on Wyoming school boards, city councils, county commissions and in the legislature and State Auditor’s office.
“I felt very inspired after attending Leap into Leadership,” said Jessica Stanbury of Casper. “I’m glad I was able to network with such amazing women and learn about all the fantastic things we are, and can be, doing to make a difference in our state and nationally.”
The nonpartisan Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus promotes women in the Wyoming legislature through support and leadership development.