As a healthcare provider, I’ve experienced the best and the worst of what life can bring. I have seen the resilience of people living with chronic health conditions and who have survived critical illnesses, and those who have met loss with extraordinary grace. I’ve also seen the devastating downstream results of social and economic disparities embedded in every community.
I volunteer with organizations that do the daily work of caring for marginalized and vulnerable women and youth. I am dedicated to bringing more women, especially women of color, into every level of political office, to achieve 51% representation for the women who make up our population. We know that when women step up, run for office, and lead, our communities do better. In December 2019 I announced my candidacy for Washington State Representative in the 4th Legislative District, never imagining the coming pandemic and how it would amplify all the reasons for my decision to run.
The COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic devastation have more clearly revealed the gaps in our county’s social and economic health. Our neighbors are experiencing urgencies with food and housing insecurity, healthcare access, and unemployment. I’ve joined hundreds of volunteers to alleviate food insecurity in our region, and to amplify small businesses struggling to stay afloat. My work shifted to tele-medicine and our children shifted to internet learning, clearly revealing the technologic divide in rural communities and low-income households.
I am even more committed now not to leave anyone behind, to prioritize healthcare, the education of all children, and to strengthen our economy. My resolve to serve others has guided me to be a nurse, a community volunteer, and to create space for women in politics, and fuels my determination to be at the table when decisions are made during our state’s recovery.
-Lori Feagan (she/her) is a nurse practitioner specializing in internal medicine in Spokane, WA. She is a founding board member of Emerge Washington. You can learn more about her campaign for state representative at www.lorifeagan.com