It is time to send a teacher to the Statehouse. A life-long educator with 20 years’ experience at Durango High School, Barbara McLachlan is passionate about our public education system, especially the kids and families she has supported in it. McLachlan knows that education is the foundation of success and economic self-sufficiency, especially for women. Naturally, it is among the issues about which she is most passionate and upon which she is focusing her campaign.
Colorado ranks among the lowest in the nation in per-pupil funding. McLachlan has experienced the direct effects funding deficits have on public schools, our students, teachers and administrators. We only have to look as far as Durango School District 9-R and the financial challenges it faces.
She has experienced kids losing interest in school because they no longer offer shop, art and music, and how education is affected by politics and policy. With a teacher’s perspective, she has ideas about how to improve education. McLachlan’s trusted, fresh and forward-thinking vision is one we could use in Denver.
In addition to the characteristics she exemplifies of being hard-working, fair and willing to compromise, McLachlan’s experience as a member of the 2015 La Plata County Fiscal Sustainability Steering Committee and as a member of the board of directors of the Durango Education Foundation and Durango Discovery Museum, will benefit her at the Statehouse.
So, too, does being the spouse of a former Statehouse legislator. She knows how things work.
McLachlan is highly respected by her peers and students and, in 2014, was awarded the National Journalism Educators Association Lifetime Achievement award and Future Farmers of America Staff Supporter of the Year award.
A third-generation Coloradan, passionate educator and community leader, her experience training future generations to succeed has her focused on the issues that affect them most – higher education, jobs, the environment, housing and health care.
McLachlan supports investments in clean energy technologies, diverse job creation and training, protecting our air, water and public lands, and will fight to keep water on the Western Slope. She will work to reduce the tax burden on middle-class families, in part, to help pay for college, and she supports continued efforts to increase access to health care for all Coloradans.
There is no denying Rep. J. Paul Brown cares deeply about this district. He has long been involved in public service, somehow making the time in between running his sheep ranch to serve as La Plata County commissioner and Ignacio School Board member. Agriculture is not an easy business. Brown is an extremely hard worker, a gentleman, always tactful and polite, even when he disagreed with and bucked his party advocating to exclude the hospital provider fee from TABOR to free up funding for schools and infrastructure, an effort that ultimately was defeated by his fellow Republicans.
But on other important issues, Brown adheres too closely to his party. He denies human-caused climate change, is for restricting a woman’s legal right to choose and has been inconsistent in his support of a model state program that resulted in a 40 percent decline in teen pregnancy.
Barbara McLachlan has the energy and smarts to broaden her view and scale up her experience to address the most pressing challenges of our times representing House District 59 in the Statehouse.
Vote for Barbara McLachlan.