DENVER-Tonight, the Denver Post announced that Senator Morgan Carroll (D-Aurora) has been named one of Colorado’s 10 most influential women.
Over the course of two weeks, hundreds of names were submitted to the Denver Post’s website in two categories: historical and present-day. The Newspaper pared those lists down and then convened a panel to help narrow it even further. The Post put together a list of 75 finalists and then asked their readership to vote for the top 10 women.
The newspaper asked Senator Carroll to offer some insight into her background, philosophy and values. Her responses are below:
Senator Morgan Carroll
Hometown: Born in Denver, grew up in Westminster and Boulder, and now living in Aurora
Organization and position: Democratic state senator, Majority Senate Caucus chair, attorney, author ("Take Back Your Government: A Citizen's Guide to Grassroots Change").
First job: Clerical in parents' law office; at age 16, worked at an Amoco gas station and Wendy's.
Who inspires you? Aung San Suu Kyi, courageous democracy leader for Burma; Raoul Wallenberg, who helped rescue thousands of Jews in the Holocaust; Pablo Neruda, sensational poet; Maya Angelou, literary genius; Martin Luther King Jr., for his gift to all of us in the civil rights movement; Mahatma Gandhi, for liberating an occupied nation peacefully; my mom, who became an attorney in 1966, is a social justice activist and worked to liberate Jewish refuseniks in the former Soviet Union; my dad, who was an idealist, an advocate for the little guy, spoke 13 languages, and took on impossible under-dog fights as a lawyer and legislator — and won.
What was your proudest moment, either personally or professionally?
Constituent services: Helping a woman whose daughter was kidnapped internationally by an abusive husband and taken to reunite with her daughter (who had been told her mother died).
Legislatively: Passing a rate review for health insurance companies to force actuarial rate justification prior to rate increases, which triggered over $150 million in returned premiums to families and businesses. Passing lobbyist disclosure reforms and campaign finance reforms to help the public follow the influence of money on the legislative process and on campaigns.
Legally: Helping hundreds of severely disabled people get Social Security disability benefits to avoid or reverse homelessness. This year, helping a young teen with severe schizophrenia get mental health treatment.
As an author: Running into a person at a book signing for "Take Back Your Government" who said he and his wife had given up on government, said they thought all government was corrupt. The following week, he showed up at the state Capitol to testify and helped defeat legislation that he opposed.
Personally: Quitting smoking, and being the birth coach for the birth of my nephew, Jason, and niece, Sarah.
Please provide a quote that sums up your professional outlook:
"One person can make a difference, and everyone should try."— John F. Kennedy
"The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any."— Alice Walker