Karla Pomeroy 5/26/22 Wyoming Northern Daily News
Worland Democrat Terry Livingston announced her bid for the state’s highest position on Monday. Livingston told the Norther Wyoming News that she would be filing for governor o the Democratic ticket prior to Friday’s deadline. She said she waited to see if any other Democrat was going to put their hat into the ring, but found out a few who were interested not seek the nomination. Livingston ran on the Democratic ticket two years ago for State Senate District 20 seat, falling to Republican candidate Ed Cooper. She said she ran two years ago for one of the same reasons she is running this year, to provide people with a choice, and to encourage people to vote, especially young voters. “I want people to vote. I want the younger people to vote. People don’t listen to young people,” Livingston said, adding that it is important to help young people grow and to believe in them. She said it is also important for people, including her grandchildren, to see women seeking office. In the last election, she said there were 20 Democratic women who ran for office but only a few were elected to the state legislature. “I told them not to be discouraged because they made history with the most Democratic Women Running for Office in Wyoming,” Livingston said.
But why governor this year? “I thought a lot about it and I felt if I was going to make a statement that would be the best place to make it. You can’t make an argument for health care if you’re a commissioner, or you can’t make it if you’re on the school board or if you’re on the city council” Livingston wants to be a champion for women’s rights and for health care and especially women’s health care. She is concerned about women, especially after Congress failed to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act of 2022. “If people have a miscarriage will they go to jail? It’s scary. I worry about women’s health and women’s rights. Are they going to take away more rights from us,” Livingston said. She would like to expand Medicaid and “I would love to see health care for all. If we don’t have a healthy Wyoming what do we have? It’s important to have healthy people in our state.” She said an expanded Medicaid may have helped Rawlins keep their maternity program. Along with women’s health and general health, Livingston would also like to see the state help address mental health issues, especially the suicide rate in the state. She said suicide is something people do not like to discuss but it needs to be talked about. Livingston was born and raised mostly in California but lived a few years in Taiwan as her father served in the military. She returned to the United States to finish schooling and attended college studying marketing, advertising, and economics. She served nine years in the Air Force. She said she wanted to join right out of high school but she had to wait as federal law prohibited women from serving at that time until they were 21. She was 22 when she joined the Air Force. She served for nine years as a lab tech, learning about health care. Her travels in the Air Force and as a military wife took her to Germany, Turkey, Spain Illinois, Texas, New Mexico, Alaska, and Montana. She also has visited Hong Kong, Okinawa, England, Scotland, France, and Greece. After her then-husband (they were later divorced) retired from the military they eventually found themselves in Wyoming, moving to Lander in 1992. Livingston later moved to Cheyenne where she began working for the Bureau of Land Management and moved to Worland in 2011. She retired from the BLM as a support service supervisor in 2016. Livingston said she learned about the Health care system in other countries as she traveled, which will be a benefit as she hopes to educate people on the need for a better healthcare system.
She is an active member of the Bighorn Basin Outdoor Recreation Collaborative and the Bighorn River Blue way Trail Committee. She said in addition to health care, another issue she would like to address is diversifying Wyoming’s economy with the focus on tourism and the recreation collaborative groups are a step in the right direction in promoting and enhancing outdoor recreation around the state.
Livingston also serves on the Washakie County Visitors Council.
Regarding education, Livingston said “I would like to make schools better” and by better she means more project-based and more of a focus on vocational education with the realization not all students will go to college. “I keep hearing kids are bored in school,” Livingston said, noting that project-based learning makes learning fun and keeps students engaged. She said schools also need to be testing for aptitude and helping students find their way. She also supports the legalization of marijuana, not only for medicinal reasons, but she said legalizing drugs would allow people to get help for their addiction rather than just be incarcerated.
Livingston enjoys being active in and serving her community. Locally, Livingston serves as Washakie County Library Board president and is a board member on the Crisis Prevention and Response Center Board. She is also serving as the county one-cent general purpose tax committee secretary/treasurer. She is a member of the Wyoming State School Facilities Commission, appointed last year by Governor Mark Gordon. She said her life motto is “be brave enough to suck at something new.” She is an avid reader, so don’t be surprised if you meet her, and rather than handing you a campaign button, she hands you a copy of one of her favorite books. “Love Where You Live,” or a “MATH” pin that stands for “Make America Think Harder.” Livingston has two grown children and three grandchildren. She lives in Worland with her two cats TLC (three-legged cat) and Moonshadow.