Celtic Diva's Blue Oasis: Another great woman leaves us... Former Texas Governor, Ann Richards

Friday, September 15, 2006

Another great woman leaves us... Former Texas Governor, Ann Richards

And another Texas treasure, Molly Ivens, says a personal farewell:

One of the most moving memories I have of Ann is her sitting in a circle with a group of prisoners. Ann and Bullock had started a rehab program in prisons, the single most effective thing that can be done to cut recidivism (George W. Bush later destroyed the program). The governor of Texas looked at the cons and said, "My name is Ann, and I am an alcoholic."

She devoted untold hours to helping other alcoholics, and anyone who ever heard her speak at an AA convention knows how close laughter and tears can be.

Ann Richards was probably the first politician to openly discuss her recovery from alcoholism. Back then I was about 5 years clean and sober, underemployed and trying to determine if my insanity was curable or was just a personality trait. (Turns out it was 50/50.)

From Texas all the way to Alaska, Ms. Richards got my attention. Her work with the poor, minorities and her attempts to open the Texas government up to everyone won my support...so much so that for the first and last time, I donated money to an outside campaign...her unsuccessful 1994 run for re-election.

If you haven't already, I recommend reading more in the New York Times article.


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