By Dorothea Farris
Those of us fortunate enough to live in the Crystal River Valley are faced today with numerous challenges that must be addressed. The list is long: Colorado’s wildlife (wildlife in Colorado belongs to all of us – thus, we must accept the responsibility for their care…), the rivers of Colorado, the air quality, light pollution, need for open lands and need for affordable housing, need for appropriate financial compensation for work, individual responsibility for our impact on our fragile environment (the “leave no trace” philosophy!), need and demand for recreational facilities and lands, the best educational institutions we can support, protection of our historic resources and recognition of our past. These values are the standards we must set for our lives together in this special place.
The ideas and the answers are there. But we will never get there until we all sit down together to share ideas and listen to the lessons and the knowledge that is “blowing in the wind”. In that world, we may be able to discover plans that may work for us all.
Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District includes some of the most beautiful, most productive, most historically significant, and most visited parts of Colorado. It includes a recreation-based economy, sustainable agriculture, successful wineries, significant educational institutions, natural resources, industries that seek to address and meet future needs for energy, preservation of our environment, and respect for our resident’s needs. We are proud of our communities and the opportunities they provide.
With so much federal land in our District, and to support our special life styles, we need a representative in Washington, DC who knows western Colorado, represents all who live here, knows our history and our dreams, and has the skills to represent our needs.
And what qualities do we need in our representative in Washington, D.C. in today’s complex society? We need a representative who understands the diverse needs, does the research, recognizes the impacts of decisions on our residents and our communities, works with all ideas and beliefs, and creates a reasonable resolution, and then works to resolve the differences, thus gaining a broad base of support. We need a representative who does not merely introduce bills, but who also knows how to educate and provide needed information and recommendations, who has a record of standing up to corporate lobbyists, and who knows how to bring people together for practical, evidence-based solutions that benefit everyone.
We cannot continue to blame others for failures in our society. We can choose leaders who have knowledge, skills, and willingness to work aggressively to understand our diverse needs and to seek acceptable and workable resolution.
Diane Mitsch Bush is that person. As a two term Routt County Commissioner, as a three term Colorado State House Representative for two headwaters counties- Eagle and Routt, and as an award-winning tenured professor at Colorado State –commuting for 11 years — and professor for 11 years at Colorado Mountain College, and named faculty of the year twice, Diane has demonstrated her ability to understand needs and dreams of our ranchers, representatives of our cultural history, members of our industrial community, those who depend on the recreation-based economy, those who work to protect our fragile environment, and those who focus on maintaining the quality of life in our ever growing state.
Diane needs our support and our funding to move forward as the Candidate of Choice for 3rd Congressional District Representative for Colorado in Washington, DC.
Dorothea Farris is a longtime Roaring Fork Valley local. Her many lives have included work as a teacher at Carbondale Union High School, a Pitkin County Commissioner, and an activist and/or board member for numerous local educational, historical, environmental, wildlife, or political agencies and organizations.