County needs Dawn Lesley

Siuslaw News Guest Viewpoint

(Editor’s Note: Viewpoint submissions on this and other topics are always welcome as part of our goal to encourage community discussion and exchange of perspectives.)

As an educator, grandmother and school board member, I endorse Dawn Lesley for West Lane County Commissioner because she will align all of her decisions with what is best for our children’s future.

Dawn shows deep care and compassion for all lives in Lane County.

Dawn stated at a recent candidate forum that the unifying vision she believes has heart for Lane County is, “We all want a healthy, vibrant county where everyone has a safe place to lay their head and folks have access to meaningful work with family supported wages and strong benefits, including health care — where our kids have economic opportunities right here, near home, and they feel excited and hopeful about our future.”

I also noted that Ms. Lesley was the only candidate at the forum that mentioned reaching out to high school students, as well as to communities of color, and to differently abled folks to hear their needs.

Dawn’s deep concern for future children and families is reflected in her three top priorities: public safety, affordable housing and homelessness, and climate action and renewable energy issues.

Her solution for public safety asks for more sheriffs in the rural areas, but also includes mitigating the effects of climate change, including CERT training so we can take care of each other.

Her plans for expanding affordable housing in our rural areas include bringing ADUs to rural areas, piloting community land trusts and limited land trusts and equity cooperatives.

Her solutions to cope with the climate change we are facing include creating a renewable energy economy and reducing greenhouse gasses from our landfill.

When candidates talk about being accessible to Lane County folks, Dawn Lesley walks her talk. She has knocked on thousands of doors to have conversations with voters all over Lane County. When I did some follow-up canvas work here, in Florence, one of our neighbors told me, “It meant so much that Dawn would come all this way just to talk to me.”

Dawn’s insightful thinking and collaborative spirit will help solve the issues we face in Lane County. She sees the need to cooperate in creative, humane, solutions to the problems we face.

Dawn states that “creating a positive future starts with recognizing each other’s humanity, listening to each other and listening for points of agreement.”

My Florence neighbor says he is voting for Dawn “because she is the only one who makes sense.” I heartily agree.

We both know that Dawn Lesley will work to improve the quality of our lives and the future of our children.

Lane County needs Dawn Lesley. She needs your vote. You may send your ballot by mail (no stamp required) or put it in the drop box by May 17.

You can watch the League of Women Voters Candidate Forum at