Dedicated to Service
Gale was raised in a small blue collar town in southwestern Virginia. She understands the value of hard work and the opportunities that come from education. Her mother worked swing shift in a local textile mill from high school graduation to retirement. Gale attended local public schools, played flute in the high school band, worked for minimum wage at the local public library and volunteered as a Candy Striper at her hometown community hospital.
Gale worked her way through college, obtaining her initial nursing diploma from Virginia Baptist Hospital followed by an undergraduate degree in Nursing from ECU and a Master’s degree in Nursing from UNC-Chapel Hill. She has been a Nurse Practitioner since 1987 and is Chief Health Officer at SAS Institute. In her role at SAS she leads a staff of 58 who provide free primary care to 14,000+ SAS employees and their family members at the Cary global HQ.
As a leader in her profession, Gale was past president of the North Carolina Nurses Association, past chair of the North Carolina Center for Nursing, and a two term member of the NC Board of Nursing. As a way of giving back to the profession she loves she is an unpaid adjunct faculty member at Duke, UNC-Chapel Hill, and East Carolina University.
Graduation day with Alex: Our youngest son received a great education in the WCPSS and at Appalachian State University where he graduated in December.
Prior to her 2014 election to the NC House, Gale served on the Legislative Study Commission on Access to Health Insurance and the Blue Ribbon Task Force on the State Health Plan for Teachers and State Employee. She was also a board member of the Triangle Chapter of the American Lung Association. She currently serves on the State Health Coordinating Council, the Taylor Family YMCA Advisory Board and the NC Diabetes Advisory Council.
During her two terms in the NC House Gale has been recognized as a commonsense leader who works effectively with members of both parties. She has been a primary bill sponsor of more than a dozen bipartisan bills that have become law. Prior to serving in the NC General Assembly she was a 2007-2014 member of the Cary Town Council; she was mayor pro tem during her last 3 years. As a Council member Gale worked to ensure investment in much-needed infrastructure, maintenance of the town’s AAA bond rating and passage of an annual budget that established Cary as having the lowest property tax rate in Wake County.
Gale, her husband and their two sons live in Cary. They are members of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church.
Gale has a solid track record of service in business, government, her profession, and her community.
Running for reelection in 2018; looking back to on my first two terms
North Carolina has grown and prospered since I moved here in 1976. Our once strong manufacturing environment has by necessity been transformed with an emphasis on finance, technological innovation and scientific discovery. Over many years state leaders made intentional investments in people, infrastructure and places: public education; roads, bridges and ports; and successful public-private partnerships like the Research Triangle Park.
Between 2011 and 2014 I witnessed many deliberate legislative actions that set North Carolina on a regressive path. I was not willing to stand by and watch a legacy of progress, forged through decades of hard work and financial investment, continue to be threatened by political partisanship and short-sighted legislative policies. I ran in 2014 to bring a reasoned, thoughtful, nonpartisan, and common sense approach to the challenges facing our state’s future.
As a nurse and a health care administrator I found it unbelievable that the 2013 legislature decided to send our federal tax dollars to states like Ohio and Florida to expand their Medicaid programs while rejecting this insurance coverage for almost 500,000 of our own citizens. This choice was not only detrimental for access to health care, but also a dangerously short-sighted economic choice for our state’s hospitals. Without access to primary care that Medicaid coverage provides, the uninsured turn to hospital emergency rooms for care. Overburdened hospitals are struggling AND have no choice but to write off this uncompensated care. This means costs are shifted to those of us with insurance and there is greater financial instability for hospitals of every size, especially small hospitals in small communities. Our hospitals need dependable revenue streams to stay open—not just as providers of health care but also as employment centers and economic engines in our communities. Stubborn ideological positions should play no role in important policy decisions like Medicaid expansion.
As a member of the Cary Town Council from 2007-2014, I know that postponing (yet again) implementation of the Jordan Lake rules in favor of untested and unproven Solar Bees, followed by the proposed use of mussels [denied by the Army Corps of Engineers] and now a delayed [and redundant] study continue to jeopardize Western Wake county residents’ drinking water. I believe that clean water and clean air aren’t simply ‘nice to have’. They are essential to good health and to the quality of life we expect and deserve.
As a parent of two sons, I believe in the promise of North Carolina. That’s why my husband and I have raised our family here. I believe that every child should have the opportunity to attend successful public schools, outstanding community colleges and a world-class public university system. I believe that we should build upon our legacy of educational progress and prepare our citizens for the economy of tomorrow.
I believe in the greatness, resourcefulness and resiliency of this state and its people. I ran in 2014 pledging to spurn partisanship and put my energies into fighting the right battles: for vibrant public schools, a healthy environment and a robust economy. In my first two terms I have been an effective legislator who has lived up to this ideal. I want to continue to represent District 41 and carry on a legacy of strong leaders who make today’s decisions with an eye toward tomorrow. I would appreciate your support and the privilege of continuing to represent you.