(Ralph Toddre) – Now that the Gibbons divorce is over, I am glad for both of them. It was a very difficult and trying time for them both. It took its toll on them, and was a very stressful situation. So, I wish them both the best.
I did however feel that comments made by the Governors campaign manager Robert Olmer, to the RGJ, that “the lack of a First Lady won’t be an issue”, and that “essentially, any First Lady is to a large extent window dressing, just showing up for public events”, is demeaning, sexist, and incredibly disrespectful to not only Dawn Gibbons, but to all First Ladies that have ever served in that position.
What a horrible thing to say in light of all that Dawn Gibbons has done for the autism community in the State of Nevada, as well as numerous other causes that she championed.
Speaking for the autism cause, we could have never asked for a better First Lady. For 3 years she has tirelessly campaigned to raise awareness, and seek funding for autism. She has always been there when asked to do whatever she could for our kids. To say that she is “window dressing” could not be further from the truth, and an awful way to paint the accomplishments of this First Lady in the time she spent in that position.
We will sorely miss Dawn Gibbons as First Lady, but we also know she will continue her work to improve the lives of Nevada’s children with autism. The Governor has also been a supporter of autism rights in Nevada, having signed A.B. 162, mandating insurance coverage for the treatment of autism, and his office has said that he does not agree with the sentiment in Olmer’s comment.
So, shame on you Robert Olmer ! Not a good thing for you to say about a person, and administration, that has supported the over 6000 families in Nevada living with autism.
In closing, I would like to thank you, Dawn Gibbons, for the incredible work you have done for our kids. You have been nothing short of an angel!
(Mr. Toddre is founder of the Autism Coalition of Nevada)