Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon
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News Release
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon Leader Announces Retirement (Photo) - 08/31/17

Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon today announced the retirement of Mary Nolan, who has served as Executive Director since 2015. She will continue to lead the organization through the fall as leadership transition plans are developed.

"We are so grateful for Nolan's leadership at a tremendously critical time for women's health and rights," says Becca Uherbelau, Board President for PPAO. "She has never wavered in her commitment to reproductive freedom for Oregonians."

"Mary Nolan is a true pro-choice champion," says Governor Kate Brown. "She has been fierce, determined and strategic in her work to expand access to family planning services for thousands of low-income Oregon women and teens. And she put these skills to work defending choice in the Legislature, at the ballot and in the budget. Oregon is a healthier state because of her leadership."

During Nolan's tenure, PPAO continued to protect and expand reproductive rights in Oregon:

* In July 2017, PPAO joined forces with the Pro-Choice Coalition of Oregon and key legislative leaders to develop and pass the Reproductive Health Equity Act, the most progressive reproductive health policy in the United States.

* In May 2017, Planned Parenthood PAC of Oregon helped unseat several members of school boards who opposed access to birth control services at high school health centers.

* In 2016, PPAO kept a dangerous constitutional amendment off the November ballot that would have prohibited access to medically necessary abortion coverage for low-income women.

* In 2015, PPAO introduced and passed landmark legislation to ensure full insurance coverage of 12 months of prescription birth control, helping make Oregon "the easiest place in the nation to get birth control," according to The Associated Press.

* In 2015, PPAO introduced and passed the Patient Privacy Protection Act, which safeguards confidentiality in insurance communications for all services, including sexual health, mental health and physical health.

Nolan brought decades of leadership in the reproductive rights movement to PPAO. In the late 1970s she was one of the founders of NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon, later serving as Board President. She was a leader in the fight to defeat all of Oregon's five ballot measures to restrict women's health, including co-chairing the steering committee for No on 8 & 10 in 1990. Under her board leadership, Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette launched and completed its first capital campaign, which built the Bend Health Center and expanded services in Beaverton, Gresham and Vancouver. During her six terms as a State Representative, Nolan achieved a dramatic increase in funding for women's health care and family planning services. In 2011, Nolan was honored as the first recipient of PPAO's Marilyn Epstein Pro-Choice Champion Award.

"Nolan has been effective in weaving together bold policy, astute advocacy and remarkable political acumen," says State Senator Richard Devlin, D-Tualatin. "She was pivotal in such diverse victories as construction of the Tilikum Crossing and the Milwaukie light rail line, expansion of Oregon Opportunity Grants to community college students and this year's Reproductive Health Equity Act."

"In 12 years serving together, Nolan and I disagreed on many issues and bills," says State Senator Sen. Jackie Winters, R-Salem. "Believe me, she fought hard and effectively for her ideas and values. And she practiced candor, respect and collaboration with me in ways that I admire deeply. We have a relationship where we have both always been open to learning from each other."

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