The Blog Formerly Known As Practical Paralegalism
“You can’t get more honest than (openly transgender individuals) are. It’s not like we’re living a lie anymore.” ~ Pam Bennett.
Sometimes I read about paralegals who capture my imagination and admiration based on their courage, their commitment to their communities, and the obvious respect they’ve earned from those who write about them.
Pam Bennett is one such paralegal. A longtime resident of Aurora, Colorado and a recent city council candidate, she is the subject of an editorial by Dave Perry of The Aurora Sentinel, “Dressed for Success, Pam Bennett heads to DC.”
A parent, a grandparent, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force and a Commissioner with the City of Aurora Veterans Affairs Commission, Bennett was Aurora’s first transgender politician. Over the course of her campaign, she made quite an impression on Perry, who describes his first sight of her: “She was about 6-feet tall in sensible pumps, wore a conservative, powder-blue, skirted suit, had bleach-blond, chin-length hair begging for a hot oil treatment and a truly infectious smile. It really was more of a grin.”
She admitted she wasn’t the “girl next door.” Much to his surprise, Perry found her likable, well-versed on key city issues and “gracious.” In October 2009, The Voice of Aurora wrote that she brought “thoughtful compassion to the race” and said that her transgender status had not defined her candidacy.
In a blog post, Pam openly shared her experience being laid off in April of this year from a paralegal job she knew was temporary but that she enjoyed. She wondered if her age (60) and transgender status were preventing her from getting other offers of employment. She focused on her special skills:
What I do know is that anyone with a skill or knowledge that is in demand will receive consideration for employment. It was that special skill or knowledge that I possess that I needed to discover. I also want to help my co-workers who are about to be laid off to discover what their special skill or knowledge is.
Multi-Discipline Engineer Paralegal.
Says it all. Very nice and succinct. Software, hardware, system integration and certified Paralegal all in one person. So if anyone is looking for me I am here; ready to interview and start working.
In his column, Perry reports that Bennett did get offered a good paralegal job – in Washington, D.C. He mused as she left his office that he’d “never known anyone more honest about who they really were” and that her honesty is “something you’d expect to hear from the girl next door.”
I think Washington, D.C. has plenty of opportunities for an honest politician, and wish Bennett the best of success at her new job and in her new life.