Phyllis Erickson

Phyllis Erickson
Phyllis Erickson (Democrat) represented [the 2nd] district comprising portions of Pierce and Thurston Counties in the House of Representatives. Elected in 1972, she served for five terms.

Born 1923, in Texas, Erickson studied at the University of Utah and received her B.A. and Master's degrees in Social Work. She passed away, November 27, 2013

Erickson first ran for office in 1961, after several years of volunteer community work, and won election to the Franklin-Pierce County school board. She served as chairwoman and member of the board for six years. During that time she joined the League of Women Voters, and in 1967 became their State Legislative Chairwoman.

An experienced lobbyist for open government, Erickson knew she would make a good legislator. Issue-oriented, rather than party-oriented, Erickson chose to campaign as a Democrat because she tended to vote Democratic, though her husband was a Republican precinct committeeman. Among the issues she advocated in her campaign were: Public Disclosure, the automatic redistricting commission, tax reform and the ERA.

Representative Erickson resigned in 1981 to successfully run for a position on the Pierce County Council. It [wa]s her belief that the participation of women in legislative decision-making ... made closed-door, smoke-filled room, power struggles less frequent. She and her husband, Jack, had four children.

--Political Pioneers, The Women Lawmakers