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  • UPDATE: Memorial scheduled for Saturday for former Supervisor Ann Day

    May 07, 2016 | Read More News
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    ann dayUPDATE: The family of former Pima County Supervisor Ann Day has announced that a public memorial will be held at Brandi Fenton Memorial Park, 3482 E. River Road, at 10 a.m., Saturday, May 14.  Ann was instrumental in working with the Fenton family to develop the park through a public-private partnership.
    Learn more about the park that was one of the hallmarks of Ann's 12 years as a county supervisor. 


    County staff and elected officials were shocked and saddened at the news of former District 1 Supervisor Ann Day's death May 7 in a traffic collision.

    Day, 77, represented District 1 for three terms, from 2001 to 2012. She also served in the Arizona Senate for 10 years. Board of Supervisors Chair Sharon Bronson, who served with Day for all 12 years, said she will miss her "cowgirl" friend.

    "I am terribly saddened at the news of Ann Day's tragic passing this morning. She dedicated her life to public service, including honorably serving the people of Pima County for 12 years. She was my friend and colleague and I will deeply miss her cowgirl common sense approach to life and public policy," Bronson said.

    A life-long Arizonan, she was born in El Paso because that was the closest hospital to the isolated Lazy B Ranch in Southeastern Arizona.

    After her rugged upbringing on the ranch (chronicled by her sister Sandra and brother Alan in their book “The Lazy B”) Ann attended Arizona State University where she received her BA and the University of Arizona where she received M.ED.

    After the completion of her studies she worked as a teacher and then a marriage and family therapist. She worked at the Industrial Commission of Arizona before entering politics in 1990.

    A moderate and pragmatic Republican, Ann served 10 years in the Arizona Senate and was the majority whip. As the chair of the Senate Health Committee she authored important legislation such as the Clinical Trials Act, which required HMOs to pay for clinical trials and the “Arizona Patient Bill of Rights” to allow patients to appeal HMO decisions.

    She was a leader in bringing tax equity to Pima County by rewriting the state sales tax and gas tax distribution formulas. This act brought millions of additional dollars to Pima County - and still does.

    She was a strong advocate for Pima County throughout her decade in the legislature. Ann never lost an election in her 22 years in politics. She joined the Pima County Board of Supervisors in 2000 and successfully stood for reelection in 2004 and 2008. As supervisor, she was an early proponent of the Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan and she valued natural conservation her entire life.

     A fiscal conservative, she garnered bipartisan support for audits and overhauls of wasteful practices in the county. She believed in collaboration and took the lead on regional initiatives for transportation, economic development and the county’s library system.

    She prided herself on her constituent services to the residents of District 1 and was responsive to their needs. During her tenure on the board she was particularly known for her integrity and her willingness to put good policy before politics. Ann often closed her public speeches with words that encapsulated her approach to public service and her love of Pima County: “Great Communities are no accident. They are brought forth by a people’s vision and hard work, are rooted in collaboration and respect for our shared history; and tempered by the beautiful desert and mountains where we live.”

    Ann Day’s Pima County Accomplishments as District 1 supervisor:

    Though Ann was in the political minority for all three of her terms, she was able to work with Democratic majority on multiple issues important to her and her District 1 constituents, including open space conservation, parks expansion, quality of life improvements, transportation infrastructure expansion and economic growth. Listing Ann’s accomplishments during her 12 years as supervisor would run pages in length.
    Below are examples of her service to the residents of Pima County:

    Conservation

    • Early and consistent supporter of the Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan 
    • Advocated in the community for open space bonds and the federal Section 10 permit 
    • Worked to preserve open space in the Tortolita Mountains of District 1 and other locations throughout Pima County 
    • Expanded recreational trails and wildlife connectivity in scenic areas of District 1 
    • Worked at the state level for State Trust Land reform 

    Parks

    • Tireless advocate for funding, expansion and improvement of the Pima County park system 
    • Developed Brandi Fenton Memorial Park in the county’s first public-private partnership for parks 
    • Fought to expand soccer and playgrounds at Rillito Regional Park, Mehl Park and other locations in District 1 and county-wide 
    • Worked with Catalina residents to change Catalina Regional Park to a compatible natural area 
    • Developed the county’s first dog park in District 1 at Northwest Community Park 

    Growth issues

    • Set a vision for “Managed Quality Growth” in District 1 and county-wide and then put that in to action in such initiatives as the state land planning for Arroyo Grande north of Oro Valley 
    • Worked with District 1 residents to meld new residential and commercial developments in growth-impacted District 1 during countless rezonings and county’s land use plans 
    • Struck a balance to reduce the footprint but allow development of the successful La Encantada mall in the foothills 
    • Consistently worked with state and academic experts to secure Pima County’s water future and was instrumental in shaping the joint Pima County-City of Tucson Water Plan 
    • Called for and improved the Pima County Sustainability Plan 

    Quality of life issues

    • Created an ordinance and established Pima County’s existing graffiti abatement program 
    • Worked to provide much needed facilities such as the Catalina Community Center to serve low income residents 
    • Served as the Board of Supervisor’s liaison to the Pima County Criminal Justice Coordinating Council to streamline and improve the county’s justice system 
    • Instrumental in helping the consolidation of what would become the Pima County Regional Library system 
    • Successfully fought the opening of an adult store located next to a children’s dance studio in District 1 and then crafted tight regulations that governed where pornography stores could operate in Pima County 

    Transportation

    • Fought for transportation funding for growth impacted District 1. At the time of her retirement, approximately 54 percent of all county transportation funding was targeted to her district. Between 2001-2012, nearly $500 million in transportation projects were completed or programmed in her district. 
    • Met regularly with District 1 residents to resolve transportation issues through the Northwest Area Transportation and Traffic Coalition 
    • Fought for the use of rubberized asphalt and other sound mitigation measures on roads located near residential areas 
    • Worked to establish the RTA, advocated for its voter-approved passage and helped shape critical road plans in District 1 for La Canada, Magee roads 
    • Worked collaboratively with Oro Valley, RTA and other entities to accelerate the funding for a bridge over the Canada del Oro wash – a much needed fix to a long-standing transportation problem in the Northwest 

    Economic Development

    • Advocated for the consolidation of scores of disparate economic development organizations into TREO (now Sun Corridor Inc.) 
    • Supported and improved the original Pima County Economic Development Plan 
    • Led a delegation of local economic leaders to Mexico in order to improve economic ties to Pima County 
    • Served on the TREO Inland Port Committee and worked closely with chambers of commerce, the Pima County Small Business Commission and other organizations on a variety of economic issues 
    • Worked with University, community college, career technical and other education leaders to advocate for full funding of education and workforce training 

    Fiscal Responsibility

    • Received bipartisan support from the board for implementing state audits in Pima County 
    • Overhauled practices and structural issues in county procurement, transportation and other departments 
    • Called for tax reductions through reasoned and detailed alternate budget plans 
    • Fought against her former colleagues in the Arizona Legislature who implemented cost shifts and budget sweeps that impacted taxes of Pima County residents 
    • Returned money every year from her District 1 office budget to the county’s general fund 

    Public Service

    Ann was an active community member and served on numerous community boards and commissions in addition to her public service as an elected official. Below is a small sample of her public service:
    • Arizona Senate, 1990-2000 (served as Majority Whip and chair of the Health Committee) 
    • Pima County Board of Supervisors, 2001-2012 
    • Pima Association of Governments, board member 
    • Kino Hospital Advisory Board, board member 
    • Criminal Justice Coordinating Council, board member 
    • State Industrial Commission, board member (first woman appointed to commission) 
    • State Liquor Board, board member 
    • Public school teacher 
    •  Pima County Conciliation Court, marriage and family therapist 
    • Precinct Committeewoman 

    Photos of Ann Day at County events
    In addition to conducting the people's business at Board meetings and working for constituents as a full-time elected official, a Supervisor's job also involves a lot of ribbon cuttings, ground breakings and other public events and celebrations. We've scoured the archive and present a few of them from Ann's 12 years on the board. They represent celebrations for new and expanded roads, constructing the Loop, new and expanded parks, new buildings and more. 

    clerk of the board

    st vincent
    ann and daughter
    ribbon cutting
    with staff
    loop launch
    loop chain
    little league
    magee road
    orange Grove HAWKriver road


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