Rose Mofford, the last ‘beloved’ politician in Arizona (per Arizona Republic columnist Ed Montini), passed yesterday at age 94.
A Democrat, she spent her life in public service. Born in Globe, a mining town to the East of Phoenix, she was an All-American softball player in high school, and turned down an offer to play professional basketball with The All-American Red Heads. She married (and subsequently divorced) a Phoenix Police Captain. They remained friends.
She became a secretary to the State Treasurer, then secretary to the Secretary of State. Ultimately, she was elected to that office, then became Governor upon impeachment of embattled Governor Evan Mecham.
She chose not to run for office at the end of her term, and retired to private life. (above via Wikipedia)
She was famous for being professional, personable, and answering her own telephone. And that ubiquitous beehive hairdo!
I had a run-in with her one day. Or rather she with me. 🙂
I was at the Arizona Department of Transportation (this was during my career as a private investigator) and opted to cross Jefferson St. (a very busy thoroughfare @ 19th Ave. and Jefferson), by jaywalking!
Just before I reached the other side of the street, a car turned East onto Jefferson and began accelerating.
I clapped my hands onto the hood to get the driver’s attention (and to pretend I could actually stop the car) and looked up in fear.
The driver was Rose Mofford! She was Arizona’s Secretary of State at the time. She smiled broadly at me, and mouthed ‘I’m sorry’. I mouthed back,‘that’s okay’, and she drove on.
I understand she supported reasonable gun control (whatever that is). Being a Democrat, I’m not surprised.
She remains a symbol for a kinder, gentler time in Arizona politics.
She will be missed.