From Utah to Oregon: Seeking a Home that Aligns with My Values
Dear friends and family,
I hope this message finds you all in good health and spirits. I am writing to share some important news with you all. After many years of calling Utah my home, I have made the difficult decision to relocate to Oregon.
Utah will always hold a special place in my heart. I have loved living here for the beautiful mountains, wonderful people, and the many opportunities that have come my way. I have made so many wonderful friends and memories here that I will always treasure.
However, I am leaving Utah due to some serious concerns that have been weighing heavily on my mind. Over the past few years, I have seen a steady decline in the rights of women, the LGBTQ+ community, and minorities. As someone who believes in equality and fairness for all, this has been deeply troubling for me.
I do not enter into this decision lightly. I have been weighing this with considerable thought and conversation with many of you, and I thank you for your frank, diverse feedback. This decision comes after much personal resistance to leaving the home I love. I have engaged both personally through many one-on-ones with many of you, and politically through serving locally as the Republican Delegate in my precinct. Through this, I have come to love and respect each of our diverse viewpoints dearly, while also gaining a much clearer understanding of the largely unchangeable and deeply funded political systems at work act like a deaf and unfeeling machination that continues driving an uncertain path forward for this great state and its people.
Furthermore, I have become increasingly concerned about the environment here in Utah. The extreme drought, arsenic in the Great Salt Lake, and water availability for the growing population are all pressing issues that our leadership continues to ignore. I fear that this economy built on development and growth has hit its limit and that the economy will experience a cliff in the next 5, 10, or 20 years.
I want to live in a place that celebrates and represents my family, including those in the LGBTQ+ spectrum, and that is progressive on women's rights and equality. After much research and consideration, I have decided that Oregon is the best fit for me and my family.
I am not the first of our friends and family to choose the Pacific Northwest for the next act in their life experiment, and I thank those dear friends of mine for their courage to voice their concerns and help me open my mind to the consideration of the building troubling situation.
I want to thank you all for the wonderful memories and experiences that I have had here with you in Utah. I will always cherish them and hold them dear to my heart. I invite you all to join us in Oregon with a visit to our new home, or a new home of your own and share in the new adventures that await.
Before I go, Colleen and I plan to host an open house sometime soon during our departure. Additionally, to help us all work through this transition together, we invite you to share any of our shared special memories here with a short story, a picture, or a video. We look forward to continuing our support and closeness to you as the supportive family you have become. We also invite you to continue to call on us for any support we can continue to provide as life companions and confidants to you and your family.
With love and gratitude,