Michigan Women Vote: Professor Gilda Povolo

Gilda Povolo is one of our super volunteers in Traverse City — and it doesn’t take much to figure out why.

The lifelong educator, who’s taught at University of Michigan and Grand Valley State University, is also a lifelong Hillary fan. Gilda joined her first Hillary Clinton fan club in 1992 in Ann Arbor, and when Bill Clinton was up for reelection in 1996, she started her own chapter in the traditionally Republican Grand Traverse County.

Today her support continues for Hillary from the coordinated campaign office in Traverse City, where she helps connect with voters and spread the word about why Hillary is the right candidate for Up North.

We chatted with Professor Povolo to find out what has driven her support for Hillary for more than two decades and volunteer for the campaign today.

Gilda has taught writing and creative thinking courses for most of her career, which she connects to Hillary’s work:

“She’s a visionary … and really an activist. She’s devoted her life and she’s stuck with these issues and her vision despite everybody trying to knock her down, and she still does it all with grace and integrity … If she were my student I’d be giving her A pluses.

Gilda’s own commitment to the Democratic party and Hillary is largely driven by protecting children, and she’s admired Hillary’s work for children’s healthcare over her entire career:

“As I saw my nieces and nephews … my sisters and brothers raising their kids and … some of them had health insurance from their jobs, some of them didn’t. And to know that the children are covered either way is huge. I don’t even know that a lot of people know that their kids are covered [because of Hillary].”

Hillary worked across the aisle to help pass the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Today, it covers 8 million kids. She has never given up on the fight for universal coverage. As President, Hillary will continue to fight for working families and their access to quality healthcare through initiatives like bringing down out-of-pocket costs like copays and deductibles and expanding access to rural Americans.

Gilda believes that this election is especially important for people to get involved in, because there is so much on the line:

“The most important issue that we face is climate change. Nothing else matters if we don’t have planet to live on … I think women’s issues are particularly important to me, I mean I am just a few years younger than Hillary Clinton and I grew up in the same kind of atmosphere, and I know a lot of what she has lived through with the sexism and how you portray yourself as a woman … And children. I am really concerned about, I mean again you gotta take care of the planet, you gotta take care of the children! Both of those are extremely important.”

Hillary has a plan to take on all of these critical issues. Hillary is ready to tackle the climate crisis head on — and and grow our economy at the same time by making America the world’s clean energy superpower. She is committed to helping women across the country, especially through closing the pay gap that still causes so many Michigan women to lose out. And Hillary knows that in order to guarantee the success of every child in America, the quality of education cannot be determined by zip code.

Gilda trusts Hillary can tackle these issues, because she has proven time and again that she will fight for us.

Her policies of working for children working for women … to me it’s what a true democrat and progressive always is: working for those that need the most help. And she has always done that. So I deeply respect her. She’s great.

Be like Gilda! We need volunteers all across Michigan to make sure Hillary wins big in Michigan. Get in touch with your local organizers by signing up here: hrc.io/gotv