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Matilda Hansen - Diamond Jubilee Outstanding Alumnus
Master of Arts - 1970 - Geography
For the last three decades, Matilda Hansen has been a role model for women as a teacher, legislator, and community activist. She came to UW for graduate studies after earning a bachelor's degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder. From 1963 to 1965, she taught American History at Englewood (Colorado) Senior High, and from 1966 to 1978, directed and taught in the Albany County Adult Education program, working in the areas of high school equivalency, English as a second language, and community education.
In 1975, Albany County citizens elected her as their representative in the Wyoming House, a position she's held for nearly 20 years. Since 1980, she has served on the Rules/Procedures Committee, and, since 1991, as assistant Minority Leader. From 1987 to 1989, she was Minority Whip. Among her numerous committee assignments are the House Judiciary Committee from 1975 through 1988, and committees on Administrative Rules, Juvenile Affairs, and Lien Laws. She has chaired several of these committees. She is currently on the Health and Human Resources, National Conference of State Legislatures Law, Children-Families-Social Services, and Appropriations committees. Hansen has been active on state and local boards of the League of Women Voters, the SAFE board, and the Taskforce on Correctional Officer Training. In 1976, she began work to create the Laramie Plains Civic Center in the old junior high school, and in 1985, she wrote legislation creating the Wyoming Territorial Park. In 1980, the Wyoming Chapter of Social Workers named her "Public Citizen of the Year." Hansen says, "My liberal arts education has served me well in my roles as public decision maker, participant on committees and boards, activist, and establisher of continuing education options for adults."