The wife of Colorado's junior Republican senator, Wayne Allard, is her husband's greatest asset. She accompanies him to every one of the town meetings he holds each year in every one of Colorado's 64 counties, getting a feel for the serious issues even as she chats casually with constituents. And not only can Joan Allard save her husband's bacon, but she can fry it up in a pan: After Nebraska senator Ben Nelson, the loser in a CU-Nebraska-game bet, delivered a box of steaks to Senator Allard's office, Joan prepared "Colorado Peppered Nebraska Steak" -- a recipe she cooked up for the occasion -- for her husband's staff.


Best Hometown Boy Made Good -- Even If He's Forgotten His Hometown

Karl Rove

Karl Rove has come a long way since his days as the fresh-from-Colorado head of the College Republicans in the early '70s. He made a critical connection during that early political stint: He met George W. Bush, whose father was in charge of the Republican Party. And when Dubya finally moved into the White House, he took Rove with him as an advisor, putting him right in the office previously occupied by Hillary Clinton. "Rove is President Bush's political Svengali, Robespierre and wizard all rolled into one," said an analyst with the Hudson Institute just six months after Rove hit town. But he's not much of a diplomat -- or a demographer. In hot water over a crack he made about a small New Hampshire town's intellectual capabilities, Rover told the Berlin Daily Sun: "Were I ever to belittle small-town America, I would have to do a lot of explaining to my friends and neighbors in Golden, Arvada and Kokomo, Colorado...the places where I grew up." He'd really have a lot of explaining to do in Kokomo: It was buried under a Climax Mine tailings pond over two decades ago.

Best Hometown Boy Made Good -- Even If He's Forgotten His Hometown

Karl Rove

Karl Rove has come a long way since his days as the fresh-from-Colorado head of the College Republicans in the early '70s. He made a critical connection during that early political stint: He met George W. Bush, whose father was in charge of the Republican Party. And when Dubya finally moved into the White House, he took Rove with him as an advisor, putting him right in the office previously occupied by Hillary Clinton. "Rove is President Bush's political Svengali, Robespierre and wizard all rolled into one," said an analyst with the Hudson Institute just six months after Rove hit town. But he's not much of a diplomat -- or a demographer. In hot water over a crack he made about a small New Hampshire town's intellectual capabilities, Rover told the Berlin Daily Sun: "Were I ever to belittle small-town America, I would have to do a lot of explaining to my friends and neighbors in Golden, Arvada and Kokomo, Colorado...the places where I grew up." He'd really have a lot of explaining to do in Kokomo: It was buried under a Climax Mine tailings pond over two decades ago.
Colorado voters probably wish that getting help from their elected representatives in the State Capitol was as easy as pushing a button. Unfortunately, things don't work that way. The lawmakers themselves, however, are always a mere arm's length from assistance -- at least when they are traveling up and down in the Statehouse's notoriously rickety elevators. Press the alarm button, and a signal automatically sounds at the fire department. In the meantime, another button with the words "Help is on the Way" lights up, assuring elevator riders that some things actually do get done in the Capitol.
Colorado voters probably wish that getting help from their elected representatives in the State Capitol was as easy as pushing a button. Unfortunately, things don't work that way. The lawmakers themselves, however, are always a mere arm's length from assistance -- at least when they are traveling up and down in the Statehouse's notoriously rickety elevators. Press the alarm button, and a signal automatically sounds at the fire department. In the meantime, another button with the words "Help is on the Way" lights up, assuring elevator riders that some things actually do get done in the Capitol.


When the boundaries of Colorado's new 7th Congressional district were announced, many people dubbed it the "Perlmutter district," assuming that state senator and popular Jefferson County Democrat Ed Perlmutter would leap at the chance to run for U.S. Congress. But those people didn't know Perlmutter's ten-year-old daughter, Zoe. When the legislator consulted his family about running for the seat, Zoe voted no, saying politics made her father "grumpy." That was all it took: Perlmutter won't be running. Nevertheless, as state Senate president, Perlmutter has made a heroic effort to get the legislature to pass laws that will guide growth in Colorado. And while those efforts weren't successful, Perlmutter has emerged as one of the most passionate advocates for Colorado's future. He may not be on his way to Washington, but we hope he'll play a role in Colorado's politics for years to come.
When the boundaries of Colorado's new 7th Congressional district were announced, many people dubbed it the "Perlmutter district," assuming that state senator and popular Jefferson County Democrat Ed Perlmutter would leap at the chance to run for U.S. Congress. But those people didn't know Perlmutter's ten-year-old daughter, Zoe. When the legislator consulted his family about running for the seat, Zoe voted no, saying politics made her father "grumpy." That was all it took: Perlmutter won't be running. Nevertheless, as state Senate president, Perlmutter has made a heroic effort to get the legislature to pass laws that will guide growth in Colorado. And while those efforts weren't successful, Perlmutter has emerged as one of the most passionate advocates for Colorado's future. He may not be on his way to Washington, but we hope he'll play a role in Colorado's politics for years to come.


Best City Councilwoman -- If You're a Sixteen-Year-Old Hipster

Elbra Wedgeworth

Last summer, when the City of Denver revoked a class of permit that allowed underage patrons into cabarets, Elbra Wedgeworth was the first councilmember to stick up for the kids and venues affected by the change. Soon after, she organized and supervised a community task force that recommended an overhaul of the cabaret-licensing code. In the end, the city council approved an ordinance that allowed sixteen-year-old music fans into local entertainment establishments, a piece of policy that pleased everyone from Mayor Wellington Webb to concert promoters. For her diplomacy, her tenacity and her recognition of youth's need for positive social outlets like music, we think Wedgeworth rocks.

Best City Councilwoman -- If You're a Sixteen-Year-Old Hipster

Elbra Wedgeworth

Last summer, when the City of Denver revoked a class of permit that allowed underage patrons into cabarets, Elbra Wedgeworth was the first councilmember to stick up for the kids and venues affected by the change. Soon after, she organized and supervised a community task force that recommended an overhaul of the cabaret-licensing code. In the end, the city council approved an ordinance that allowed sixteen-year-old music fans into local entertainment establishments, a piece of policy that pleased everyone from Mayor Wellington Webb to concert promoters. For her diplomacy, her tenacity and her recognition of youth's need for positive social outlets like music, we think Wedgeworth rocks.

Best City Councilwoman -- If You're a Skateboarder of Any Age

Joyce Foster

Joyce Foster knows that skateboarding is not a crime, which is why she pushed and pushed and pushed for the construction of the Denver Skatepark, a state-of-the-art facility that finally opened in the summer of 2001. Situated on a prime piece of real estate in the Central Platte Valley, the park was designed with the help of a national team of architects and consultants, including Thrasher magazine's Kevin Thatcher. Judging by the masses of kids who turn up to ride in it, even on days when the weather is less than ideal, the place turned out just fine. The popularity of the skate park, especially with teenage boys, proves that Foster was right to lobby for it so passionately. The only way Foster could top her present cool status would be by taking the half-pipe herself.

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