A former telephone operator from Nebraska, Pauline Davis became the longest-serving woman in the California Legislature and an effective advocate of local water development. Source: private collection of Rodney Davis
Tina Cannon Leahy: A tribute to California’s ‘First Lady of Water’
From Tina Cannon Leahy, posted at the California Water Blog:
“As water policy consultant for the California Assembly, I occasionally research legislative history to iron out competing theories on a law’s meaning. So it was earlier this year when I visited the California State Archives to investigate the Davis-Dolwig Act of 1961.
I took a manila folder from the nice clerk and sat in the rows of small wooden desks to learn what this “Mr. Davis” and “Mr. Dolwig” had in mind when they drafted the bill more than 50 years ago.
My jaw dropped when I pulled a carbon-copied transcript of a 1960 water committee hearing fully identifying the “Davis” as Assemblyman Pauline L. Davis. A woman in the Legislature! Involved in water policy! The water committee chair, no less! ... ”