It is with great sadness that I share that LWVUS President Dr. Deborah Ann Turner passed away Sunday morning.
A fearless advocate for voting and women’s rights, Dr. Turner devoted her life to empowering others.
Dr. Turner first joined the League of Women Voters of Metro Des Moines in 2010. She went on to lead within that League, on the Board of the LWV of Iowa, and finally, as the 20th president of our 103-year-old voting rights organization. In each role, Dr. Turner fought for a more representative union while uplifting racial equity in LWV's mission work.
Her dedication to uplifting others stretched beyond the League. Dr. Turner practiced gynecologic oncology for 35 years, working directly with patients and teaching across the Midwest. She participated in a dozen international medical missions and served as the associate medical director of Planned Parenthood of North Central States.
Dr. Turner saw her work in reproductive health care and democracy defense as intertwined, stating, “equality of the sexes is necessary to keeping the promise of democracy — and that such equality is not achievable without reproductive freedom.”
We're committed to continuing her great work, even as we mourn this enormous loss.
Our thoughts are with Dr. Turner’s family during this difficult time. We are committed to honoring her legacy by upholding our values to empower voters and build a stronger, more inclusive democracy. As Dr. Turner always said, “We will keep on keeping on!”