Representation Matters: Spotlight on State Representative Judy Amabile

This is a recurring series highlighting openly nonreligious elected officials across the nation. Prior to the 2016 election there were only 5 public nontheist state legislators, because of the efforts of the Center for Freethought Equality, the political and advocacy arm of the American Humanist Association, we have identified over 60 state and federal legislators today.

It is critical that our community connect and engage with the elected officials who represent our community and our valuesyou can see a list of these elected officials here.

State Representative Judy Amabile

Serving House District 13, Colorado

“We need to destigmatize holding a nonreligious worldview, and being open is the first step.”

Representative Judy Amabile is an entrepreneur, employer, mother, and community activist. She currently serves on the Business Affairs and Labor Committee and the State, Civic, Military and Veterans Committee in the Colorado House of Representatives.

Amabile has lived in Colorado for nearly 50 years and earned a BA and an MBA at the University of Colorado in Boulder. Twenty-five years ago, she co-founded Polar Bottle, a Boulder company that manufactures smartly-designed sport water bottles and made sure her values were reflected in her business practices by manufacturing the company’s products exclusively in the USA, paying employees dignified and fair wages, and ensuring employees had time off to attend to family needs. She continued to advocate for these values as a founding member and former board member of Good Business Colorado, a consortium of businesses that advocates for a strong Colorado economy, thriving communities, and a sustainable environment.

Amabile has a long record of activism at the local level, serving as the Vice President for the Democratic Women of Boulder County for two years and as an active member of the Daily Camera’s Editorial Advisory Board for eight years. She also served on the Community Affairs Council, the advocacy group for the Boulder Chamber of Commerce. At the national level, she has advocated for bicycling accessibility and for protecting public lands through the League of American Bicyclists and the Outdoor Industry Association.

Sarah Levin: What motivated you to run for office?

Judy Amabile: As a lifelong Democrat and activist for people with mental health issues, I ran to make a positive difference in people’s lives.

Levin: What are your policy priorities and how does your nonreligious worldview impact your policy platform?

Amabile: Protecting our environment, making our economy work for all families, and improving mental health treatment access in our state are some of my key priorities. My nonreligious worldview is reflected in my desire simply to improve people’s lives. I rely on facts, data, and science to make informed policy decisions.

Levin: Why was it important for you to be open about your nonreligious identity?

Amabile: We need to destigmatize holding a nonreligious worldview, and being open is the first step.

Levin: How did voters respond (if at all) to your openness about your nonreligious identity?

Amabile: Many in my district are religious, but my district is also largely progressive. I wouldn’t say people embraced me because of my nonreligious identity, but neither did it cause them to reject me.

Learn more about State Representative Judy Amabile