Mona Lee Locke

Mona Lee Locke

Mona Lee Locke, wife of Washington Governor Gary Locke, became the state’s twentieth First Lady on January 15, 1997. Governor and Mrs. Locke are the proud parents of Emily Nicole, born in March 1997, and Dylan James, born in March, 1999.

Mrs. Locke co-chairs the Governor’s Commission on Early Learning. The commission is charged with ensuring that every child in Washington state goes to school prepared to succeed. It is comprised of leaders in education, child care, health, business and government. The commission is working to identify gaps in programs for children from birth to age five, as well as raise public awareness about the importance of early learning.

In June 1998, the First Lady led a delegation of fifty early childhood educators, child care providers and parent educators on a cross-cultural exchange to China. Mrs. Locke and the delegates, from five Pacific Northwest states, met with their counterparts at primary schools, kindergartens, preschools, community centers and orphanages. Mrs. Locke co-produced a documentary about early childhood education in China.

As First Lady, Mrs. Locke is an advocate for other issues related to children and education. She is the spokesperson for Washington state’s Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Foundation, an advisory board member of Mothers Against Violence in America (MAVIA) and honorary co-chair of Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies.

Mrs. Locke, a California native, graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a bachelor’s degree in English Literature and earned a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. She has worked as a television news reporter in Washington DC, Green Bay, Wisconsin and Seattle, Washington.

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