Proud of mom's dedication and passion

State Rep. Diana Urban’s decision not to run for a 10th term in the 43rd House District means that for the first time in 18 years North Stonington and Stonington will have a new state representative, Kate Rotella. It also means that for the first time since high school, I can’t sarcastically refer to my mother as Representative Urban.

My mom’s political career began when I was a Wheeler High School senior about to head off to college. While I packed my things, my mom planned her first campaign strategy. Mother and son starting off on new adventures, though it was my mom who was the most nervous about her new journey. I still remember the call I received the night she won her first election in a run-off; she started simply with a deep inhale and the words, “Lex, I won.” (and then proceeded for 15 minutes to tell me how excited she was.)

Over the years, my mom ruffled a lot of feathers. Before she ever got into politics, most of the faculty in the North Stonington public education system were well versed in her ruffling and it only continued in Hartford. Be it switching parties (Republican to Democrat), pushing results based accountability, advocating children’s safety, or championing animal rights, she was never scared to rub anyone the wrong way if she believed she was acting for the greater good.

I’m sure most people reading this had their feathers ruffled by her at one point in the last 18 years. And, whether you believed in her mission to protect children, circus elephants, small businesses and everything in between or not, I don’t think anyone can question the dedication and passion that she brought to her job.

And, while that outspoken persona likely dominates the public’s view of who Rep. Urban is, to me she was always just Mom. She was the person who drove me to sports all over New England and insisted on making my dorm bed before my first night at college (much to my embarrassment). She was the person that I could always call with a question, share a concern, or celebrate a victory.

Whatever anyone thought of her politics, behind it all she was simply a mom. Something we all had at one point, and if we’re lucky, still have. I’m proud of my mom. I’m proud that she dedicated herself to something so fully and so passionately. I’m proud that she cared so much about the community in which I grew up.

So, Rep. Urban, thank you for your hard work and service and for proving that you can re-invent yourself at any moment. And thanks for being a great mom.

Lex Urban is a lawyer practicing in Washington D.C. and the son of retiring state Rep. Diana Urban, D-North Stonington.



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