“Politics, music, code, and poogles. GWU. PhD SUNY. Polyglot ~ sisu ja Suomi. I study utopian thinking, but I don’t engage in it.”
Lori Taylor has been involved in Utah politics since she walked into the Democratic Party office in 2004 and asked, “What can I do to help?” Every time she was offered a job, she said, “YES!” so she’s had a long string of jobs in the party. She’s been helping now for 15 years as Precinct Chair, House District Chair, Regional Director, and on the Executive Committees at the county and the state level. She was one of the founding members of the Utah Democratic Party Progressive Caucus and the Salt Lake County Democratic Party Progressive Caucus. She currectly serves as a member of the Executive Committee of the Utah Democratic Party and the Salt Lake County Democratic Party as Chair of the Utah Democratic Party Candidate Recruitment Subcommittee and Chair of the Salt Lake County Recruiting Committee.
Lori grew up in Hunter (West Valley City) and South Jordan, and she currently lives in the house she grew up in. In between the years of growing and of excessive political volunteering, she lived in Washington, D.C., where she earned an MA at George Washington University then worked at the Smithsonian Institution and in Buffalo, New York, where she earned a PhD at the State University of New York at Buffalo.
Her scholarship is an exploration of histories, lies, and fantasies people tell themselves about their Others as well as the music and other expressive forms activists have used for propaganda and persuasion in the 19th and 20th centuries. It’s all about the stories people tell themselves.
“One of my advisors of oh-so-long-ago, Pete Mondale (of The Mondales), said to me, ‘You do research like a plow.’ (Though, honestly, he was probably saying ‘plough.’) I said, ‘That doesn’t sound too bad.’ Because, hey, I gather it all up. That’s good, right? He had such a stern face with those Mondale eyes. He blinked. ‘It wasn’t meant as a compliment.’ I laughed then, and I still laugh now. I don’t think I could avoid being a plow or a plough even if I wanted to, and I don’t. I like being a plough. It’s low-yield, but I get to know all the things. That’s my modest goal: know all the things.”
Lori has been a small business owner since the 20th-century. Graduate work on narrative theory actually comes in handy in marketing as well as in politics.
Lori has been a founding member of six nonprofits, including Utah Moms for Clean Air and Breathe Utah. She continues to publish scholarly work as well as fiction. She makes stuff. She speaks Finnish. She reads books. She tests 20-30 years younger than her children on mental age tests. Lori is a serial careerist who has been coding for herself for 20 years and is now building her data skills to help the Democratic cause.
The work we do is important.
Come for the cause, but stay for the people.