Primrose resident Jeanne Pence coaching a future doctor
Jeanne (Combs) Pence lives with her husband Ernest and mother Shirley Lewis here at Primrose in Cheyenne. They moved to Wyoming from Nebraska to retire in January, 2013, and were among the first charter residents to move into the community when we opened for occupancy in December, 2013.
A native of southwestern Ohio, Jeanne has also resided in southern California, Appalachia in southeastern Kentucky, and most recently in southeastern Nebraska, working her entire 38-year career as a registered nurse in the specialties of long term care, home health, hospice, and occupational health. Her current hobbies in retirement include reading, traveling, baking, oil painting, and doing marker art.
During her wide-ranging nursing career she also completed several volunteer medical missionary tours in the United States, Mexico and India, witnessing first-hand the hardships and poverty faced by other societies around the world. Her lifetime of traveling has taken her to every US state including Alaska and Hawaii, along with trips to Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and two weeks in her beloved Italy and Sicily.
One of the highlights of her life was serving as a Nebraska State Senator for Legislative District 32 from 2003 – 2007. She ran a very grassroots campaign, working hard to defeat four other candidates in her race. She took pride in working collaboratively with various interest groups and stakeholders during her term, to successfully influence policy development and effectively negotiate to pass legislation.
Jeanne served as Vice-Chair of the Business and Labor Committee in the non-partisan Unicameral, helping shape legislation to positively impact both employee welfare and the business community. She was known among her peers as the “velvet sledgehammer” for her ability to effectively work behind the scenes and garner sufficient support to help pass her bills. She also became the first Senator in the history of the Legislature to cloture debate three times in succession on each reading of a bill to achieve its final passage. This was LB454, giving Nebraskans the right to carry concealed weapons for personal protection with state-issued permits.
Jeanne also developed a nationally recognized District 32 Citizens’ Advisory Task Force which was organized into specific committees mirroring the Unicameral, to develop legislative ideas and solicit constituent feedback. This had never been achieved before and has not since; however, it proved to be a most effective way to get the residents of her District actively involved with lawmaking and also draw from their expertise when reviewing issues being presented before the Legislature. The Committee became the subject of an hour-long TV show on PBS, and was also featured in national legislative publications for its innovative approach to direct constituent involvement in lawmaking.
Both Jeanne and her family are enthusiastically appreciating the social life and activities at Primrose, always ready for friendly conversation, enjoying the great food, playing music, singing, or shooting a fun game of pool. They are also enjoying the personal freedom to be as active as they each like to be, while making lots of new friends as our community continues to expand. They are all very grateful to be able to live the retirement lifestyle they have always dreamed of, and look forward to many more years of fun and developing even more friendships.
by Jeanne Pence
Cheyenne Primrose resident
[Welcome, gentle reader. You have just finished reading the 41st installment in a series of blogs written by actual Primrose residents. Please return often to read more! — Ed]
To find out more about the retirement living experience at Primrose, please contact your nearest Primrose Retirement Community today to see more of our fun and social living. We’ll happily answer all your questions and show you around our beautiful communities. Come see why we say, THIS IS LIVING!