Unless you’ve been stuck in an underground mine for this entire year, you’re most likely aware of the fact that our country/state/county/city just completed its mid-term elections. Whether you saw their faces while driving around town or heard their names and stances on the radio, you may know of the men and women who exercised their right to run for public office. However, now that the polls have officially closed, I (Anthony Crosby) want to sit down and talk with one of those individuals. She may have a familiar name and face because of the elections, but she’s still someone with a story to share. That’s what we’re about here at AAT, not politics, but people!
Today’s guest is Marcey Logsden. Marcey has practiced as a registered nurse at the NNRH (Northern Nevada Regional Hospital). She has two sons, one is off studying to become a nuclear engineering technician, and the other is a freshman at Elko High School. Marcey was a candidate for the office of Elko mayor during the 2018 mid-term elections, and we have her here to share many of her experiences with us, today!
Thank you for joining us today, Marcey! Nursing is one of those professions that deserves much love because the people in that field work very hard and have important jobs to carry out! However, before we talk more with you about your work in health care, let’s get to know you a little bit! How did you end up with a career at our local hospital? “My family moved to Elko in 1984; we came from very humble beginnings. There were six of us. My dad was in the military, but after he got out, he became a logger. Our treats, as kids, would be the honeycombs we’d get if he’d cut down a tree with a beehive in it, so less is more for me! We loved being outside; my dad was from Maine, so he wanted to instill that love in us. I learned young how to hunt and fish, dress a deer, tan its hides and make clothing! I graduated from Elko High School; I was a varsity volleyball player all four years and held a decent GPA. After I graduated, I was in the Navy for four years. When I got out, I moved back to Elko and went to nursing school, graduated, and have been a nurse ever since! I always knew I wanted to help people; the emergency side of health care has always been a passion of mine. My nursing degree has taken me all over the world!”
“In 2012, I wanted to get into working abroad in the Middle East, so I applied for a position over in Iraq as a senior site representative for a company called First International SOS. I worked for them for two months; I didn’t really want to continue in clinic work, so I talked with a friend, and she told me about a job with GardaWorld for the close protection operative. I went over there and spoke with the country manager about a position, and he told me if I could take apart an M16 (rifle) and put it back together, I would have the job; I did it! I was in that role for about two and a half years, and I loved it! However, we learned about Isis before the rest of the world did; I was the only American female down there working in the field, so I started becoming more a target for my clients and had to get out of that. I didn’t want that, I loved my team and learned a real appreciation for life; I can chuckle now when people talk about first world problems because I’ve seen the other side! International SOS wanted to send me to Papua New Guinea to be a clinical educator for Exxon Mobil. I was only able to do that job for six months. My mother-in-law was a significant caregiver for my son at the time. However, she became ill, so I was no longer able to travel abroad. I came back to Elko and applied for a full-time position at NNHR; I was already working PRN (as needed) in the emergency department when I applied, and I got the job!”
Great! Now, let’s talk more about your current job, Marcey. As someone who has worked in health care for quite a while, what is your perspective on the field? “I don’t think health care providers get the recognition we should. We see the worst on the worst days and the best on the best days. People see health care providers as just a bunch of bleeding liberals or attribute it to socialism, and I guarantee you it’s just not like that. We all work hard for our money too and care where our taxes go. With that being said, I’m a huge patient advocate, big time! We all put our pants on the same and are all pink and gooey on the inside. Nobody wants to think about health care until something happens to them; it’s like that all over the world. You’ll never hear more “I’m going to change” speeches than you will in the back of an ambulance or the side of an ER bed.”
As many people know, you recently ran for mayor of Elko. What were your big observations and takeaways from that entire experience? “My goal (behind running) was to be a part of change because my biggest passion is empowering people. I’ve never been openly political. There are reasons why I have the opinions and beliefs I do, and I don’t try to force them down on anybody; that doesn’t feel fair to me. However, I did talk with many people about things they’re not happy with. For example, Idaho St. One hundred percent of the people I talked with always brought up Idaho St. and the fact that they don’t like it. An emergency provider shouldn’t have to think about the fact that if it’s rush hour, they need to avoid that area of town. I knew that because I also worked on the ambulance for five years before I went to Iraq. Another big issue was in the fact that physicians need to be enticed to come here. Our mental health staff in the hospital, for example, is horribly overworked. It’s just the monster in the room; there’s much need for physicians. As a health care provider, myself, I also saw that a real lack of education on the subject of cannabis, a potential multimillion-a billion-dollar business with health benefits. I’d say, at least forty percent of the people I spoke with, over the age of sixty-five, were for it. I talked to a ninety-two-year-old woman who only wanted to know what was happening with cannabis; I wasn’t even going to steer towards that subject when I was speaking with her, but she wanted to know if it helped with chronic pain! I said yes ma’am; it’s working fantastic for people with arthritis, who need to get on a proper sleep schedule, gain weight, and helping them become more functioning as members of society! Who wouldn’t want that?”
What are your feelings coming out of that entire election process, Marcey? What’s next for you? “I feel the same struggles as anyone else in the town. I’m a single/working mom who is just trying to find her own way coming out the election. I’m an on-the-go kind of person, and I need to focus on my family, my son, and what I want to do with my life. I’ve always worked behind the scenes, health care has never been a very pretty profession, so it was kind of hard for me to put myself out there for everybody to know. I do feel like I failed; I’ve never failed at anything I’ve set out to do in my life, so it’s humbling. I am heartbroken I didn’t win, but I hope people do feel empowered, now. As a health care provider, I want to continue to try to do good and make people feel better. I want to be there as a resource for people because I’ve made so many friends, especially on social media, throughout this year. I had a lady message me the other day about how she couldn’t get her kitten to use the litter box (Marcey is a huge animal buff, as well). I told her to put him in the bathroom; she texted me the next day and was so happy it worked because she had been trying to figure it out for two weeks! I’m an advocate for everyone and not just my patients. If people have questions or ask me to help, I’m going to help; I’ve been serving my entire life. Several people have asked me to run for office again in four years, and I don’t think that’s something I want to do. I threw my hat in and can at least say that I’ve done it; this no-name nurse went from zero to a mayoral candidate in the matter of a signature! I’ve always kicked butt in health care, and now I know politics; people better watch out!”
Finally, is there anything you want to leave the good people of the Elko area with before we sign off? ” Don’t take no for an answer. Take charge of your own health care needs with your physician. Promote communication with your city officials to get your voices heard and remember you’re all important and valued members of this community. We are now all empowered citizens!”
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See you around, Elko!