Born second in a family of six, Pam developed her problem-solving and organizational skills at an early age. These traits carried her through her school days, where she began developing her leadership skills by running for and being elected to various class and student government positions.
Being civic-minded and involved in local organizations, she began setting a leadership example and encouraging other women, especially her three daughters to participate. With an ever-present awareness of the importance and responsibility of women’s involvement in current issues, she saw the need to become an activist in local politics. She first served as a precinct leader, eventually being elected to serve as both a county and state delegate.
During 1980, and after being told it was a man’s job, she worked for over three years as an appraiser — deputy assessor — for the Sevier County Assessor’s Office. Having established herself as a valued member of local government, she was appointed Sevier County’s first woman assessor in 1984. She ran for and was re-elected for three additional terms, serving more than 13 years. Being assessor served as a steppingstone, leading to appointments in both state and national leadership positions. Elected by her peers, she served as president of the Utah Association of Assessors in 1994, served on the Taxation & Finance Steering Committee of the National Association of Counties from 1990 through 1994, as a board member of the International Association of Assessing Officers, and President of the Federation of Tax Administrators.
During her years of public service, she raised her three daughters, was active in church and other civic organizations, including starting and serving as president of the local branch of the Business and Professional Women, and establishing the Sevier County Chapter of the Utah Republican Women. Being a long-distance runner, Pam was instrumental in organizing races in Richfield, Monroe and Fish Lake, with the help of her daughters.
Pam was the first woman inducted into the Richfield Rotary Club, and served in various leadership roles during her involvement with this organization. Her sphere of influence continued to grow with an appointment to the Central Utah Project, and an appointment by Gov. Mike Leavitt to the Snow College Board of Trustees.
Running on a platform of balancing Utah’s Republican Party leadership with a rural state officer, Pam ran for and won her first statewide political position, as Republican Party secretary. She traveled to all the county and state conventions, where she represented those in the delegation who were unable to attend or promoting her own leadership abilities.
During the summer of 1997, Pam’s civic involvement led to her appointment to the Utah State Tax Commission by Leavitt. She served as one of four commissioners until January 2000, when she was appointed as the first female chair of the Utah Tax Commission. She served in this capacity under Gov. Olene Walker and Gov. Jon Huntsman until she retired in 2010.