Rockefeller Center’s Perkins Bass Distinguished Visitor, Terie Norelli, Visits PBPL 45 Class

Terie Norelli, the Perkins Bass Distinguished Visitor, discusses her work as Speaker of the New Hampshire House.
On Thursday, October 22, 2015, Terie Norelli, former Speaker of the New Hampshire House of Representatives and President and CEO of the New Hampshire Women’s Foundation, spoke in Professor Shaiko’s PBPL 45: Introduction to Public Policy Research class. This was her first event at the Rockefeller Center as the Perkins Bass Distinguished Visitor. During her visit, Norelli commented on the large size of New Hampshire’s legislature and the unique atmosphere of this state legislature in recent years. She emphasized that recently, women have had a large role in state politics in New Hampshire and have had the ability to redirect the focus of the legislature to address women’s issues that had not previously been the focus of the NH policy agenda. Furthermore, she explained that the small district sizes in New Hampshire make the state legislative environment more hospitable to female candidates.

In addition, Norelli addressed some of her responsibilities during her time as Speaker of the House from 2006 – 2010, and 2012-2014. She recalled some of her most notable memories, stating that she once had the doors to the floor barred during a session to ensure members would stay and complete the necessary work for the session. In addition, Norelli stated that the current political environment often makes working in state legislature particularly challenging. Closing her talk, Norelli urged students to become involved in state and local politics, especially in New Hampshire.