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Color: Blue and Pink
Food: Chicken
Quote: The Greatest Achievement Requires Time.
Season: Spring
Vacation Destination: Anywhere on the water
Birthplace
Henderson, Nevada United States
Interview Description:

Biography |

Interview Date: 9/25/2016

County Commissioner The Honorable Yvonne Atkinson Gates was born on June 10, 1956 in Henderson, Nevada. Her mother was a hotel maid and her father was a bricklayer. Gates attended Ed W. Clark High School in Las Vegas and received her B.S. degree in Political Science and Journalism from University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 1978. She received her M.P.A. degree in public administration from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 1982.

Following her graduation from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Gates worked as the research and planning manager for Clark County’s Department of Social Service, as well as personnel manager for Clark County’s Department of Aviation. Between 1985 and 1992, Gates was a member of the Clark County School District Board of Trustees in Las Vegas. During this time period, Gates was Research and Planning Manager for Clark County’s Department of Social Service and Personnel Manager for Clark County’s Department of Aviation. In 1992, Gates won her first term on the Clark County Commission for District D in Las Vegas. Beginning in 1995, Gates was Chair of the Clark County Commission, rendering her the first African American woman to hold that position. In 2000, Gates became a member of the Democratic National Committee as a super-delegate and, in 2002, became chair of the Democratic National Committee Black Caucus. Throughout her political career, Gates advocated for strengthening public education and daycare programs nationwide. After resigning from the Clark County Commission in 2007, Gates remained as a Democratic Party super-delegate for the State of Nevada in 2008. At University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Gates completed her doctoral dissertation, “Public Corruption for Gain in America: The Costly Consequences of Violating Public Trust,” in Public Administration in 2012.

In addition to her political contributions, Gates is the founder of a construction firm, ECO Construction LLC, in Las Vegas. Clark County School Board named a daycare and Head Start learning center in West Las Vegas after Gates in 1996.

The Honorable Yvonne Atkinson Gates and her husband, former Judge Lee Gates, live in Boulder, Colorado. They have four children.

The Honorable Yvonne Atkinson Gates was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on September 25, 2016.

Speaker Bureau Notes: