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Yvonne Atkinson Gates

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Information about Yvonne Atkinson Gates

Profile image of Yvonne Atkinson Gates

Profession

Category:
PoliticalMakers
Occupation(s):
County Commissioner

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue, Pink
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Anywhere on the Water
Favorite Quote:
The Greatest Achievement Requires Time.

Birthplace

Born:
6/10/1956
Birth Location:
Henderson, Nevada

Profession

Category:
PoliticalMakers
Occupation(s):
County Commissioner

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue, Pink
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Anywhere on the Water
Favorite Quote:
The Greatest Achievement Requires Time.

Birthplace

Born:
6/10/1956
Birth Location:
Henderson
See how Yvonne Atkinson Gates is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Political leader Yvonne Atkinson Gates was born on June 10, 1956 in Henderson, Nevada to Bobbie Davis Atkinson and Eddie Atkinson. Gates graduated from Ed W. Clark High School in Las Vegas and went on to earn her B.S. degree in political science and journalism in 1979, her M.P.A. degree in 1982, and her Ph.D. degree in public administration in 2012, all from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

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. From 1985 to 1992, Gates served on the Clark County School District Board of Trustees in Las Vegas. In 1992, Gates was elected as the youngest and only minority member to serve on the Clark County Board of Commissioners for District D in Las Vegas, becoming its first African American female chair in 1995. She was chosen as a super-delegate for the Democratic National Committee; and, in 2002, she chaired the Democratic National Committee Black Caucus. As chairwoman, she worked with black female elected officials like Donna Brazile and Minyon Moore to found the Women Building for the Future Political Action Committee. Throughout her political career, Gates advocated for strengthening public education and daycare programs nationwide. After resigning from the Clark County Board of Commissioners in 2007, Gates was appointed by Senator Harry Reid to serve as a Democratic National Committee super-delegate in 2008 for Hillary Rodham Clinton, although Gates later shifted her support to Barack Obama. In addition to her political career, Gates founded the construction firm of ECO Construction LLC in Las Vegas.

Gates was a recipient of the Community Image Award from the Professional Black Women Alliance in 1989, and a recipient of the Community Service Award from the Westcoast Black Publisher's Association in 1990. In recognition of her public service, the Clark County Board of School Trustees opened the Yvonne Atkinson Gates Center in 1996. In 1997, Gates was named Outstanding Democrat of the Year by the Democratic Party of Nevada. In 2002, she received an Eleanor Roosevelt Award from the DNC Women's Vote Center; and in 2006, she received a human rights award from Church Women United.

Gates and her husband, former Judge Lee Gates, have four children.

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

See how Yvonne Atkinson Gates is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Yvonne Atkinson Gates' interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates lists her favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers segregation in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her father's career
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about how her parents met
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her likeness to her parents and paternal aunt
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates lists her siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her father's work as a brick mason
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her neighborhood on the Westside of Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her early education in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls her early experiences of religion
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers Ed W. Clark High School in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Tape: 1 Story: 14 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls her athletic involvement in high school
  • Tape: 1 Story: 15 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers building a homecoming float
  • Tape: 1 Story: 16 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers a student demonstration at Ed W. Clark High School
  • Tape: 1 Story: 17 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about the casino industry in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls her start at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her experiences at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about the Runnin' Rebels basketball team
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers her professors at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her early political activities
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers her early employment with the City of Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about the growth of Clark County, Nevada
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her early employment with Clark County, Nevada
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls her appointment to the Clark County Board of School Trustees
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her work on the Clark County Board of School Trustees
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes the jurisdiction of Clark County, Nevada
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls her decision to run for the Clark County Board of Commissioners
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers the riots of 1992 in West Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her husband's career
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls joining the Clark County Board of Commissioners
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about the authority of the Clark County Board of Commissioners, pt. 1
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about the authority of the Clark County Board of Commissioners, pt. 2
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers the congressional representatives for the State of Nevada
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her advocacy for early childhood education centers
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers campaigning for President Bill Clinton
  • Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her divestiture from Fat Tuesdays
  • Tape: 3 Story: 12 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers the gubernatorial campaign of Joe Neal
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls speaking to the Democratic National Committee in Los Angeles, California
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her work at the McCarran International Airport in Paradise, Nevada
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates reflects upon the presidential election of 2000
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about chairing the Democratic National Committee Black Caucus
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about the population growth in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls the conviction of four Clark County commissioners for corruption
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates remembers the presidential election of 2004
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls her decision to leave the Clark County Board of Commissioners
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her dissertation
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates recalls becoming a Democratic National Committee superdelegate
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates reflects upon Barack Obama's first presidential campaign
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her retirement
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about the legalization of marijuana
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about superdelegate reform in the Democratic National Committee
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her support for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her plans for the future
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her family and community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates talks about her chairmanship of the Clark County Board of Commissioners
  • Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Yvonne Atkinson Gates reflects upon her legacy and how she would like to be remembered