Endorsements From Across District 3, Yavapai County, and the State




Gubernatorial Acclaim and Community Leadership Boards Laud Visionary Outcomes

These accolades from former Arizona Governor Jane Dee Hull, from the Board of Directors of Sedona Cultural Park, and from the President of the Verde Valley Land Preservation Institute demonstrate nearly 3 decades of State and Verde Valley trusted leadership.

Donna’s visionary leadership skills have always included deep listening, facilitating consensus, and galvanizing communities and individuals toward successful outcomes. Her work spans fields such as education, land use collaboration, community initiatives, development, and nonprofit service, to mention a few.

These honors and recognition affirm Donna’s commitment to community and her passion to lead the Verde Valley in ways that help ensure that local control and self-reliance are realized and sustained.

Click on the images of the letters below to enlarge.

Donna conceived the Arts Integration Teacher Training program, raised the funds for the program, recruited and hired faculty, and selected participants.

Jane Dee Hull
Former Governor of Arizona
August 8, 1935 – April 16, 2020

I would like to add my endorsement to Donna Michaels to serve as the Yavapai County District 3 Supervisor.  Through my years in law enforcement and as a city manager, I always placed maximum value on integrity in the way I conducted myself and I always set that as a value for the organizations I led.  Today, I think this personal value is so important particularly in the world of politics and public office.  We must be able to depend on what our government leaders tell us and feel confident that our county supervisors will do what they promise.  This is the reason I feel comfortable in endorsing Donna Michaels; I feel she has a high level of integrity and I can trust her word.

I also find Ms. Michaels to be highly qualified for the position of supervisor due to her experience and education. We will face tough decisions regarding “smart growth” and Ms. Michaels has the background to consider all the factors to make the right decisions to protect the quality of live we all moved here to enjoy.

Please join me in voting for Donna Michaels for Yavapai County District 3 Supervisor!

Doug Bartosh

Retired City Manager, City of Cottonwood

Yavapai County Board of Supervisors District 3: Vote for Donna Michaels!

On the other side of Mingus Mountain, Save the Dells endorses Donna Michaels, who is running against incumbent Randy Garrison. Donna, whose website features the slogan “PROTECT, PRESERVE, and PROMOTE” is well prepared for the job, as she holds a doctorate in social policy and planning. Donna filled out our questionnaire, while Mr. Garrison did not. In responding to a question about our proposed Regional Park and Preserve, Donna stated that it’s “important for residents across our region to work collaboratively to ensure that these preserves exist in the whole of Yavapai County.” We couldn’t agree more. Yavapai County is growing rapidly and does not have a system in place to ensure fair and easy access to public parklands for all residents, from Bagdad to Beaver Creek. Yavapai County residents outside of Prescott or Sedona have few public natural parklands to enjoy. Tell your friends in Clarkdale, Cottonwood, Sedona, and the Village of Oak Creek to vote for Donna Michaels!

Donna Michaels.

Friendly:  Donna lays out the Welcome Mat for any and all, bringing adversaries into her circle to explore mutual desires.  …And, our friend for decades.

Forward Thinking:  A rich background and astute eye enable her to pick up on opportunities, trends and movements, charting a course of intelligent dialog based in local qualities and viabilities.  Verde Valley First!

Tireless:  The mission-at-hand is enough to sustain her efforts.  Puts forth a drive many times her stature, evidenced by the marathon called ‘Verde Valley Town Hall”.

Visualizes:  The Verde Valley is unique with a wide array of special virtues all its own.  The ability to see through circuitous bureaucratic processes to a clear vision takes patience and talent, both come naturally, not forged.  She seeks solutions that evolve with the ‘place’, not in-spite of it.

Knows Community:  Needs and desires are defined and developed through cooperative effort.  We are stronger together!     

A Leader:  Knows that incentives drive development and that ‘Good Incentives’ foster “Good Development’.  A show of conviction and consideration are valuable assets to her methods. 

Promotes:  Growth is essential for a vital, happy society.  Defining our hopes and dreams brings about their fulfillment.  Donna is bold enough to face the future and embrace intelligent solutions.

Take-On the Challenge:  There are many challenges to an emerging dynamic, local economy.  This outpost, in the middle of a million acres of wilderness will be better for her representation. 

Donna is ‘Verde Valley’:  She wears the hat and rides the horse!

Marina & Stephen Thompson

I have known Donna Michaels since the early 2000’s. We happened to serve our constituencies during the same time from 2002-2006; Donna on the Yavapai Community College Board, and I on the Sedona City Council.

During that time, and right now, in the present, Donna and I share the same set of basic values – and that is precisely why I support and endorse her for Yavapai County Supervisor. Those values are:

  • Community Plans – An extremely strong support for, and belief in the value of individual Community Plans. After all, they are created by the residents, voted upon, and approved by the residents, and provide the best indication of what the community desires for its future.
  • Local Control – Closely related to the above, it has oft been said that the best government is closest to the people. After all, wasn’t this concept what the Boston Tea Party and the American Revolution was all about? However, it takes more than that. It takes truly listening to and caring about what “the people” want. Otherwise, you do not represent them at all.
  • Collaboration – Unlike the military and some corporate entities, a local political leader accomplishes little on their own. True leadership occurs by clearly understanding one’s role and working well with others. This is the antithesis of autocratic rule, and throughout her multifaced career, Donna has utilized this factor to its utmost.
  • Related Experience – It takes more than words and pretense of a belief system to be an excellent representative of your constituents. It takes doing and learning by service in many previous similar organizational entities. Donna has the experience and background knowledge to apply in spades; just view her Profile/Biography.
  • Personal Characteristics – A “clincher” in my determination to strongly endorse Donna Michaels for Yavapai County Supervisor is her commitment to the character qualities of Transparency, Integrity and Accountability. It is truly an impossible task to please all the people, all the time. However, being clear and transparent about what is guiding your decisions, having the courage and integrity to back them up against special interests that desire an opposite result, and being willing to take the responsibility on one’s shoulders for the outcome of those decisions – accountability, defines the essence of leadership. I am convinced that Donna has and will continue to exhibit these critically important qualities.
Ernie Strauch - Sedona

Former Sedona City Councilor and Vice-Mayor

My husband Ernie and I have lived in Sedona for over twenty years. We have known Donna for many of the years. Donna is devoted to the Verde Valley. On many community issues, you will hear her voice. She will have researched, talked with many people, connected people, and helped them understand the issues. She is one of the hardest working women I have ever known.

Donna has a love of this land having served as a Board member of the Verde Valley Land Preservation Institute. As a Yavapai County Supervisor, we will be in good hands as she has the expertise in land use planning, public policy and government regulation,

Karen Strauch - Sedona

We support Donna Michaels for Supervisor because she is a collaborative team builder who gets things done. She will bring economic development to the Verde Valley that doesn’t kill the goose that has laid our golden eggs. Finally, Donna will protect our county’s rural character, preserve our natural resources, and promote local businesses that enhance our region’s vision.

Please tell your friends and neighbors to Vote for Donna Michaels and move Yavapai County to the 21st Century.

Bob and Kristen Rothrock - Cottonwood

25-year Verde Valley public school educators

We have known and worked with Dr. Donna Michaels for almost 15 years as a fellow board member, college trustee, and a tireless, effective community advocate and leader.  She rapidly became a trusted friend and colleague on whom we can always depend.  Donna’s dedication, perseverance and principle-driven activities and projects in the Verde Valley and larger region have been a joy to witness.  Her work is always based on her careful consideration of the needs of those she serves and the best practices she can apply.

Because we live in District 2, we cannot vote for Donna for District 3 Supervisor in the upcoming election.  However, she has our unqualified support and we are, without hesitation, encouraging our friends and colleagues who are in District 3 to vote for her.  We have no doubt she will listen to their and others’ concerns and represent the interests of all district residents extremely well as she works on behalf of her constituents to protect, preserve and promote the Verde Valley.

Drs. Jane & Marshall Whitmire - Camp Verde

I am so encouraged by Donna’s candidacy – it gives me hope. Someone speaking Truth has never been needed more. Seek that person out.  We are also seeing amazing results when constituents feel they are being heard: collaborative, real and fair solutions to concerns we all share.
Wendy Parker-Wood

We are pleased to offer Donna Michaels our support and endorsement for District 3 Supervisor of Yavapai County.

We believe that the most important leadership quality is a commitment to listen to and engage with the people that you are representing.  A leader must then analyze the information that they receive from their constituents in order to make decisions and advocate for the “greater good” of each community that they represent.

District 3 is comprised of a diverse demographic of people.  What is in the best interest for one community is not necessarily in the best interest of another.  A leader must be flexible in serving each demographic. We don’t believe that this flexibility has been demonstrated with the incumbent Supervisor.

Donna has stated that her top priority is to engage with her constituents and utilize the community and regional plans that have been created in the Verde Valley as her guiding principles in decision-making. We applaud that commitment and encourage you to support Donna as our next District 3 Supervisor.

Rob and Christine Adams - Sedona

Former Mayor and First Lady of Sedona

We met Donna almost 30 years ago through our mutual love of trail riding, horse camping, hunting, and communing with nature.

Donna is a visionary. Her initiatives bring opportunity to our communities and her skills in strategic planning have been utilized by numerous leadership groups.

Through the years we have watched her in various leadership roles—as the first Director for the Sedona campus of Yavapai College, as a member of the Yavapai College District Governing Board, and in her work with the County School Superintendent’s office serving school districts both county and state wide.

As a steward, Donna will promote smart, regenerative growth—growth that gives back more than it takes. She understands the need to balance growth with protection and preservation of our precious natural resources, especially water.

Her service to community comes not from a personal agenda but from a deep love for the Verde Valley Region she has called home for nearly thirty years.

Ginny & Steve Rench - Cottonwood

Verde Valley Weed Control

She received her PhD at Barry University in Florida and is a published author in the fields of Social Policy Preferences and Capital Campaigns. She is a teacher. She taught university graduate students and is a Nationally Certified Hearing Official (NAHO) for Arizona school districts who utilizes a restorative justice model. Simply, that means: crime causes harm and justice should focus on repairing that harm.

She’s a passionate equestrian and big game hunter. She revives her mind and heart by spending time alone with her beloved horses and dogs. They love the Mogollon Rim. A favorite pastime while there is writing poetry.

She is loudly opposed to violence against women and girls…  many feel she is a hero for them. She has helped to find the shelter and programs they need. She was successful in changing an antiquated 1886 rape law in Nebraska. She has been recognized and honored, serving as the youngest member of the nation’s first Commission on the Status of Women. Wow!

This woman is all about leadership and vision. She founded the Women’s Resource Center at the University of Nebraska, establishing a powerful model for others to follow. She was inducted into the Honors Fraternity Omicron Delta Kappa.

It is obvious that she is a tireless and formidable warrior on behalf of others. It is a natural instinct of hers to protect her community, its residents, and all those who are vulnerable.

She is a powerful, kind woman who raises the bar for others by reminding us of our human potential. She is a survivor of a tragic car wreck and deeply understands how to help people who are hurting.

She loves God, her family, and country!

She is Dr. Donna Michaels, Candidate, Yavapai County Supervisor, District 3, 2020.

Beverly Copen & Kenneth Rouse - Sedona

Donna Michaels has lived in this area for 30 years. She has always worked with endless energy to improve education, to protect the environment, maintain the natural beauty and to preserve Verde Valley as a top choice for people to retire and live.

She is motivated by the above and pledges to work with the citizens of this area to reach that end.

I plan to support her and hope you will give her your careful consideration.

Dick Ellis - Sedona

Former Mayor of Sedona

Donna has acquired and accumulated a vast background from education, knowledge, experience, and involvement in business and local issues.

This gives Donna the unique combination to understand, assess, and solve many of the troubling problems we are facing today in the Verde Valley and Yavapai County.

She is a tireless worker to preserve the uniqueness of our area and to balance it with thoughtful business and land use planning.

Donna is the best candidate for Yavapai County District 3 Supervisor and deserves your vote! She has mine.

Jo Ellis - Sedona

Former First Lady of Sedona

It has been my privilege to know Donna Michaels for over 25 years and to have worked with her on various projects over that time that are important to Yavapai County.

We worked together on a Rural Health Initiative together plus development issues specific to District 3.

As Senate Chairman of the Natural Resources, Transportation and Environment Committee, Donnas knowledge and expertise on water issues proved invaluable to me. She was always an extremely reliable resource.

I have always appreciated her initiative and leadership skills to “Get the job done”.

Donna has served on numerous National and Statewide Boards and Commissions and knows how to build a team. She has always worked diligently to resolve issues that can often prove difficult.

There is no doubt in my mind that Donna Michaels is eminently qualified and would make an excellent Yavapai County District 3 Supervisor and I hereby fully support her for that position.

Linda Binder

Former State Senator and Chair of the Natural Resources, Transportation and Environmental Committee

I support Dr. Donna Michaels for Supervisor because she will do the best job for us. Vote for Donna and give her the opportunity to show you that she is a strong voice for our Verde Valley values. A resident of this beautiful rural area for 32 years, I have been so impressed with Donna’s hard work, her brilliant ideas, and her willingness to bring everyone to the table and hear them out. That’s what we need more than ever right now.

We’re at a crossroads. We need much better leadership that will look out for the Verde Valley. Don’t we want to prosper and attract responsible businesses? Don’t we need those who will be creating the future to have excellent educational opportunities? And don’t we want our leaders to be good stewards and preserve the beauty and character of our Valley? It hasn’t happened so far.

Donna has the business expertise we need. She has extensive experience in the field of education. And she has worked consistently and effectively to preserve our rural wonders.

What are we waiting for? Vote for Donna Michaels for Supervisor.

Dianne B. Prescott - Cottonwood


Though I grew up in Nashville, TN, my wife grew up here in AZ, and we raised our children in Camp Verde. We love almost everything about the Verde Valley – climate, people, the beautiful outdoors, and, of course, the River. We started a small farm and greenhouse (herbs and veggies) in Middle Verde, and my wife helped create the Camp Verde Farmer’s Market and Verde Valley Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) that delivers fresh produce to Verde Valley patrons every week. We’ve gotten involved in our community by volunteering at our schools and trying to help our town – for instance, my wife heads up the Tree Committee, a group of good citizens who have have provided and planted over 800 trees, making Camp Verde a “Tree City USA “(Arbor Day Foundation).

Between raising kids, running a farm and maintaining our own business, we haven’t had much time for politics, but it turns out that the people we elect to represent us are critical, so that’s why I’m writing you this letter of recommendation. We need you and your good work now!

While development can be positive, unbridled and thoughtless development is disastrous. We can look to Phoenix or any of our Verde Valley towns struggling with traffic and growing congestion to know that reckless development is one of the biggest challenges we face. Our Verde Valley communities will continue to grow. (Folks who visit here love our Valley too, and who can blame them?) But thoughtless development driven by developers only, without consideration for local communities, essential history and a sense of what we want to preserve, is disastrous. We can’t let the Verde Valley become just one more place that folks “loved to death.”

There are smart ways to develop that embrace our history and our hopes for preserving the beauty and serenity of our Valley, and that’s why we support you – an intelligent, experienced and capable candidate who has shown, through honest intent and effective action, that thoughtless developments can be stopped and thoughtful developments can be encouraged. When the Verde Valley’s oldest families, long-term residents and newcomers all agree, it’s no longer a “them versus us” argument. We need you to protect and help guide us into a brighter future for the Verde Valley.

Thank you for all you have done and will do. We’re rooting for you!

Todd and Diane Scantlebury - Camp Verde

I have had the opportunity to read over more than a dozen testimonials for Dr. Donna Michaels as a candidate for Yavapai County Supervisor District 3 for the upcoming 2020 election. She has support from long time friends, community members representing elected officials, an attorney of law, public education professionals, a physician, a state legislator and long time residents of the Verde Valley to name only a few.

Each endorsement of Dr. Michaels’ exemplary character and public servitude tells a different story of her commitment to the Verde Valley community. The stories speak to her endless hours of volunteering to help many important community initiatives, her involvement with non-profit organizations, and her willingness to support municipal efforts that make the Verde Valley the unique and special place we all call our home.

Beyond the stories are several common themes describing Donna’s character. Words such as endless energy, outstanding leadership, transparency, and accountability weave through the letters of support. The recommendations give specific examples of how she has advocated for Yavapai County’s rural character, and how she is an outstanding listener in order to hear all sides of an issue to develop viable solutions.

I have known Dr. Donna Michaels for over 30 years and continue to be amazed by her willingness to give back to our community. I wholeheartedly endorse her as Yavapai County Supervisor District 3.

Dr. Nancy Alexander - Sedona

Former School Superintendent, Leadership Consultant

We find ourselves living in times of a rapidly evolving society. The residents of Yavapai county deserve representation that will listen to the needs of constituents and evolve with us. COVID-19 has shown the failure of our dependence on a system where 90% of our food chain is controlled by only a few mega corporations. Agriculture has always been at the heart of Yavapai county. We are seeing the re-emergence of the importance of small agriculture providing quality food in our communities. Farmers, ranchers, and other producers, many of whom grow on nothing more than small backyard lots in the middle of our towns, are feeding our citizens. Far too long have politicians only supported their friends—the millionaire real estate investors with a hobby ranch, reaping tax incentives while they wait to develop—and call it supporting agricultural. Donna Michaels supports all agricultural producers, large and small—the people who are putting food on the tables of Yavapai county’s families. Donna Michaels supports our entire community, and this is why we support her.

Thank you, Donna.

Zach & Shannon Wolfe - Camp Verde

Owners/Operators, Plowing Ahead Ranch

After 20 years of service in the U.S. Navy, I had repeatedly learned that one’s immediate supervisor had more influence and impact on one’s daily life than any commanding officer could have. Good leadership at the lower levels enhances quality of life and serves as a model for team spirit and accomplishment. And as I’ve grown older, I’ve noticed a slow and incremental diminishment of certain core values in our society. Much to my dismay, the erosion of honor, courage, trust, integrity and the value of the Common Good has lowered the status of our “by the people and for the people” government at all levels. When personal or corporate gain takes center stage, then we all lose!!

That is why I was greatly heartened to learn that Donna Michaels is running for our District 3 Supervisor position. Over the past 10 years I have come to know her love and commitment to our precious Verde Valley by her impressive involvement and contributions over the years. She has an ear to the ground on the significant issues of preserving our cherished resources and protecting our region from rampant development that disregards community wishes and often the Common Good.

With solid confidence I believe we can all embrace a sustainable, creative, and bright future with Donna Michaels as our next District 3 Supervisor!!!

A. Leigh Lucart, Ph.D.

As you all know, elections are around the corner, mostly focused on National and State, however we also have local elections which require our attention and action as they effect many aspects of our lives here in Sedona and the Verde Valley. 
One of the votes which will be coming up is that of Yavapai County supervisor, whose purview include issues such as Protection of Natural Resources, community services, infrastructure taxes and budgets, among many other extremely important issues.
I have known Donna Michaels for over 25 years, She is running for Yavapai County Board of Supervisors, district 3 . I trust and respect her integrity, her intellect, her empathy  and her ability to execute this position in the service of our community.
I encourage you to take a look at her web page Donna for District 3  and join me in supporting her.
Donations can be made directly through her website, and any amount that you deem appropriate would be greatly appreciated. 
Thank you for your consideration.
Barbara Breitbart

It has been my privilege to know and work with Donna Michaels over the past 30+ years. We are indeed fortunate to have her step forward and offer the caliber of leadership that our County so desperately needs. I am proud to offer my unqualified endorsement for election as our District 3 representative on the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors.

Dick Dahl

We’d like everyone in Yavapai County to know as well as we do what a great champion Donna Michaels will be for all of us who care about our environment and quality of life.  She is the perfect person to protect and represent those of us who care about our collective future.  She has our votes for this upcoming 2020 election for Yavapai Supervisor and for every other office she pursues in the future.

Susan and Wayne Johnson (and Charlie)

To Donna for inclusion on your website or anywhere you may want to have our endorsement.

My husband and I have a business in the Village of Oak Creek. We sell flowers. We love nature and that is a big reason why we choose to live and work in the Verde Valley. Donna Michaels has our support for her run for office for several reasons but only one really matters. She will do an amazing job. We know it because Donna is a woman of exceptional empathy and that quality is matched by her smarts.

Donna is a neighbor and a customer and a friend. Peter and I trust her because we have seen her be caring and thoughtful. We have seen her rise to meet personal challenges and have seen how passionate she is about this beautiful land and the people in it.

We are living in some strange times. Uncertainty is underlying life right now, and it is now, especially now, when we need to have elected officials that we know will handle the burdens that will inevitably come, with intelligence, grace and without fatigue.

Peter and I ask you to join us in our endorsement of Donna Michaels for District 3 representative on the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors. Vote for Donna Michaels.

Peter and Gari Gold Richardson

Sedona Fine Art of Flowers

This week, I was reminded why I am an avid supporter of Donna Michaels. I made a stop at Hauser’s for corn and then on to the farm stand around the corner. As I checked out, the young woman remarked about my Donna car magnet signs and stated she knew Donna!  They have been conversing over the years as Donna would support their stand. She told me “I am voting for Donna because I know that she cares”. A long-time relationship that prompted a conversation.

I also support Donna because unlike too many of our public servants, she is motivated by the sustainability of Yavapai County that is driven by our community perspectives and supported by a strategic plan that is constantly evolving vs personal gain, power, and ego.

As a 30+ year resident, Donna understands the value of our communities and the need to provide for jobs, homes, and education. Donna’s community-based career experience and education will enable her to apply common and best practices for the overall greater good.

Donna will seek to drive a balance of our homes, tourism industry, water and a county that thrives at the right pace.

Please take time to review Donna’s positions, drop her a note with perspectives or concerns and please vote in November.

Tom Coultas

Indivisible Sedona is endorsing Donna Michaels for your Yavapai Board of Supervisors District 3 candidacy.

We look forward to working with you as the election approaches.

Toby Friedman

Indivisible Sedona

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