Tamya Cox

Tamya Cox - 2017 Nominee
Position: Regional Director of Public Policy & Organizing
Organization: Planned Parenthood Great Plains Votes
Current Location: United States
B.A. in Journalism from Oklahoma State University
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
J.D., Oklahoma City University, School of Law
Awards Received:
  • Award:
    AC Hamlin Award
    Awarding Organization:
    Oklahoma Legislative Black Caucus
    Date Awarded:
    January 1, 2009
  • Award:
    John Green Community Service Award
    Awarding Organization:
    Association of Black Lawyers
    Date Awarded:
    January 1, 2012
  • Award:
    Faith and Freedom Award
    Awarding Organization:
    Oklahoma Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice
    Date Awarded:
    January 1, 2016
Tamya Cox has been an outstanding legislative liaison to community and coalition partners for that past 5 five years. She is thoughtful and inclusive of all people in her analyses and organizing. She rallies us and always keeps us informed. – Nominator
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I work in partnership with other organizations to ensure that positive reproductive health is reflected in Oklahoma policies. Most of this work occurs at the state Legislature; however, this work can also be done at local levels of government as well. I continue to work with legislators as to the harm that occurs when restrictive family planning measures are pushed. I provide them with as much information as necessary to help them make and educated decision regarding these measures. For over a decade, laws restricting the right for a woman to choose have been signed into law every year. However, this will be the second year in row where no extreme anti-abortion measures will become law in Oklahoma. This is a major victory for this state.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

I have had the privilege of growing up in a community and family that valued access to family planning education. It was only when I moved to Oklahoma did I know that not everyone was afforded that same privilege. It was not until I began working racial justice work did I become aware about the true disparity that exists when it comes to access and education simply because of race or economic status. It is now as it was then to emphasize that in order for a successful community to thrive all obstacles to quality family planning care must be removed.

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

I host an annual legislative preview with coalition partners working in reproductive health throughout Oklahoma. The Oklahoma legislature tends to be extremely hostile to the importance of family planning; therefore, it is imperative that those working to support family planning are armed with the knowledge of upcoming measures restricting access and most importantly are able to navigate through the at time difficult political process.

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work? :

The grant will help to continue to promote proactive reproductive health measures at the state and local levels. It will allow the great work that occurs at the grassroots level to continue.

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