For anyone who wants to make political change, start a campaign, advance a cause or just stay in the fight, former Senator Dede Feldman's memoir, Ten More Doors, charts an inspirational path. Arriving in New Mexico a stranger in 1975, Dede's path to change takes her through alternative newspapers, adobe construction, women's campaigns and heated grassroots politics. Door-to-door, she learns the wisdom of the street in Albuquerque's North Valley, where matanzas and sweathouses reveal an eclectic mix of old and new, Hispanic and Anglo. Once inside the legislature, she takes on the big issues amid conflict and corruption, developing the grit to persist in a long game that she plays even after she has left the Santa Fe Roundhouse.
Dede's honest-and sometimes hilarious-account of neighborhood encounters and both political wins and losses holds lessons for activists, journalists, aspiring candidates and ordinary citizens on the path to political change. Her memoir-and her life-shows us how the path is never straight, and it calls on all of us to make a difference, starting at ground level, door by door.
Dede Feldman was not born a progressive reformer, but her crooked path to the New Mexico Senate, through door-to-door politics, early women's campaigns, and alternative newspapers took her there. Dede grew up outside of Philadelphia and moved to Albuquerque's North Valley in 1976 where she and her husband built a pioneering solar adobe home. She was elected to the Senate in 1996, one of the first women to represent the largely Hispanic area. During her 16 years in Santa Fe, she became a champion of healthcare and democracy reforms, environmental and consumer protection, causes she still fights for outside of the legislature. A former teacher and journalist, she is the author of two award- winning books, Inside the New Mexico Senate: Boots Suits and Citizens and Another Way Forward.