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Memories of The One Ann Only Enrich the Fuller Circle

There was plenty to laugh about on Friday, Sept. 1 at Austin’s Headliner’s Club as AHCA’s Fuller Circle welcomed Austin authors Margaret Justus and Sarah Bird to talk about their new book, The One Ann Only: Wit and Wisdom from Texas Governor Ann Richards.

Justus and Bird shared stories about Ann Richards, 45th Governor of Texas, who was also the last Democrat to win the Texas Governor’s Mansion. Richards was also a two-term Texas State Treasurer, and two-term Travis County Commissioner.

Justus, founder of The Ann Richards Legacy Project, served as Richards’ deputy press secretary from 1989 to 1994. That experience inspired her to start the Ann Richards Legacy Project, a nonprofit with a mission “to inspire future generations to embody Governor Richards’ timeless spirit and courage to lead” through public art projects and programs.

Bird, a bestselling Texas author, has penned eleven books and wrote the foreword for The One Ann Only.

Justus and Bird signed copies of the book, which features more than 80 photographs, including those captured by Pam Francis, Annie Leibowitz, and Ave Bonar, who photographed Richards’ first campaign for governor in 1990 and published a book showcasing the photos.

The Fuller Circle, named for Stephen Fuller Austin, are small, invitation-only events that encourage AHCA members to bring a potential AHCA member. They highlight a Texas author, artist, or storyteller. The Sept. 1 event was the third straight sellout for the Fuller Circle, and it coincided with what would have been Ann Richards’ 90th birthday. The gathering was significant enough to draw Austin Mayor Kirk Watson, who brought with him a proclamation declaring Sept. 1, 2023, as Ann Richards Day in Austin.

Other notables in attendance were Precinct Three Travis County Commissioner Ann Howard; Amalia Rodriguez-Mendoza, the first minority district clerk of Travis County; former Austin City Council Members Kathie Tovo and Randi Shade; Saundra Kirk, former AHCA board member and a former member of the Austin Planning Commission; and former Texas State Representative Elliott Naishtat.


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