A bioscientist, healthcare professional, leader and longtime Fort Collins resident, Dr. Joann Ginal is beginning her third term representing House District 52, which includes eastern and central Fort Collins and parts of unincorporated Larimer County. She is chairwoman of the Health, Insurance & Environment Committee and sits on the Public Health Care & Human Services and Transportation & Energy Committees.
Much of Rep. Ginal’s legislative activity has been devoted to public health issues. In the 2016 session she sponsored a new law prohibiting the production and sale of marijuana edibles that resemble gummy vitamins or in other shapes attractive to children. In 2014 she sponsored a health data analysis for communities along the Front Range to measure local health impacts from the oil and gas industry. A bill to regulate naturopathic doctors in Colorado had failed for 22 years before Rep. Ginal’s legislation passed in 2013.
Among her other bills was one to create uniform standards for prior authorization of prescription medication, saving health care providers significant time and money and ultimately reducing costs for consumers. Rep. Ginal has also championed legislation to allow terminally ill patients to make the decision to end their own suffering.
Before joining the legislature, Rep. Ginal worked in the biological and medical fields for more than 20 years as a scientist with a focus in pharmacology, in research and most recently as a medical liaison in medical affairs for various pharmaceutical companies. Previously she was a professor of biology at Florida Institute of Technology and held other teaching positions at Iowa State University, spending some of her spare time as a biologist guide on eco-tour trips down the Amazon River through Peru, Colombia and Brazil; and on photo safaris in Kenya and Tanzania.
Rep. Ginal earned a Ph.D in reproductive endocrinology from the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Colorado State University, a master’s degree in zoology from Iowa State and a bachelor’s in biology from the University of New Hampshire.
She has been an active member of the Fort Collins community, serving a total of 16 years on the City of Fort Collins Commission on the Status of Women and the Human Relations Commission. She is a master naturalist for the City of Fort Collins and cares deeply about preserving the special places that make Colorado a nationally recognized place to raise a family, retire, buy a home, start a business or receive an excellent education.
Rep. Ginal was raised in a working-class family. Her father was a police officer for more than 25 years. Her mother stayed at home, raised three children and was a dedicated community volunteer.