Episode 136 – Fighting for Equality in the Equality State with Natalia Macker

In this week’s episode of the Jackson Hole Connection, Stephan chats with Natalia Macker. Natalia is Chairwoman of the Teton County Board of County Commissioners, she also works as Artistic Director of Off Square Theatre Company. Over the past decade, Natalia has made a huge impact in the Jackson arts community as well as our political landscape. Natalia is helping Wyoming stay true to its motto as the Equality State. 

In this episode, Natalia shares how a vacation out to Jackson changed the trajectory of her life. She talks about how she unexpectedly got into politics after seeing the need for better representation in the Wyoming legislature. Natalia also discusses how her theater background has helped her when it comes to working in government. She shares her love for her two energetic boys, one of whom was born limb different. Natalia goes into the roller coaster of emotions she and her son Woody have faced with development and living with a limb difference. Stephan and Natalia also converse about the supportive Jackson community, but how with any smaller community it can be hard to connect with other families who are experiencing similar life experiences and obstacles. 

Follow Natalia on Instagram @CommissionerMacker

Find out more about Natalia and schedule a Zoom office hour meeting at MackerForWyo.com

This week’s episode is supported in part by Teton County Solid Waste and Recycling reminding you to reduce, reuse, recycle, and compost. Avoid single-use products whenever possible, and remember to bring your reusable bags with you while shopping. More at TetonCountyWY.gov.

Support also comes Kilter Physical Therapy and Sports Performance Center. Each physical therapy session at Kilter is 1-on-1 with a licensed physical therapist.  Every treatment session will allow ample time for individual evaluation, manual treatment, modalities, and appropriate exercise prescription for your personal needs. More info at KilterPT.com

Want to be a guest on The Jackson Hole Connection? Email us at connect@thejacksonholeconnection.com. Marketing and editing support by Michael Moeri

Below is the poem from Napoleon Hill that Stephan mentioned in today’s episode:


Listen Son, I am saying this as you lie asleep, one little hand crumpled under your cheek

and blonde curls sticky over your wet forehead. I have broken into your room alone. Just a few minutes ago, as I sat reading my paper in the library, a stifling wave of remorse swept over me. Guilty, I came to your bedside.

There are things which I am thinking, son; I had been cross to you. I scolded you as you

were dressing for school because you gave your face a mere dab with the towel. I took you to task for not cleaning your shoes. I called out angrily when you threw some of your things on the floor

At breakfast I found fault, too. You spilled things. You gulped down your food. You

put your elbows on the table. You spread butter too thick on your bread. As you started off to play and I made for my train, you turned and waved a hand and called, “Goodbye, Daddy!” I frowned, and said in reply, “Hold your shoulders back!”.

Then it began all over again late this afternoon. As I came up the road I spied you, down on your knees, playing marbles. There were holes in your socks. I humiliated you before your friends by marching you ahead of me to the house. Socks were expensive, and if you had to buy them you would be more careful! Imagine that son, from a father.

Do you remember later, when I was reading in the library, how you came timidly, with

sort of a hurt look in your eyes? I glanced up over my paper, impatient at the interruption; you hesitated at the door. “What is it that you want?” I snapped.

You said nothing, but ran across in one tempestuous plunge, threw your arms around my neck and kissed me, your small arms tightened with affection that God had set blooming in your heart, which even neglect could not wither. Then you were gone, pattering up the stairs.

Well, Son, it was shortly afterwards that my paper slipped from my hands and a terrible

sickening fear came over me. What has habit been doing to me? The habit of finding fault, or reprimanding; this was my reward to you for being a boy. It was not that I did not love you: it was that I expected too much of you. I was measuring you by the yardstick of my own years.

There is so much that was good, fine and true in your character. The little heart of yours was as big as the dawn itself over the hills. This was shown by your spontaneous impulse to rush in and kiss me goodnight. Nothing else mattered tonight. Son, I have come to your beside in the darkness, I have knelt there, ashamed!

It is a feeble atonement; I know that you would not understand these things which I have told you in the waking hours. Tomorrow I will be a real daddy! I will chum with you, suffer when you suffer and laugh when you laugh. I will bite my tongue when impatient words come. I will keep saying as if it were a ritual: “He is nothing but a boy–a little boy.”

I am afraid I have visualized you as a man. Yet as I see you now, Son, crumpled and

weary in your bed. I see that you are still a baby. Yesterday you were in your mother’s arms, your head on her shoulder. I have asked too much, too much!

Posted by, Michael Moeri

Leave a Comment