Sue has lived in Chapel Hill for over 30 years. She earned her undergraduate degree from UNC Chapel Hill and later earned a graduate degree in Public Health from Emory University. During her college years, she was drawn to the local music scene and worked as a college radio DJ at WXYC. In a classic Chapel Hill story, Sue met her future husband, local musician Chuck Garrison, on Franklin Street in 1987. They were married in 2008. Sue and Chuck have two young sons, Stough and Callum, who are both students at Estes Elementary. Sue and her family love Carolina Basketball, soccer, and heading out to local concerts and festivals to support our town's great artists and musicians.
Sue's volunteer service in Orange County started with the Orange-Durham Coalition for Battered Women (now the Family Violence Prevention Center) and the Orange County Rape Crisis Center, where she answered crisis calls, met with clients at the emergency room and accompanied them to court. She later spent time volunteering with the Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition, working with marginalized populations made vulnerable by drug use and commercial sex work.
Sue currently serves on the Orange County Planning Board, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro NAACP Housing Committee, and is a member of the community organization, NEXT Chapel Hill-Carrboro, which she represents on the Climate Action Coalition of Orange County. Sue is a member of the Orange County Transit Advocates, and the Durham and Orange County Transit work group. She has been a tireless advocate for the expansion of public transit in Chapel Hill, and was a vocal advocate for the Durham Orange Light Rail Transit project. Since that project was discontinued, Sue has continued to meet with local Durham and Orange county elected officials to discuss the path forward for transit solutions and sustainable growth in our town.
Sue has worked in research at Duke University since 2004, currently managing research compliance for the Duke School of Nursing. Prior to moving to Duke, Sue managed communications and outreach for a Medicare quality improvement organization, worked in outreach and education for Planned Parenthood, conducted community asthma research for the Centers for Disease Control, and managed shelters for the Partnership Against Domestic Violence and Family Violence and Rape Crisis Services.
Sue's experiences in community health research, working with vulnerable populations, and conducting data collection in homes and neighborhoods, has helped her gain an in-depth understanding about the key relationship between the places people live, health, and access to opportunity.
Sue's education, community service and work have led her to always seek community input, and utilize data and evidence-based best practices to guide decision-making. She's running for Chapel Hill Town Council to help chart a course for a healthy and sustainable Chapel Hill.