I’m a planner— but no one’s life goes according to plan, right? I can honestly say “Plan B” has made me resilient and resourceful. It has opened my heart to others. And it has led me to this very point—seeking your support in my bid for the United States Senate.
I am the oldest of six children. When I was a small child, my daddy told me I could be anything I wanted if I only put my mind to it. I knew he was right. I learned to work hard, helping stuff hundreds of my mom’s hand-made toy animals, delivering heavy newspapers in homemade coats and cleaning movie theaters after midnight alongside my siblings and parents…
I knew there was a better way than my mother working three jobs to make ends meet. I knew education was the vehicle. But it was difficult staying on track in school when we kept relocating— thirteen moves in all.
My parents couldn’t write a check, so sponsors helped me attend Jr. Statesman Summer School at Stanford University and debate camp in Washington, D.C.
I chose the Harvard debate tournament over playing high school basketball. I eventually became a policy debate state champion and attended Provo’s Brigham Young University on scholarship.
Right after my freshman year of college, I married a Jimmy Stewart-type, Idaho farm boy who, 32 years later, still tears up to Lee Greenwood’s “I’m Proud to Be an American.”
As we welcomed our four children into our family, I was immersed in community service and Republican grassroots politics, including numerous campaigns, serving as a precinct officer and alternate national delegate, chairing the 2006 GOP State Organizing Convention, and serving on the Kaysville City Council.
After jumping into state government as an agency administrator, I negotiated flexible hours to be home when my children were home. I learned I love good public policy—the process, the outcomes, the partnerships.
Those opportunities led to a post as Governor Gary Herbert’s deputy chief of staff, communications director, and spokesperson. That post was the ideal convergence of my academic and professional preparation—the nexus of politics, policy, communications. It started to feel like Plan A.
But then, just as I was running full throttle with sixteen-hour days—Plan B again.
Our luminous, smart, vibrant 21 year-old daughter passed through life’s veil and our world entirely changed. Words cannot convey our journey of heartache and healing (I talk more about Alyssa and grief here and here).
In 2014, I accepted a post with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I became director of Family and Community Relations with responsibility for local community and interfaith outreach, as well as fostering understanding on concerns to women, people of color, and LGBTQ+ people. Later I served as the first director of Institutional Messaging (global branding).
When a worldwide pandemic hit the United States in 2020, Plan B surfaced again, I switched professional tracks, and took a job in Utah’s thriving tech sector as Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer for EVŌQ Nano.
In Spring 2021, after urging from people I trust, I began to seriously weigh a bid for the US Senate in 2022—something I never expected to do. When I was made acting Executive Officer at EVŌQ Nano, it became readily apparent that I could not meet the incredible demands of that promising role and simultaneously run a successful challenger campaign.
So I began much soul-searching, had numerous in-depth conversations with more people I trust, including my family, and concluded that, if I want the world to be all it can be for my children and grandchildren, I have a responsibility to do all I can do.
Plan B has become my constant new normal. Plan B requires courage and action and resolve. At age 51, I understand living life is facing one frontier after another, the end of one thing, the beginning of another.
Plan B prepared me for this moment.
As I stand on this frontier, I have a vision for our nation’s future—a vision informed by my experiences in business, government and community, a vision grounded in what matters most to Utahns, and a vision that unites us as Americans.
Now that you’ve read my story, I’d like to hear yours. To connect with me when I’m in your community, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ACTING EXECUTIVE OFFICER, CHIEF STRATEGY & MARKETING OFFICER EVŌQ Nano (formerly ATTOSTAT), April 2020 – May 2021
DIRECTOR, IDENTITY & MESSAGING The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, January 2017 – March 2020
DIRECTOR, FAMILY & COMMUNITY RELATIONS The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, January 2015 – December 2016
SENIOR MANAGER, PUBLIC AFFAIRS STRATEGIC INITIATIVES The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, January 2014 – December 2014
DEPUTY CHIEF OF STAFF, COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR Office of Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert, December 2010 – December 2013
GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS DIRECTOR Utah Department of Workforce Services, November 2009 – December 2010
DEPUTY DIRECTOR Utah Department of Community and Culture, May 2005 – November 2009
POLITICAL CONSULTANT R&R Partners, Government and Public Affairs Division, November 2002 – May 2005
CAMPAIGN MANAGER / CONSULTANT Numerous state, legislative, county, and municipal political campaigns, 1993 – 2004
View recommendations from former colleagues and partners at linkedin.com/in/ally-isom.
WOMEN’S LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE, EXECUTIVE BOARD & PAST CHAIR 2015 – 2021
WOMEN WHO SUCCEED, Success in Education, Member 2021
EMERGING LEADERS INITIATIVE, ADVISORY BOARD 2016-2021
GET REAL FOUNDATION, ADVISORY BOARD 2020-2021
NEXT GENERATION FREEDOM FUND BOARD 2018-2020
UTAH MUSEUM OF HERITAGE & ART WORKING GROUP 2016 – 2018
UTAH OLYMPIC EXPLORATORY COMMITTEE 2013
GOVERNOR’S INAUGURATION COMMITTEE CHAIR 2013
UCAIR BOARD OF DIRECTORS 2012 – 2013
BYU POLITICAL AFFAIRS SOCIETY, SLC ALUMNI CHAPTER PRESIDENT 2011 – 2012
CITY COUNCIL, KAYSVILLE 2010
DOWNTOWN RISING, ORIGINAL CONVENERS, SL CHAMBER 2007– 2009
UTAH REPUBLICAN PARTY ORGANIZING CONVENTION CHAIR 2006
UTAH CULTURAL HERITAGE COUNCIL, CHAIR 2005 – 2009
COMMUNITY COUNCIL, CHAIR, Arcadia Elementary
PTA MEMBER – every year my children attended public school
Precinct Vice Chair
State Central Committee
Senate District Chair
1993-2004 Campaign manager for numerous city, county, legislative and statewide candidates
2004 Alternate National Delegate
2006 UT GOP Organizing Convention chair
2007-2008 Co-president Professional Republican Women
2013 Governor’s Inauguration chair