Jae Spears, pioneering W.Va. legislator, dies

ELKINS (AP) — Jae Spears, the West Virginia Senate’s first female majority whip, has died She was 90.

An obituary posted on Lohr & Barb Funeral Home’s website says Spears died Saturday at her home in Elkins.

The Randolph County Democrat also was the only woman to chair the Senate Finance Committee, and was the first female member of the Joint Committee on Government and Finance.

She was first elected to the Senate in 1980 after serving three terms in the House of Delegates. She became majority whip in 1982 and led the Finance Committee from 1984 to 1986.

A funeral service will be held Saturday at First United Methodist Church in Elkins.

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