Planned Parenthood’s second in command is leaving, barely six months after its CEO Cecile Richards also abandoned her role.
The Huffington Post reports Dawn Laguens, who worked at the abortion giant for eight years, announced her resignation this week. She was the executive vice president and acting leader after Richards left in May. Leana Wen began her role as president of Planned Parenthood this week, replacing Richards.
For eight years, Laguens oversaw millions of abortions at Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion chain in America. Its annual reports show that it aborts about 320,000 unborn babies every year.
Laguens said her proudest moment was fending off pro-life lawmakers’ efforts to defund Planned Parenthood of about half a billion tax dollars each year.
“The fact that they never succeeded in doing that, and that we were able to protect care for millions of people over many years, stands out as a highlight,” Laguens said.
The report listed her other accomplishments at the abortion chain:
She modernized the organization and and attracted a new generation to the reproductive rights movement with a period tracker app, a new brand, look and logo, and the award-winning virtual reality film “Across the Line” about the personal experience of getting access to abortion. She developed the group’s powerful political advocacy arm, the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, and built partnerships with other progressive organizations. Since 2010, she has helped fend off 21 attempts by Congress to defund the health care provider.
Under Richards and Laguens’ control, Planned Parenthood also saw huge drops in patient numbers and actual health services and scandal after scandal involving alleged aborted baby body parts sales and sexual abuse cover-ups.
At the same time, the abortion chain reaped in record profits, including billions in taxpayer funding, and maintained a corner on the abortion market. It ramped up its political advocacy and attacked numerous efforts to protect unborn and born babies from abortion.
Prior to Planned Parenthood, Laguens worked as a Democratic political consultant. According to the report, Richards personally asked Laguens to work at Planned Parenthood after pro-life Republicans won a strong majority in the U.S. House in the 2010 midterms.
“I fell in love with the people, more than anything, and the mission, more deeply,” she said of her work. “I stayed about seven and a half years longer than I ever planned.”
Laguens did not mention what her plans are next other than to spend time with her partner and daughters. However, she said she would keep fighting for abortion.
“We’ve won these elections, and it’s a great moment to make a switch and think about how I can tackle some of these challenges that new technologies can be applied to,” she told the liberal news outlet. “But I’ll stay close to the fight ― I can’t imagine that I will go far away from it. It’s close to my heart.”
The timing of their resignations is interesting, given that the U.S. Department of Justice said it is investigating whether the abortion chain illegally sold aborted baby body parts. The DOJ announced its investigation in December, and Richards announced her plans to resign in January.