Home Address: 1722 Hill Hedge Drive, Montgomery, AL 36106
Phone #: 334-269-2295
Cell Phone #: Don't know the number; only call out.
Fax #: None
Your Life Since 1957: I received my B.A. from Wellesley College and got married 5 days later. We lived in Brooklyn, N.Y. for a year and then moved to the Boston area where I worked in personnel and Jerry was a stock broker. In 1968 we came back to Iowa City where Jerry attended the law school, and I worked at the University, where I discovered that students spouses, 99% female, were locked out of better paying job opportunities. Working with several other women concerned about our own situations and those of other women, we arranged a visit by the EEOC and eventually forced the U of I to upgrade the hundreds of women working 7/8ths time as maids to full time status, complete with benefits. (Janitors, all male, already had such status.) And finally student spouses were eligible for TIAA-CREF, a retirement program from which I will soon receive money. I really began cutting my political teeth during these years and in 1972 participated in the Iowa caucus system to send a Shirley Chisholm delegate to the Democratic National Convention. (We held bake sales to fund our delegate's expenses!)
After my husband finished law school, we came to Alabama where he taught in a black state university (and then worked as a lawyer) and I searched for other feminists,that took a while. Alabama is something of a third-world place in many respects, and I found my calling trying to change it! I also found a group of outspoken, intelligent women who remain my close friends despite their subsequent dispersal to other states.
Careerwise, I became for 10 years the executive director of the state ACLU and tried to learn to temper my Midwestern accent to sound more Southern on t.v. I don't think it worked too well. People are still asking me where I'm from and the correct answer is not Montgomery. I lobbied the Legislature for the National Organization for Women (NOW), and then for the League of Women Voters. I consulted with national civil rights groups who had projects in the state. Along the way I taught adult basic education to women on welfare, a venture in which I probably learned more than they did. In 1989 I was the event coordinator for the Southern Poverty Law Center's unveiling of its Civil Rights Memorial designed by Maya Lin. (If you haven't seen this, don't miss it when you come to Montgomery) And in 1995, I started working with Alabama Arise as a policy analyst. Arise is a grass roots, statewide organization of 130 groups that seeks fairer state policies for low and moderate income citizens. I analyzed federal policies, state legislation and especially the state budget for its impact on the people we represented. In 2006 I retired to take a two and a half month trip, first to Buenos Aires, then to Antarctica, and then up the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, ending up with a week in Amsterdam.
Throughout these years my husband and I went on several wilderness adventures by ourselves. These included several lengthy trips to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area (on one trip we didn't see any other people for 10 days); a 16-day canoe trip down the Yukon River from Whitehorse to Dawson City; canoeing the Allagash River in Maine, and one aborted canoe trip in Manitoba, where we ran into a forest fire two days after setting out and had to turn back. We also backpacked closer to home in North Carolina wilderness areas which aren't very wild compared to the far North; trekked from northern Alaska into Canada on a Sierra Club trip; rafted on the Kobuk River in Alaska and did some hiking in England and Scotland.
Your Life Now: Retirement hasn't been as easy as I imagined. I feel I waste too much time, although I did finally clean up the 'junk' room so out of town friends and relatives could stay with us. Getting rid of a lot of stuff that I, especially, have accumulated over the years is really difficult for me. It is fun being able to play tennis during the day (as well as at night). Last summer I took a Geology 101 course at Auburn. Jerry and I love to travel, and to birdwatch. Most recently we spent 3 weeks in Turkey, a fascinating country full of ruins of many civilizations. And we hope to do lots more foreign and U.S. travel in the coming years.
What classmates have you kept in contact with: Since last reunion, Jane Arevalo.
What classmates would you like to hear from: Everyone.
Would/could you help find classmates: I doubt I could help much.
Any hobbies: Love to play tennis, do the NY Times crossword puzzles, read, discuss politics, bake bread.
Favorite song of 1957 or earlier: Recently I gained a new appreciation for Elvis Presley and have several of his C.D.s now My favorite piece of music is the 4th movement of Beethoven's 9th Symphony!