Tuesday, March 2, 2010
GLORIA STEINEM KEYNOTES WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH AT MTSU
Feminist Writer, Publisher, Activist to Address Women’s Progress, Challenges
(MURFREESBORO) – Writer and lecturer Gloria Steinem, whose pivotal role in the women’s rights movement has resulted in great strides toward equality, will deliver the keynote address of MTSU’s National Women’s History Month celebration at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Mar. 2, in the Tennessee Room of the James Union Building. This event is free and open to the public and will be followed with a reception and book signing.
Steinem, a co-founder of Ms. magazine in 1972, raised the public profile of feminism with her writing, lectures and public appearances. She helped to found the Women’s Action Alliance, a national organization dedicated to nonsexist, multiracial children’s education, and the National Women’s Political Caucus, a group that strives to increase the numbers of pro-equality women in elected and appointed offices at all levels of government.
“Gloria Steinem is an icon!,” says Terri Johnson, chair of MTSU’s Women’s History Month Committee and director of the June Anderson Women’s Center. “Her place in the women’s movement is one that will always be respected and honored. She opened doors when so many were closed for women. She stood up, spoke out and fought for the cause! She fought behind the scenes and on a public platform, using her voice and pen to raise consciousness to a new level for women.”
Among Steinem’s other accomplishments is her tenure as the founding president of the Ms. Foundation for Women, which funds grass roots projects, and as co-founder of “Take Our Daughters to Work Day,” which has become an institution in the United States and numerous countries.
Steinem’s work also has been essential to the progress of the pro-choice movement. She co-founded and served as president of Voters for Choice, a political action committee that merged with the Planned Parenthood Action Fund for the 2004 elections. In addition, Steinem co-founded Choice USA, a national group that supports young pro-choice leaders and comprehensive sex education in schools.
“I admire her individuality, intelligence, bravery and her ability to place women in the forefront of society,” Johnson says. “Gloria Steinem asks the tough questions about women's important value as individuals in society.”
As an author, Steinem is the recipient of the Penney-Missouri Journalism Award; the Front Page and Clarion awards; National Magazine awards; an Emmy Citation for excellence in television writing; the Women’s Sports Journalism Award; the Lifetime.
Achievement in Journalism Award from the Society of Professional Journalists; the Society of Writers Award from the United Nations; and the University of Missouri School of Journalism Award for Distinguished Service in Journalism.
Her books include Revolution from Within: A Book of Self-Esteem; Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions; Moving Beyond Words; and Marilyn: Norma Jean, all bestsellers. Steinem also was an editor of The Reader’s Companion to U.S. Women’s History.
As an activist, her honors include the first Doctorate of Human Justice awarded by Simmons College; the Bill of Rights Award from the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California; the National Gay Rights Advocates Award; the Liberty Award of the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund; the Ceres Medal from the United Nations; and numerous honorary degrees. In 1993, Steinem was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame in Seneca Falls, N.Y.
A 1956 Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Smith College, Steinem is collaborating with her alma mater’s Sophia Smith Collection on a project to document the grass roots origins of the U.S. women’s movement. In addition, she is working on Road to the Heart: America As if Everyone Mattered, a chronicle of her more than 30 years as a feminist organizer.
The National Women’s History Month Committee, the June Anderson Women’s Center, the Seigenthaler Chair of Excellence, the Distinguished Lecture Fund, the Esther Seeman Fund, the Black History Month Committee, the Virginia Peck Trust Fund, Women in Action, the Women’s Studies Program, and the School of Journalism are sponsors of Steinem’s appearance.
Steinem’s keynote address is part of the MTSU Women’s History Month theme of “History, Change and the Future.” For more information on Steinem’s appearance or any other Women’s History Month activities, contact the Women’s Center at 615-898-2193 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or go to the Web site at http://www.mtsu.edu/jawc/nwhm.shtml.