Women in Politics

  • Mid 1600s Colonial Women Rights

    Mid 1600s Colonial Women Rights
    Married: NONE
    Unmarried or Widowed: vote, public office, serve on juries, make a will, buy property, sign a legal contract, sue or be sued
  • Seneca Falls Convention

    Seneca Falls Convention
    Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Lucretia Mott wrote the Declaration of Sentiments, demanding a variety of rights for women, especially suffrage.
  • 1st Female to run for House of Representatives

    1st Female to run for House of Representatives
    Elizabeth Cady Stanton ran for the US House of Representatives even though she was NOT eligible to vote. She ran as an independent from NY, receiving 24 out of 12,000 votes.
  • 1st Female Presidential Candidate

    1st Female Presidential Candidate
    Victoria Woodhull ran for president of the United States on the Equal Rights Party ticket. She couldn't even cast a vote for herself in the election!
  • Susan B. Arrested!

    Susan B. Arrested!
    Susan B. Anthony was arrested in Rochester, NY for casting a ballot in the 1872 election. Citing the 14th Amendment, Susan B said "Is it a crime for a US citizen to vote?" She was arrested and fined $100 which she refused to pay!
  • 1st Female to Practice Law Before the Supreme Court

    1st Female to Practice Law Before the Supreme Court
    Belva Lockwood was the first woman admitted to practice law before the US Supreme court. She also ran for president on the Equal Rights Ticket in 1884 & 1888
  • 1st Woman Mayor

    1st Woman Mayor
    Susanna Salter was elected mayor of Argonia, Kansas. The first mayor in the country!
  • 1st Woman Elected to Congress

    1st Woman Elected to Congress
    Jeannette Rankin, a Republican from Montana became the first female elected to Congress. She served in the US House of Representatives from 1917-1919 AND from 1941-1942. She was the ONLY Congressional leader to vote against US entry into both world wars.
  • 19th Amendment

    19th Amendment
    After 72 years of struggle, the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified giving women the right to vote.
  • 1st Woman Senator

    1st Woman Senator
    Hattie Wyatt Caraway filled a vacancy cause by her husband's death but then ran for a full term and became the first women elected to the Senate. She was alss the first woman to chair a Senate committee
  • 1st Woman Federal district Court Judge

    1st Woman Federal district Court Judge
    Burnita Shelton Matthews was appointed by Harry Truman to serve on the US court for the District of Columbia.
  • 1st Black Woman Nominee for Vice-President

    1st Black Woman Nominee for Vice-President
    Charlotta Spears Bass was the first Black woman nominee for vice president in the US. She ran on the Progressive Party ticket, which received less than 1% of the popular vote in the 1952 presidential election.
  • 1st Black Woman to serve in Congress

    1st Black Woman to serve in Congress
    Shirley Chisholm, a NY Democrat became the first black woman to serve in Congress. She remained in the House of Representatives until 1982
  • Election of 1972

    Election of 1972
    Shirley Chisholm ran for president in the Democratic primaries and received 151 delegate votes before Senator George mcGovern clinched the nomination. At the same convention, Frances Farenthold finished second in the balloting for the VP nomination.
  • 1st Elected Black Woman Mayor

    1st Elected Black Woman Mayor
    Lelia Foley-Davis was elected mayor of Taft, Oklahoma, making her the nation's first elected Black woman mayor.
  • Presidential Candidate

    Presidential Candidate
    Ellen McCormack entered 20 state primaries for the Democratic presidential nomination as an anti-abortion candidate, winning 22 convention votes. She became the first woman to qualify for federal campaign matching funds and qualified for Secret Service protection. In 1980, she ran for president again as the candidate of the Right to Life party, winning 30,000 votes from 3 states.
  • 1st Woman to sit on the Supreme Court

    1st Woman to sit on the Supreme Court
    Sandra Day O'Connor was appointed by President Ronal Reagan as the first woman ever to sit on the US Supreme Court.
  • 1st Woman to Run on a Major Party's National Ticket

    1st Woman to Run on a Major Party's National Ticket
    Geraldine A. Ferraro (D-NY) became the first woman ever to run on a major party's national ticket as Walter Mondale's VP running mate. Few analysts felt that Ferraro's presence had a strong impact-positive or negative- on the outcome.
  • 1st Black Woman Elected to Senate

    1st Black Woman Elected to Senate
    Carol Moseley Braun (D-Ill) became the first black woman and the first woman of color to be elected to the US Senate. She was also the first black woman to win a major party Senate nomination.
  • 1st Woman US Attorney General

    1st Woman US Attorney General
    Janet Reno became the first woman to serve as US Attorney General. She served in President Clinton's cabinet from 1993-2001.
  • Olympia Snowe (R-ME)

    Olympia Snowe (R-ME)
    Olympia Snowe became the first woman (and only Republican woman) to have been elected to her State House, State Senate, US House, and US Senate. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) followed this path as well.
  • 1st Woman Secretary of State

    1st Woman Secretary of State
    Madeleine Albright became the first woman to serve as US Secretary of State, serving from 1997-2001. She became the highest ranking woman in the US government. She also served as US Ambassador to the United Nations from 1993-1997.
  • Tammy Baldwin

    Tammy Baldwin
    Tammy Baldwin, a Democrat from Wisconsin, became the first openly gay or lesbian person elected to Congress as a non-incumbent. She was also Wisconsin's first woman in Congress. In 2012, she became the first openly gay or lesbian person elected to the US Senate.
  • First Lady AND a Senator

    First Lady AND a Senator
    Hillary Rodham Clinton became the first woman elected to the US Senate from NY, the only First Lady ever elected to public office.
  • President George W. Bush's Cabinet

    President George W. Bush's Cabinet
    President George W. Bush's cabinet had a record breaking number of women appointed. Condoleezza Rice (National Security Advisor), Elaine Chao (Secretary of Labor), Gale Norton (Secretary of the Interior), Ann Veneman (Secretary of Agriculture), Christine Todd Whitman (Administrator of the EPA),
  • Highest-Ranking woman in the History of US Congress

    Highest-Ranking woman in the History of US Congress
    Representative Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) was elected by her colleagues as House Democratic Whip, the highest-ranking woman in the history of the US. In 2007 she will be Speaker of the House.
  • 2008

    2008
    The presidential election of 2008, saw Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as the first female vice presidential running mate on a national GOP ticket. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton was also the first woman to be a presidential candidate in every primary and caucus in every state in 2008.
  • The Court gets 3!

    The Court gets 3!
    Sonia Sotomayor was appointed as an associate justice of the US Supreme Court by President Barack Obama, becoming the first Hispanic and third female member of the Court.
  • New Hampshire Senate

    New Hampshire Senate
    The New Hampshire Senate became the first state legislative chamber in the coutnry to reach or surpass gender parity, with 13 of its 24 seats (54%) held by women.
  • 1st Black Republican Woman in Congress

    1st Black Republican Woman in Congress
    Mia Love (R-UT) became the first Black Republican woman in Congress.
  • 2nd Black Woman Elected to Senate

    2nd Black Woman Elected to Senate
    Kamala Harris (D-CA), who is both Black and South Asian, became the first South Asian and second Black woman elected to the US Senate. She will also be chosen as VP Biden's running mate in 2020
  • 2016

    2016
    In June 2016, Hillary Rodham Clinton became the first woman to be a major party's presidential nominee at the Democratic National Convention on July 26, 2016. Despite winning the popular vote by almost 3 million votes, Clinton lost the Electoral College and conceded the general election on November 9, 2016.
  • 2019

    2019
    In 2019, six women formally announced their candidacy for president: Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA), Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Marianne Williamson. This is the first time in history that more than two women competed in the same major party's presidential primary process.