National Interviews

Recorded in Houston, Texas during the National Women’s Conference November 18-21, 1977, these interviews reflect perspectives from across the country, including some of the 1,440 delegates elected at the state conferences. The collection includes approximately 550 participants’ views on issues important to women and reactions to the conference itself. The voices document the diversity sought at the conference and include interviews across the social and political spectrum.

Click on any name to read or listen to their interview. As digital preservation works continues, more interviews will be added.

Ernie Attwell

Houston, Texas
African-American business owner

Cathy Banner

Organizer for the ERA America Benefit
Supporter of women’s rights

Dorothy Barker

Texas
Christian Democrat
Anti-ERA
Views on same-sex lifestyles

Lois Black

Syracuse, New York
Psychologist and Director of Affirmative Action, Syracuse University

Barbara Bornstein

Social worker from New Jersey
Married with two young sons
Reproductive health issues

Margaritte Boye

Washington state
Pharmacist

Mavis Brady

US Virgin Islands
Educator

Wilma Brady

Educator
Representing the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’is

Teresa Tellez Brown

Hawaii
Mexican-American
Active in NOW and the Women’s Equity Action League (WEAL)
Former aid worker and science/technology program adviser in South American countries

Patricia Hill Burnett

Michigan
Artist
Served as President, Michigan chapter of NOW and served on national board of NOW

Gwendolyn Carey

Social worker from Houston
29 years old
Pro-ERA

Mary Margaret Carney

Indiana
Involved in the Indiana women’s movement
Women’s equity education in education and honor societies for educators

Irene Carr

Union/labor issues

Joleen Cate

Washington, delegate’s assistant
Native American, age 28
Evergreen State College student

Alicia M. Payan Cedillos

Chicana caucus member

Judy Christianson

California
Substance abuse educator

Jean Marshall Crawford Clarke

Virginia
Delegate
Lawyer

Lydia Cruz

New Jersey
Delegate
Puerto Rican

Anne Culhane

New Jersey
Delegate
Puerto Rican

Alice Eckelhawk

Native American
Minority activist

Rene Epstein

Daughter inspired activism

Hedy Ferreria

Massachusetts
Alternate delegate
Union organizer

Nancy Cusick Fox

Washington, DC
Artist and instructor

Franciscan Priest

New Jersey
Worked to help prostitutes in New York City
Pro-women’s rights and reproductive freedom, with the exception of abortion

Dorothy Franklin

South Carolina
Delegate
NAACP

Carol Gaddy

Little Rock, Arkansas
Feminist
Official observer with the Arkansas delegation
Worked in employment agencies

Dottie Geare

Virginia
Community college counselor
Rural women issues

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Supreme Court Justice

Lucy Gonzalez

California
Military wife
Filipino activist

Carol Greenspan

Missouri
Professor of Chemistry and Medicine
Conservatism in the South

Larry Hatteberg

Kansas
Reporter
Male observor

Betty Hickey

Nebraska
Psychologist
Mental health care

Eva Lee

Nuclear physicist
Volunteer at conference

Jean Maack

Illinois
Biochemist

Elise MacBride

Nebraska
Engineer
Emigrated to U.S. from Ireland at age 2

Rose Marie McDuff

California
Delegate
African-American minister

Sandra Murphy

Fort Wayne, Indiana
A feminist and member of the organization Fort Wayne Feminists
Co-director, Women’s Studies Program at Purdue University

Kathy Parker

Phoenix, Arizona
Previously opened a women’s center in the Australian Outback
Long-term feminist activist

Viola Peterson

Michigan
Supporter of Native American rights
Commissioner of Michigan Commission on Indian Affairs
Partly pro-plan

Theola Petteway

Texas
Social worker
Women’s and African-American organizations

Christine Nestrase (with Laura Polla Scanlon)

New York
Activist for working class women

Joan Neuwirth

New Jersey delegate
47 years old
Civil Servant
Feminist

Otoria O’Rear

Lexington, Kentucky
African-American
Civil rights and women’s rights activist

Linda Ragsdale

Illinois
Pro-ERA
Social worker

Amy Raskin

Houston, Texas

High school student
Volunteer at the Conference

Bea Rodriguez

Kansas
Mother of eight
Chicana activist

Nancy Sablan

Guam
Delegate
Pro-women’s rights/anti-feminist label

Keith Sanborn

Wichita, Kansas
Husband of Kansas delegate
Helped organize Kansas state level conference

Ann Savage

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
A feminist delegate who opposes the conservative attitude of the overall delegation
Homemaker and President of the Oklahoma League of Women Voters

Laura Polla Scanlon (with Christine Nestrase)

New York
President of the National Congress of Neighborhood Women
Representing working class women’s issues

Betty Bone Schiess

New York
Chaplain at Syracuse University
Episcopal priest, one of the first to be ordained in US

Paula Seddon

Illinois (Chicago)
Amtrak driver, age 32
Union member

Meri M. Smith

Business and Professional Women’s Club
Activist

Jean Stapleton

California
Commissioner, International Women’s Year
Actress, most notably as Edith Bunker on “All in the Family”

Laurie Steiner

Alabama
Doctoral student in Houston

Judy Stietly

Pennsylvania
Physical therapist
Enlisted in the Army

Joanne B. Thomas

From Salt Lake City, Utah
Mormon
Radio Show Host

Irene Tinker

Professor
Women and Gender Studies

Mollie Tremain

Therapist
Mother of 6
Earning PhD

Grace Ware

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
African-American social worker and consultant and PhD student
Education, health, and the unequal treatment of white and black communities