Wednesday, July 14, 2010

70: The Self-Empowered Woman: Gloria Allred

Dear Followers,Lately these blogs have been introducing readers to accomplished women from a variety of nations, but today I'd like you to meet a home-grown Self-Empowered Woman who has - for most of her life - been comfortable with controversy.

Born in Philadelphia on July 3, 1941, Allred is possibly the most famous female attorney in America. She has consistently welcomed clients and cases that many other attorneys would avoid. According to Allred "My work is not about popularity contests...women can't enjoy equal opportunity if they are sexually harassed at work...[and] the defense just hopes the woman doesn't hire Gloria Allred (5: Life is Not a Popularity Contest).

In the 1960s, after her daughter was born Allred and her first husband divorced and in 1987 (after 19 years of marriage) she and her second husband divorced (15: Forget About Prince Charming).

Allred's daughter, Lisa Bloom, who is 20 years younger than her Mom, worked at the same law firm for nine years and the two are very close (16: Intensive Motherhood).

Thane Rosenbaum, a law professor at Fordham University has described Allred as a "moral attorney" because she accepts cases with no concern for her own reputation or for her (often unlikely) chances of winning (11: Risk Addiction). She has made her (7: Magnificent Obsession) defending women who have been taken advantage of by people in power.

Perhaps the key to her passion is that she was - at age 21 - a divorced single mother with no child support. When she was 25, she was a teacher at a high school in Watts (a volatile neighborhood in Los Angeles) and took a vacation to Mexico. While there, she was raped; after undergoing an illegal abortion she almost bled to death, but a nurse in the intensive-care unit told her "This will teach you a lesson." (12: Hard Times). It was that experience that made the young Ms. Allred begin to fight against the systemic way that women were treated in America.

Allred has her share of critics in both the legal and media communities and Comedienne Chelsea Handler has been critical of Allred on both her blog and her late-night talk show and has accused the lawyer of "...setting the women's movement back 100 years." But what other people think (like when a California State Senator called her a "slick butch lawyeress") rarely seems to bother Allred.

Looking forward to your comments...


  1. 困難的不在於新概念,而在於逃避舊有的概念。............................................................

  2. 生存乃是不斷地在內心與靈魂交戰;寫作是坐著審判自己。..................................................

  3. I enjoyed reading the article about Gloria Allred. It was nice to read something that portrayed her with understanding and in a positive light. Most of the things printed about her are negative. Your posting really cast her as a feeling caring human being. Please keep posting these articles about self empowered women. You are doing important work.