Women's History Month: Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962) was First Lady of the United States during the Presidency of her husband Franklin Delano Roosevelt and later a diplomat at the United Nations.


She re-defined the role of the First Lady by working tirelessly to lobby her husband to ensure all children, women and minorities, in particular African Americans, felt the full benefit of the New Deal established under FDR. She was also a highly prominent activist for civil rights.


After her husband’s death she became the US representative to the UN General Assembly and was the inaugural chair of the UN Human Rights Commission. She played an instrumental role in drafting and ratification of the UN Declaration of Human Rights. Her commitment to furthering equality for all saw her secure key economic rights for everyone and social protections at the heart of the UN declaration.

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