Pitzer College's 41st Commencement Features Speaker Sarah Weddington

Nationally known attorney successfully argued Roe v. Wade

CLAREMONT, Calif. (May 2, 2005) — Pitzer College proudly announces that Sarah Weddington will serve as featured speaker at the College's 41st Commencement at 1 p.m. Sunday, May 15, at the Gold Student Center Field. Her speech is titled "Some Leaders are Born Women."

Pitzer seniors selected Weddington, a nationally known attorney and spokeswoman on leadership and public issues, as this year's speaker. By tradition, Pitzer seniors choose the speaker for their commencement exercises.

Weddington's book, A Question of Choice, which details the Roe v. Wade case, will be available for purchase for $14 during commencement. She will be signing her book following the commencement ceremony on the Pellessier Mounds.

Weddington is particularly well known for her work on issues affecting women through her many roles as attorney, legislator, presidential advisor, professor, and expert called upon by the national media. In 1973, at age 26, she argued the winning side of the landmark case Roe v. Wade before the United States Supreme Court. She is thought to be the youngest woman ever to win a case in the Supreme Court. She has recently been involved in promoting the development of leadership and self-renewal skills.

Weddington has been a long-time advocate for women. In 1972, she was the first woman from Austin elected to the Texas House of Representatives. She served three terms before becoming the U.S. Department of Agriculture's General Counsel in 1977, the first woman to ever hold that position.

From 1978 to 1981, Weddington served as Assistant to the President of the United States. She was designated by President Carter to direct the Administration's work on women's issues and leadership outreach. She also directed White House efforts to extend the time for ratification of the ERA and to assist in the selection of women for federal judiciary appointments.

At The University of Texas at Austin, where she is an adjunct associate professor, she is shaping a new generation of leaders in her classes "Gender-Based Discrimination" and "Leadership in America." She also writes and travels extensively, speaking on women's issues and the development of leadership skills. She is currently working on her next book on the topic of leadership and self-renewal.

Weddington earned her J.D. degree from The University of Texas School of Law in 1967 and is a Distinguished Alumna of McMurry University. She holds honorary doctorates from McMurry University, Hamilton College, Austin College, Southwestern University, and Nova Southeastern University.

For more information, please contact the Pitzer College Office of Public Relations at (909) 621-8219.

About Pitzer College

Pitzer College is a nationally top-ranked undergraduate liberal arts and sciences institution. A member of The Claremont Colleges, Pitzer offers a distinctive approach to a liberal arts education by linking intellectual inquiry with interdisciplinary studies, cultural immersion, social responsibility and community involvement. For more information, please visit www.pitzer.edu.

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