- Source:Booklist; 12/15/2018, Vol. 115 Issue 8, p6-25, 18p, 42 Color Photographs, 3 Black and White Photographs
- Document Type:Book Review
- Publication Information:American Library Association / Booklist Publications
- Subject Terms:
Booklist Reviews 2018 March #1
*Starred Review* Some people are hardwired to pursue their lives' passion. The daughter of Ann Richards, the firebrand feminist Texan politician, and David Richards, a landmark civil rights attorney, Richards learned about having the courage of one's convictions at an early age. She championed workers' rights for janitors and nursing-home staff and protested punitive voter restrictions wherever they occurred, experiences that would eventually put her on Capitol Hill working for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. But it is her work as president of Planned Parenthood that catapulted her to national attention, especially in the wake of nearly constant GOP assaults to defund the organization during the passage of the Affordable Care Act and subsequent budget battles. As she speaks admiringly of her mother's trailblazing career and lovingly about the nascent political and organizing work of her three children, Richards makes clear that the life of a grassroots activist can be an all-consuming mission, but one that reaps untold personal benefits and results in unimaginable rewards for individuals and the nation. An intimate yet wide-ranging chronicle of a life in the trenches and at the pinnacle of her profession, Richards' enthralling memoir will provide rousing motivation for anyone passionate about social and political causes. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.
LJ Reviews 2018 April #2
Richards, president of Planned Parenthood from 2006 to 2018, here traces her life as an activist. Born in Waco, TX, in 1957, Richards was raised by progressive parents; her mother, Ann, was a feminist, and her father, David, a labor and civil rights attorney. She protested the Vietnam War and honed her skills as an activist at Brown University. One of her first jobs was as an organizer for the United Labor Union in New Orleans, where she met her husband, Kirk Adams. Richards organized nursing home staff in Southern California and repeatedly notes the courage of the workers who were willing to put themselves on the line at great cost to make change. Later, she moved to Austin to help her mother become the first female governor of Texas. Along the way, the author had a family, eventually relocating to Washington, DC, to work for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi; then on to New York to run Planned Parenthood. During her tenure at Planned Parenthood, Richards never wavered in her resolve to battle funding cuts to the organization and ensure that a woman's right to a safe and legal abortion is nonnegotiable.