Phyllis Schlafly (1924-)
Phyllis Stewart Schlafly was born on August 15, 1924 to John Bruce Stewart and Odile Dodge in St. Louis, Missouri. Her father was a lawyer and her mother worked to support them as a librarian and school teacher.
At the age of 19, she earned her A.B. from Washington University in 1944 and then went on to receive a Master’s degree in Political Science from Harvard in 1945. She also earned a J.D. from the Washington University Law School in St. Louis in 1978.
Schlafly came to prominence with the publication of A Choice Not An Echo, her best-selling book from 1964. She quickly became a leader of the conservative movement and in 1972, founded the Eagle Forum, a volunteer organization that works on public policymaking.
In the 1970s, she led the battle to oppose the Equal Rights Amendment. Her movement, called “STOP,” stood for “Stop Taking our Privileges.” Schlafly argued that the ERA would take away key privileges for women, such as the exemption from Selective Service registration and the “dependent wife” clause in Social Security benefits.
During her career, she has managed Republican campaigns, served as a Delegate to the Republican National Convention, and served as various chairs for the Daughters of the American Revolution. She is also the author of 20 books on subjects such as the family and feminism, education and phonics. She has also published The Phyllis Schlafly Report, a monthly newsletter and is heard daily on the “Eagle Forum Live,” her radio talk show focused on education.
Schlafly was named one of the 100 most important women of the 20th century by Ladies’ Home Journal. She also received the Woman of Achievement Award in 1963, where presenter Richard Amberg, publisher of the St. Louis Globe-Democrat said, “Phyllis Schlafly stands for everything that has made America great and for those things which will keep it that way.”