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Nevada Government & Politics
Contemporary Nevada

Jean Ford

Jean Ford came to Nevada in 1962.  She was born in Oklahoma in 1929, and raised in Missouri.  Ford graduated from Oklahoma College for Women in 1951, then went to work for the Red Cross.  She met and married a physician while working in Hawaii; the Fords moved to Las Vegas in 1962, and Jean Ford started her life in Nevada as wife, mother, and homemaker.

Over the years Ford moved into the public sphere and became an activist, legislator, business woman, and educator.  Jean Ford worked in community groups in Las Vegas and was active in the League of Women Voters, working with the State Parks Commission and the Clark County Library.  She served in the Assembly in 1973 and 1975.  She was a State Senator for the 1979 and 1988 legislative sessions.  Ford was involved in the women's rights movement in the 1970s and 1980s and worked for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment, which failed in the Nevada legislature in 1973, 1975, and in 1977.

Jean Ford was also active in establishing the Women's Studies program at the University of Nevada Reno, and supported collection of materials useful for research of the history of women in Nevada.  Ford died in August, 1998.

Photo Credit:
Nevada State Library and Archives