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Other titles in the Women and Politics in the Pacific Northwest series:
Up the Capitol Steps: A Woman's March to the Governorshipby Barbara Roberts
Synopses & Reviews
Up the Capitol Steps is a personal and political memoir by Oregon's first (and only) woman governor, one of only 34 women who have served as state chief executives in the history of the United States. Barbara Roberts offers a behind-the-scenes glimpse of a woman's life in politics and aims to "demystify" leadership by telling the story of her own unlikely rise to power.
The mother of an autistic child before the advent of special education, Roberts began her life in public service as an advocate for the rights of children with disabilities. She documents her expanding political career from school board member to legislator to Secretary of State and finally, Governor. In this gripping and poignant memoir, hotly contested elections and tough policy decisions are interspersed with intimate details of personal ups and downs. Throughout, Roberts reveals the warmth and humor that show the "real" person behind the politician.
Only the third published memoir by a woman head-of-state, Up the Capitol Steps is "a very significant contribution to Oregon history, the history of women in politics, and especially the history of women governors," according to series editor Melody Rose. Roberts' autobiography captures a period of our nation's political history and a view of women's expanding role in government that will bring new understanding to the term, "social revolution."
Standing at the Water's Edge is a personal and political biography of one of Oregon’s unlikeliest political heroes, former Oregon governor Robert W. Straub. The book reveals Straub's warm personal story, along with his secret struggles, including his battle with depression while governor.
Standing at the Water’s Edge chronicles the life of a unique, and perhaps unlikely, political figure in Oregon’s history: former Governor Robert W. Straub.
A man of intelligence, drive, creativity, and fascinating contradictions, Straub overcame personal challenges and inevitable comparisons to his charismatic predecessor and friendly Republican rival, Tom McCall, to have a lasting impact on Oregon and the nation. Charles Johnson shares insights into Straub’s significant legacy, focusing on his leading role in the state’s financial and environmental issues and his influence on McCall. Johnson also reveals much of Straub’s warm personal story, along with his secret struggles, including his battle with depression while Governor.
Standing at the Water’s Edge offers rich descriptions of other intriguing political figures of the time as well, capturing the flavor of what has been called Oregon’s political “golden age” of the sixties and seventies—created in part by the symbiotic relationship between Straub and McCall—and describing how and why it ended.
Standing at the Water’s Edge is an essential addition to the literature about Oregon’s political leaders for historians, political scientists, and general readers interested in Oregon history.
About the Author
Barbara Roberts was Governor of Oregon from 1991-1995 and Oregon Secretary of State from 1985-1991. She was Director of the State and Local Government Executive Programs at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government and held a senior fellowship at the Harvard Women and Public Policy Program. Before her retirement in 2005, she served for five years as Associate Director of Leadership at Portland State University's Hatfield School of Government.
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