To watch Planned Parenthood's Cecile Richards at work is to see a portrait of grace, intellect and determination. Her family believes that public service is a noble calling; her mother, the remarkable Ann Richards, taught her that social justice is a cause worth fighting for. And Cecile has dedicated her abilities to progressive causes.
Cecile is a tenacious organizer, talented at both inside maneuvering and outside mobilization. She always wins. She leads with diplomacy and makes her case with facts, not hyperbole. That's what I saw when she served as my deputy chief of staff; that's what the nation sees as she leads Planned Parenthood.
Partly because of the respect legislators have for Cecile, being a woman is no longer a pre-existing condition. She's now leading the charge against a comprehensive and radical attack on women's health and reproductive freedom.
Cecile, 53, is a proud mother of three, a devoted wife and gracious company. But make no mistake: her resolve is steadfast. And American women are the better for it.
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