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Can Women Win California’s Big Political Prize?

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Hear the authors tell stories from Paving the Way.
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Paving the Way: Women's Struggle for Political Equality in California, is a comprehensive book coming out in early 2019. Published by the Institute of Governmental Studies at UC Berkeley, it tells the stories and backstories of remarkable women pathfinders who left their marks along the elusive trail to political gender equality in California.

     As the country prepares to honor the centennial of national woman suffrage in 2020, the quest to close the political gender gap has gained new urgency. Moving ever closer to political gender parity has consumed California's female trailblazers since the state's inception. As documented by Paving the Way and regular updates on this site, it's a struggle that continues.

“Women’s struggle for representation and influence in California politics as been long and difficult. Paving the Way vividly tells the tale of that struggle – the blatant sexism that women leaders faced, the tough fighters who won the early battles, the inspiring moments of success – and serves as a road map for all the work that remains to be done. We must face the hard lessons of the past if we are to build a truly inclusive California of the future.

 – Lisa García Bedolla, Director,

    Institute of Governmental Studies, UC Berkeley

Paving the Way is written by four former journalists, senior legislative staffers and political consultants with more than 150 years of combined experience in reporting on or participating in California politics.

Steve Swatt

Susie Swatt

Rebecca LaVally

Jeff Raimundo

 With a Foreword by California State Librarian Greg Lucas

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