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Sarah Ragle Weddington (born February 5, 1945, in Abilene, Texasmarker) is a Americanmarker attorney and lecturer from Texasmarker who gained world-wide fame when she and Linda Coffee represented "Jane Roe" (real name Norma McCorvey) in the landmark Roe v. Wade case in the United States Supreme Courtmarker.

Family and education

She is the daughter of Lena Catherine and Rev. Herbert Doyle Ragle.

Weddington holds honorary doctorates from McMurry University, Hamilton College, Austin Collegemarker, Southwestern Universitymarker, and Nova Southeastern University. She received her J.D. degree from The University of Texas School of Law in 1967 (in a class that included United States Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison) and is a Distinguished Alumna of McMurry University, where she was inducted into the Zeta Nu chapter of Sigma Kappa sorority.

Roe v. Wade

Weddington was 26 years old when the case was first argued before the Supreme Court, and it was her first contested case. She is thought to be the youngest person to win a Supreme Court case.

"Roe", whose real name is Norma McCorvey, now claims she became the "pawn" of a young and ambitious lawyer (Sarah Weddington) who was looking for a plaintiff whom they could use to challenge the Texas state law prohibiting abortion. Norma McCorvey actually approached Sarah Weddington while she was working at the University of Texas Law School with issues regarding the use and prescribing of birth control pills. From that, the issues developed into the abortion question which eventually led to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Sarah Weddington actually argued this case twice before the U.S. Supreme Court, once at age 26, and then again at age 27.

Political career

Weddington was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1972 (where future Texas Governor Ann Richards was her administrative assistant) and was re-elected twice; she was the first woman elected to represent Austin, Texas, in the Texas House of Representatives.

She resigned her seat in 1977 when she was appointed General Counsel for the United States Department of Agriculturemarker, the first woman to hold that position. The following year she became a special White Housemarker advisor to President Jimmy Carter. During her time as assistant to Carter, she helped appoint Ruth Bader Ginsburg to a federal judgeship.

She later founded the Weddington Center. She wrote the book, A Question of Choice, detailing the Roe v. Wade case.

Currently, Weddington is an Adjunct Professor at The University of Texas at Austinmarker and travels the world delivering speeches on leadership, her experiences with breast cancer and women's issues. She teaches leadership courses at institutions including Texas Woman's University. She is working on a book on the topic of leadership.

External links

Further reading

  • Weddington, Sarah. A Question of Choice.

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