Karen DeCrow

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Karen DeCrow (born 1937) is an American feminist attorney, author, and activist. Beginning her career as a journalist, she joined the National Organization for Women in 1969, and in 1969 she ran for Mayor of the city of Syracuse, New York, becoming the first female mayoral candidate in the history of New York.[1] After entering law school, she earned her Juris Doctor from Syracuse University College of Law in 1972.[2]

DeCrow was elected President of the National Organization for Women from 1974 to 1977, during which time she led campaigns to ensure that collegiate sports would be included under the scope of Title IX, oversaw the opening of a new NOW Action Center in Washington, D.C. and the establishment of NOW's National Task Force on Battered Women/Household Violence, and participated in a tour of over 80 public debates with antifeminist activist Phyllis Schlafly over the Equal Rights Amendment.[3]

She is the author of several books, including The Young Woman’s Guide to Liberation (1971) and Sexist Justice—How Legal Sexism Affects You (1975).[1] In October 2009, she was inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame.[2] DeCrow describes her ultimate goal as "a world in which the gender of a baby will have little to no relevance in future pursuits and pleasures—personal, political, economic, social and professional."[1]

DeCrow has taken on a different view of life, being interviewed in Jack Kammer's book "Good Will Toward Men" (St. Martin's Press, 1994).


  1. ^ a b c "MEDILL Hall of Achievement: Karen DeCrow". Retrieved 19 January 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Syracuse University George Arents Awards: Karen L. DeCrow". Retrieved 19 January 2010. 
  3. ^ "National Organization for Women, "Celebrating Our Presidents," now.org". Retrieved 19 January 2010. 
Preceded by
Wilma Scott Heide
President of the National Organization for Women
1974 - 1977
Succeeded by
Eleanor Smeal