Marjorie Margolies is a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1993-1995) and is the President and Founder of Women’s Campaign International (WCI). Marjorie Margolies was born on June 21, 1942, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, daughter of Herbert and Mildred Margolies. After graduating from Baltimore’s Forest Park High School in 1959, Margolies earned a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1963. She worked as a television reporter for a Philadelphia NBC affiliate in 1967 and, from 1969 to 1970, she was a CBS News Foundation Fellow at Columbia University. Ms Margolies worked as a correspondent for 12 years for the local NBC television affiliate in Washington, D.C., focusing on congressional issues. She also worked for a Philadelphia television station and for NBC’s Today Show in New York City. During her career, she won five Emmy Awards. She also published three books, including They Came to Stay (1976), relating her experiences as an adoptive parent and a supporter of immigrant families.
Ms. Margolies ran for the U.S. Congress in 1992 as a Democrat, achieving a narrow victory in a district that had not elected a Democrat since 1916. As a member of Congress, Representative Margolies focused on issues affecting women, particularly health care issues. Congresswoman Margolies lost her re-election bid in 1994 as a consequence of her courageous decision to pass the deciding vote in approving President Clinton’s 1993 budget proposal.
After serving in Congress, Ms. Margolies led the United States delegation to the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in 1995. At the conference, 189 countries signed a Platform for Action that pledged to further the rights of women around the world. Inspired by these commitments and the astounding attendance of thousands of women participants from around the world, Ms. Margolies founded WCI to help women achieve the goals laid out in the Platform for Action. WCI’s programs help women find their voices by giving them tangible skills in areas such as leadership, public speaking, media relations, grassroots organizing, campaign strategies, voter outreach and mobilization, polling, policy analysis and fundraising. WCI has worked with political leaders, activists, advocacy groups and non-profit partner organizations to ensure that women have a legitimate opportunity to participate in the development of public policy, and that women’s issues are placed on local, national and regional agendas. With the help of local civil society organizations (CSOs), WCI is able to tailor its programs to fit the needs, culture and abilities of women in each country.