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Cecile Richards

1959 –

“I can't imagine that my children would have fewer rights, and less access to the safest, best health care.”

Like Mother, Like Daughter

Cecile Richards joined Planned Parenthood as its President in 2006, and since then, the number of the organization’s supporters has doubled, having reached a total of 5.7 million in 2011. 

With over 80 locally-managed affiliates and more than 800 health centers, each serving the unique needs of its individual communities, the Planned Parenthood Federation of America is one of the country’s trusted reproductive health care center. Planned Parenthood has served one in five American women at least once in her life. Nearly 1.2 million youths and adults participate in Planned Parenthood educational programs every year. Through its website,, Planned Parenthood provides health information and referrals to 30 million people each year. Given statistics like these, it seems remarkable that the U.S. Congress got hung up on the abortion rights issue and nearly failed to pass a budget in 2011, funding for Planned Parenthood was a key stumbling block in their negotiations. 

Cecile Richards is the daughter of the late Ann Richards, the second female governor of Texas and the woman who gave the infamous keynote address, “Where’s George?” at the 1988 Democratic National Convention. Cecile Richards helped her mother get Sarah Weddington elected to the Texas Legislature in the 1970’s.  Weddington was the lawyer who successfully argued the landmark 1973 U.S. Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion nationwide.

Before joining Planned Parenthood, Cecile Richards served as deputy chief of staff for House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi. In 2011, Richards was named to TIME magazine’s annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world. 


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