Bravo, Ellen

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Bravo, Ellen

PERSONAL:

Married; children: two sons.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Milwaukee, WI. Office—9 to 5 National Office, 207 E. Buffalo St., Ste. 211, Milwaukee, WI 53202; fax: 414-272-2870.

CAREER:

Activist and writer. 9 to 5 National Association of Working Women, Milwaukee, WI, founder of Milwaukee chapter, 1982—, national director, 1993-2004, consultant, 2004—; University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, lecturer. Multi-State Working Families Consortium coordinator.

MEMBER:

Working for Good Jobs in America Fund, Work-Life Law (advisory committee member), Ms. Foundation for Women (advisory committee member), Milwaukee Women's Fund (grants advisory committee member).

AWARDS, HONORS:

Woman of Vision award, Ms. Foundation.

WRITINGS:

(With Ellen Cassedy) The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment: Candid Advice from 9 to 5, the National Association of Working Women, Wiley (New York, NY), 1992.

The Job/Family Challenge: A 9 to 5 Guide, Wiley (New York, NY), 1995.

Taking on the Big Boys, or, Why Feminism Is Good for Families, Business, and the Nation, Feminist Press at the City University of New York (New York, NY), 2007.

Contributor to periodicals, including Wall Street Journal, Parenting, Glamour, and the New York Times.

SIDELIGHTS:

Ellen Bravo is an activist and writer. A recipient of the Ms. Foundation's Woman of Vision award, Bravo has campaigned for women's rights for decades. She founded the Milwaukee chapter of the 9 to 5 National Association of Working Women in 1982. She then served as the national director from 1993 to 2004. From then on, she remained a consultant for the organization while lecturing in women's studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She also serves as the coordinator for the Multi-State Working Families Consortium.

Bravo serves on several advisory committees for national organizations, including Working for Good Jobs in America Fund, Work-Life Law, Ms. Foundation for Women, and the Milwaukee Women's Fund. Frequently interviewed by national news organizations, Bravo has also worked at the governmental level, serving on Congressional committees such as the bipartisan Commission on Leave, which studied the impact of the Family and Medical Leave Act. She cochaired the Economic Sufficiency Task Force of the Wisconsin Women = Prosperity project. In addition, Bravo acted as the treasurer for Congresswoman Gwendolynne Moore's campaign.

As a writer, Bravo has contributed to a number of periodicals, including the Wall Street Journal, Parenting, Glamour, and the New York Times. Bravo published her first book, The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment: Candid Advice from 9 to 5, the National Association of Working Women, with Ellen Cassedy in 1992. Judith Stadtman Tucker, writing on the Mothers Movement Web site, pointed out that Bravo "has a long track record of fighting for women's workplace rights and has no reservations about exposing and criticizing the tactics of heavyweights who want to protect the status quo."

Bravo published The Job/Family Challenge: A 9 to 5 Guide in 1995. The book looks at the way the Family and Medical Leave Act, which was enacted in 1993, was a step in the right direction for women's rights and family rights. Bravo includes new research and personal accounts to show how the Act has helped—but could go even further—to promote these basic rights. Bravo also includes suggestions that can help individuals to make some progressive changes on family policies at their workplace. Booklist contributor Barbara Jacobs called the collection of research, facts, and personal stories in the account "powerful." Jacobs noted that "every conceivable objection to specific family policies is carefully and considerately answered" in the text.

In 2007, Bravo published Taking on the Big Boys, or, Why Feminism Is Good for Families, Business, and the Nation. The book targets corporate executives, or "Big Boys," as Bravo calls them, claiming that they are responsible for the lower wages paid to women in the business world and for restricting the rights of women to have a career and raise a family. Bravo explains how higher pay for women, flexibility for family care, quality childcare, and universal healthcare would improve societal and familial relations. Bravo argues that this social change is not unfounded and provides stories from individuals and companies that already practice these sorts of responsible social business behaviors.

Tucker, writing on the Mothers Movement Web site, observed that "Taking on the Big Boys is more than rant against the power elite of the employer lobby, however. It's also a compassionate argument for feminism as a positive force for social transformation, and a practical guide to working for change." Wendy Wendt, writing in Library Journal, found the book to be "very readable, at times humorous, and always informative." Wendt also considered Taking on the Big Boys to be a "personal handbook for taking on the ‘Big Boys.’" Booklist contributor Gail Whitcomb noted that Bravo "gives us a liberal dose of feminist history as she tries to reframe the old debates."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Booklist, May 15, 1992, Mary Ellen Sullivan, review of The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment: Candid Advice from 9 to 5, the National Association of Working Women, p. 1645; April 1, 1995, Barbara Jacobs, review of The Job/Family Challenge: A 9 to 5 Guide, p. 1365; April 1, 2007, Gail Whitcomb, review of Taking on the Big Boys, or, Why Feminism Is Good for Families, Business, and the Nation, p. 11.

Business Week, July 6, 1992, review of The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment, p. 16.

Library Journal, May 15, 1992, Joan Pedzich, review of The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment, p. 104; April 1, 1995, Alan Farber, review of The Job/Family Challenge, p. 104; March 1, 2007, Wendy Wendt, review of Taking on the Big Boys, or, Why Feminism Is Good for Families, Business, and the Nation, p. 97.

Ms. Magazine, May, 1992, review of The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment, p. 73.

O, the Oprah Magazine, May, 2007, "Nugget," p. 58.

Progressive, November 1993, L.A. Winokur, review of The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment, p. 38.

Publishers Weekly, April 27, 1992, review of The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment, p. 262.

Reference & Research Book News, December, 1992, review of The 9 to 5 Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment, p. 13; November, 2007, review of Taking on the Big Boys, or, Why Feminism Is Good for Families, Business, and the Nation.

Wall Street Journal, December 27, 1995, Sue Shellenbarger, review of The Job/Family Challenge, p. 13.

ONLINE

Ellen Bravo Home Page,http://www.ellenbravo.com (March 8, 2008), author profile.

Fighting Bob Fest Web site,http://www.fightingbobfest.org/ (March 8, 2008), author profile.

Mothers Movement Web site,http://www.mothersmovement.org/ (March 8, 2008), Judith Stadtman Tucker, author interview.

9 to 5 National Association of Working Women Web site,http://9to5.org/ (March 8, 2008), author profile.

Soapbox Inc.,http://www.soapboxinc.com/ (March 8, 2008), author profile.