A expert political panel discusses the role of women in politics in 2012, and the future of women's politics."
Michelle Bernard is the founder, president, and chief executive officer of the Bernard Center for Women, Politics & Public Policy. She is a frequent political and legal analyst on television and radio shows including MSNBC’s “Hardball with Chris Matthews” and NPR’s “All Things Considered.” Ms. Bernard is the author of Women’s Progress: How Women Are Wealthier, Healthier and More Independent Than Ever Before and is a contributing author to the National Urban League’s “State of Black America.” In 2009, she created, co-produced, and hosted MSNBC’s historic television program, “About our Children,” which featured Dr. Bill Cosby and explored poverty and education reform.
Ms. Bernard is the former president and chief executive officer of the Independent Women’s Forum (IWF) where she founded IWF’s Iraqi Women’s Democracy Initiative. As a political and legal analyst, she has spoken on topics as varied as the 2008 presidential campaign, the political participation and voting trends of women and African Americans, education reform and school choice, the war in Iraq, and advancing the human rights of women and ethnic and religious minorities in the Middle East. Ms. Bernard holds a BA in philosophy and political science from Howard University and earned her JD from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Susan Page is Washington Bureau Chief for USA TODAY. She is also the immediate past president of the White House Correspondents' Association. She joins the journalists' roundtable each week on CNN's Late Edition, a public-affairs and interview program broadcast live on Sundays at noon and Tuesdays at 10 p.m., and regularly guest-hosts The Diane Rehm Show on National Public Radio. She also appears on other radio and television programs.
Page has received numerous national awards for her reporting. They include the Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency, the Merriman Smith Award for Deadline Reporting on the Presidency, and the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Washington Correspondence (shared).
A native of Wichita, Kansas, she received a bachelor's degree from Northwestern University, where she was editor-in-chief of the Daily Northwestern. She received a master's degree from Columbia University, where she was a Pulitzer Fellow.
She has worked at USA TODAY since 1995. Previously, she covered the White House and national politics for Newsday.
Cathy McMorris Rodgers
Cathy McMorris Rodgers represents Washington state’s fifth congressional district, currently serving her fourth term in the House of Representatives. She is the Vice Chair of the House Republican Conference, making her the highest-ranking Republican woman in Congress, and is also a member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
While working in a family-owned orchard, Rep. McMorris Rodgers was appointed and later elected to the Washington state legislature, where she served for 10 years and eventually rose to become the state’s first female minority leader. In 2004, she was elected to Congress and became the freshman representative to the Republican Steering Committee. Rep. McMorris Rodgers is the co-chair of seven congressional caucuses, including the Congressional Down Syndrome Caucus, which she co-founded. She was the first person in her family to attend and graduate from college, earning a BA from Pensacola Christian College in Florida and later an MBA from the University of Washington. She and her husband reside in Spokane with their two young children.
Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Debbie Wasserman Schultz is the U.S. Representative for Florida's 20th congressional district, serving since 2005. She is a member of the Democratic Party and the Chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee. She previously served in the Florida House of Representatives and the Florida Senate.
Neera Tanden is the president of the Center for American Progress and counselor to the Center for American Progress Action Fund. Most recently, Ms. Tanden served as the chief operating officer for the Center, leading strategic planning of the organization and managing all operations.
Ms. Tanden previously served as senior advisor for health reform at the Department of Health and Human Services, advising Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and working on President Obama’s health
reform team to develop and pass the Affordable Care Act.
Prior to that, she was the director of domestic policy for the 2008 Obama campaign, where she managed all domestic policy proposals. Ms. Tanden also served as policy director for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, having previously served as associate director for domestic policy and senior advisor to the first lady during the Clinton administration. She received her B.S. from the University of California Los Angeles and her law degree from Yale Law School.
A expert panel of female political strategists forecast when a woman will be elected president of the United States. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, chairperson of the Democratic National Committee, argues that while the presidency is a strong goal, women should target positions of leadership throughout the political system.