Elizabeth Ann Ford (Bloomer) (1918 - 2011) MP

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Nicknames: "/Betty/"
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois
Death: Died in Rancho Mirage, Riverside, California, United States
Occupation: First Lady
Managed by: Ernesto Álvarez Uriondo
Last Updated:

About Elizabeth Ann Ford (Bloomer)

Elizabeth Ann Bloomer Warren Ford (April 8, 1918 – July 8, 2011), better known as Betty Ford, was the wife of former United States President Gerald Ford and served as the First Lady of the United States from 1974 to 1977. As first lady, Ford was active in social policy and shattered precedents as a politically active presidential wife. In the opinion of several historians, Ford had more impact upon history and culture than her husband.

Throughout her husband's term in office, she maintained high approval ratings despite opposition from some conservative Republicans who objected to her more moderate and liberal positions on social issues. Ford was noted for raising breast cancer awareness following her 1974 mastectomy and was a passionate supporter of, and activist for, the Equal Rights Amendment. Pro-choice on abortion and a leader in the Women's Movement, she gained fame as one of the most candid first ladies in history, commenting on every hot-button issue of the time, including feminism, equal pay, ERA, sex, drugs, abortion, and gun control. She also raised awareness of addiction when she announced her long-running battle with alcoholism in the 1970s.

Following her White House years, she continued to lobby for the ERA and remained active in the feminist movement. She is the founder, and served as the first chairwoman of the board of directors, of the Betty Ford Center for substance abuse and addiction and is a recipient of the Congressional Gold Medal (co-presentation with her husband, Gerald R. Ford, October 21, 1998) and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (alone, presented 1991, by George H.W. Bush).

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Betty Ford's Timeline

April 8, 1918
Chicago, Illinois
October 15, 1948
Age 30
Grand Rapids, MI
Age 29
Grand Rapids, Kent, Wisconsin, USA
March 14, 1950
Age 31
March 16, 1952
Age 33
May 19, 1956
Age 38
Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States
July 6, 1957
Age 39
District of Columbia, United States
July 8, 2011
Age 93
Rancho Mirage, Riverside, California, United States