Kirstin Downey: The Life of Frances Perkins

May 22, 2009

OH&S editor Jerry Laws interviews Kirstin Downey, author of a new book that offers a revealing portrait of the most influential U.S. Labor secretary in history, Frances Perkins, and how she shaped the major labor and workplace safety laws enacted during the early years of Franklin D. Roosevelt's presidency. The Woman Behind the New Deal: The Life of Frances Perkins, FDR's Secretary of Labor and His Moral Conscience (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday 2009) has gone into its fourth printing.

Downey has discussed the book on NPR's "All Things Considered," on the AFL-CIO's blog, and at the U.S. Capitol. She is scheduled to give talks about Perkins at the Women's City Club of New York and the Harvard Club of New York City in July and will participate in the 2009 National Book Festival on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., in September.

Downey's appearances in June to promote the book will include June 5 at the Georgetown Senior Center in Washington, D.C. (call 202-333-9348 for information); June 16 at the Woman's National Democratic Club, 1526 New Hampshire Ave. NW in Washington (; and June 20 at the Roosevelt Reading Festival at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library, 4079 Post Road, Hyde Park, NY (call 845-486-7745).

Visit to order the book and find out about additional appearances.

To read the book's prologue, click here.

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