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Gloria says turning 70 was quite shocking. "It's about mortality, " she says. "I woke up the next morning, and I thought, 'There's a 70-year-old woman in my bed.'"

As women age, Gloria says they gain more experience in life. She feels this experience increases the chance of women voicing their own opinions when they deal with inequalities firsthand. "It's part of the reason that women do get more activist, more radical, you might say, with age because we have to experience what the unfairnesses are in the workplace and who takes care of kids and who doesn't," she says.

As the November 5, 2008, election approaches, Oprah says it's important to remember that Gloria played a big part in changing the political landscape. "Everybody agrees that the women are going to determine who wins this election," Oprah says. "The fact that Hillary Clinton could be a candidate for president of the United States and Sarah Palin can be a nominee for vice president of the United States would not have happened had there not been you kicking that door."

Gloria is quick to credit former U.S. Rep. Shirley Chisholm, a past presidential candidate, for these accomplishments. "I ran as a delegate for Shirley Chisolm in 1972," she says. "She only ran in six states, I think, but she took the 'white male only' sign off the White House door."
FROM: Women Who Changed the World
Published on October 16, 2008