Ellen Goodman has spent most of her life chronicling social change and its impact on American life. As a Pulitzer Prize winning columnist she was one of the first women to open up the oped pages to women’s voices and became, according to Media Watch, the most widely syndicated progressive columnist in the country.
She continues that from her observation post now as a writer, speaker and commentator.
Ellen began her career as a researcher for Newsweek magazine in the days when only men wrote for the newsweekly. She landed a job as a reporter for the Detroit Free Press in 1965 and, in 1967, for The Boston Globe where she began writing her column in 1974. It’s been syndicated by the Washington Post Writers Group since 1976.
A 1963 cum laude graduate of Radcliffe College, Ellen returned to Harvard in 1973-74 as a Nieman Fellow, where she studied the dynamics of social change. In 2007, she was a Shorenstein Fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, where she studied gender and the news. As the first Lorry I. Lokey Visiting Professor in Professional Journalism she taught at Stanford in 1996.
Ellen’s first book, Turning Points (Doubleday, 1979), detailed the effect of the changing roles of women on the family. Six collections of her columns also have been published: Close to Home (Simon & Schuster, 1979); At Large (Summit Books, 1981); Keeping in Touch (Summit Books, 1985); Making Sense (Atlantic Monthly Press, 1989); and Value Judgments (Farrar Straus Giroux, 1993) and Paper Trail: Common Sense in Uncommon Times (Simon & Schuster, 2004). She is also co-author with Patricia O’Brien of I Know Just What You Mean: The Power of Friendship in Women’s Lives (Simon & Schuster, 2000).
Ellen won the Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Commentary in 1980. She’s won many other awards, including the American Society of Newspaper Editors Distinguished Writing Award in 1980. She received the Hubert H. Humphrey Civil Rights Award from the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights in 1988. In 1993, The National Women’s Political Caucus gave her the President’s Award. In 1994, the Women’s Research & Education Institute presented her with their American Woman Award. In 2008, she won the Ernie Pyle Award for Lifetime Achievement from the National Society of Newspaper columnists.
Ellen has a daughter, stepdaughter, two grandchildren and lives with her husband, Robert Levey in Boston. An innovative force in American journalism, Ellen brings her trademark intellect, wit, and compassion to her speeches. She’s given keynote speeches all across the country.
Also a board member of Encore.org (Second Acts for the greater good) and founder of The Conversation Project, a public engagement campaign to see that people’s wishes for end of life care are expressed and respected. She is also an Ashoka Fellow.