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Biographies Unit Biographies

Dianne Feinstein 1933–
United States Senator

Dianne Feinstein was born and grew up in San Francisco. She went to Stanford University. Feinstein had planned to go to medical school, but she changed her mind and studied politics and history instead.

Feinstein began her political career in the 1960s, when women were winning many elections for the first time. She was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1969. Later, she became the Board's first woman president. In 1978, she became the Mayor of San Francisco. She was that city's first woman mayor and served for ten years. Then in 1992, she was elected to the United States Senate. She was the first woman senator from California.

In the Senate, Feinstein helps make laws for the whole country. She also works to help California. One of her main projects is protecting the environment. For example, in 1994 she helped pass the California Desert Protection Act. She has also worked to protect the state's water supply, forests, and other natural resources.

Comprehension Check

Dianne Feinstein was the first woman to do what?

Critical Thinking

In what ways does Dianne Feinstein help California?