Shattering The Afl Cio's Glass Ceiling

Linda Chavez-Thompson learned at age 16 how to stage a job action. One of eight children born to dirt-poor sharecroppers in Lubbock, Tex., she was elected by her siblings to present their dad with a demand--he had to allow their overworked mother to stay home from picking cotton and get some rest. Otherwise, the kids would refuse to work. "I just walked right in there," she recalls. "But I was sweating the whole way." Her dad acquiesced, boasting later that his daughter was a born labor leader.

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