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The Day the Innovators Died:
Steve Jobs and Derrick Bell

When I was 17, I got my first Apple computer, a clunky SE which oddly turned out to be a precursor to a portable computer. With Steve Jobs' passing, let's not let his innovative and creative spirit die with him. As he is now often quoted as saying: "stay hungry."

When I was 20, I learned that Derrick Bell, an African American tenured professor, resigned his post at the prestigious Harvard Law School because there were no tenured women of color. I was awed by his bravery, leadership and willingness to make himself vulnerable so others wouldn't have to be. In solidarity, I vowed that I would some day use my privilege to support others. Yesterday, Derrick Bell died and Harvard Law School has three women of color out of 69 faculty. Three women over 21 years? I'd hoped that history would have moved at a faster pace.

As these men pass, we can't afford to let their legacies die with them. What could you do to continue their work?

Amy Richards is a founding board member of and the voice behind Ask Amy, the online advice column she launched at in 1995. Amy is best known for creating the Third Wave Foundation, a national organization for young feminist activists as well as for her writings on contemporary feminism. Amy is the author of Opting In: Having a Child Without Losing Yourself, and the co-author of Manifesta: Young Women, Feminism, and the Future and Grassroots: A Field Guide for Feminist Activism. Amy’s writings and opinions can be found in various media outlets, including NPR, The New York Times, Bitch and The Chicago Tribune. Amy is a producer of the HBO documentary "Gloria Steinem: In Her Own Words", and an advisor to "Makers", a forthcoming PBS documentary. She has traveled the world representing feminism—most recently at Ewha University in Korea and at the American Embassy in Russia and years ago at the UN Conference on Women in Beijing. She has won numerous awards for her activism. Amy graduated from Barnard College in 1992 with a BA in Art History.


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