|First Lady of the United States|
August 9, 1974 – January 20, 1977
|Preceded by||Pat Nixon|
|Succeeded by||Rosalynn Carter|
|Second Lady of the United States|
December 6, 1973 – August 9, 1974
|Vice President||Gerald Ford|
|Preceded by||Judy Agnew (Oct. 1973)|
|Succeeded by||Happy Rockefeller (Dec. 1974)|
|1st Chairwoman of the Betty Ford Center|
October 4, 1982 – January 25, 2005
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Susan Ford|
Elizabeth Anne Bloomer
April 8, 1918
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
|Died||July 8, 2011 (aged 93)|
Rancho Mirage, California, U.S.
|Resting place||Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum|
(m. 1948; died 2006)
Elizabeth Anne Ford (née Bloomer; April 8, 1918 – July 8, 2011) was an American spokesperson and women's right activist who served as the first lady of the United States from 1974 to 1977 as the wife of the 38th president of the United States, Gerald Ford. She was also the second lady of the United States from 1973 to 1974 when her husband was vice president.
Biography[change | change source]
Early life and education[change | change source]
Elizabeth Anne Bloomer was born on April 8, 1918, in Chicago, Illinois, to Hortense Neahr and William Stephenson Bloomer. She also had two older brothers. Ford later grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Marriage and family[change | change source]
The couple had four children named Michael, Jack, Susan, and Steven Ford.
Second Lady of the United States (1973–1974)[change | change source]
Ford became the second lady of the United States succeeding Judy Agnew when her husband inaugurated as the 40th vice president of the United States on December 6, 1973, after the resignation of Spiro Agnew.
Ford served as the second lady from 1973 until her husband's term ended in August 1974.
First Lady of the United States (1974–1977)[change | change source]
Ford assumed the role and duties as the first lady of the United States succeeding Pat Nixon, when her husband inaugurated as the 38th president of the United States, upon the resignation of Richard Nixon on August 9, 1974.
As first lady, Ford was very active, she kept high approval ratings and she was considered to be an influential first lady. Ford was known for raising Breast cancer awareness In addition, she was a strong supporter of the Equal Rights Amendment, abortion rights and the women's rights movement.
She was regarded to be the most politically outspoken first lady since Eleanor Roosevelt. Ford regarded Roosevelt as a role model. Active in social policy, Ford broke a record as a politically active presidential spouse.
Ford was popular with the American public. Her overall approval rating was as high as 75%. Ford's popularity was higher than her husband's at most times.
Ford served as the first lady from 1974 until her husband's term ended in 1977.
Later Life[change | change source]
In 1987, Ford opened the Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, California. The center helps treat drug dependence, alcoholism, and substance abuse. In 1991, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George H. W. Bush.
Death and funeral[change | change source]
Her funeral was held on July 14, 2011, and she was later buried next to her husband at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum.