MAKERS Profile

Hillary Rodham Clinton

Former Secretary of State

In this video

Hillary Clinton talks about the values of the 60s, becoming a politician's wife, her historic presidential candidacy, and her devotion to women's rights worldwide.
Wellesley College seniors had never before chosen a commencement speaker from their own ranks when Hillary Rodham stepped to the podium on the last day of May in 1969. Education, she said, must grant "the courage to be whole" and permit people to live "in relation to one another in the full poetry of existence." The speech received national attention and marked Rodham as a leading light for the young women of her generation.   By now, it's safe to say that the early promise has been borne out; had Hillary Rodham Clinton "merely" attended Yale Law, served on the staff of the Senate Watergate Committee, become a respected children's rights advocate, been the first female partner at her law firm, been a mother, and served as First Lady of Arkansas, we would think of her as a leader. And yet she has by now spent two additional decades at the very heart of the national consciousness — as a sometimes-embattled First Lady, as a distinguished senator from New York, as a groundbreaking 2008 Presidential candidate, and as the 67th Secretary of State. Clinton has outlasted the smears to top Gallup's "most admired woman in America" a record 16 times since 1993.   On April 12, 2015, Clinton announced she will run for president in 2016.   Clinton made history June 7, 2016 when she declared victory in the Democratic presidential primary, marking the first time a woman captured the nomination of a major political party in the United States' 240-year history.

More From Hillary Rodham

The Lesson of ‘Hillarycare’
What Clinton learned from the firestorm over her 1993 health care reform plan and why it came as a shock.

Embracing Bill's Ambitions
Clinton talks about the limits of her early political ambitions and accepting Bill's.

Parents' Encouragement
Despite their traditional household, Clinton's parents had nothing but the highest expectations for her future.

What You Can Control
Clinton describes her mother's powerful example, character, and words to live by.

Being A Role Model Internationally
Clinton reflects on why women worldwide look to her as a role model.

Obama's Invitation
When President Obama asked Clinton to be his Secretary of State, her answer was not an immediate "yes."

At Home in Arkansas
Clinton describes why she loved her years in Arkansas and how it kept her grounded in helping others.

All-Women's College
The benefits of women's colleges and why Clinton cherished her Wellesley experience.

Becoming a Democrat
Clinton, who began college as a Republican, recounts how she realized she was actually a Democrat. 

No Women Allowed
Clinton recounts being turned down by NASA and the other opportunities closed off to her as a girl.