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MAKERS Moment

My First Act of Defiance

My First Act of Defiance

More From Esta

In this video

Soler recalls taking her first social justice stand in fifth grade and her mother's support.

Esta's Biography

First paying job: Cleaning dishes in the dining hall at her college.    
Good Advice: “Whatever you do, do it in a nice and respectful way and do it with integrity. And if you can't do those things, you got to rethink what you're doing.”    
Ways to Unwind: "Dinner with friends, hiking, trips where you have to walk 14 miles a day, seeing films, reading murder mysteries.”  
Relationship Secret: “Find somebody who when you're with that person you like who you are more than when you're not.”

Esta Soler is President of Futures Without Violence, a leading non-profit organization in the fight against domestic violence. She was born in Bridgeport, CT, in 1947 and has a Masters in Social Work from the University of Connecticut.
 
After beginning her career at the Department of Health and Human Services, Soler founded the Family Violence Project in 1980 (she renamed it Futures Without Violence in 2011). Under her leadership, the organization has led anti-violence education, advocacy, and prevention efforts in all fifty states and around the world.
 
Soler’s advocacy was instrumental in convincing Congress to pass the Violence Against Women Act in 1994, the nation’s first federal policy designed to reduce domestic violence. Congress re-authorized and expanded the law in 2000 and 2005. Soler is spearheading efforts to pass the International Violence Against Women Act.
 
Recent public service campaigns include That’s Not Cool, launched in 2005 to prevent dating related violence among teens, and Coaching Boys Into Men, designed to educate men about domestic violence issues.

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