« Back to previous page

Genevieve Blatt

  • Riverfront Park at Liberty Street, one block north of State St. Harrisburg, PA

Considered the “first lady” of Pennsylvania politics, Genevieve Blatt was the first woman to sit as a Pennsylvania appellate judge. One of her most important rulings prohibited gender discrimination in high school sports. In 1954, she was the first woman to hold a statewide elected office in Pennsylvania when she became State Secretary of Internal Affairs. A lifelong Democrat, Blatt attended her first Democratic National Convention in 1936 and every convention thereafter until 1972. A pioneer for environmental activism and very active in the Roman Catholic Church, Genevieve Blatt received three papal honors and was instrumental in the canonization of two saints. Blatt was also well known for her choices in headwear, coining the phrase “Blatt with a hat”. Today, the Genevieve Society honors her legacy by working to increase the political and professional power of women.