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Previewing 'American Experience': Sandra Day O'Connor

sandra day o'connor
Matt Rourke
Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor at the National Constitution Center, Friday, Sept. 16, 2011, in Philadelphia.

Sandra Day O'Connor made American history when, in 1981, she was appointed by President Ronald Reagan as the first woman Supreme Court justice.

But her days of breaking ground preceded her joining the nation's highest court. O'Connor was a powerful lawmaker in her native Arizona, rising to become the first woman to serve as majority leader of any state legislative chamber, when the Republican became leader in the state Senate.

Justice O'Connor bucked traditional norms even as a law student and lawyer, defying the suggestion that women were expected to become homemakers.

Her story and tenure on the Supreme Court are explored in the new installment of the PBS anthology series American Experience.

Joining Cincinnati Edition to talk about Sandra Day O'Connor: The First, which premieres Monday, Sept. 13 on PBS stations, is writer/director Michelle Ferrari.

Listen to Cincinnati Edition live at noon M-F. Audio for this segment will be uploaded after 4 p.m. ET.

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Michael Monks brings a broad range of experience to WVXU-FM as the host of Cincinnati Edition, Cincinnati Public Radio's weekday news and information talk show.