MYRA MACPHERSON is an award-winning best-selling author of five books.
AN acclaimed journalist, she was hired by Ben Bradlee for the Washington Post where for twenty years she specialized in politics , in depth human interest stories and profiles, including four of the President’s Watergate criminal aides She interviewed famous figures such as Fidel Castro, Helen Keller, and the mother of serial killer, Ted Bundy, as well as several Presidents. She also covered five Presidential campaigns. MacPherson has continued her long career as a journalist, with articles in national magazines on the internet. Her most current tackles abortion rights, which will figure heavily in the 2020 campaign: Forgotten Father of the Abortion Movement, The New Republic.
“Sensational” is frequently used by reviewers to describe her latest book, The Scandal Sisters: Sex, Suffrage and Scandal in the Gilded Age. This true story of sisters Victoria Woodhull and Tennie Claflin details their rags to riches rise as the first women to compete with men on Wall Street and in politics—150 years ago. Woodhull became the first woman to run for President, a half century before women got the vote.
The Scarlet Sisters was a return to the compelling issues of women’s rights addressed in MacPherson’s first book The Power Lovers. Covering the male dominated 1972 campaign inspired her to write this book in the midst of the 1970’s fight for women’s rights. It examined the political family façade for the first time and addressed the handful of women in politics. It remains a valuable resource regarding the sexist treatment of women in earlier politics and the media. It is a subject she knows well, as MacPherson was banned from sports press boxes In the 1960’s Mad Men Era because she was a woman.
A series on Vietnam led to her classic Long Time Passing: Vietnam and the Haunted Generation. She is a member of Veterans for Peace and continues to write about Vietnamese who suffer from birth defects caused by Agent Orange and are maimed or killed by dormant bombs that explode a half century later. She is a frequent participant in Vietnam seminars and conferences.
Her award winning All Governments Lie: The Life and Times of Rebel Journalist I. F. Stone was praised as not just a biography but a critical examination of 20th century media coziness with government.
She was a consultant for an Emmy nominated documentary on investigative reporters called All Governments Lie, which premiered at the Toronto international film festival in 2016. She is interviewed in the 2019 widely acclaimed documentary, Raise Hell: the Life and Times of Molly Ivins, which premiered at Sundance. She has been a frequent lecturer on media, women’s rights issues, and Vietnam.
MacPherson’s first marriage to Morrie Siegel, a legendary sportswriter and tv personality, ended in divorce. They were proud parents of a son and daughter, Michael and Leah. MacPherson met her second husband, Florida state senator, Jack D. Gordon. when she covered the pivotal 1977 Florida vote on the Equal Rights Amendment; he was the only male sponsor.
In 2010, Leah, the mother of three young children and an Emmy winning field producer for ESPN died of breast cancer. MacPherson could not write about the grief parents feel for several years, until 2019 in Grieving the Death of a Daughter and the Platitudes I Hate, Newsweek. Her son, Michael, has been a mainstay for her, along with friends and family.