Utah Women Making History: Reva Beck Bosone
Continuing the celebration of Women’s History Month and Utah Women Making History, this week we’re going to take a look at Reva Beck Bosone. Reva Beck Bosone became Utah’s first woman judge and congresswoman in a life full of achievements. Utah Womens History.org has been an amazing resource that I’ll link here.
Reva was born in 1895 in American Fork and went to Westminster College before receiving her bachelor’s degree from the University of California at Berkeley in 1919. After receiving her bachelor’s degree, she became a high school public speaking, debate, and dramatic arts teacher at Ogden High School. She went on to enroll in the University of Utah College of Law and married into an Italian-American family. Once she married into an Italian-American family, she joined the National Italian-American Civic League.
In 1930, she became the fourth woman to graduate from the University of Utah’s law school and also became the eleventh woman admitted to the Utah State bar. She was elected to the Utah State House of Representatives in 1932 and was also re-elected in 1934. During the 1935 legislative session, she sponsored several bills and an amendment that established a minimum wage for women and children.
In 1936 she was elected to the Salt Lake City judge’s bench and during her judgeship, she aired a fifteen-minute radio show called “Her Honor, the Judge”. In 1948 she continued her political career by becoming a Democratic candidate for the U.S House of Representatives and won. With that win, she became the first woman sent to congress from Utah. In 1949, she spoke to women lawyers nationwide, urging them that all women should have the same rights as men. In 1950, she ran for re-election and won.
In 1952, she hosted an award-winning TV program called “It’s A Woman’s World” and some of her Congressional career highlights include attempts to improve the citizenship of Native Americans, reinstate important conservation efforts, and supported legislation to improve funding for forest and national park services.
In 1961, she became the Chief Judicial Officer for the United States Post Office Department. After a lifetime full of achievements, she passed away in 1983.