Skip to main content

Judith Brodkey papers

Identifier: IWA0964

Scope and Contents

The Judith Brodkey papers date from 1977-2016 and measure approximately 15 linear inches. The papers include documents and audio/visual materials arranged into four series: Personal; Professional; UN Conference on Women, Nairobi; UN Conference on Women, Beijing; and Faith and Activism.

The Personal series dates from 1977-2016 and contains creative writing/poetry written by Brodkey and several of Brodkey’s school papers; for example: ‘Final Exam for Program Planning and Administration,’ and ‘Analysis of the Economics of Racism in the USA.,’ This series also includes miscellaneous speeches, articles, and correspondence, as well as a Passover Hagaddah compiled by Brodkey in 1995.

The Professional series dates from 1984 to 2015 and contains materials related to Brodkey’s position as executive director of the Oregon Mediation Association from 2008-2013, as well as materials related to the five major mediation conferences planned by Brodkey. These materials include: newsletters, executive directors reports, position descriptions, speaker scripts, contact lists, committee information, schedules, conference news, brochures, and registration materials. This series also contains training materials and new employee orientation materials designed and/or presented by Brodkey during her employment at the Oregon Health Sciences University and Legacy Health System in Portland, Oregon. These materials include presentation manuals, worksheets, slide printouts, and outlines. The training manuals cover topics such as: coaching, behavioral interviewing, working through conflict, customer service, employee recognition, ensuring respect at the university. Other materials in this series include: fliers, worksheets, and workbooks for the forgiveness workshops led by Brodkey and publications edited and co-edited by Judith for various jobs, such as ‘Women’s Space Board Orientation Manual (1984), ‘Journey of a Thousand Miles: A Guidebook to a Better Tomorrow’ (undated). The Professional series includes materials for the Oregon Prenatal Smoking Cessation Project for the Oregon Health Division, co-managed by Brodkey in the 1990s. These materials are titled ‘Oregon Prenatal Smoking Cessation Project’ (undated) and the ‘Oregon Prenatal Smoking Cessation Project’ (1993). Finally, this series contains materials from the Cleveland Sight Center for the Blind where Brodkey was the Volunteer Coordinator and Director of Human Resources from 1987-1990. The materials, which are related to her work designing the agency’s new Performance Appraisal system, include: ‘Handbook for Volunteers,’ ‘Cleveland Sight Center Performance Review’ booklet, Volunteer Visions brochure, event invitations, and the ‘Cleveland Sight Center Performance Management Process Model.’

The UN Conference on Women, Nairobi series dates from 1985 and contains notes for a meeting about the Nairobi Forum (1985), a document called “The Nairobi Forward-Looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women,” typed notes from a session called “Let the Other Half Speak,” and copies of the publication FORUM 85 for July 22, 23, 10, and 12 of 1985. This series also includes slides, descriptions of the slide contents, and a cassette tape entitled “Forum ’85 Women’s Global Vision,” produced by Judith R. Brodkey and recorded at Peters Sound Recording Service. Finally, this series includes Brodkey’s personal trip log from the 1985 Nairobi UN Conference on Women.

The UN Conference on Women, Beijing series dates from 1995 and contains materials related to Judith’s organizing effort for the 1995 United Nations Conference on Women NGO Forum in Beijing, China. This includes the following materials: maps, schedule of activities, and copies of a publication called FORUM ’95 (The Independent Daily of the NGO Forum on Women) for August 31 and September 2, 3, 5, 7, and 8 of 1995. Another folder within this series contains speeches, articles, composition, transcripts for presentations, and correspondence. Materials include: an excerpt by Brodkey in Mysterious Ways (Dec/Jan 2016); published and manuscript versions of Brodkey’s speech at a statewide meeting in Oregon about her experience at the UN Conference on Women in Huairou, China, called Beyond Beijing: From Global Vision to Community Action (1995); a letter to friends detailing the contents of a tape containing songs sung by a choir at the 1995 UN Women’s Conference in China; a speech given by Brodkey that details the facts about the China forum; and a draft of an article by Brodkey entitled “Lessons I Learned While Organizing for Beijing.”

The Faith and Activism series dates from 1990-2001 and contains booklets and fliers from the Re-evaluation Counseling Community’s Jewish Women’s Gather-In, contact sheets and fliers for the Portland Middle East Peace Project co-founded by Brodkey; contact sheets, clippings, and fliers for the Iowans in Oregon picnic co-founded by Brodkey; and materials for the 1994 Judy and Judith’s party organized by Brodkey.


  • 1977-2016


Conditions Governing Access

The papers are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright held by the donor has been transferred to the University of Iowa by the donor.

Biographical / Historical

Judith Brodkey was born in 1954, in Sioux City, Iowa, to Lillian and Norman Brodkey. She grew up within the Jewish community in Sioux City, Iowa, where she was active in the Junior Congregation at Shaare Zion Synagogue, Young Judea and the B’nai Brith Youth Organization. Brodkey graduated from Central High School and attended the University of Iowa graduated with a BA in Social Work. She then went to Bryn Mawr College for her MSW where she co-founded the first women’s center at the graduate school of social work. Brodkey moved to Portland, OR and over the course of the next two decades, Brodkey attended two United Nations Conferences, was actively involved in local anti-racist and feminist activism in Portland, OR.


1.5 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Feminist and anti-racist activist and public health professional in Portland, Oregon.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Judith Brodkey papers (donor no. 1420) were donated by Judith Brodkey in 2016.
Judith Brodkey papers
Katie Gandhi, 2016
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Iowa Women's Archives Repository

100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City IA 52242 IaU
319-335-5900 (Fax)