RIP RBG: What An Icon Meant to Iowa City Moms

We’ve all heard the news by now — Associate Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, also known as RBG, died Friday, Sept. 18, 2020.

The news devastated many, including moms right here in the Iowa City community.

Moms feel heartbroken about the death of RBG
Ginsburg was more than a judicial figure. She was a trailblazer who simply “changed the way the world is for American women.” When she began her professional career, women were not treated equally under the law as state and federal laws blocked women from professional opportunities, basic rights, and even the ability to serve on a jury.

Several Iowa City Moms’ contributors took a moment to reflect on the life and legacy of RBG and what her work meant to them. This is what they said:

“The news of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s passing cuts deep for me.

As I sat reading the news, I couldn’t help but feel an enormous weight. The tears started to pool as I thought about this significant loss. Not only was she a legal, cultural, and feminist icon — for me — she was also a role model. As a working mom she showed us that we could have both worlds and be good at it. Heck . . . we can be great at it. She proved that we can have it all: a successful career and a happy family.
In her own words, “I am a professional success because I am a mother, not in spite of it.”
These words ring so true to me. Mothers are some of the most hardworking women that I know — both in the home and outside of the home. I hope to honor her by continuing my life with a similar outlook. That when things are difficult, to keep going with class, determination, compassion, and strength.
Thank you to the “Notorious RBG” for being a pioneer and showing women just how strong we can be.”

“What did RBG mean to me?

As a woman, she was an inspiration.

As a working professional, she was a mentor.

As a mother, she was a beacon. She was everything!

I hope we can be half as good in continuing the fight for equality and representation.”

“I cried when I heard that RBG had passed. I barely even know why. It felt incredibly heavy.

Losing someone who has tirelessly worked for the good of those without a voice is sad. Losing someone in our current climate of division is overwhelming and scary. I will keep learning and working to do better in honor of her legacy.”

“RBG once told the story of how her baby Jane was the real reason she made it through law school.

In her words, “Each part of my life provided respite from the other and gave me a sense of proportion that classmates trained only on law studies lacked.”

In one sentence, she not only validated all of us working moms, but she also suggested that we are even more qualified as a result of our pursuing both our career goals and our family goals simultaneously. Thank you, Ruth, for paving the way.”

“One of my favorite RBG stories comes from a college friend.

Her daughter dressed as RBG for her school’s superhero day after being inspired by the children’s book, I Dissent.

After hearing about this from a staffer who saw it on social media, Justice Ginsberg sent a handwritten note on SCOTUS stationery to encourage her. I felt like that just went to prove all the things I already believed about RBG as a caring and kind person, in addition to being one of the most brilliant legal minds of our lifetime and a feminist icon.

Amidst what must be an insanely busy schedule, she found time to inspire a little girl, helping lift up the next generation, who will no doubt accomplish great things and become other little girls’ superheroes some day.”

How will you remember Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg?


Katie is a spouse, mother, and professional communicator. She became acquainted with Iowa City as a student at the University of Iowa, earning degrees in Journalism, Political Science, and most recently her MA in Strategic Communication. Katie and her husband met and fell in love in Iowa City, deciding to never leave. Their family can often be found eating their way through downtown, walking their dog in City Park, or cheering on their beloved Hawkeyes at live sporting events.


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