Top 100 - 2011

Gail Collins

In 2001, Gail Collins became the first woman to be appointed editor of The New York Times editorial page. Her work at the Times began in 1995 when she signed on as a member of the editorial board and later as an op-ed columnist

Collins is a prolific writer, whose most recent book, When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present, was published in 2009. Collins is also the author of America’s Women, Scorpion Tongues: Gossip, Celebrity and American Politics, and The Millennium Book, which she co-authored with her husband, Dan Collins, an editor at CBS News. Born Gail Gleason in 1945, Collins traces her Irish roots to both her maternal and paternal ancestry. Her mother, Rita, to whom Collins dedicated America’s Women, kept Irish stories and traditions alive in their household.

In an interview with Forbes, Collins said of When Everything Changed, “the saddest part for me researching this book was to find out that the Child Development Act of 1971, which budgeted $2 billion for childcare, was passed. Then Nixon vetoed it. Part of the childcare solution has to include a federal commitment.”