Patricia Taft, the great-granddaughter of William Howard Taft, the 27th president of the United States, has a few thoughts on how the White House can improve its Women’s History Month festivities.
In mid-March, Vice President Kamala Harris and Glamour magazine hosted an event celebrating trailblazing women across various industries. Guests included former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Grammy-winning rapper Megan Thee Stallion, actor Nicole Ari Parker, fashion designer Anifa M, and former Teen Vogue editor-in-chief Elaine Welteroth. Surprisingly, Patricia, who has deep ties to the White House, didn’t score an invite.
“I wasn’t invited. I’m not an influencer,” Taft said during an interview with Raw Story. The 38-year-old also shared she was unaware of the event until she saw it on social media. She continued, “I am the descendant of a U.S. president but I’m also a Black person, and the privilege of one does not negate the pain of the other.”
In the same interview, Patricia opened up about her efforts to push Congress to give more credit to the U.S. first ladies and acknowledge their impact on American history by making National First Ladies Day a federal holiday.
Though Patricia doesn’t desire a political career, she’s committed to using her voice as an exclusive member of The Society for President Descendants to bring more awareness to the legacies of the women who served their country as first ladies.
Her great-grandmother Helen “Nellie” Herron Taft is recognized as the first wife of a president to step out to the forefront. In addition to becoming the first president’s wife to attend Inauguration Day, Helen held press conferences and championed women’s and minority rights.
“I’m not just thinking me, but anyone who could add a historical perspective to this that could actually make it a greater thing than just a few dresses would be amazing,” Patricia said about the White House event. “But I get it because you want people there that are going to garner press, right? It’s strategic, but there’s a void.”