Anne Holder, a UTEP-trained sociologist, educator, and early activist in the El Paso Woman Political Caucus, was named Feminist of the Year in 1976 at their Women’s Equality Day (WED) fundraising banquet. Her obituary in the El Paso Times in February of 2017 described her “as a woman of passion and burning rhetoric.”A key player in creating the rape crisis center in El Paso, she spoke diligently to community groups and law enforcement to change attitudes and institutions. This effort won her a 1975 WED award for improving public welfare. Holder attended graduate school at UC Berkeley, almost completing a dissertation. A description of Holder’s activism appeared in Feminists Who Changed America, 1963.
Due to the sudden death in 1983 of her ex-husband, Holder returned to her hometown to support the college educations of her daughter and son. Holder was a highly skilled English teacher at Ysleta Middle School. Over her lifetime she shaped the critical thinking and writing skills of hundreds of students and coworkers. At the end of her career Holder managed the Research Department of the Ysleta Independent School District and administered a YISD local grants fund. She persistently wrote concise, powerful letters to the editor to both the El Paso Times and the El Paso Herald-Post. Her attention after retirement was on the needs of her family.
-Eva Antone Ross and Aaron J. Waggoner