Marian Sheldon Ash

  • "Marian was a dear friend and marvelous spokesperson for the..."
    - Winifred (Freddie) Higgins
  • "Missing you more than I could ever have imagined. Love you..."
    - RidgleyElisabeth Reece
  • "In my prayers daily, missed more than I ever thought..."
    - RidgleyElisabeth
  • "Mother like an eternal flame you burn bright in my..."
    - Ridgley Elisabeth Reece Hatfield
  • " of your special empty with out..."
    - RidgleyElisabeth Loving Daughter

ASH, Marian Sheldon

Renowned feminist Marian Sheldon Ash died in the arms of her beloved daughter RidgleyElisabeth on Saturday, October 14, 2006, in Auburn, Calif. Marian had been seriously ill over the past year.

Marian was born on July 21, 1923, in Trenton, NJ, to Elisabeth Annis Godson and Captain Grover Cleveland Rippetoe. Marian and her mother went to Prince Rupert when World War II broke out and worked in communication. After the war they moved to San Francisco, Calif., where Marian taught teletype at the Presidio in San Francisco. Marian then taught ballroom dancing at Arthur Murray's Dance Studio. She also taught amputees to dance at Letterman General Hospital. Marian went on to teach Ballroom Dancing and etiquette to students in junior and senior high schools in Marin County, Calif. She lived in Corte Madre, Calif. In the early 1950s Marian moved with her daughter RidgleyElisabeth to Sacramento, Calif., where she continued to teach ballroom dancing and work nights at McClellan Air Force Base as a teletype operator. Marian then worked at the Music Circus in Sacramento in the Office. Marian then worked as Public Relations Director for the California State Fair in the late 1950s.

In the early 1960s Marian took a position working for Senator Alan Short at the State Capital in Sacramento. She soon became his administrative assistant and became very active in the legislature. Marian became an administrative assistant to Governor Pat Brown. Marian was appointed to the Chile California Program by President John F. Kennedy in the 1960s and travelled to Chile and South America. Marian was the first woman to publish and edit a newsletter for women, "Skirting the Capital," concerning fair employment practices and legislation. Marian joined the National Association ofBusiness and Professional Women of America. Marian was the President of California Federation of Business and Professional Women in 1982. She was active in the her local club up to her death. Marian then became the Director for the First Commission on the Status of Women in California. She was appointed to President Lyndon Johnson's National Commission on the Status of Women in Washington, D.C. Marian was the Director of the Training Academy for the California Conservation Corps in the 1980s, working with youth 18 to 23. Marian then worked for Secretary of State March Fong Yu for close to 30 years in a variety of positions, such as Chief of Elections, Chief of Political Reform, and Chief of Universal Commercial Code, and was the Director of Training when she retired in 1999. Marian worked continuously, lobbying for the Equal Rights Amendment and women's equality. She published pamphlets and booklets. Marian spoke throughout the United States about the Equal Rights Amendment and Women's Issues to women's organizations, political groups, schools, and the media. Marian was a national resource regarding legislation and legislative issues regarding women and the Equal Rights Amendments publishing booklets and speaking. In the summer of 2003, Marian received the Mariwyn Heath Award from the National Federation of Business and Professional Women in Washington, D.C. for all of her work on the Equal Rights Amendment.

Marian is survived by her daughter RidgleyElisabeth Sheldon Hatfield and her husband John Hatfield of Newcastle, Calif., her granddaughters Ann Elisabeth Reece and Lisa Deann Reece Deleon of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., step-granddaughter Ashley Hatfield and step-grandson John K. Hatfield, both of Newcastle, Calif., and great-granddaughters Courtney Elise Reece and Arianna Elisabeth Deleon of South Lake Tahoe, and her cousin Howard Lynk and his wife Donna of Havelock, NC.

A celebration of the life of Marian Josepha Rippetoe Sheldon Ash will be held at HARRY NAUMAN AND SONS, Freeport Blvd. Sacramento, Calif., on Saturday, Oct. 21, at 1:00 PM.
Published in The Sacramento Bee from Oct. 19 to Oct. 20, 2006