Florence Pat Haseltine

Fighter and tireless promoter for the advancement of women. Former Director of the Center for Population Research of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. At the NIH, led the way for advances in reproductive research and other critical health areas.

What has been your most notable rebel accomplishment or experience?

I changed the way women’s health is viewed. Women were not included in clinical trials and therefore the medical research negated their existence. Although I started out to improve the research education and funding for Obstetrics and Gynecology, the work quickly exploded into women’s health research in general. Another part of that was writing a snippet of legislation thatstarted a program to repay medical scientists’ debt.

When did you first realize that you were a rebel?

Probably age five to six. I looked at my mother and decided I did not want to be like her. I decided I could look at my environment and see it better than my parents and do what I need to and change it. I quickly learned not to trust authorities rules.

What advice do you wish someone had given you earlier in your career?

Pay attention to “What you pay attention to.”  This is what will give you the most validity when you want to change the system. Don’t buy into someone else’s rebellion unless it hits your core values.

What is your favorite rebel characteristic?


What’s your favorite question?

“How do we do it?”

What tells you you’re effecting positive change?

When I give a talk for the first time usually very few people show up (sometimes one or two), but by the time I give it the third time, there are at least 25 people. Later I don’t have to give the talk, someone else does and there are a 1,000 + people and they say something I did not know.

What do you think is most important for people to understand about rebels?

We do not like to repeat ourselves.

What’s your one sentence piece of advice for rebels?

Don’t take NO for an answer, it just means that that person will not help you, it does not mean you cannot do it.

What’s your one sentence piece of advice for non-rebels?

“Don’t’ be afraid of change.”

Where do you think rebels are most needed today?

In teaching

Who is your favorite rebel from the past 100 years?

Margaret Sanger

What’s the one thing you should never say to a rebel?


 What do you think needs to be done next?

Get rid of loans for education.