14 Things You Need To Know About Gloria Allred

She's the powerhouse feminist lawyer who has been at the forefront of fighting for women's rights for over 40 years - and now she's got her own Netflix documentary.

MOST POPULAR

If you haven't heard of Gloria Allred, you'll probably recognise her.

If you've ever turned on the news and seen that a high-profile, powerful man has been accused of sexual misconduct or assault (which sadly seems to happen regularly) the woman the accuser often turns to to represent her is Allred, a powerhouse feminist lawyer who has been at the forefront of fighting for women's rights for over 40 years. Allred is often sat beside the women in press conferences with her hand on their shoulder or offering them a tissue.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

From fighting for reproductive rights in the US to taking on President Donald Trump, Allred is consistently a key player in standing up for women, and now there's a chance to take a peak at the inner workings of her professional and personal life through a new Netflix documentary: Seeing Allred.

At a crucial time where women are saying 'Times Up' to discrimination, harassment and abuse based on our gender, an insight into the workings of one of the biggest women's rights advocates is what we need to keep on fighting the good fight.

Here's 14 more facts about the 76-year-old to inspire you:

1. She sued a mens-only club so she could become a member

In 1987, Allred filed a sex-discrimination case against the controversial Friars Club in New York, which was all-male, after she was barred from entering with a guest for lunch.

She told the New York Times at the time that the club failed to take into account 'the fact that women such as myself also do business at lunch'. She became the club's first female member in 1988.

Allred outside Friars Club after being the first woman to have lunch there in June, 1988
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

2. She too had a horrific experience, much like the women she represents

While on holiday in Acapulco, Mexico in 1966, Allred was raped at gunpoint, a crime which she never reported. She became pregnant from the rape and had a 'botched' illegal abortion which almost killed her - when an infection developed, she begun haemorrhaging, and a friend then took her to hospital.

In 1989, she recounted: 'The doctor [at the hospital] told me he didn't care if I lived or died. The nurse told me this was my fault.'

3. Her daughter is another feminist lawyer

Allred had her first and only daughter Lisa Bloom when she was 19-years-old. Lisa, now 56, is also a successful lawyer best known for representing women accusing someone of sexism, sexual assault or sexual harassment. She has represented Blac Chyna after her ex-boyfriend Rob Kardashian posted graphic photos of her on social media, Janice Dickinson in a defamation case against Bill Cosby, and sexual harassment accusers of former Fox News host Bill O'Reilly.

Bloom and Blac Chyna in July 2017

4. Most of her cases don't make headline news

Despite her reputation for a penchant for high-profile cases, she told Harper's Bazaar in 2010 that more than 90% of her cases are confidential and most result in settlements.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

'It's not my fault if the media and the public are more interested in Tiger Woods than in women farm workers,' she said. Allred both represented a woman Woods allegedly had an affair with during the height of the scandal over his personal life in 2010 and a group of female farm workers in a gender-discrimination lawsuit (for which the six female workers won $1.6 million in damages).

5. She represented a Weinstein accuser, while her daughter represented Weinstein

When the very first allegations of sexual harassment against film mogul Harvey Weinstein were made, his lawyer was Allred's daughter Bloom. Soon calls for Bloom to step down started coming and even her mother said she would have declined to represent Weinstein.

'I only represent those who allege that they are victims of sexual harassment,' she told The Wrap. 'While I would not represent Mr Weinstein, I would consider representing anyone who accused Mr Weinstein of sexual harassment, even if it meant that my daughter was the opposing counsel.'

Days later, Bloom resigned as a legal advisor to Weinstein.

6. She has taken on some of the biggest powerful names in politics, film and entertainment

According to The Guardian, she has represented 33 women who accused Bill Cosby of sexual assault, a woman who accused Donald Trump of sexual misconduct just before he won the presidential election and a Harvey Weinstein accuser. She has also gone up against Charlie Sheen, Tiger Woods and represented Spice Girl Mel B in a paternity lawsuit against Eddie Murphy.

7. She represented the family of Nicole Brown Simpson

Allred was the lawyer for the Brown family in the OJ Simpson murder trial, otherwise known as the 'trial of the century'. The 1995 trial famously saw American footballer Simpson found not guilty for the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson, his ex-wife, and her friend Ron Goldman.

Allred outside court during the OJ Simpson trial of 1995
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

8. She tried to sue Dodi Al-Fayed when he started dating Princess Diana

When it emerged that Diana, Princess of Wales, was in a relationship with Harrods owner Mohamed Al Fayed's son, Allred represented a model who sued Dodi. In a press conference where the model Kelly Fisher flashed an expensive-looking ring, Allred claimed Fisher had sacrificed her modelling career to marry Al-Fayed, only for him to jilt her and start a relationship with Diana. In response, the Al-Fayed family issued a statement saying: 'We are content to leave it to the good sense of the British and American people to judge this development for what it is.'

Allred with Fisher at a press conference on August 14 1997
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

A month later, after both Diana and Dodi were killed in a car crash in Paris, Allred announced they were dropping the $440,000 lawsuit out of respect for Dodi's family and that Fisher had 'decided to forgive Dodi Fayed for the past injustices he inflicted on her and to go on with her life'.

9. She also fights discrimination cases against other minorities

It is not just in cases of gender inequality where Allred steps in, she has also been a major player in many other anti-discrimination cases over racial, disability and LGBT issues. She famously represented a transgender Miss Universe Canada pageant, Jenna Talackova, who was forced out of the competition because she was born male. With Allred's help in a legal battle,Talackova was allowed back into the competition and made it to the final 12.

Allred with Essie Grundy, who is filing a race discrimination lawsuit against Walmart, on January 26, 2018

Most recently, she is representing a woman in a discrimination lawsuit against retailer giant Walmart over the woman's claim that African-American hair products were locked behind glass at a California store. The woman said she felt like a 'criminal' as she was allegedly escorted to the front desk to pay for a $0.48 hair comb with a Walmart employee, while more expensive non-African-American hair products were not locked up in the glass container. (Wallmart said they take the situation seriously and 'look forward to addressing it in court'.)

10. She helped pave the way for same-sex marriage in the USA

In 1994, Allred represented both a lesbian couple and a gay couple who were turned away from marrying in San Francisco. After a few years of back and forth in legal challenges at a state level (all under the guidance of Allred), their case, along with others, led to the supreme court. In 2015, the supreme court ruled that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry.

11. She was given a presidential award

In 1986, President Ronald Reagan awarded her the President's Award from the National Association of Women Lawyers and the President's Award for Outstanding Volunteerism.

12. She is still involved in a lawsuit against President Donald Trump

She is representing the former Apprentice star Summer Zervos in a defamation suit against the President. Zervos alleges Trump kissed and groped her in 2007, Trump denies this and has dismissed all the accusations at various points including calling them 'made up', hence the defamation lawsuit. In an interview with The Daily Beast last month, Allred said they are waiting for the court's decision on whether the case can go ahead after Trump's legal team made a motion to dismiss the case by saying he is protected as president.

Allred with Zervos at a press conference on October 2016

13. She hasn't taken a holiday in decades

According to a recent interview with The Guardian, Allred has not taken a break from work since the mid-1980s. She also said she has no intention of ever retiring.

14. She has been nominated for Emmy awards

Allred spent 14 years hosting a radio show called We Are The People With Gloria Allred for which she was nominated three times. According to Allred, most of her show was unscripted.

Seeing Allred is available on Netflix UK from 9 February.

More from ELLE UK: