Senator Dianne Feinstein, the first female senator to be elected in the US House of Senate and the longest-serving female senator has died at 90.
From California, she was first elected in 1992 in a wave election known as “the Year of the Woman” and went on to champion gun control.
In a statement released Friday morning, James Sauls, Feinstein’s Senate chief of staff, confirmed her death.
“There are few women who can be called senator, chairman, mayor, wife, mom and grandmother. Senator Feinstein was a force of nature who made an incredible impact on our country and her home state,” Sauls wrote.
“She left a legacy that is undeniable and extraordinary. There is much to say about who she was and what she did, but for now, we are going to grieve the passing of our beloved boss, mentor, and friend.”
California Gov. Gavin Newsom has yet to announce plans for Feinstein’s replacement. Releasing a statement, he spoke about her legacy.
“She broke down barriers and glass ceilings, but never lost her belief in the spirit of political cooperation,” Newsom said in a statement.
“Every race she won, she made history, but her story wasn’t just about being the first woman in a particular political office, it was what she did for California, and America, with that power once she earned it. That’s what she should be remembered for.”
She was also San Francisco’s first female mayor, although she wasn’t always as much of a feminist as advocates would have liked.