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Catching Up with Pat Schroeder

Former Rep. Pat Schroeder (D-Colo.), is taking a stab at app storytelling. The former CEO of the American Association of Publishers didn’t think that she’d be the voice of the new kids book app, The House that Went on Strike — but she is. “You just never know what’s going to happen,” Schroeder said from her home in Celebration, Fla.

The House that Went on Strike is an interactive app designed to help parents teach their kids the importance of respecting their home and doing their chores.

It is perhaps a natural evolution for the woman who once chaired the House Select Committee on Children, Youth and Families.

“The story I read is about a mom and dad and two kids, and the whole place is a mess. And it ends with everybody doing the right things,” said Schroeder, who voices all the characters in the story. “I had a lot of fun doing it.”

A message, perhaps, she’d like to share with the 112th Congress. “They oughta strike,” Schroeder said. Schroder said she used to dream of leading her colleagues on a strike against “the messy House” they created and hopes that the house in this story will inspire Congress to take similar action. “It’s a very different Congress, and it has not done a good job,” Schroeder said, whose 1998 memoir was humorously titled “24 Years of House Work … and the Place is Still a Mess.”

Even though the 12-term lawmaker has been gone from Congress since 1997, she still has a passion for politics, as was evidenced when she was discussing the recent shooting in an Aurora, Colo., movie theater. “Every thing I’ve watched on TV now says it’s not the time to talk about gun control. I just find it appalling that this country can’t come to a decision. There are 35,000 gun deaths in the country each year, and 15 in the U.K. Don’t tell me laws don’t make a difference,” Schroeder said.

“I had campaigned for Gabby Giffords; that didn’t do anything either. They have go to get a different Congress if they want anything [to get done],”said Schroeder.

However, the trailblazing Congresswoman and one-time presidential candidate, says she doesn’t really miss the everyday drama of the political arena.

“I don’t [miss it]. I had a wonderful career, and it’s time to move on,” Schroeder said. She said that while trying to juggle the work-life balance in office she’d tell herself, “I control this job, it does not control me.” But, somewhere along the way she realized that it did.

Today, in retirement, she’s finally in control. “I get to see my grandchildren,” said the mother of two, who will teach a course on the philosophy of feminism at Rollins College this fall, and is still active in several organizations like Common Cause, the Marguerite Casey Foundation, and English-Speaking Union of the United States. “[And] I will continue to learn, even at 72.”

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