To celebrate what would have been Betty Ford’s 100th birthday, the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan has opened a beautiful temporary exhibit aptly titled, “In Step with Betty Ford.”
I had the great honor of being at the ribbon cutting ceremony on April 10, along with Susan Ford Bales and many other members of the Ford family.
If your travels take you anywhere near Grand Rapids this summer, I highly suggest this be one of your must-sees. Having spent the past two years researching and writing about Betty Ford for my upcoming book BETTY FORD: First Lady, Women’s Advocate, Survivor, Trailblazer, it was wonderful to see how the curators have culled through their vast archives to showcase Betty’s life from childhood and aspiring dancer in Grand Rapids, her marriage to Jerry Ford, motherhood, life as a Congressman’s wife in Washington, to suddenly becoming First Lady in the wake of political scandal. The exhibit also showcases how, after the White House, she made the courageous decision to go public with her addiction to prescription drugs and alcohol, and eventually founded the world-renowned Betty Ford Center. What a life! And what a legacy.