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Rocker, Betty papers
MC 65  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
Betty Rocker served as an attorney for the Sacramento County public defender's office from 1974 to 1988. Her influential life and career is expressed through this collection of images, ephemera, awards, scrapbooks and newspaper clippings.
Background
Betty Potok was born on August 13, 1931, in Brooklyn, Kings County, New York, to Mac Potok, a clothing salesman and native of Germany, and Alice Potok (nee Kraisler), a native New Yorker. She went on to attend James Madison High School, learned French, became an amateur roller-skater, and took advantage of New York's world famous opera and theater offerings. In 1950, she married Herbert Dankman who soon took a job as a civilian engineer at Sacramento's McClellan Air Force Base. The couple had three children - Linda, Carolyn and Alan - but divorced in 1962. Settled in Sacramento, Betty married Edwin Rocker in August 1963. For much of the 1960s, she both worked in real estate and owned and operated an employment agency called the Keller Agency. In 1968/68, Rocker then pivoted to the study of law. Even without an undergraduate degree - she attend Sacramento State College from 1967 to 1969 as a business major - she scored so well on her Law School Admission Test that the University of the Pacific's McGeorge School of Law admitted her in 1969. To fund her coursework, Rocker won a number of scholarships while also working full-time as a nightshift telephone company supervisor. Rocker went on to graduate fifth in her class in June 1973. Within a year, she was working for the Sacramento County public defender's office where she specialized in spousal abuse law and developed a reputation as a dauntless adversary for prosecutors and committed defender of the underdog. Rocker died in May 1988.
Extent
2 Linear Feet 5 Archival Boxes