Barbara Olson

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(Redirected from Barbara K. Olson)

Barbara Kay Olson (December 27, 1955September 11, 2001) was a conservative American television commentator who worked for FOX News, CNN and several other outlets.

Olson was born Barbara Brasher in Houston, Texas. She earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Saint Thomas (Texas) and a law degree from Cardozo Law School. In the early 1990s, she worked as a partner at the Washington DC based law firm of Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering, before marrying United States Solicitor General Theodore Olson in 1997.

In the mid 1990s, she was a chief investigator for the House Government Reform Committee. She was later a staff lawyer for Senate Minority Whip Don Nickles, before branching out on her own as a TV commentator and private lawyer. She was a frequent critic of the Clinton administration and wrote a book about First Lady Hillary Clinton, Hell to Pay: The Unfolding Story of Hillary Rodham Clinton. She was working on her second book, The Final Days: The Last, Desperate Abuses of Power by the Clinton White House (published December 2001) when she died. She had been a professional ballet dancer when younger, and had also been a prosecutor.

She was a passenger on board American Airlines Flight 77, on her way to a taping of Politically Incorrect in Los Angeles, when it was flown into the Pentagon in the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attacks. She had reported the hijacking to her husband twice by phone about 20 minutes before the plane hit the Pentagon.

She was the subject of a eulogy by her husband at the Federalist Society on November 16, 2001. The occasion was the launching of the annual Barbara K. Olson Memorial Lectures. These lectures have a theme of "Limited Government and the Spirit of Freedom", to quote from the Society's website.


See Casualties of the September 11, 2001 attacks.

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