Paul Schmelzer as signed by Doris "Granny D" Haddock
At 96, Doris Haddock has a lifetime of activism behind her, from community organizing in New Hampshire to anti-nuclear protest, and likely much more to come. But her walk across America in 1999 -- at age 89 -- is her claim to fame. She put on walking shoes and trod 3,200 miles to raise awareness of the corrupting effect of soft money in politics. Her final 100 miles, during a snowstorm that blocked roads in Washington, D.C., was on skis. In 2003 and 2004, she made a 23,000 mile tour of swing states, encouraging first-time, women, and low-income voters to exercise -- bad pun -- their rights. I mailed her to get this signature shortly after I saw her bring a 10,000-person crowd to its feet in a rally at Minneapolis' Target Center for Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader in 2000.