First Cabinet Member - Alice Moyer-Wing
In the early 20th century, there were few women allowed in government positions. However, Missouri was ahead of the curve. In 1921, Governor Arthur Hyde appointed the first woman, Alice Jane Curtice Moyer-Wing, to be the State Industrial Inspector and a member of his Cabinet.
Wing was born in 1867 in Du Quoin, Illinois. She held several notable political positions. She was the field secretary for the Missouri Equal Suffrage Association in 1913, a member and delegate of the Republican National Convention in 1920 and again in 1928, and a member of the Woman’s Republican County Committee. She was also a Republican U.S. Congressional Candidate in 1924. Wing had two children, Selma and Charles.
As Chief Inspector, Wing was responsible for enforcing labor laws to protect all laborers, including women and children.
Wing worked to protect employees from occupational diseases and enforced all health-protecting measures, including proper ventilation and sanitation. Under Wing’s administration, Missouri saw a significant decrease in industrial accidents and child labor, despite an increase in manufacturing. Wing’s successes led to her reappointment in 1925. In 1927, she became the Chief Clerk for the Department..
Wing was also a notable author of several well-known articles about women’s suffrage including “Men Only,” and “When a Woman is the Head.” She also wrote one book, “Romance on the Road.”