WALNUT CREEK, Calif. (KTVU) - Hundreds of friends, co-workers, and admirers came to the Lesher Center For the Performing Arts in Walnut Creek, to remember Ellen Tauscher, a former Congressswoman who shattered glass ceilings, and always with style.
Among the speakers was Eric Swalwell, her former intern now an East Bay Congressman running for President.
"She said you need to know three things. Who is important. What is important. And when to leave a party," Swalwell said to laughs.
Tauscher's friend Hillary Clinton sent a video tribute.
"I was always a little in awe of Ellen. Not only because of her big brain and amazing personality, but because she was game for everything."
Tauscher died in April of pneumonia, while battling cancer of the esophagus.
She was one of the first woman to hold a seat on the New York Stock Exchange, Tauscher first ran for Congress in Contra Costa County in 1996.
She defeated Bill Baker, a long time incumbent Republican.
Later she became Undersecretary of State for the Obama Administration negotiating nuclear arms treaties.
Many who came to pay respects say she paved the way for other women.
"She was a woman who could get things done. A role model for women who run for office. She had the country in her heart," said Mary Borrelli of Oakland, who says she worked on Tauscher's first campaign.
"For all of us having known Ellen, having her in our family, and on our side, has made us stronger and wiser," said Tauscher's sister Sally O'Kane.
Bender Tauscher once said, "I sleep well at night because I've done all I could possibly do to make a difference." She was 67 years old.