Episode 21: Elisa Batista on career, kids, midlife, and how to divorce a public figure

Last Updated on October 10, 2020 by Kristen

Elisa Batista

Twenty years ago, I wrote about biotechnology at Wired and for several of my years there, I sat directly across from an incredible woman named Elisa Batista, who I’m so excited is my guest on todays’ show.

This episode is a kind of reunion between old friends as well as an exclusive interview where Elisa, who is currently an activist and writer, shares for the first time details about her life with and divorce from a public figure. 

Elisa was married for nearly 20 years to Markos Moulitsas, who was and still is a bit of a celebrity, especially if you’re into politics, and who isn’t these days? He founded a progressive blog network called Daily Kos, and I remember Elisa and Markos as this young power couple, all of us at Wired gatherings and Markos surprising everyone with his incredible piano playing. I remember seeing him on television, talking about progressive politics and ideas, and my husband and I were very proud to call them friends. 

Behind the scenes, a very traditional domestic life was unfolding. As you’ll hear in this exclusive interview, the couple’s politics may have been progressive, but Elisa still changed all the diapers and cooked all the meals. The gender roles reflected those of both of their Latino families’ for generations—except for the fact that Elisa was also establishing her own career while raising their two children.

And then, after 21 years together, they split up, and in this episode, Elisa tells the story of what happened for the first time.

Now that she’s in her 40s and single, she’s ready to focus on herself. As a matter of fact, she recently wrote a book about activism. You’ll also hear about Elisa’s important work on DACA during the Obama administration, her current work for Ultraviolet as a campaign director fighting to end violence against women, to increase economic security for women and families, and ensure that all women have access to full and affordable health care, how thinking about Breonna Taylor’s mother keeps her up at night, and lots more.

Audio editing by Sofija Jovanov.

Relevant Links:

Elisa Batista


Moms Rising

Downtown Writers Jam

Elisa on Twitter

Elisa on Instagram

Elisa on Facebook

Elisa on Medium


Daily Kos

SB Nation

E.J. Dionne Jr. of the Washington Post

Ezra Klein, co-founder of Vox

Jennifer Weiner

Ronnie Citron-Fink

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