Former Planned Parenthood director Abby Johnson writes memoir


CAROL STREAM, Ill. — Abby Johnson, the former Planned Parenthood clinic director who publicly denounced abortion after becoming a vocal pro-life advocate, has written her story, "Unplanned."

A joint venture of Tyndale House Publishers and Focus on the Family, the book, written with Cindy Lambert, centers on the true account of Johnson's decision to cross to the other side in the abortion debate.

Johnson's decision to leave her job after eight years with Planned Parenthood, initially as a volunteer and then as a paid employee, came after she participated in an ultrasound-assisted abortion procedure for the first time. Her action became national news when Planned Parenthood took her to court in the fall of 2009, accusing Johnson of violating confidentiality agreements she signed with the organization. The abortion provider—which named Johnson employee of the year for the southeast Texas region in 2008— later dropped the lawsuit.

"Unplanned" reveals what Johnson initially found so attractive about the mission of Planned Parenthood, the personal secret she never divulged, and the disturbing events that caused her to suddenly quit her job.

"Planned Parenthood tries to instill in their employees and the women that are coming in for abortions that this is not a baby. This is just a mass of cells," Johnson said shortly after she left her job in an interview with Fox's "The O'Reilly Factor."

"Unplanned: The Dramatic True Story of a Former Planned Parenthood Leader's Eye-Opening Journey across the Life Line" offers an insider's viewpoint on Planned Parenthood's practices, as well as on the heartfelt, but misguided, efforts of some radical anti-abortion activists.

"So many people want to see these clinic workers as the enemy, but they are not," Johnson said. "The sin of abortion is the enemy. These clinic workers are good people who have just been grossly misguided by untruth. On the other side, there are people who claim to be pro-life but believe in taking the lives of abortionists and bringing harm to workers. I have been able to see the good and bad in both camps. No movement is perfect ... no matter how much we like to think we are, or how much we try to be."

Johnson credits the peaceful, respectful witness of a local pro-life ministry with her change of heart.

"Without them, I wouldn't be here today," she said. "It is their faithfulness and perseverance that help women face the truth of abortion every day."

Johnson's story has prompted an endorsement by Dr. Alveda C. King, founder of King for America and the niece of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

"Unplanned is a powerful and compelling testimony of the power of prayer and love," she said. "A story of courage, conviction, and conversion, the book will draw you into Abby's life." 

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