Isabel María Josefina Robalino Bolle (14 October 1917 – 31 January 2022) was a Spanish-born Ecuadorian lawyer and politician.[1]

Isabel Robalino

Senate of Ecuador
In office
Constituent Representative of Ecuador
In office

Metropolitan Council of Quito [es]
In office
Personal details
Isabel María Josefina Robalino Bolle

(1917-10-14)14 October 1917
Barcelona, Spain
Died31 January 2022(2022-01-31) (aged 104)
Quito, Ecuador
OccupationLawyer, trade unionist, and politician



Isabel Robalino was born in Barcelona, Spain, where her family was residing while her father worked as a consul in Geneva. She completed her secondary education at the Instituto Nacional Mejía and higher education at the Central University of Ecuador, where former president Camilo Ponce Enríquez worked as an educator.[2] In 1944, she graduated from the Central University as a lawyer, becoming the first woman to graduate the University with a degree in Law.[3]

Following her graduation, Robalino was appointed a member of the Criminal Court of Ecuador.[4] In 1946, she briefly held the position of Metropolitan Council of Quito [es], becoming the first woman to hold that office.[5] Between 1959 and 1961, she was President of the National Court for Minors.[4]

As a trade unionist, she was led to participate in the Revolution of 28 May [es], called "La Gloriosa." In September 1947, she personally directed the seizure of the Carondelet Palace from the military dictatorship of Carlos Mancheno Cajas. She also took several businessmen to trial, including future Ecuadorian president León Febres Cordero, to secure workers' rights.[6] Because of her work, Robalino was selected by workers' organizations to represent them in the Constituent Assembly of 1966 and as a senator in 1968,[7][8] becoming the first female senator in Ecuador.[9][10] She would as a lawmaker introduce new legislation in favor of workers' rights.[3]

Among the organizations Robalino founded are the Confederation of Catholic Workers,[8] the Ecuadorian Institute for Social Development,[7] the University Women's Youth, and the Mariana de Jesus Social Work School, among others.[3] She turned 100 in October 2017,[6] and died on 31 January 2022, at the age of 104.[11]


  1. ^ "Universidad/Isabel Robalino Bolle". La Hora (in Spanish). 4 July 2010. Archived from the original on 17 April 2017. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  2. ^ "Una abogada incansable". El Comercio (in Spanish). 12 March 2016. Archived from the original on 18 April 2017. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  3. ^ a b c "Abogadas ecuatorianas galardonan trayectoria de Isabel Robalino Bolle". El Comercio (in Spanish). 4 March 2016. Archived from the original on 6 March 2016. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  4. ^ a b Robalino Dávila, Luis (2005). Luis Robalino Dávila: el hombre, el historiador, el político. Corporación Editora Nacional. ISBN 9789978843994. Retrieved 22 November 2017.
  5. ^ "A los 99 años, Isabel Robalino sigue en la lucha". PlanV (in Spanish). 18 October 2016. Archived from the original on 19 April 2017. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  6. ^ a b Ayala Mora, Enrique (15 October 2017). "El siglo ganado de Isabel Robalino". El Comercio (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 15 October 2017. Retrieved 16 April 2017.
  7. ^ a b "Isabel Robalino, la madre de los obreros". La Hora (in Spanish). 22 July 2002. Archived from the original on 18 April 2017. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  8. ^ a b "La historia de las mujeres en la Asamblea". El Comercio (in Spanish). 22 November 2013. Archived from the original on 19 December 2013. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  9. ^ Olsen 1994, p. 314.
  10. ^ Kinnear 2011, p. 314.
  11. ^ "Falleció Isabel Robalino, primera concejala de Quito y activista por los trabajadores". El Comercio. 31 January 2022.