Erin Brockovich Husband: A Life of Advocacy and Personal Struggles

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Written By Drew Gomez






Erin Brockovich, a name synonymous with environmental activism, catapulted into the public eye due to her relentless pursuit of justice. From her groundbreaking lawsuit against Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) to her media presence, Brockovich’s life has been a rollercoaster of challenges and achievements. In this article, we delve into her background, accomplishments, and personal life.

Erin Brockovich, the renowned American paralegal and environmental activist, gained fame for her pivotal role in the Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) groundwater contamination case. Beyond her legal accomplishments, her personal life has been marked by multiple marriages and challenges. Let’s explore the life of this remarkable woman, including details about her husbands and family.

Early Marriages

  1. Shawn Brown (1982–1987): Erin’s first marriage was to restaurant manager Shawn Brown. They had two children, Matthew and Katie, before divorcing in 1987.
  2. Steven Brockovich (1989–1990): Her second marriage was to electrical engineer Steven Brockovich. They had a daughter, Elizabeth, before divorcing in 1990.

The PG&E Litigation

In 1993, Erin became a whistleblower when she exposed widespread unexplained illnesses in Hinkley, California, linked to PG&E’s contamination of drinking water with hexavalent chromium. The resulting lawsuit (Anderson, et al. v. Pacific Gas & Electric) led to a historic settlement of $333 million. Erin’s tireless efforts and legal acumen were instrumental in achieving justice for the affected community.

Balancing Fame and Family

While Erin’s fame soared due to the Oscar-winning film “Erin Brockovich” (starring Julia Roberts), her family life faced challenges. Raising three children—Elizabeth, Matt, and Katie—proved difficult as her work demanded extended periods away from home. Elizabeth, now a mother herself, reflects on the toll it took on their family dynamics. Despite setbacks, Erin’s resilience and commitment to activism continue to inspire.


Erin Pattee Brockovich was born on June 22, 1960, in Lawrence, Kansas. Her parents, Betty Jo and Frank Pattee, instilled in her a sense of determination and resilience. Despite being diagnosed with dyslexia, Erin graduated from Lawrence High School and later attended Kansas State University and Wade College in Dallas, Texas.

Education and Early Career

Erin’s journey took unexpected turns. She worked as a management trainee at K-Mart, won a beauty pageant, and eventually became a legal clerk at Masry & Vititoe. It was here that she stumbled upon a pro bono real estate case that would change her life forever.

Pacific Gas & Electric Litigation

In 1993, Erin became a whistleblower, exposing widespread unexplained illnesses in Hinkley, California, caused by contaminated water. The subsequent lawsuit against PG&E resulted in a $333 million settlement, making it the largest ever paid in a direct-action lawsuit at the time. The Oscar-winning film “Erin Brockovich” immortalized her fight for justice.


Erin’s accomplishments extend beyond the courtroom. She hosts TV shows, including “Challenge America with Erin Brockovich” and “Final Justice,” and has authored books. Her relentless advocacy continues to raise awareness about environmental issues.


Despite her victories, Erin acknowledges the toll her fame took on her family. Her children, Matthew, Katie, and Elizabeth, experienced her extended absences due to work commitments. Elizabeth, now a mother herself, reflects on the challenges they faced as a family.

Social Media Activity

Erin remains active on social media, using platforms like Instagram to share her ongoing environmental work. Recently, she uncovered toxic PFAS contamination in Maine, emphasizing the urgency of clean water initiatives.

Family and Social Life

Erin’s family life has been marked by divorces and struggles. She has been married and divorced three times, with her third marriage to Eric Ellis ending in 2012. Despite setbacks, she remains resilient, teaching her children to persevere through life’s challenges.


Erin Brockovich’s legacy extends far beyond legal victories. Her unwavering commitment to environmental causes serves as an inspiration to us all. As she continues to fight for clean water and justice, Erin reminds us that ordinary individuals can create extraordinary change.

Erin Brockovich’s journey exemplifies determination, sacrifice, and advocacy. Her marriages may have ended, but her impact on environmental justice endures. As we celebrate her legacy, let’s remember that even heroes face personal struggles behind the scenes.

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