April was Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Every year, at this time, we talk about awareness, prevention, and the importance of women feeling they can step forward, say something, and be heard. That belief — that women should be heard — was the underpinning of a law I wrote over 25 years ago. To this day, I am most proud of the Violence Against Women Act. So, each April we are reminded not only of how far we have come in dealing with sexual assault in this country — but how far we still have to go.When I wrote the bill, few wanted to talk about the issue. It was considered a private matter, a personal matter, a family matter. I didn’t see it that way. To me, freedom from fear, harm, and violence for women was a legal right, a civil right, and a human right. And I knew we had to change not only the law, but the culture.So, we held hours of hearings and heard from the most incredibly brave women — and we opened the eyes of the Senate and the nation — and passed the law.In the years that followed, I fought to continually strengthen the law. So, when we took office and President Obama asked me what I wanted, I told him I wanted oversight of the critical appointments in the Office on Violence Against Women at the Department of Justice and I wanted a senior White House Advisor appointing directly to me on the issue. Both of those things happened.