In her short 30 years of life Milholland accomplished more than anyone could have imagines. Milholland was born in Brooklyn, NY and attended Vassar College in Poughkeepsie. She interested in many social policy reforms including prison reform, rights for African Americans, suffrage, and world peace. Milholland was a member of the NAACP, the Women's Trade Union League, the Equality League of Self Supporting Women in New York (Women's Political Union), the National Child Labor Committee, and England's Fabian Society. She was also involved in the National American Woman Suffrage Association, which later branched into the grassroots radical National Woman's Party.
Milholland went on to become an attorney. One of her first assignments was to investigate Sing-Sing prison's deplorable conditions. In the early 1900's Milholland became actively engaged in the suffrage movement and began to travel the country attending suffrage parades wearing her iconic banner "Forward Into the Light".