Marthe Gosteli was born in 1917 on her parents' farm in Worblaufen near Berne. During WWII, she worked in the Press and Radio Department of the Army. After the war, she was in charge of the Film Department of the Information Services at the US embassy in Berne.
Ms Gosteli put her experience with the media solely in the service of the feminist movement from the mid 1960s onwards. From 1964 to 1968, she was President of the Bernese Suffrage Society. Subsequently, she became Vice President of the Union of Swiss Women's Organisations BSF. During 1970/71, she presided over the consortium of the Swiss Women's Unions for the Political Rights of Women. This organisation's negotiating skills with the Federal Assembly were instrumental in achieving the acceptance of women's suffrage on a federal level. Marthe Gosteli founded the Archive on the History of Women in Switzerland, and in 1982, the Gosteli Foundation. She was awarded the Trudi-Schlatter Prize in 1989, received the Civil Medal of the Townspeople of Berne in 1992 and in 2008 she was decorated with the Silver Service Medal of the Economic and Charitable Society of the Canton of Berne. In 1995, she was made an honorary Doctor of the University of Berne.