Thompson was born in Whitehall, Michigan and attended the public schools. She graduated from Muskegon Business College of nearby Muskegon in 1905, and became a lawyer with a private practice. She was registrar of probate court of Muskegon Countyand judge of probate from 1925- to 1937. She gained national recognition as an advocate for children's rights during that period. She was elected the county's first female state representative in 1938 and served as a member of the Michigan House of Representatives (Muskegon County 1st district) from 1939-41.