Thursday, June 23

Time Activity
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM

Registration and Credentialing

4:00 PM – 5:30 PM

Registration and Credentialing

7:00 PM

50th Anniversary Gala

Friday, June 24

Time Activity
8:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Registration and Credentialing

Exhibitors and Vendors

9:00 AM- 10:30 AM

Welcome Plenary

    Moderator: Patricia Ireland
    Speakers: Patricia Hill Collins, Miriam Yeung
    Honoree: Brittney Cooper, Olga Vives Award

10:30 AM -10:45 AM


10:45 AM – 12:00 PM

Breakouts A

  • NOW’s Political Action Committee (NOWPAC): Looking at the 2016 Feminist Political Landscape
  • Know Your Rights: Recent Federal Initiatives to Achieve Equal Pay
  • Recruiting NOW Leaders – Attracting Young and Older Feminists
  • A Critically Important Women’s Issue: Stopping Gun Violence
  • NOW’s Strategic Action Program: Advancing Reproductive Justice
  • NOW 101
12:00 PM – 2:00 PM


2:00 PM – 3:15 PM

Breakouts B

  • The Founding of NOW: She Was There
  • Strategies to Combat Anti-Abortion Agendas in the States and Nationally
  • Ending the Culture of Complacency: Campus Sexual Assaults
  • Personal Storytelling to Advance Justice
  • NOW’s Strategic Action Program: Sexual Abuse to Prison Pipeline
3:15 PM – 3:30 PM


3:30 PM – 5:00 PM

Plenary II

Moderator: Kim Gandy
Speakers: Aileen Hernandez, Shireen Mitchell
Honorees: Candace Liger and Grace E. Franklin, Woman of Action Award; Muriel Fox, Woman of Vision Award; Emma Sulkowicz, Woman of Courage Award

5:00 PM – 5:15 PM


5:15 PM – 6:00 PM

Breakouts C – Candidate Forums: Pacific, Western, Heartland Districts

6:00 PM – 6:15 PM


6:15 PM – 7:00 PM

Breakouts D – Candidate Forums: Southern, Eastern, Northern Districts

7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Special Constituency Caucuses

8:00 PM

Dinner on Your Own

Saturday, June 25

Time Activity
8:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Registration and Credentialing

9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Exhibitors and Vendors

8:30 AM – 9:45 AM

Breakouts E

  • NOW’S Political Action Committee (NOWPAC) – Engaging a New Generation of Political Leaders
  • Where Did We Go From NOW and What Did We Take With Us?
  • Building a Grassroots Movement to Expand Support for Caregivers
  • Stop Fake Clinics: Texas NOW’s Brilliant Campaign
  • NOW’s Strategic Action Program: Equal Rights Amendment
9:45 AM – 10:00 AM


10:00 AM – 11:15 AM

Plenary III

Moderator: Eleanor Smeal
Speakers: Candace Bond, Judy Goldsmith, Barry Lynn
Honoree: Jessica González-Rojas, Victoria J. Mastrobuono Award for Women’s Health

11:15 AM – 11:30 AM


11:30 AM – 12:45 PM

Breakouts F

  • The Founding of NOW: She Was There! Part Two
  • Immigrant Women and Children Flee Violence, End up Detained and Deported
  • Faith and Feminism: Unlocking the Power of the F Words
  • Documenting Our History and Digitizing NOW Chapter Archives
  • Can We Really Talk? Feminism, Race, Gender & Identity – A Workshop on Intersectionality
12:45 PM – 1:00 PM


1:00 PM – 2:30 PM

Plenary: PAC Lunch

Moderator: Eleanor Smeal
Speakers: Bonnie Grabenhofer, Jacqueline Kozin, Mini Timmaraju, Jamia Wilson
Honoree: Senator Barbara Mikulski, Woman of Impact Award

2:30 PM – 2:45 PM


2:45 PM – 4:00 PM

Breakouts G

  • Pursuing the Best Route to ERA Ratification
  • Women of Color and Immigrants Leading NOW Into the Future
  • Freedom Under Attack: Protecting Real Religious Liberty is Radical and Imperative
  • Ride the Title IX Wave: Expanding the Network and Protecting LGBTQIA Students
4:00 PM – 4:15 PM


4:15 PM – Open for 2 hours

Breakouts H – NOW Board Elections

4:30 PM – 6:30 PM

PAC Party – Poster Session & Silent Auction

6:30 PM

Dinner on Your Own

Sunday, June 26

Time Activity
8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Exhibitors and Vendors

9:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Registration and Credentialing


Announcement of Board Winners

9:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Plenary: Strategic Action Plan & Resolutions

11:00 AM – 11:15 AM


11:15 AM – 1:30 PM

Plenary: Strategic Action Plan & Resolutions

1:30 PM



Please note: this agenda is subject to change.

2016 National NOW Conference Workshops

BREAKOUT SESSION A – Friday, 10:45 a.m. to 12 noon

Congressional A – NOW’s Political Action Committee (NOWPAC): Looking at the 2016 Feminist Political Landscape

What is NOW PAC’s strategy to elect the first woman president and deliver to her a Congress that will finally make our dream of equal rights a reality? NOW PAC members and advisors will discuss the current political opportunities and perils for feminists running for federal office this year. Learn how we intend to put Rep. Nancy Pelosi back in the Speaker’s chair, regain the majority in the Senate to protect the judiciary, and elect Hillary Clinton to be our next woman president.

    Moderator Linda Berg – NOW Political Director; coordinates NOW PAC’s endorsement process and legal compliance; active in Montgomery County, Maryland NOW Chapter; formerly Director, National Jewish Democratic Council.

    Bonnie Grabenhofer – NOW Vice President; NOW PAC Member and Treasurer; coordinates MsPresidentNOW, the PAC’s campaign in support of Hillary Clinton for president; served as President of Illinois NOW and Chair of Illinois NOW PAC.

    Representative Cheri Bustos – Representing Illinois’ 17th district in the United States Congress since 2012, feminist Representative Cheri Bustos co-chairs the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s Red to Blue Program, the goal of which is to take back the House from the right wing.

    Eleanor Smeal – President and Co-founder of Feminist Majority Foundation; NOW PAC Advisor; served three terms as President of NOW 1977-1982 and 1985-1987; coined the term “gender gap” describing women voters’ preference for Democratic candidates.


Concord – Know Your Rights: Recent Federal Initiatives to Achieve Equal Pay

Paycheck fairness legislation may not be moving in Congress, but significant progress towards pay equity has been made by the Obama Administration. A panel of senior officials from the U.S. Department of Labor, including the Women’s Bureau, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance and the Wage and Hour Division will discuss new equal pay initiatives at their respective agencies including regulations to support pay transparency in federal contracting, new wage enforcement regulations, and a number of new web resources for women workers. An Equal Employment Opportunity Commission member will discuss important enhancements to the agency’s employer data collection efforts that will provide critical new information on worker compensation. This workshop will provide attendees with important tools and resources for understanding and seeking recourse against gender-based wage disparities.

    Moderator Latifa Lyles – Director, Women’s Bureau, where she works to advance and improve standards, practices and opportunities for women in the labor force; oversaw the 2014 White House Summit on Working Families in coordination with the White House Council on Women and Girls; co-managed the earlier National Dialogue on Workplace Flexibility event series; previously served as Membership Vice President for the National Organization for Women, 2005 – 2009.

    Christopher Seely – Branch Chief for Regulatory, Legislative and Policy Development, Division of Policy and Program Development, in the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs.

    Laura Fortman – Deputy Administrator for the Wage and Hour Division at the U.S. Department of Labor.

    Charlotte Burrows – Commissioner, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, with special expertise on equal pay issues and the EEOC’s proposal to collect pay data from employers through annual EEO-1 reporting.


Lexington – Recruiting NOW Leaders – Attracting Young and Older Feminists

There is a powerhouse waiting to be unleashed – retired women. Pairing experienced feminist activists with the idealism young feminists bring, can provide an important new source of activism and leadership for NOW. Older feminists have the contacts that young feminists need. They have the influence and experience and have worked with the right people. Bringing them together with young feminists can make a major impact. NOW activists in the St. Louis, MO area have revived their feminist roots and used their power to get the wider community to see the needs facing today’s working class women. But appealing to younger feminists in today’s iPod world is far different from the early days of NOW’s phone trees and conscious-raising sessions. This panel will feature experienced feminists and young feminist leaders from the Net Generation to dialogue.

    Mary Jean Collins – National Action Vice President from 1982-1985; former mid-west Regional Director, 1970; joined the National Organization for Women in 1967 and became a NOW leader; in 1968, became president of the Chicago NOW chapter which organized the 1970 Women Strike for Equality attended by 15,000 persons; led fights against discrimination by AT&T and Sears, then the world’s largest employer of women; elected again in 1980 as Chicago NOW chapter president and helped direct the campaign to ratify the ERA in the Illinois General Assembly; served as Deputy Director of Catholics for a Free Choice, Vice President of People for the American Way and board member, Choice USA; currently board member of Veteran Feminists of America.
    Pam Ross – Former NOW chapter President and Treasurer in Missouri in the 1970’s; elected Missouri State NOW Coordinator in 1981 and lobbyist for MO NOW; lobbied for ERA ratification, helped win first state funding for battered women’s shelters; helped to organize numerous NOW chapters in the state; Stated a State Political Action Committee; served on the NOW PAC under then NOW President Judy Goldsmith; Chief of Staff for the St. Louis Board of Aldermen, writing and helping to pass legislation to fund medical care for prostitutes and arrest the johns; currently sits on numerous boards and is Treasurer for Veteran Feminists of America.

    Bettina Hager – DC Director of the ERA Coalition and Fund for Women’s Equality; also serving as the Co-chair of the Equal Rights Amendment Task Force of the National Council of Women’s Organizations; previously served as DC Coordinator for the National Women’s Political Caucus.

    Jeanine Johnson – President of District of Columbia NOW Chapter; Legislative Aide for a Maryland State delegate; previously worked in the areas of domestic violence advocacy, community behavioral health direct services, and outdoor education, all of which directly inform her current work.

    Pam Yuen – Government Relations Coordinator, American Association of University Women (AAUW); Manager, AAUW Action Fund Capitol Hill Lobby Corp; formerly Scheduler and Staff Assistant to Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-New Jersey).


Bunker Hill – A Critically Important Women’s Issue: Stopping Gun Violence

It is a shocking fact that more than half of the women who are murdered every year are killed by intimate partners or family members using a firearm. This workshop will explore what we know about the relationship between gun violence and intimate partner violence, such as the mere presence of a gun in a home significantly increases the risk of firearm homicide and suicide. Questions asked: Do background checks work? How do we close loopholes in the system leading eventually to true gun safety? What can we as individuals do to make a difference? This workshop will also include a focused discussion on what NOW chapters can do to make a difference in the lives women that involve intimate partner violence where the presence of a firearm is a significant risk factor.

    Moderator Patricia Reuss – Former Washington, D.C. Office Director, NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund; Organizer of National Task Force to End Sexual and Domestic Violence which was instrumental in passing the 1994 Violence Against Women Act; formerly Senior Policy Analyst and currently consultant to the National Task Force and to the National Organization for Women; NOW PAC Advisor; Vice President NOVA NOW chapter.

    Marian Bradley – Montana NOW State President and NOW Board Member; Working for years on gun violence and background checks in Montana and is part of a task force on social media to keep the issue of gun violence before the public.

    Ron LeGrand – Vice President for Public Policy, National Network to End Domestic Violence; former Counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on the Judiciary; lead Democratic Counsel on the committee for the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013.

    Kristen Moore – Director for Partnerships for Everytown for Gun Safety; has worked on the issue of domestic violence, gun violence and their impact on women for a number of years. Formerly President and CEO, Reproductive Health Technologies Project.


Regency B, C – NOW’s Strategic Action Program: Advancing Reproductive Justice

Reproductive rights are under severe attack in the U.S. In state legislatures around the country, conservative lawmakers have done their best to limit access to abortion care and contraceptive coverage by passing hundreds of restrictive laws. How can NOW members at the grassroots level fight back? In this panel, we will explain how community-based activism can support the work of state and national coalitions working to restore reproductive justice. Members will vote on the set of priorities presented in this workshop, part of the 2016 Strategic Action Program, on Sunday.

    Moderator Meredith Ockman – NOW Reproductive Justice Board Committee Chair; Board Member, National Organization for Women and Florida NOW, Florida National Women’s Political Caucus, The Women’s Health Foundation of South Florida and Palm Beach County Human Rights Council. Recipient, 2011 Feminist Leadership Award, Veteran Feminists of America; has provided clinic defense and escort training for past 13 years.

    Emily Imhoff – NOW Policy and Grassroots Outreach Fellow – A recent graduate of the University of Cincinnati, where she studied international affairs with a focus on international conflict; coordinated a number of intersectional feminist and social justice organizations on campus, focusing largely on women’s leadership, gender-based violence survivor advocacy, consent education, and racial justice; also serves as the Program Assistant for Women’s Information Network (WIN).

    M.E. Ficarra – NOW Policy and Grassroots Outreach Fellow – A recent graduate of Hamilton College, where she studied environmental policy and comparative literature; interned for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and the NY League of Conservation Voters; trained as a campus peer advocate for survivors of sexual assault, developing a guide to writing respectfully about gender; also completed research projects on sex work, abortion policy, and women’s role in international development while studying at the University of Amsterdam.


Presidential Suite – NOW 101


BREAKOUT SESSION B – Friday, 2 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.

Congressional A – The Founding of NOW: She Was There

On this 50th Anniversary we will celebrate the beginnings of the National Organization for Women. NOW Co-Founder Muriel Fox will give a first-hand account of the founding meeting, how it came about and how these leaders had the vision to create NOW. Muriel will be joined by Barbara Love, author and LGBTQIA feminist; Eleanor Pam, President of Veteran Feminists of America, and Mary Jean Collins, former NOW Press Secretary. Muriel will tell the story of the first meeting and early days of NOW, while Barbara, Eleanor and Mary Jean will talk about issues and organizing in the early days.

    Moderator Muriel Fox – Co-founder of NOW and member of NOW’s first board of directors; helped organize NOW’s founding conference and directed NOW’s Public Relations, writing and distributing the organization’s first press releases, as well as serving as ‘Operations Lieutenant’ to NOW President Betty Friedan during the organization’s early days; involved in the NOW campaign to de-segregate Help Wanted ads; founded and edited the first NOW National newsletter, “Do it NOW”; was a board member of NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund (Legal Momentum); and, is a founder and board member of Veteran Feminists of America. Muriel participated in the historic NOW campaign that convinced President Lyndon Johnson to add women to Executive Order 11246 in October, 1967, establishing non-discriminatory practices on hiring and employment, which created jobs for millions of women through affirmative action.

    Mary Jean Collins – National Action Vice President from 1982-1985; former mid-west Regional Director, 1970; joined the National Organization for Women in 1967 and became a NOW leader; in 1968, became president of the Chicago NOW chapter which organized the 1970 Women Strike for Equality attended by 15,000 persons; led fights against discrimination by AT&T and Sears, then the world’s largest employer of women; elected again in 1980 as Chicago NOW chapter president and helped direct the campaign to ratify the ERA in the Illinois General Assembly; served as Deputy Director of Catholics for a Free Choice, Vice President of People for the American Way and board member, Choice USA; currently board member of Veteran Feminists of America.

    Eleanor Pam – President, Veteran Feminists of America; a pioneer feminist and Professor Emerita, City University of New York; co-founded NOW New York’s first education committee with Kate Millett; has focused on education issues and women in prison.

    Barbara Love – A lesbian feminist activist in the early days of NOW and for years following; co-author of “Sappho was a Right-On Woman: A Liberated View of Lesbianism” with Sidney Abbott; editor of “Feminists Who Changed America, 1965-1975”; currently serves on the board of Veteran Feminists of America; Love can speak about the early struggles around lesbian rights and the development of NOW policy around the issue.


Concord – Strategies to Combat Anti-Abortion Agendas in the States and Nationally

More than 900 state laws have been passed since 1995 to limit women’s access to reproductive health care. This workshop will examine proactive strategies used in Pennsylvania and other states to combat TRAP laws and other legislation designed to increase barriers to access critically important health care services, including abortion. Of special concern are state laws that are defunding women’s health clinics and inching laws closer to outright abortion bans. This workshop will connect state and national campaigns to protect and expand access as well as efforts to end the harmful Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal funding for low-income women to obtain abortions. Finally, this workshop will discuss organizing in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s decision in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, the Texas law that imposes TRAP restrictions intended to close down women’s clinics.

    Moderator Caryn Hunt – President of Pennsylvania NOW and is a writer and media professional; a representative to Pennsylvanians for Reproductive Health statewide coalition and to the Pennsylvania Campaign for Women’s Health Coalition in place to support the state Agenda for Women’s Health.

    Carol Tracy – Executive Director of the Women’s Law Project since 1990; presided over major victories in the areas of reproductive rights, discrimination in employment, education athletics and welfare; Lecturer, University of Pennsylvania and Bryn Mawr School of Social Research; has served on numerous boards and non-profit agencies in the Philadelphia area.

    Tara Sweeney – Communications Director, National Institute for Reproductive Health, which works across the country to increase access to reproductive health care by changing public policy, galvanizing public support and normalizing women’s decisions to have abortions and use contraception.

Lexington – Ending the Culture of Complacency: Campus Sexual Assaults

When one in five women can expect to be sexually assaulted during their college experience, women are not receiving an equal education. Sexual assault results in discrimination in education, which violates federal law. As efforts to stop sexual assault on campus have grown, a pushback is attempting to force victims to report sexual assault to police – which as many feminists know rarely results in a successful prosecution and is often traumatizing to survivors. Legal Momentum will discuss their extensive research that refutes the assertion that individuals accused of rape or other types of campus sexual assault should be given the same constitutional/due process protections as defendants in criminal trials. There is another process which better protects victims and applied appropriately results in expulsion for perpetrators. Legal Momentum was instrumental in drafting and passing New York’s “Enough is Enough,” which House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) described as the most comprehensive and effective statute to end campus sexual assault.

    Moderator Carol Robles-Roman – President and CEO of Legal Momentum (formerly NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund); formerly Deputy Mayor for Legal Affairs and Counsel to NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, leading city efforts to combat domestic violence and human trafficking through Family Justice Centers.

    Jennifer Becker – Staff Attorney for Legal Momentum; formerly Title IX Coordinator for the New York City public school system; former prosecutor for Bronx County, NY; Member of New York City Bar Association Domestic Violence Committee.

    Caitlin McCartney – A Gender Justice Fellow at Legal Momentum; formerly Civil Rights Fellow at the New York State Office of the New York Attorney General, focusing on sex-based discrimination in employment and education.


Bunker Hill – Personal Storytelling to Advance Justice

Personal storytelling has the potential to advance legal, political, and social change when advocates use it strategically. Drawing on examples from campaigns to advance reproductive and LGBTQIA rights, this skills-building session will offer guidance on how to incorporate story-telling into your work and achieve concrete results. Presenters will discuss recent examples of strategic story-telling in amicus briefs submitted to the Supreme Court and media strategy in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt (the Texas clinic access case) and Obergefell v. Hodges (same-sex marriage). How personal stories can enrich rallies and legislative hearings on these issues and others, including economic rights and how effective use of stories requires media amplification. Covered topics will include how to identify and train potential story-tellers; what constitutes a “good story” for different purposes and common pitfalls.

    Moderator Amy Myrick – Staff Attorney for Judicial Strategy at the Center for Reproductive Rights, working on innovative legal strategies to advance the current reproductive rights framework; worked as a social science researcher studying social movements and has published in law journals including the Law and Society Review and NYU Journal of Legislation and Public Policy.

    Kristine Kippins – Federal Policy Counsel, Center for Reproductive Rights, responsible for developing and implementing strategies to ensure protection for reproductive rights and access to reproductive health care, working with coalition partners, members of Congress and the Administration; formerly Director of External Affairs at the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy.

    Kerri Lyon – Oversees SKDK communications and media strategy for corporate and nonprofit clients seeking to raise their profiles, sway public opinion and manage major crises; a former television reporter for NY1 and WCBS-TV; communications director for the New York City Department of Education and New York City Charter School Center and has worked to elevate the voices of reform-minded teachers over the Common Core Standards.

    Kate Bernyk – Oversees the Center for Reproductive Rights communications and messaging strategies across traditional and online media platforms to promote high-profile cases and initiatives; led communications strategies in the Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt case. She has also worked as primary spokeswoman for the New Jersey Department of Children and Families.


Regency B, C – NOW’s Strategic Action Program: Sexual Abuse to Prison Pipeline

Girls and young women in the U.S. experience sexual violence at alarmingly high rates; worse still, victims of sexual abuse are often funneled into the juvenile justice system as a result of these experiences. How can NOW members across the country take action to dismantle this pipeline? In this panel we will explore how the sexual abuse to prison pipeline disadvantages girls and young women – often having life-long impacts, and propose ways for grassroots activists to take action to educate the public and lawmakers. Members will vote on the set of priorities presented in this workshop, part of the 2016 Strategic Action Program, on Sunday.

    Moderator Michele Hamilton – NOW Sexual Abuse to Prison Pipeline Board Committee Chair; second term Board Member, National Organization for Women, PA NOW vice president and chapter president; Assistant Director of Shelter Services (domestic violence and sexual assault) at State College, PA.

    M.E. Ficarra and Emily Imhoff – NOW Policy and Grassroots Outreach Fellows. (See previous listing)


BREAKOUT SESSION C – Friday, 5:15 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Candidate Forums

Concord – Pacific Electoral District
Lexington – Western Electoral District
Bunker Hill – Heartland Electoral District


BREAKOUT SESSION D – Friday, 6:15 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Candidate Forums

Concord – Southern Electoral District
Lexington – Eastern Electoral District
Bunker Hill – Northern Electoral District

Congressional A – Issue Hearing, 5:15 p.m. to 7 p.m.


BREAKOUT SESSION E – Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 9:45 a.m.

Congressional A – NOW’S Political Action Committee (NOWPAC) – Engaging a New Generation of Political Leaders

As NOW celebrates its 50th anniversary and looks ahead to its next 50 years of feminist activism and advocacy, a key to success will be engaging the next generation of feminists in the political process and in NOW. Participating in elections is an effective way for young feminists to bring positive change in their communities. To raise women’s issues to the forefront of campaigns, women must be at the table serving as key campaign staffers, campaign managers and the candidates. NOW members can also serve as invaluable support networks and community connectors for campaigns. Join an intergenerational discussion about how we can support and engage a new generation of feminist political leaders.

    Moderator Jacqueline Kozin – NOW PAC member; former Connecticut NOW President; Campaign Manager for a Connecticut State Comptroller candidate.

    Hala Ayala – President of Prince William County NOW; Virginia State NOW Vice President.

    Alice Cohan – Political Director, Feminist Majority Foundation; Member, Advisory Committee of Women’s Information Network; former Political Director, National Organization for Women; Director, 2004 March for Women’s Lives attended by more than a million marchers.


Concord – Where Did We Go From NOW and What Did We Take With Us?

Continuing with our NOW 50th Anniversary look-back, this panel of NOW’s former leaders who are still active and vigorous in their 70s and 80s, will share their memorable experiences. As they tell it, “We came together from different interests and united around a variety of issues over our NOW careers. In NOW we all fought hard for the Equal Rights Amendment – and we learned issues and skills we carry with us today. Most importantly, we found internal confidence and developed organizational skills.” Among some of the lessons the NOW leaders learned: “Don’t fall in love with tactics – fall in love with outcomes.” And, “Avoid the pitfalls – don’t confuse the person with the issue. Along the way, learn to pay attention to governance and organizing. But also, Remember to laugh.”

    Moderator Lois Galgay Reckitt – Former NOW Chapter President; former NOW State Coordinator for Maine; former NOW Regional Director and Board Member; National Vice President Executive under Presidents Judy Goldsmith and Eleanor Smeal; PAC Board Member and NOW LDEF Board Member; Founder, Maine Women’s Lobby; Founder, Human Rights Campaign Fund; Executive Director for 36 years, Family Crisis Services in Cumberland Country, Maine; currently candidate for State Representative in Maine.

    Judy Murphy – Reporter, editor, daily newspapers, Sports Illustrated magazine; National NOW Press Secretary during ERA countdown campaign; spokesperson for Women of Time after filing class action lawsuit against Time Inc. for sex discrimination; retired NOW State Coordinator in Vermont; active in NOW since 1968.

    Myra Terry – Former NOW New Jersey State President; founder of NOW NJ Foundation; Founder and Executive Director for many years of Women’s Fund of NJ; Founder, first Board Chair and current Executive Board member of EMERGE NJ.

    Marion Wagner – Member, Indiana NOW Board and the Indianapolis Chapter Board, Former Chapter President, National NOW board and National PAC member; Emeritus Professor of Social Work, Indiana University School of Social Work; Member, Council on Social Work Education, Commission on Women.

    Marian Watkins – Two-term former National NOW Board member; current member of Pennsylvania NOW Board and member of several NOW board committees, including Committee to End Racism.


Lexington – Building a Grassroots Movement to Expand Support for Caregivers

Caregivers, who are predominantly women, provide the majority of family care work, including child-rearing and long-term care for ill relatives. The demand for caregiving is growing as the population ages and the need for long term caregivers grows. Sixty percent of caregivers of older adults are women and they often must reduce their paid work hours or drop out of the paid labor force entirely to accommodate their caregiving responsibilities. Thus, they face significant financial penalties in lost wages and pension income, along with less Social Security contributions due to gaps in their work history. Recent initiatives to build grassroots support and to promote legislation in Congress have focused on valuing the work of caregivers and helping to build financial security.

    Moderator Elizabeth Blair – Research and Management Associate with the Center for Elder Care and Advance Illness, Altarum Institute; formerly, Research Assistant, Long-Term Quality Alliance; Research Associate with the Commission on Long-Term Care, researching family and paid caregiving.

    Barbara Goldschmidt – Educator, writer and licensed therapist with a passion for providing care for the elderly and persons with disabilities; Co-author, Comforting Touch in Dementia and End of Life Care: Take My Hand, a caregiver guide to the benefits of touch; as publicity director of New York magazine, she booked Gloria Steinem on one of her first interviews and helped with the launch of Ms.Magazine.

    Anne Montgomery – Deputy Director of the Center for Elder Care and Advanced Illness, Altarum Institute, developing community-based, integrated elder care arrangement; former professional staff member, Senate Special Committee on Aging and the House Ways and Means Committee.

    Deborah Watson – Home care worker involved in the Service Employees Union (SEIU) 1199 “Fight for 15” Campaign to raise the minimum wage.

    Jan Erickson – NOW Director Government Relations, responsible for issues related to Social Security and older women’s economic security, among other issue areas.


Bunker Hill – Stop Fake Clinics: Texas NOW’s Brilliant Campaign

As a referral lawyer for Jane’s Due Process which provides legal services for pregnant teenagers, Moderator Poppy Northcutt frequently heard from young women who had visited so-called Crisis Pregnancy Centers and, as she put it, “heard some real horror stories from them.” Northcott and her activist panel members will discuss the tactics used by crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) to prevent women from accessing abortion care and contraception. NOW chapters in Texas have undertaken an action-oriented Stop Fake Clinics campaign to raise awareness of the deceptiveness of the CPCs. Panelists will discuss in-person and telephone probes of the fake clinics, sidewalk counseling and demonstrations outside of fake clinics, plus efforts to “follow the money” to learn who is funding these deceptive “clinics.” Additionally, ideas for legislative action against fake clinics will be presented.

    Moderator Poppy Northcutt – Member, Board of Directors, National Organization for Women in early 1970s; attorney specializing in women’s rights; President, Texas NOW and Houston Area NOW; coordinator of Texas State NOW’s Stop Fake Clinics Campaign; initiated the Houston Area NOW Clinic Defense Team that has been providing escorts at a Houston abortion clinic for more than three years; first female engineer to work in NASA’s Mission Control during Apollo 8; lunar crater Poppy is named after her.

    Jasmin Patel – Works with University of Texas Medical Students for Choice, conducted research into the services of the Life Choices clinic in San Antonio which helped to prevent the CPC from having an official relationship with the university.

    Lexie Cooper – Re-convenor of Austin NOW Chapter; formerly a clinic escort with Houston Area NOW’s Clinic Defense Team; coordinates semi-weekly protests outside of a fake clinic in Austin.

    Rufi Natarajan – Escort with Houston Area NOW’s Clinic Defense Team; coordinates the telephone probes of fake clinics for the Houston Area NOW Truth Squad; writes scripts for phone probes and collects data from the callers.


Regency B, C – NOW’s Strategic Action Program: Equal Rights Amendment

NOW members–and women around the country–experience sexism in a myriad of ways. Community-focused activism will be critical to unifying activists in the fight for the Equal Rights Amendment, particularly as we push for ratification in just three more states. In this panel, we will explore ways that NOW’s grassroots activists can expand the national conversation around the Equal Rights Amendment, focusing on the needs of their local communities. Members will vote on the set of priorities presented in this workshop, part of the 2016 Strategic Action Program, on Sunday.

    Charlotte Klasson – NOW Equal Rights Amendment Board Committee Chair’ two-term board member, National Organization for Women, representing the mid-south region; State Coordinator, Louisiana NOW; President, New Orleans NOW Chapter and founder of the Legislative Agenda for Women (LAW).

    M.E. Ficarra and Emily Imhoff – NOW Policy and Grassroots Outreach Fellows. (See previous listing)


BREAKOUT SESSION F – Saturday, 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.

Congressional A – The Founding of NOW: She Was There! Part Two

Muriel Fox, Co-Founder of NOW, joined by early activists Barbara Love, Eleanor Pam and Mary Jean Collins will discuss the founding of NOW: the timing, the intention, the Broad Statement of Purpose, the early challenges and political environment. The workshop will feature eye-witness accounts of early NOW-how chapters were formed, issues developed, people recruited. How NOW chapter formation came about and questions as to whether state organizations should be preserved. Goal is to encourage chapters and state leaders to preserve history of their organizations; explore how to use these resources to work with women’s history and women’s studies programs. (See speaker information under Workshops B)

    Moderator Muriel Fox – Co founder of NOW and member of NOW’s first Board of Directors.

    Mary Jean Collins – National Action Vice President, 1982-1985; Former mid-west Regional Director, 1970; long-time NOW leader.

    Eleanor Pam – President, Veteran Feminists of America; pioneer feminist and early NOW activist.

    Barbara Love – Lesbian feminist activist in the early days of NOW; author and Board Member, Veteran Feminists of America.


Concord – For-Profit “Prisons” – Immigrant Women and Children Flee Violence, End up Detained and Deported

Since 2014, thousands of women and children have left their homes in Central America – primarily Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras — because of extreme levels of organized crime, gang violence, sex trafficking, and economic violence. Murder rates have increased exponentially. Women and children traveling north face the risk of additional violence, kidnapping for ransom, sexual exploitation, or being swallowed up by human trafficking networks. After being processed by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, they are sent to detention facilities run by a for-profit corporation specialized at running prisons but not caring for women and children suffering from trauma. Two facilities where immigrant families are sent have been cited for multiple safety violations. Women are subjected to a Credible Fear interview to determine whether they may move forward with an asylum claim, but often do so without legal representation – which often leads to quick deportation. This is an issue which questions the U.S. commitment to social justice and one NOW chapter in San Antonio allied with an immigrant support center are trying to make a difference.

    Moderator Jonathan Ryan – Executive Director, Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES) since 2008, an organization which provides free and low-cost legal services to underserved immigrant children, families and refugees in south Texas; previously worked as staff attorney at American Gateways, helping to establish the Legal Orientation program for adults in DHS detention.

    Rebecca Flores – A San Antonio NOW member and retired union organizer, United Farm Workers; member, Interfaith Committee who visited women and children in Karnes City, TX detention center in 2015 and continues to assist a woman and her son after their release with all the obstacles placed before them.

    Jenny Hixon – A San Antonio NOW member and policy fellow, Texans Care for Children focusing on birth outcomes and early childhood education; has worked with state and local health departments on maternal and child health issues.

    Amy Fischer – Policy Director, Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES) in the Washington, D.C. metro area; five years’ experience working with youth at the intersection of juvenile and immigrant justice in North Carolina.


Lexington – Faith and Feminism: Unlocking the Power of the F Words

It might be easy for some to get the impression that faith and feminism are mutually exclusive terms – but nothing could be further from true. Using efforts to expand access to abortion, through the elimination of the Hyde Amendment and the EACH Woman Act as well as efforts to maintain civil rights protections for LGBTQIA individuals, expert panelists from Catholics for Choice, Jewish Women International, National LGBTQ Task Force and the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice will examine different faith perspectives on sexual and reproductive health and rights and justice, explore connections between faith and feminism, and offer best practices for mobilizing people of faith for feminist ideals and women’s equality. Panelists will emphasize the importance of collaboration and respect between faith and feminist communities for achieving shared goals of equality, dignity and freedom to choose.
Moderator Sara Hutchinson Ratcliffe – Director, Domestic Programs, Catholics for Choice.

    Jana Priestley – Director, Faith Formation, UCC Center Church, Hartford, CT; representative of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice CT (RCRC) affiliate; Coalition Council Member at RCRC.

    Ilana Fleming – Manager, Advocacy Initiatives, Jewish Women International.

    Victoria York – National Campaigns Director for Religious Exemptions and Welcoming Movements, National LGBTQ Task Force; Florida Director, Organizing for Action; Member, Human Rights Campaign’s National Diversity & Inclusion Council; the National Black Justice Coalition’s Leadership Advisory Council; first openly gay member, Howard University Board of Trustees; Board Member, Center for Black Equity and Next Generation Leadership Foundation.


Bunker Hill – Documenting Our History and Digitizing NOW Chapter Archives

Most histories of NOW have focused on the national level. The feminist movement is largely remembered in terms of national leaders, but would never have changed so many hearts and minds, would never have transformed our society without the efforts of women in local communities, working tirelessly for gender justice. We must document the rich history of the second wave feminist movement while many of our founding members are still with us. Many are in the 70s and 80s – time is running out. In the same workshop, you will learn how to collaborate with a university or historical library to preserve the story of NOW and the struggle for equal rights. Also information will be provided on how to handle and catalogue archival materials for the World Wide Web, providing access to everyone. This is a great way to preserve stories of strategies for equity and to help others develop ideas for political activism.

    Co-Moderator Karen Bojar – Professor Emerita, English and Women’s Studies, Community College of Philadelphia where she founded the Women’s Studies/Gender Studies Program; President, Philadelphia NOW chapter, 2001-2009; Board Member, Board Member, Philadelphia NOW and Pennsylvania NOWPAC; Author, numerous articles on feminist activism ; Co-editor with Nancy Naples, “Teaching Feminist Activism” and “Feminism in Philadelphia: the Glory Years – 1968-1982; Blogger about women and retirement, and currently writing a book about grassroots politics in Philadelphia.

    Co-Moderator Kathy McMahon-Klosterman – Long-time NOW member; Emerita Faculty, Women’s Studies, Miami University, Ohio; Producer and Host of local NPR Radio Program, Women About Women; Board Member, first Ohio shelter for battered women; co-founder of first Butler County (and Ohio) Take Back the Night March, 1978 to present.

    Joanne McQueen – Long-time NOW member; Board Member of first Ohio shelter for battered women; Co-founder of the first Butler County (and Ohio) Take Back the Night March, 1978 to present; Owner, mail order feminist business, Fantastic Feminist; created and maintained archives for two NOW chapters from 1974 until 2000.

    Patricia Ulbrich – Ph.D., Visiting Scholar in the Gender, Sexuality and Women Studies Program, University of Pittsburgh and Director of the Sisterhood project, an oral history and multimedia project focusing on influential feminist leaders and pioneering feminist organizations in Pittsburgh, 1968-1989, having recorded 80 interviews on digital video, developing collection of records and memorabilia and created three multimedia exhibits. Also, taught sociology and women studies at University of Miami (FL) and University of Akron (Ohio); Co-founder, Women and Girls Foundation of Southwest Pennsylvania and served on board of Pittsburgh Action Against Rape; Member, first Pittsburgh NOW chapter.

    Jody Perkins – Digital Archivist; university librarian.


Regency B, C – Can We Really Talk? Feminism, Race, Gender & Identity – A Workshop on Intersectionality

Feminist discourse has finally entered the mainstream, with infographics about gender inequality popping up across social media platforms and in the news. While we should all be proud of the great strides we have made in advocating for equality, much of the conversation is limited to the experiences of white, cisgendered, heteronormative women. Through this workshop, we will use Kimberle’ Crenshaw’s intersectionality framework to help our participants explore the nuances within their own identities and understand the personal and political power and privilege that they have within the context of a society still very much influenced by white supremacist, classist, heteronormative and patriarchal lenses. Using economic empowerment and economic justice as our launching point, we will unpack and explore ways in which our perceived identities can clash with how we may self-identify. This workshop intends to highlight just how far away we still remain from an actual color-blind, gender neutral and equal opportunity society today.

    Moderator Nicole Brownstein – Community engagement and advocacy specialist with a background in public policy and urban planning through a feminist lens, working to help New York reach its feminist potential through awareness and inclusion; Communications and Public Outreach Manager, Natural Areas Conservancy; serves on the board for The Other Side, a nonprofit using Theater of the Oppressed to empower girls around the world.

    Caryn T. Davis – No Limits for Women workshop leader; workshop leader for white women and men on issues related to eliminating racism; advisory board member for The Other Side, an international organization that brings girls together to share their lives and stories; workshop leader for Jews on issues related to ending Jewish oppression.

    Abby Dobson – An independent scholar, researching the intersection of race and gender in the imagination, creation and consumption of music; has made presentations at major national academic conferences; is also a Sonic Conceptual Artist who mixes genres; her debut CD, “Sleeping Beauty: You Are the One You Have Been Waiting On” was released in 2010; is passionate about using music as a tool for empathy cultivation for transformative social change; creates music to privilege Black female voices; volunteers with NOW-NYC and is 2016 Artist-in Residence with the African American Policy Forum.

    Jessica Robles-Morales – Program Manager, Women’s Center for Gender Justice, John Jay College.


BREAKOUT SESSION G – Saturday, 2:45 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Congressional A – Pursuing the Best Route to ERA Ratification

A panel of experts will discuss communications, organizing and political strategizing for full ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. There is renewed interest in the ERA with a new film, Equal Means Equal, and a growing national coalition involving prominent actors and advocates focusing on the need for a Constitutional guarantee of equality for women. Panelists will cover such aspects as expanding a national coalition, building statewide coalitions, developing a communications strategy, using messages that reach out to women of color and others to become more involved in this effort, and finally lobbying legislators to support and ratify a federal ERA. The panel intends to bring a stronger focus to organizing efforts that involve a strategic political calculation, stressing real-world political planning so that advocates can better understand the prospects and resources required for passage and ratification of a start-over ERA or for the alternative three-more states ratification strategy.

    Moderator Roberta “Bobbie” Francis – ERA Consultant, Alice Paul Institute in Mt. Laurel, NJ; Founding Chair (1999-2015) of the ERA Task Force of the National Council for Women’s Organizations; Script Consultant in 1998 for the 17-minute educational film The Equal Rights Amendment: Unfinished Business for the Constitution, which is available for download at, a website established in 1999 and continually updated by Bobbie; Director, New Jersey Division on Women, 1990 – 1994.

    Bettina Hager – Bettina is DC Director of the ERA Coalition and Fund for Women’s Equality. She also serves as the Co-chair for of the Equal Rights Amendment Task Force of the National Council of Women’s Organizations. Bettina has conducted lobby training workshops and organized and participated in Senate and House briefings on ERA ratification legislation. Bettina participated in an ERA Roundtable at the National Women’s Studies Conference in 2015 and has authored an article on the ERA which has published in a special edition of Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies in 2016.

    Desiree Jordan – Founder, United Women New York, Inc. in 2012 to promote women’s rights and gender equality, regardless of age, race, ethnicity, religious or political affiliation, sexual orientation or preference; social worker in the Bronx; Member, NOW’s Women of Color Committee and the Combatting Racism Task Force; volunteers for an international development non-profit organization and works closely with the Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition, the Elizabeth Cady Stanton Trust, and Women on 20s.

    Marena Groll –Grassroots activist and community organizer in North Carolina; a feminist speaker, writer and ardent advocate for the Equal Rights Amendment; has been instrumental in organizing a broad coalition of organizations in her battleground state to push for ratification of the ERA; Chair of NC4ERA, a project of NC NOW and Co-chair of ERA-NC Alliance.

    Jan Erickson – Director, Government Relations, National Organization; Director of Programs, NOW Foundation; formerly professional staff member, U.S. Senate, Alaska governor’s office and state legislative research agency; staffed and consulted on several dozen election campaigns; led successful state-based efforts to ratify the ERA and repeal a restrictive abortion law, authored several professional papers on the Equal Rights Amendment, including an article in an upcoming edition of Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies, Ohio State University.


Concord – Women of Color and Immigrants Leading NOW Into the Future

As NOW looks towards evolving and growing in the next 50 years, we need to pay attention to the demographics of our organization and have our chapters reflect our communities in order to remain vital and relevant. We must also find fresh ways of creating and sustaining community leadership. Foremost among our concerns is the need to attract more women of color and immigrants to our chapters. And, at the same time, we should also try to get more women of color on local non-profit human service boards which are overwhelmingly White, even though the core population they serve is not. NOW members can gain more community influence while working to reduce institutional racism and speak with power on intersectional political issues.

    Moderator Michele Hamilton – National NOW Board Member, Mid-Atlantic Region; Vice President Pennsylvania NOW; Chapter President of Ni-Ta Nee NOW (Centre County); Board Member, Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition.

    Shamine Daniels – Council Member, Harrisburg City, PA; former President, Harrisburg NOW; former Board President, Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Council.
    Dona King , Ph.D. – Teaches and conducts research, African American Studies and Women’s Studies at Pennsylvania State University; Lecturer, Africana Research Center, Pennsylvania State University.

    Kathy Wilson – Former Board Member, Pennsylvania NOW; Former Director of Affirmative Action, National Organization for Women; Representative of Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission for over 20 years.


Bunker Hill – Freedom Under Attack: Protecting Real Religious Liberty is Radical and Imperative

Religious liberty is a fundamental American principle; it belongs to each individual. Currently that freedom is under siege as the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and its conservative allies attempt to redefine it as the right to protect their business interest at the expense of women, workers, LGBTQIA individuals, students and anyone who disagrees with them. Coalition for Liberty & Justice experts will examine the spurious arguments of the Catholic hierarchy and their allies who would use religion to distort constitutional protections, undermine equality, restrict access to important health care and other services for women, workers and LGBTQIA individuals and otherwise violate individuals’ conscience and civil rights.
Moderator Glenn Northern – Domestic Program Senior Associate, Catholics for Choice, coordinating work of the Coalition for Liberty & Justice; CFC liaison with the media, the public and advocates for policies that protect what real religious liberty should mean in this country.

    Toni Van Pelt – President and Public Policy Director, Institute for Science and Human Values, Inc.; former Board Member, National Organization for Women; conducted a recent speaking tour of the U.S. to raise awareness and warn of the dangers of religious refusals being enacted into public law to elevate religious views above civil rights protections and other laws which permit discrimination against certain persons and groups.

    Candace Bond-Theriault – the Policy Counsel for Reproductive Rights, Health and Justice at the National LGBTQ Task Force where she primarily works to combine the Reproductive Rights communities and the LGBTQ communities to fight against religious refusals at the federal legislative level.

    Candace Gibson – Policy Analyst/Legal Counsel, the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health; represents interests of marginalized communities in policies which seek to limit access to citizenship, healthcare and other social services through public policy and law at the state and federal levels.


Lexington – Ride the Title IX Wave: Expanding the Network and Protecting LGBTQIA Students

Title IX is an excellent – but underused — tool to promote economic and educational equity for both students and staff at educational institutions in both areas of academics and athletics. Title IX coordinators are key to protecting the equal education rights of students and to ending sex discrimination – but many schools fail to have trained Title IX coordinators who can be an effective advocates even though federal law requires this. Attendees will be provided an Office of Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education Title IX Guide to take to local school districts to help them improve their Title IX resources. One excellent example of how Title IX compliance can be successfully applied comes from the University of New Mexico where a cross campus collaboration strengthened LGBTQIA inclusion and visibility. A tool kit will be distributed on how to work with university officials and the community to advance LGBTQIA interests, leverage legal liability and build a stronger foundation for Title IX compliance.

    Moderator Connie Cordovilla – Associate Director of Human Rights and Community Relations, covering women’s issues, American Federation of Teachers; Treasurer, National Coalition for Women and Girls In Education; active with Coalition of Labor Union Women, Northern VA NOW Chapter.

    Erin Prangley – Associate Director, Government Relations for the American Association of University Women; former professional staff member for several senior members of Congress and the Congressional Caucus on Women’s Issues.

    Sue Klein – Educational Equity Director, Feminist Majority Foundation; Co-chair of the National Coalition for Women and Girls in Education’s Single-Sex Education Task Force; Co-president of the Clearinghouse on Women’s issues; 34-year veteran of research offices in the U.S. Department of Education; author of over 200 publications; editor, 2007 Handbook for Achieving Gender Equity through Education and Title IX Coordinators: An Underused (Resource) Requirement to End Sex Discrimination in Education.

    Heather Cowan – Title IX Coordinator, University of New Mexico.

    Alma Rosa Silva-Banuelos – Director, LGBTQIA Resource Center, University of New Mexico; member of numerous committees that discuss sexual assault on campus.


BREAKOUT SESSION H – Saturday, 4:15 p.m. to 6:15 p.m.

Board Elections

Concord – Pacific and Southern Electoral Districts
Bunker Hill – Western and Eastern Electoral Districts
Lexington – Heartland and Northern Electoral Districts

NOW PAC Reception: Poster Session and Silent Auction – 4:40 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Regency B, C

The Ms. President NOW campaign is NOW PAC’s campaign to elect Hillary Clinton the first feminist woman President. NOW activists have been instrumental in gaining votes and delegates for Hillary in primaries and caucuses throughout the country. They have run for delegate, held leadership roles in the campaign, done visibility events, tabling, door knocking, watch parties, rallies, and lots of phoning. Come see what other NOW members have done and what you can do in your own area as we prepare for the critical election in November.

At NOW PAC’s Poster Session and Auction you’ll have an opportunity to view posters highlighting some of the excellent Ms. President NOW work done by NOW activists. View items like pictures, flyers, and media and talk to the organizers about their events and tips for success. At the same time you can bid on highly sought after feminist suffrage and ERA memorabilia and many other wonderful items. Get some great stuff, help the NOW PAC, be inspired, and have a lot of fun! And did we mention refreshments?