Elections were held in July of 2021, members attending the National Organization for Women (NOW) National Conference elected Christian F. Nunes president and Bear Atwood vice president. The pair will lead the largest organization of feminist grassroots activists in the country, focusing on the core issues of reproductive rights and justice, economic justice, ending violence against women, LGBTQIA+ rights, constitutional equality, and racial justice.
Nunes became NOW president in August 2020 and was previously appointed vice president by the Board in May 2019. She is the second African American president in the organization’s history, the youngest person of color, and the youngest president in 50 years. She is also a former NOW board member and national committee chair, as well as a licensed clinical social worker, consultant, and a woman-minority business owner who is an active community organizer and public speaker. Prior to becoming a national officer, Nunes held local and state NOW leadership positions in the state of Arizona.
“I’m honored to lead NOW as we embark on a new era and recognize the need to reaffirm what it means to be an anti-racist intersectional feminist. We must be more inclusive and employ a more intersectional lens, centering diverse voices and experiences when it comes to our activism,” stated Nunes. “I know many challenges lie ahead, but I also know our grassroots coalition has the power to dismantle the systems that have perpetuated so many injustices and will continue influencing lasting change, as our organization has done for fifty-five years.”
Atwood first joined NOW in 1977 and has been a lifetime member for approximately 20 years. She is a past president of New Jersey NOW, current president of Mississippi NOW, and served on the National NOW PAC and the national board under four NOW administrations. Her previous experience includes serving as a civil rights lawyer representing LGBTQIA+ clients, acting as the Legal Director for the ACLU of Mississippi, and leading the Southern Poverty Law Center’s youth justice project as their executive director.
“Christian and I are committed to building a stronger feminist, anti-racist, intersectional grassroots movement of activists and allies,” Atwood told the Conference. “We want to bring NOW back to its roots and develop strong chapters across the country. Our diverse multigenerational grassroots is our greatest strength, and we are committed to providing the tools needed to build our bench of leaders.”
Christian F. Nunes and Bear Atwood were elected to a four-year term office, which begins on September 9, 2021.
National NOW President, Christian F. Nunes
- 10/02 – Rally for Abortion Rights: D.C (Check out photos below)
- 10/04 – Guest on Elaine B. Holtz (former Sonoma County NOW President)’s Radio Show, Women’s Spaces
- 10/05 – White House Session Event—pending details
- 10/10 – Tucson NOW Speaking Event on Intersectionality and NOW’s Priority Issues
- 10/17 – Co-hosting virtual screening of The Battle of Birth Control documentary with Ripple Catalyst Studios
- 10/21 – Panelist at Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) Roundtable
- 10/21 – Co-hosting NOW & EveryGirl World: Girls State of the Union Forum #1
- 11/04 @ 5pm – invited to the Turkish Ambassador’s home for Five o’Clock Tea or “Beş Çayı” (not an open event but just letting you know in case we’d like to mention it on socials). The invite is at the office, but I can scan to you on Monday if you need more context.
- 11/06 – NCNW’s 2021 Uncommon Height Gala – waiting to hear from them on whether she will be an attendee or speaker.
- 11/11 – Christian Speaking at National Council for Negro Women’s Conference
- 11/12 & 11/13 – 2021 LULAC National Women’s Confernce, Christian as Keynote Speaker. This will be in person / in NY (letter attached for context)
- 11/17 – Feminist Public Square with Michele Goodwin Nov. 17th.docx – Christian will moderate
- 11/20 – pending this NEW date for Book Event with Geeta Kapur and Joel Segal. Will keep you posted on the details for this one because it seems very disorganized.
National NOW Vice President, Bear Atwood
- June 2nd: Panelist at the Run NOW Launch Party
- June 5th: Spoke at the Michigan NOW Conference
- June 30th: Participated in the NOW 55th anniversary event.
Chapter Annual Reports:
Campus Action Network (CANs):
The Chapters Department is currently working on contacting all inactive campus action networks. If any chapter leaders are still in contact with a school/university with a former that had a NOW CAN, please email us firstname.lastname@example.org their contact information to follow up. We would like to revive as many CANs as possible and convene a new Campus Action Network to motivate our youth to get involved.
Please be sure to stay up to date with your dues. If an officer’s membership expires, email our NOW Chapters Leader at email@example.com with your new officer’s first and last name, title, and email address.
Thank you to all the chapters that participated in this past weekend’s national Abortion Rally. Here are some photos we’ve received from Chapters.
Supporters of Women’s Reproductive Rights gathered in Inverness this Saturday, October 2nd to rally and protest restrictive abortion laws being introduced in states like Texas and being discussed in Florida’s own State legislative committee for 2022. Held in conjunction with hundreds of Women’s Marches nationwide to demand continued access to abortion in a year when conservative lawmakers have put it in jeopardy. The demonstrations took place two days before the start of a new term for the Supreme Court that will decide the future of abortion rights in the United States.
New Jersey NOW:
San Diego NOW:
Linda Varonich, Citrus County NOW Chapter Leader: The Inverness rally, which drew over 100 protestors, was organized by Linda Varonich of Citrus County NOW (National Organization For Women) and the Citrus County Coffee Coalition.
Deb MacDannald and Rally Goers:
Victoria Ostrander dressed in vintage suffragette fashion represents multiple eras of struggle for women’s equality!
Nathan Sharp, Eddie Sharp, John Comer and Mike Ciszewski:
Donna Munroe, Kathy O’Donoghue & Linda Meyers:
Tucson NOW’s Ruth Reiman and Mary Swallow:
Phoenix AZ NOW:
Politics and Advocacy
NOW is a multi-issue, multi-strategy organization that takes a holistic approach to women’s rights. Our priorities are winning economic equality and securing it with an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that will guarantee equal rights for women; championing abortion rights, reproductive freedom, and other women’s health issues; opposing racism; fighting bigotry against the LGBTQIA community; and ending violence against women.
Learn about our PAC endorsements and more on the NOW PAC website here.
NOW is a multi-issue, multi-strategy organization that takes a holistic approach to women’s rights. Our priorities include gaining economic equality, a Constitutional guarantee of equal rights for all; championing abortion rights and reproductive freedom, opposing structural racism; fighting bigotry against the LGBTQIA community, and ending violence against women. Read more about our Core Issues here.
Read the weekly messages from Christian and Bear about how they are implementing the Core Issues that NOW is structured around.
Messages from Christian and Bear
NOW in the News
A key component of NOW’s mission is to monitor and elevate the country’s progress and shortcomings regarding women’s issues through social media, press statements, and media outreach.
Recent highlights include our work for racial justice, reproductive health and abortion, and the incoming Biden/Harris administration. Below are our recent press statements and media clips or read more here in our Media Center.
Follow all of NOW’s events here, Events.
Girls State of the Union: October 21st, 7:30 ET/ 4:30 PT
National Organization for Women joins EveryGirl World (http://www.everygirlworld.com) to launch the Girls State Of The Union, a national platform for girls’ voices. The free-to-all event provides a platform to elevate girls’ concerns and to collectively define key policies and actions necessary to create a just world for the women of the future. Featuring teen girl activists, panelists, and thought leaders, the interactive event kicks off a year-long initiative with quarterly events that result in a policy statement to be delivered on Capitol Hill in 2022. Please help register every 14-18-year-old girl you know to participate in this important event.
The 11th Annual Feminist Affair: October 14th, 6:00 –9:00PM ET
On Thursday October 14th 6:00 – 9:00PM, a vibrant feminist community will fill up Hibernian Hall to celebrate our successes over the last two years and honor a group of dynamic changemakers in Massachusetts and beyond. We will livestream for virtual attendees and will be ready to pivot to be completely virtual if needed. One way or another, we are so excited to be reconvening our feminist community from across the state to celebrate all that we’ve accomplished over the last two years. Given that we were unable to hold this annual event last year, we are excited to be awarding two Feminist in Action Awardees this year! Bria Gadsen, Founder of Love Your Menses and Chastity Bowick, Executive Director of the Transgender Emergency Fund.
Press Statements & On The Records:
Recent highlights include our work in pushing an intersectional feminist agenda and ensuring all six core issues are brought to the forefront of our work.
In our blogs, a variety of feminist core issue topics are discussed. All posts and comments reflect the individual views of their authors, and should not be construed as positions taken by NOW.
©National Organization for Women
What’s Up NOW is a bi-monthly publication of the National Organization for Women. If you have suggestions or news items to include, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.