Remembering the Legacy of Pauli Murray

Statement by NOW President Christian F. Nunes  

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, we celebrate the birthday of a true trailblazer and co-founder of the National Organization for Women, Pauli Murray. Murray’s pioneering work as a lawyer and writer has served as a guiding light for activists and advocates for generations, encouraging us to treat all individuals with dignity and respect.  

“One person plus one typewriter constitutes a movement,” asserted Murray, and her words are a beacon of hope and a reminder that one’s individual dedication can bring about monumental change. Murray’s tireless efforts to advance gender and racial equality in legal, societal, academic and religious circles have left an indelible mark on the course of history.  

As a Black, queer woman, Murray’s work as a feminist often goes unnoticed. Murray served as a bridge between the civil rights movement and the women’s rights movement. In recognition of her achievements, we recommit ourselves to the principles of intersectional feminism that Murray championed throughout her lifetime. We strive to carry her torch of progress forward. As we continue our fight for an equitable society, Murray’s unwavering commitment to social justice is an enduring source of inspiration for all of us at NOW. 

In the past, the remarkable contributions of Murray have often been erased, a regrettable oversight in our history. Our responsibility is to ensure that this never happens again and that her story is brought to light. We must remember the struggle for justice is a collective endeavor, so let’s ensure that the brilliance of women like Murray is not lost to the annals of history but celebrated and cherished.  

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