Writing at the intersection of motherhood, feminism and my Latinidad

05 July 2005

2005 National NOW Conference

Maybe I won't have a ton of time to go on and on about the conference, but here are some highlights:

* The main reason to be in Nashville was to vote on senior leadership. The Kim Gandy's (i) slate vs. Rosemary Dempsey's slate. Both are great speakers and honestly if either of them won, I wouldn't worry too much about either kicking ass. Kim Gandy & her slate did win thou.

* Rosemary and her slate did congratulate Kim & her slate on Sunday morning during a resolution hearing.

* I met a ton of fab women including another Veronica from Chicago. I totally freaked her out when I found her since I guess I was kinda stalking her for 24 hours. But now we're buddies. She also said that she's always felt a psychic connection with Frida and then we debated if Frida was just a representation for me. We're both totally into the whole "we're here, meeting for a reason" train of thought.

* I got to see Ellie Smeal, Patricia Ireland, Carol Moseley Braun, and Martha Burk again. Obviously, to them it was our first meeting, but they meet a zillion people a day. Why should they remember me? OK, besides me being one of a handful of Latinas there...but back to the conference.

* I got to meet Katie Hnida. I not only wanted to meet her because of her courage to speak out about rape on college campuses, but she played football! Don't think I'm downplaying her courage - I was almost in tears while she spoke - but the fact that she played college football and scored 3 extra points...that's just fab. I got to shake her hand, thank her for everything, bonded over baseball (for about 5 seconds), and got an autograph. Sadly, I lost my program book.

* We rallied on Saturday and that was a lot of fun. But it was damn hot out!

* I also got myself on the hook for $600 to go towards funding one paid internship for next summer to a low-income student. It was like a bidding war. One woman got up during the resolution process and said she'd donate $600 if someone matched it. A friend of mine matched it. Then another friend did too. I thought, why the hell not!? And I think that within 10 minutes we had next year's internship funded. It still needs to pass the National Board, but since there is funding, that should be just a formality. Watch for some fundraising news in the next week or so.

* One member I know let her membership lapse and couldn't vote. Can you believe that? She went all the way there to find out she wasn't an updated member. HA!

Overall, it was a great weekend. I got a lot done and have a lot to consider. The lack of Latinas is starting to get disheartening, especially at the 20s-30s area. Let me be specific, the lack of Latinas in leadership roles is unnerving.

I've put a lot of time, energy, money, and love into NOW. While I'd love to be paid back by holding a senior leadership position one day, I'd be more happy to look around the conference hall and see a sea of Latinas staring back at me. *big sigh*