NOW National Conference: 2005

email thisSend or printable versionPrint this page
Take Action Join / Donate Issues Chapters About NOW Shop NOW Home

2005 Conference Speakers

Conference Speakers

Tillie Black Bear

Tillie Black Bear
Woman of Courage Award Recipient

Tillie Black Bear, the executive director of the South Dakota-based White Buffalo Calf Woman Society, the first shelter established for women of color in the United States, helps 300 women and 600 children each year end the violence in their closest relationships.

In addition to heading the society, established in 1978, Black Bear worked with women's historian Sally Roesch Wagner to produce a poster series featuring the life experiences of female Native American elders from the nine Dakota/Lakota Nations in South Dakota. The series touched various aspects of the elders' experience, from the racist sting some felt from in-laws of European-descent to the difficulties of working in war-time factories and caring for families while their husbands were gone.

As a victim of domestic violence, Black Bear, a member of the Sicangu Lakota Nation/Rosebud Sioux Tribe, attended a 1978 two-day symposium hosted by U.S. Commission on Civil Rights held in Washington on wife battery. After an impromptu gathering in the restroom of the convention's hotel, Black Bear and a group of fellow attendees, who dubbed themselves the "the Bathroom Sisters," pledged to give domestic violence a national voice.

That year, Black Bear and other Bathroom Sisters formed the National Coalition against Domestic Violence to educate the public about domestic violence through advocacy and education programs. (The coalition was instrumental in passing the 1994 Violence Against Women Act, aimed, in part, at curbing domestic violence through intervention services and education.)

A few months later, Black Bear formed the South Dakota Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault and was a founding mother of the White Buffalo Calf Woman Society, Inc., the oldest shelter for rape and domestic violence victims abused on Native American reservations.

Martha Burk

Martha Burk

Dr. Martha Burk is a political psychologist and women's equity expert who is co-founder and President of the Center for Advancement of Public Policy, a research and policy analysis organization in Washington, D.C.

Burk currently serves as Chair of the National Council of Women's Organizations (NCWO), a network of over 200 national women's groups collectively representing ten million women. She led the NCWO effort to open the Augusta National Golf Club to women, and remains at the forefront of the debate on women's progress in corporate America. Her most recent book Cult of Power: Sex Discrimination in Corporate America and What Can Be Done About It unmasks how corporate America conspires to keep women down, and offers solid solutions.

In addition to extensive work on domestic policy, Burk has conducted training workshops with women's NGOs internationally in Macedonia and Kuwait, under the sponsorship of USAID, and has conducted training in the U.S. for delegations from Russia, Botswana, Korea, Romania, and Bulgaria, and the Middle East. She has recently been a member of official U.S. Delegations to international conferences in Iceland, Lithuania, and Estonia.

Burk's institutional consulting clients have included the University of Texas, the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, the U.S. Department of Education, the National Science Foundation, the Smithsonian Institution, Women's International News Gathering Service, National Education Association, Search for Common Ground, the United States Information Agency, and the U.S. Department of State.

Judge Daughtrey

Martha Craig Daughtrey

Martha Craig Daughtrey is an attorney, law professor and federal judge—the first Tennessee woman appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit (Nashville). She served on the Tennessee Supreme Court for three years before being nominated by Bill Clinton in 1993 to the federal bench.

Daughtrey is a past president of the National Association of Women Judges and the Women Judges' Fund for Justice. She has served as chair of the Judicial Division of the American Bar Association and chair of the ABA's Appellate Judges Conference. In 2003 Daughtrey received the ABA's Margaret Brent Award for Women Lawyers of Achievement.

Daughtrey was born in Kentucky and received both her bachelor's and law degrees from Vanderbilt University. From 1968 to 1972, she was a prosecutor in the federal and state courts in Nashville. Daughtrey joined the Vanderbilt law faculty in 1972 and taught there until her appointment to the Court of Criminal Appeals in 1975.

Daughtrey has served periodically as an adjunct professor of law at Vanderbilt University and has been a faculty member of the Appellate Judges Seminar at New York University since 1977. She is a frequent continuing education lecturer, a current member of the Board of Visitors at Mercer University's Walter F. George School of Law, and a former member of the University of Memphis Law School Board of Visitors. In April 1991 she was a member of the ABA-sponsored CEELI delegation to Romania, where she consulted with the drafters of the new Romanian constitution.

She and her husband, Larry Daughtrey, a political columnist, have a daughter, Carran, who is an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, and a granddaughter, Mattie, who was adopted from China in 2001.

Sybil Niden Goldrich

Sybil Niden Goldrich
Woman of Courage Award Recipient

More than 20 years ago Sybil Niden Goldrich discovered that she had breast cancer. After undergoing bi-lateral mastectomies, she received silicone gel-filled breast implants as part of her reconstructive surgery. Goldrich should have been on the road to recovery, but instead her nightmare was just beginning.

Within two years, Goldrich underwent seven operations and a total of four sets of implants, finally choosing to have her implants removed for good. During this time she experienced painful and disabling complications, and was described in her medical records as a "breast implant failure." She would later learn that the silicone gel had migrated throughout her body to her liver, uterus and ovaries. Goldirch decided to find out why she "failed" and in 1987 she uncovered the fact that the breast implant manufacturers had never conducted long-term studies on implant safety and that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had never approved their use. She wrote an article about her experience which was published in Ms. Magazine in 1988.

As a result of the article, Goldrich began to hear from women around the country who had similar experiences or wanted more information. That same year she co-founded Command Trust Network, a clearinghouse dedicated to providing women with hard-to-find information on breast implants and silicone. Goldrich began actively lobbying Congress, educating women through the media and participating in legal proceedings. Her activism led to the landmark 1992 congressional hearings that resulted in the restriction of the sale of the then-unregulated silicone implants.

A 1997 Lifetime movie told Goldrich story and chronicled her participation in what was at that time the largest class action lawsuit in U.S. history. This suit put Dow Corning — the company that helped develop silicone implants in the 1960s — out of the breast implant business.

Currently, the FDA is considering the applications of the two manufacturers that are making the next generation of silicone implants, and Goldrich has been there every step of the way. She is working to ensure that women are fully informed, members of Congress are educated, that manufacturers conduct rigorous studies, and that the FDA upholds its regulatory responsibility — all so that no woman has to go through what she experienced.

Katie Hnida

Katie Hnida

Katie Hnida made women's sports history by becoming the first woman ever to score in a NCAA Division I football game. Yet, Hnida reached stardom before ever entering the halls of ivy. As a high-school senior, she was crowned homecoming queen in her football uniform and named Colorado Sportswoman of the Year.

Hnida's athletic career and life were forever changed when she joined the Colorado University football team as a walk-on placekicker in 1999. From the first day of practice, some of her male teammates made it clear she wasn't welcome there.

What began as verbal abuse and sexually graphic comments developed into groping during team huddles and footballs fired at her head during practice. Eventually it escalated to rape. Afraid of what might happen if she contacted the police, Hnida kept quiet and “fell into the darkest of dark places.” She left Colorado, and as a placekicker at the University of New Mexico in 2003, she made history when she kicked two extra points. Her shoes and uniform are in the College Football Hall of Fame.

The next year, recruiting scandals and allegations of rape by C.U. football players brought back Katie's nightmare, and she decided to come forward and tell of her own experience, in the hope that her story could save others from the same horror. Since then, she had toured the nation speaking with groups of all ages about the importance of ending violence against women.

This amazing woman, who was named Teen People magazine's Number One Teen Most Likely to Change the World, continues to do just that.

Dolores Huerta

Dolores Huerta

Dolores Huerta is one the century's most powerful and respected labor movement leaders. Huerta left teaching and co-founded the United Farm Workers with Cesar Chavez in 1962: "I quit because I couldn't stand seeing kids come to class hungry and needing shoes. I thought I could do more by organizing farm workers than by trying to teach their hungry children." The mother of 11 children, Ms. Huerta has played a major role in the American civil rights movement.

Using tactics of non-violence, she organized a successful boycott of California table grapes that lasted five years but resulted in the entire California table grape industry signing a three-year collective bargaining agreement with the UFW, and launched UFW into a period of fast-paced organizing, with Ms. Huerta negotiating contracts with growers, lobbying, organizing strikes and boycotts and well as spearheading farm worker political activities.

Always politically active, she co-chaired the 1972 California delegation to the Democratic convention, and led the fight to permit thousands of migrant/immigrant children to receive services. She also led the struggle to achieve unemployment insurance, collective bargaining rights, and immigration rights for farmworkers under the 1985 Rodino amnesty legalization program.

Aside from currently serving as the secretary-treasurer of the United Farm Workers, Ms. Huerta has served as vice-president for the Coalition for Labor Union Women, the vice-president of the California AFL-CIO, and is currently a board member for the Fund for the Feminist Majority.

Kakenya Ntaiya

Kakenya Ntaiya
Woman of Courage Award Recipient

Kakenya Ntaiya comes from the Maasai Tribe in Western Kenya and is the first girl ever in her village to go to college. In May of 2004, she received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in International Studies and Political Science at Randolph-Macon Woman's College in Virginia. Ntaiya currently works for the United Nations Population Fund as a youth advisor and hopes to continue with her education in the fall. In an effort to open doors for other girls and women, Ntaiya plans to go back to Africa and open a school for girls, a library, a maternity clinic and more.

Ntaiya's remarkable journey was chronicled by The Washington Post in a recent four-part series. She grew up in the small village of Enoosaan, and her early life experiences were common for girls in rural Kenya. However, Ntaiya is no ordinary young woman-she decided to write her own destiny.

As the eldest of eight children, Ntaiya had to help her mother raise her siblings. Their home had no running water or electricity and Ntaiya worked in the fields to help feed the family. At the age of five, Ntaiya was engaged and was supposed to be married when she turned 14. Although this is the normal life of a Maasai girl, Ntaiya refused to get married and remained determined to get an education. In order to finish high school, Ntaiya made a deal with her father-she underwent the painful ritual of genital mutilation. Her father kept his end of the bargain, and Ntaiya excelled in school, eventually winning an almost full scholarship to Randolph-Macon.

Obtaining the consent of her parents and the community members to move to the U.S. and attend college was a challenge, as was raising the money not covered by her scholarship. But with much determination and negotiation, Ntaiya made her dreams a reality. Her mission next is to help make the dreams of the women in her village come true.

Sara Paretsky

Sara Paretsky

Paretsky will be signing her brand-new book Fire Sale at the conference!

When Sara Paretsky introduced her private detective V.I. Warshawski in Indemnity Only in 1982, she revolutionized the mystery world. By creating a female investigator who uses her wits as well as her fists, Paretsky challenged a genre in which women traditionally were either vamps or victims. Hailed both by critics and readers, Indemnity Only was followed by ten more best-selling Warshawski novels. The Los Angeles Times says, "Paretsky is unique among the women writing about women," while Publishers Weekly claims, "Among today's P.I.'s, nobody comes close to Warshawski."

Paretsky's deep-rooted concern for social justice, the hallmark of her novels, has carried her voice beyond the world of crime fiction. As a frequent contributor to the New York Times and The Guardian, and a speaker at such places as the Library of Congress and Oxford University, she is an impassioned advocate for those on society's margins.

Not only has Sara Paretsky broken barriers with her own work, she has also helped open doors for other women. Her role in founding Sisters in Crime, an advocacy group for women writers, caused Ms. Magazine to name her Woman of the Year in 1988. In 2002, the British Crime Writers Association awarded her the Cartier Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement. Paretsky's work is celebrated in Pamela Beere Briggs's documentary, Women of Mystery.

To give back to the community, Paretsky established the Sara and Two C-Dogs Foundation, which primarily supports girls and women in the arts, letters, and sciences. She has endowed several scholarships at the University of Kansas, and has mentored students in Chicago's inner city schools.

Paretsky grew up in eastern Kansas. She and her brothers attended a two-room country school, which gave Paretsky her lifelong love of baseball and under-dogs: she played third base for a school that always finished at the bottom of its rural league. Her first published writing, a story about living through a tornado, appeared in American Girl magazine when she was eleven. In 1966, Paretsky came to Chicago to do community service in the neighborhood where Martin Luther King was organizing. Staying on to make Chicago her home, she received a Ph.D. in history and an MBA from the University of Chicago. She lives in the city with her husband, a physics professor at the University of Chicago, their wonder dog Callie, and near their adored granddaughter.

email thisSend or printable versionPrint this page

Take Action | Join / Donate | Issues | Chapters | About NOW | Shop
  Links | Privacy Policy | Home

Copyright 1995-2005, All rights reserved. Permission granted for non-commercial use.

National Organization for Women