THE VFA PIONEER HISTORIES PROJECT
“If We Organize, We Can Change the World. You Need to Do it with Love at the Center.”
Organizer. Activist. Political strategist. VFA Board member. One of the country’s leading strategists on progressive issues, including women’s equality and civil rights. Co-founder of Chicago Women’s Liberation Union (CWLU), 1968. Created JANE, an underground abortion service operational 1968-1973. Worked with NOW and designed training for its national board, regions and many of its chapters. Founding director and now Board Chair of Midwest Academy to train organizers of social change, including leaders from NOW and other women’s organizations. Organized Action Committee for Decent Childcare (ACDC) and Sojourner Truth day care center, 1969. Helped start Citizen Action in 1979. Worked on political campaigns; was field director for Carol Moseley Braun’s successful Senate race. National training director of the Democratic National Committee. Director of the NAACP National Voter Fund (2000) increasing African American election turnout. Campaign for Comprehensive Immigration Reform, 2005. Director of Health Care Campaign for the AFL-CIO, 2008. Director of Americans for Financial Reform, 2010. Americans for Tax Fairness. Director, Progressive, and Senior Outreach for the Biden/Harris Campaign. Democracy Partners.
Interviewed by Mary Jean Collins, VFA Historian, June 2022
Photo 1: Heather Booth today. Photo 2: Training women in 1973 at the Midwest Academy. Photo 3. Heather and Paul Booth.
More About Heather:
- Heather Booth’s biography on Democracy Partners, including the interview that was conducted by the Center for Community Change in 2009 and is now in an archive at Brown University.
- Select Films, Interviews, Panels and Speeches
- Heather Booth: When We Organize, We Can Change the World
- The Janes, 2022
- “How Jane Collective’s Founder Heather Booth is Coping with a Post – Roe v. Wade Reality,” by Nicole Phelps, Glamour, June 15, 2022
- Heather Booth: Changing the World, official website
- TEDx Talks – “If We Organize, We Can Change the World,” by Heather Booth
- Heather Booth, from She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry, by Mary Dore
- Select Publications
- “Organizing Principle: For activist Heather Booth, AB’67, AM’70, the personal has been the political for more than 50 years,” by Carrie Golus, UChicago Magazine, Winter 2019
- The Feminist Memoir Project: Voices from Women’s Liberation by Rachel Blau DuPlessis and Ann Barr Snitow, published in 1998.
- Select Veteran Feminists of America Events
- Heather’s remarks (41:42), “Betty Friedan’s 100th Birthday: Moving the Legacy Forward,” February 4, 2021
- Fabulous Feminist Biography
- Heather interviewed by her grandson Henry Booth, May 2018
- Feminist Reunion 2017: “We Will Not Go Back!” June 10, 2017
- “Sharing Our Stories: The Second Wave Feminist Movement,” Durham, North Carolina, March 31, 2017
- “Labor and the Women’s Movement, The Untold Story and Why It Matters,” St. Louis, MO, September 27, 2014
- “Empowering Women: A Tale Of Two Generations,” Alverno College, September 15, 2012
- Heather’s remarks (1:11:20) Honoring The Legacy of Betty Friedan, NYC, June 7, 2011
- Muriel Fox introduces Heather Booth at the Publication Debut of Barbara Love’s, Feminists Who Changed America 1963-1975, November 2006
- “Unfinished Business of the Women’s Movement,” Honoring Midwest Feminists, Chicago, IL August 27-28, 2004
- The Jewish Women’s Archive
- Midwest Academy (Chicago, IL) records, 1963-1990. Chicago History Museum, Research Center
- Women’s History Week : Oral histories of Women Civil Rights Activists – 1940s-1960s
- Appearances on C-SPAN
- Democracy Partners official website
- Midwest Academy official website
- Cited in Barbara Love’s book, Feminists Who Changed America 1963-1975, pages 49-50.
- Wikipedia page