Virginia NOW - Who We Are
For more than four decades Virginia NOW - the Virginia chapter of the National Organization for Women - has been at the forefront of women’s advancement in Virginia. We are a non-profit feminist membership organization composed of chapters, members and supporters across the Commonwealth and we advocate for and actively welcome women and men of all ages, races and ethnicities, without regard to sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ability, and marital and economic status.
As the grassroots arm of the women’s movement in Virginia, VA NOW’s main purpose has been to champion women’s rights in a politically conservative state. Our efforts have been effective in defending our current rights and achieving greater legal and political equality for all women.
Some people think the struggle for women’s equality is over. The truth is that discrimination based on sex and gender continues to limit all women, rich and poor alike. Opponents of women’s reproductive, economic and political equality are still working to undermine our rights, not only in Virginia but also across the nation.
Join us today if you share our goals to: promote feminist ideals, lead societal change that puts more women in political posts; increase educational, employment and business opportunities for women; and enact tougher laws against violence, harassment and discrimination, to eliminate all forms of discrimination, and achieve and protect the equal rights of all women and girls in all aspects of social, political, and economic life.
Membership in national NOW is on a sliding scale and includes state and chapter membership. Join our mission to empower women and strengthen equality within Virginia by becoming a member today.
Please note that Virginia NOW and its local chapters are not equipped to serve as a crisis hotline or provide emergency resources.
The Virginia NOW Political Action Committee (PAC) expands women's participation in Virginia politics and civil life through direct political work with feminist candidates, both male and female, for office.
Virginia NOW is a non-profit feminist organization whose purpose is to bring women into full participation in society --- sharing equal rights while living free from discrimination. We promote awareness of issues that impact women economically, legally, socially, and personally. Our chapters across Virginia work in their local communities and cooperate at the state level to promote feminist values and a progressive vision for a prosperous, thriving, and robust future for women and Virginia.
Collectively, we work towards these goals by raising and maintaining awareness of feminist responses to women's issues through education of the public at large via old and new media. We also strive to expand women's participation in Virginia politics and civic life through direct political work with feminist candidates, lobbying the state legislature, and collaborating with our allied organizations across the social spectrum.
The purpose of Virginia NOW is to bring women into full participation in the mainstream of American society, exercising all privileges and responsibilities thereof in truly equal partnership with men.
Membership and Election Rules
Due to COVID-19, our 2020 semi-annual membership meeting and officer elections is delayed.
For all Virginia NOW members in good standing, the semi-annual meeting and luncheon are free. For non-members there is a nominal charge of $10 to help defray the cost of the luncheon. If you have not renewed your membership, we urge you to do so because in order to vote, you have to be a member in good standing for at least 30 days prior to election day. In order to run for office, you must be a member in good standing for at least one year prior to the date of the election.
Office Descriptions and Election Procedures
President shall be the executive officer of Virginia NOW; shall help resolve conflicts within Virginia NOW; shall foster communication within Virginia NOW; shall serve as or appoint a spokesperson for Virginia NOW in all matters except those under the legislative vice president; shall preside at all meetings of Virginia NOW and the State Council; shall appoint members of the nominating committee, elections committee and any other committees; shall appoint the Treasurer with the advice and consent of the executive committee; shall appoint, with the advice of the state conference, the State Council, or the chapters of Virginia NOW, coordinators to implement programs, policies, or plans mandated by the state conference, the State Council, or the chapter. President has the authority to appoint and retire certain executives as needed. The President may also hire at will for the needs of the chapters with advice of their executives and chapter officers; shall be, or appoint with approval of the State Council, the Chair of Virginia NOW PAC (Political Action Committee); shall serve as, or appoint with approval of the State Council, a representative to state coalitions; and shall be an ex-officio member of all committees except the nominating committee.
Executive Vice President (EVP) shall assume the responsibilities of the President if the President is unable to perform them. In the event of a vacancy in the position of President, the Executive Vice President shall assume the position of President until such time as regular elections are held. EVP shall assist the President in the operation of the state organization; and shall manage state meetings, caucuses, and conferences. EVP shall keep minutes of meetings of the executive committee, State Council and state conference.
Treasurer shall be appointed by Virginia NOW’s President with the consent of the officers; shall work with the President to draw up a projected annual state budget for the year to be presented at the first executive committee meeting after the state conference; shall collect and deposit state funds and disburse them in accordance with the approved budget upon receipt of duly approved vouchers; shall submit a Treasurer’s report at each State Council meeting; shall prepare and submit financial transactions and reports for review by the executive committee; shall be a member of the Virginia NOW PAC, and shall provide guidance to the executive committee in management of financial resources of Virginia NOW.
Vice President of Communications manages internal/external communication and correspondence within the state; shall be responsible for setting up and maintaining an Internet presence for Virginia NOW; shall accept and assist in updating amendments to the state bylaws for distribution to the membership; shall produce press releases and other press information for the President; shall produce/archive Virginia NOW's media and photography; may also serve as Virginia NOW’s webmistress; conducts day to day activity of website, Facebook, and Twitter, blog, etc., and their overall administration; is able to appoint and/or retire a Web Editor to assist any and all communication needs with the approval of the state President.
Membership Vice President shall coordinate with existing chapters to identify and contact at-large members to expand existing chapters or convene new ones; shall assist chapters in development of programs and projects, including administrative development; shall assist chapters in communicating with other levels of NOW regarding chapter development; shall provide coordination, training and information to chapters on member recruitment and retention, including National and Virginia NOW recruitment incentives and procedures; shall report statistics on chapter and at-large membership to the State Council at least annually.
Legislative Vice President shall coordinate with chapters on legislative matters, including providing training and legislative information on a regular basis; shall coordinate lobbying and testimony on state and national legislative issues; shall serve as or appoint a spokesperson on legislative issues; shall assist in drafting legislation in accordance with Virginia NOW’s Legislative Agenda; shall communicate with National NOW about state and national legislative issues; shall be a member of Virginia NOW PAC (Political Action Committee) ; and shall maintain communication with the Senators and Delegates of the Virginia General Assembly, with Virginia’s Congressional Representatives, and with other elected and appointed state officials.
Election Rules for Virginia NOW INC.
All members in good standing at least 30 days prior to the election date may vote. A member in good standing has paid dues/renewed their membership in that period of time.
Nominations for the offices described above can be submitted to the nominations chair at Nominations@vanow.org (this email address will be available March 3, 2020)
We ask all nominees to submit a paragraph or two about your qualifications for the office and your areas of interest and support.
Nominations can be made from the floor of the meeting but paper copies of the qualifications statement should be provided by such candidates.
The nominations chair will receive all nominations and share them with the nominations committee members.
Members in good standing will be given a voting card that can be held up to indicate the vote for each office. The person receiving the most voting cards will be considered the winner.
In the event of office transition, all material will be picked up from the out-going officer by the newly elected officer within a month. All bank account signatures will be changed in that same time period.
Posted March 1, 2020, Updated May 28, 2020