Betty Friedan continued as president through the Third National NOW Conference in Atlanta, Georgia (December, 1968)
and until March, 1970, when Aileen Hernandez, former EEOC
Commissioner, was elected to that office at the Fourth National Conference in Des Plaines, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago.
Wilma Scott Heide became chairone of the Board. Also at that
time a Legal Defense and Education Fund was finally incorporated.
On August 26, 1970, 10,000 women and men staged a spectacular march down New York City's Fifth Avenue, as part of
NOW's nationwide celebration of the 50th anniversary of women's suffrage—still another example of NOW's successful adoption of tactics used by the early feminists.
Membership had mushroomed to 15,000 by September,
1971 when NOW chapters from Maine to Hawaii attended the
Fifth Annual Conference in Los Angeles on Labor Day Weekend. Wilma Scott Heide became NOW's third national president and Muriel Fox became chairone of the Board. A signi
ficant resolution of this convention was that NOW acknowledged the "oppression of lesbians as a legitimate concern of
In 1971, NOW members came together with other feminist
organizations and formed the National Women's Political Caucus, a non-partisan coalition of women in politics, which provided a forceful demonstration of woman power in politics
during the 1972 election campaigns.
Incidentally, even when NOW members agree to disagree,
the results have benefited the new feminist movement. It
was disagreement with NOW's adoption of the abortion issue
and unhappiness with its unconventional tactics that led some
NOW members to create another organization, Women's Equity
Action League—WEAL—in December, 1968. Though more limited than NOW in the scope of its program, WEAL added new
strength and impact to the feminist cause.
NOW members have also played significant roles in the creation of Black Women Organized for Action, BWOA, on the
west coast in January, 1973 and the National Black Feminist
Organization, NBFO, on the east coast in August, 1973.
1973 saw the Sixth NOW National Conference, which convened in Washington, D.C, in February, form national task
forces on Minority Women and Women's Rights, Sexuality
and Lesbianism, Rape, Older Women and Poverty—thus initiating even more activities with the goal of equality for all women.
Wilma Scott Heide was re-elected president and Judith Lightfoot became chairone of the Board.
By early 1974, NOW had grown to almost 40,000 members,
over 700 chapters in all 50 states and some foriegn countries.
Yes, an old revolution caught fire again in 1966 with NOW's
Seventh National Conference in Houston proof of its increasing
growth and strength. NOW will continue to fan the flames until
women finally achieve the long-sought goal of the first wave of
The Executive Woman
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on NOW's past
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LIFE & CASUALTY
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IF Housewives Got Paychecks: The latest toting up of the value of a housewife's
services would put her annual earnings at $12,140 a year—if she received a salary
for her work. This tabulation was made by GSI, Inc., a subholding company of
Esmark, Inc., Chicago.
The company estimates that the more than 28 million nonsalaried wives and
mothers in this country actually perform some $340 billion in services annually.
Husbands average 1.5 hours a day in household chores, worth about $1,300
Rise In Working Women: More than 33 million women, 43% of the women of working age, now hold jobs. In 1960, that figure was only 37%.