Member Mondays: TammyJo Eckhart

How long have you been in Monroe County?

20 years!

What is your involvement with NOW, and why did you get involved?

I've been involved in NOW twice in my lifetime.

The first was when I was an undergraduate at Drake University in Iowa, and I was part of the first students in the new Women's Studies Minor when it began in the late 1980s. Through a history of feminism rhetoric class, I learned about NOW and decided to join. I stayed a member through my years in New York City until I moved to Bloomington 1997. At that point, with the nearest chapter of NOW up in Indy and no car, I let my membership drop.

After the horrific national election results of 2016, my household made a pledge to get more involved than we normally were. When I saw that a branch of NOW was forming in Monroe County, I sent in my money and rejoined NOW and then become involved in the communications committee so I could use my skills as an author and a historian to help others find inspiration to fight and keep fighting.

How do you define “feminism”?

Feminism is the recognition that when society is organized along duality, the feminine side has commonly been denigrated, and thus humanity has been prevented from achieving its full potential. Only by lifting up the feminine to the same level of respect can we move beyond the limitations of duality and embrace the full potential of humanity.

Of NOW’s six priority issues, where are you most channeling your energy?

hile I find all of the priorities to be important, I tend to focus on constitutional equality, ending violence against women, and LGBTQ rights.

When you aren’t working towards social change, what do you do for fun in your life?

I'm a geek in the pop culture and academic senses of that word, so I watch a lot of TV, movies, listen to lots of music, play board games and role playing games, play some computer games, and read a ton. I'm also very much into chocolate and coloring.