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At the Downtown Spokane Public Library

Saturday, April 27, 2019   |   9AM to 4PM 

Washington State NOW Conference

at the Downtown Spokane Public Library

April 27th, 2019  |   9AM - 4PM

$25 - $35 per person.

NOW Memberships and sliding scale pricing available! See Eventbrite for further registration information. 

About This Event


Our dynamic, informative program is now final and you won’t want to miss a minute. Check out presenter bios below. Most importantly, REGISTER SOON!


  • Opening Ceremony: Carol Evans from the Spokane Native Tribal Council

  • Women’s Warrior Song: Cheryl Wapes'a-Mayes

  • Kate Bitz: "Misogyny and the Alt-right: How Anti-feminism Fuels White Nationalism & how to Fight Back"

  • Nikki Zacherle Haste: Indigenous Women’s Issues

  • Young Feminist Perspectives: Ellary Lockwood, Dharma Hoy, and Jen Contreras, local high school and college women speak out

  • Heather Bahne: Veteran's Caregivers Initiatives

  • Deva: "Womanism... A Conversation"

  • Olympia Legislative Update: Jessie Turner, NOW lobbyist

  • Stephanie Widhalm- Child Advocacy Center Director and Forensic Interviewer: Child abuse/family support services

  • Elisa Law from the State Historical Society updates: 2020 Suffrage Centennial

  • The Raging Grannies: A musical performance


The conference is hosted by the Spokane chapter of the National Organization for Women ( Event fees are $25 for NOW members; $35 for non-members (includes an annual NOW membership).  Lunch provided. Registration fees are also offered to students and NOW members at a sliding scale - please complete the registration process and choose the option to pay at the door. Some scholarships are available – for information contact Kialynn at


FemFest 2019

Later that evening the Spokane NOW chapter will sponsor our second annual FemFest (6:30-9:30 pm) which will include art with a feminist theme, presentations by vocal artists and some terrific musical acts. We strongly encourage you to attend the conference and to stay for FemFest. Details at

For more information contact Kialynn at


Parking & Accessibility


The parking garage below the Downtown Library is operated by Diamond Parking and is OPEN during construction. 

Parking is available under the library for $1.00 per half-hour (plus tax) with a daily maximum of $8.50 (plus tax). Visit the library's website for further details. On Saturday, you'll need to walk to the front door from the parking garage because the basement doors won't open until 10:00 when the library opens. We'll let you in the front door when you arrive. Additional parking options include the Riverpark Square garage as well as the metered street parking. 


The conference will take place on the ground floor level of the Library, and is wheel chair accessible from the basement by elevator. 


Heather Bahme is the Eastern Washington Regional Coordinator for VetCorps, the Veteran Conservation Corps and the TBI Program all for the Washington Department of Veterans Affairs. Heather is an Army Veteran retired after 20+ years of service in November 2014. She started with VetCorps at Eastern Washington University in 2011 and helped develop their Veterans Resource Center. Heather coordinates 6 universities/colleges that span North Eastern Washington and two interns with the Veterans Conservation Corps currently working within the Vets on the Farm Program. Heather’s is also a caregiver to her husband, whom is an Army Veteran and Survivor of TBI/PTSD.


Kate Bitz was born and raised in the Spokane area, then spent over a decade in Hamburg and Berlin. Throughout her education in urban planning and her history of working on projects like tenant support and a neighborhood food co-op, she kept up a practice of researching and counter-organizing against the far right. With Alternative für Deutschland entering Parliament, Brexit, and the election of Donald Trump, confronting the rise of white nationalist ideology has become her focus. She is currently a 2018-2019 Western States Center Senior Fellow in their Defending Democracy program. Conference follow-up:


Jennifer Guadalupe Contreras is a junior at EWU double majoring in Women & Gender Studies/Sociology and a work study student at the Women's and Gender Education Center. Jen is the vice president of Planned Parenthood Generation Action and a member of the Scary Feminists. In her spare time she enjoys playing guitar and supporting local shows!

Deva is art curator for Shades of Me and Stylist for Posh and Maverick. She was raised as a free black child in the Midwest, born to intellectual creatives. She spent a lot of time being encouraged to learn how to think and not what to think. Deva has always had a gift for bringing people together and creating beautiful experiences. That gift came to fruition when she gathered local woman of color together for the art event, “Shades Of Me”. She harnessed her community relationships and passion for raising voices to successfully bring to the forefront, a platform that highlights female artists of color. Deva loves her brown. Deva loves being a black woman. Deva loves being a creative. Deva is ready to change the world through beauty and by being a maverick.

Carol Evans is the Chairwoman of the Spokane Tribal Business Council, and she is the first woman to serve as Tribal Chair.  Prior to being elected to the Spokane Tribal Council in 2013, she worked twenty-eight years as the Chief Financial Officer for The Spokane Tribe of Indians.  Carol graduated from Eastern Washington University with a Bachelors of Arts Degree in Business Administration and retains a CPA Inactive Certificate from the State of Washington.  Carol truly believes that our spiritual tradition shows us the way to live in harmony, balance, and respect. One must respect self, our earth and each other.  Each and every matter of creation has a purpose and one purpose is as important as another.  Shay u hoy.

Dharma Hoy is currently a senior at Central Valley High School. She helped lead her school’s walkout last year which led her to work in campaigns. She was an intern with Lisa Brown last summer, and in the fall was promoted to Deputy Field Organizer. She is currently doing work with Breean Beggs and the Spokane County Democrats Democracy Together Project.


Elisa Law,  (B.A., M.A. University of Washington) is honored to be serving as your State Coordinator for the upcoming Women's Suffrage Centennial in 2020. Before taking on this role with the Washington State Historical Society she managed the touring documentary project, Project 562: Changing the Way We See Native America and wrote and designed the award-winning exhibition and book Unsettled~Resettled: Seattle's Hunt Hotel recounting the post-war resettlement experiences of Japanese Americans in Seattle. Conference follow-up  253-219-7215  @suffrage100wa on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter


Ellary Lockwood is a senior at Lewis and Clark high school, and is a local activist whose passions include feminism and school safety. She is planning to study environmental ethics and policy in college to help give back to the planet.

Raging Grannies: In the tradition of wise women elders, the mission of the Spokane Raging Grannies is to promote global peace, justice, and social and economic equality by raising public awareness through the medium of song and humor. Our goal is to challenge our audiences to work to bring about the social changes that are required in order to end economic oppression, particularly of women and children, and to end racial inequality, environmental destruction, human rights violations, and arms proliferation. We model ourselves after the Canadian Raging Grannies.  We use tunes of old songs and write lyrics to fit what we sing about.  We are challenged to keep step with current issues.

Niki Zacherle Haste is the Eastern State Representative of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women of Washington. Living in a small rural town on the Colville Reservation, she is continuing her education to soon study social work. Niki advocates for Indigenous rights and is bringing back the community garden. She helped coordinate the “Women’s Persistence March 2018” as fundraising lead and has petitioned the Spokane City Council to pass MMIWG Awareness Day as May 5 . Niki continues to speak at community events, colleges, and universities to bring awareness about MMIW.

Jessie Turner joined Cascadia Law Group as a Government Affairs and Policy Specialist in 2014 after six sessions at the Washington State Legislature. Jessie leads advocacy and facilitation projects at the local, state, regional, and international levels and has ten years of experience working in public policy development, advocacy, and stakeholder engagement. Jessie works on a multitude of issues including affordable homeownership, healthcare, energy efficiency, and climate.

Cheryl Wapes’a-Mayes is enrolled in the Assiniboine-Sioux Tribe at Fort Peck Indian Reservation in Northeastern Montana. She spent thirty-one years of her thirty-four year teaching career at Chief Leschi Schools at the Puyallup Tribe of Indians. She taught many grade levels and subjects, but was most successful at teaching the Lushootseed language, Native culture and history, and cultural arts. She is currently enjoying her first year of retirement.

Cheryl is active in the National Organization for Women as Tacoma NOW president and currently serves on the National Board where immigration, reproductive rights, and violence against women are her areas of passion.

Cheryl is a member of Thurston County Democrats and was appointed to TDC Campaign Services. She is also involved in Urban Indians Northwest.

Stephanie Widhalm, MSW, LICSW, MHP, CMHS Children’s Advocacy Center Director and Forensic Interviewer. Stephanie received her Master of Social Work in 2007 and holds licensure as an Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) as well as designations as a Mental Health Professional (MHP) and Child Mental Health Specialist (CMHS).  Stephanie began her career at Partners in 2006, working as a Children's Legal Advocate, Child Interview Specialist, and Mental Health Therapist.  In 2016, Stephanie transitioned to the Spokane County Regional Behavioral Health Organization as an Integrated Care Coordinator for a seven-county region.  In 2018, Stephanie returned to Partners to lead the Children's Advocacy Center as Program Director. 




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