At a conference about social movements in Los Angeles last month, all it took was the mention of her name and the crowd erupted in applause. In the world of community organizing, Ai-jen Poo, the director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, is a rock star.
As the crowd sat, though, Poo asked the women to stand up again and give themselves a round of applause. “Women are the heart of social organizing,” she said. “And you should be recognized.”
Rock star she may be, but Poo always puts the movement first. When she was voted onto Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World this year – hailed by no less than Gloria Steinem – she attributed it to her cause. “It’s a testament to the power of women’s organizing,” she said over tea. “And particularly to the movement that I’m a part of.”