The Chicago SNCC

History Project


Who we are - Heather Booth

Heather Booth joined in support of the protests against Woolworth’s in 1960 (who would not seat African Americans at their lunch counters in the South). She became head of her campus Friends of SNCC and student liaison to Coordinating Council of Community Organizations (CCCO) in Chicago and went to Mississippi for the Summer Project of 1964, working in Ruleville, Shaw and Cleveland, MS. She was the organizer of the first campus women’s liberation group in 1965 and has been involved in and managed many political campaigns, including Deputy Field Director for Mayor Washington, Field Director for Carol Moseley Braun’s 1992 Senate race and was the Training Director of the Democratic National Committee. In 2000, she was the Director of the NAACP National Voter Fund, which helped to increase African American election turnout by nearly 2 million voters. She has been a consultant to a variety of social change and political groups that have included and National Council of La Raza. She was the lead consultant, directing the founding of the Campaign for Comprehensive Immigration Reform. In 2008 she was the director of the Health Care Campaign for the AFL-CIO.  In 2009, she directed the campaign passing President Obama’s first budget.  In 2010 she was the founding director of Americans for Financial Reform, fighting to regulate the financial industry and create Elizabeth Warren’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. She was called to return to Chicago as strategic advisor for Chuy Garcia in his recent campaign for mayor of Chicago.  She was founding director of the Citizen Labor Energy Coalition, co-director of Citizen Action and other organizations. Booth was the national coordinator for marriage equality events around the Supreme Court decision. She was the founding Director and is now President of the Midwest Academy, training social change leaders and organizers.