MAKERS Profile

Muriel Fox

Co-Founder, NOW

In this video

In this MAKERS interview, Muriel Fox talks about breaking into the male-dominated public relations world of the 1940s, meeting Betty Friedan in 1963, and becoming a co-founder of the "NAACP" for women, NOW, and making history. 
Muriel Fox is a co-founder of the National Organization for Women (NOW) and, as a prominent public relations executive at Carl Byoir, wrote the organization's first press release, an achievement that made waves for the national women's movement.   In 1963, when Fox met Betty Friedan at an event and told Friedan to count her in if she ever started the "NAACP for women" Friedan mentioned. And in 1966, with thirty-some other NOW founders, Friedan and Fox drafted NOW's Statement of Purpose.   In 1967, Fox became chair of NOW’s first Public Relations Task Force. She served on the NOW Board for ten years, and was elected Chair of the Board in 1971. Fox was also founder of the NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund (now Legal Momentum), serving as President and as Board Chair for 13 years. In her time at NOW, she helped fight for essential legislation including Executive Order 11246, which added sex to Affirmative Action, and she wrote the 1968 letter to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission explaining the need to 'desexigrate' Help Wanted Ads.   Fox has received numerous awards and accolades for her life's work, including being the first woman to receive the "Business Leader of the Year" Award from Americans for Democratic Action and the first public relations executive to win the Achievement Award of American Women in Radio & Television. The NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund also created the Muriel Fox Award for Communications Leadership Toward a Just Society (also known as the "Foxy") in her honor. Fox now serves as Chair of the Veteran Feminists of America board.

More From Muriel