Family Equality is thrilled to welcome Rebecca Willman to our Program department!
Rebecca Willman, Chief Community Engagement & Programs Officer
Rebecca Willman (she/her) has spent most of her adult life ensuring bodily and emotional autonomy for individuals and families. Prior to Family Equality, she worked at Abortion Care Network supporting the sustainability of community-based abortion clinics and creating a strong and thriving national network of local abortion providers and allies. Before that, she spent many years working in clinics providing direct care to abortion seekers.
Rebecca is also trained as a doula and direct-entry midwife and spent several years supporting people through pregnancy, labor, and early postpartum. A former academic, she has published, taught, and researched in the fields of reproductive health and freedom, gender, and sexuality. She spent 15 years as a yoga and meditation teacher as well.
Grounded in empathy, intersectionality, generosity, and a bias toward action, Rebecca’s goal at Family Equality is to create transparent, focused, and equitable programming that moves us closer to racial justice and freedom for LGBTQ families. She believes that equity and justice are realizable. In the words of Arundhati Roy, “Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.”
Rebecca is raising her adorably magical twins in the mountains of Western North Carolina with the love of her life, Al. She’s a part of a large and loving queer community that helped her become a parent – it’s a story too long to share here, but you should ask her about it sometime!
Top 3 favorite podcasts, books, or TV shows?
As a parent of 2-year-old twins, right now I don’t read anything without pictures, but current household faves are:
- “Bodies are Cool” by Tyler Feder (made even better by toddlers chanting, “bodies are cool! Bodies are cool!”)
- “The Big Orange Splot” by Daniel Pinkwater
- “What Makes a Baby” by Cory Silverberg
What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working?
Clearly, I mostly chase twins, dress twins, feed twins, laugh at twins, and get yelled at by twins. In the remaining moments, I love to be outside, swim, listen to music … and I’m also learning to skateboard and play the piano!
What drives you to do this work?
I’ve tried a handful of times to separate my paid work from my life, but have accepted that for me, they’ll always be intertwined. I’m driven by love, a commitment to bodily and emotional autonomy, and a strong belief that justice and freedom are attainable. Becoming a parent has rocked my world in the best and hardest of ways, so it makes sense that my path now is one where my family is an explicit part of what I’m doing.
What does family equality mean to you?
Quite honestly, I have to defer back to Family Equality’s vision statement here – I’m in total agreement! But to put it in my own words: family equality is about LGBTQ+ families living and loving freely in their own creative and beautiful ways, and dismantling the systems that seek to erase and/or hinder that beauty from shining.
“When you get confused, listen to the music play.” – Grateful Dead