Meet a Nasty Woman: 5 Questions with Katie Hultquist

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Meet Katie Hultquist. Katie is a Nasty Woman and the West Coast Director for OutRight Action International, a U.S-based non-profit advancing human rights for LGBTIQ people around the world. She has more than 20 years of experience in nonprofit management, fundraising, and social justice activism for local, national, and international organizations. Previously, Katie served as the Northwest Regional Director at NPH USA, where she raised more than $11 million to support vulnerable children in Latin America and the Caribbean, and helped launch a training institute for young leaders from Central America. Katie was also the Executive Director of Passages Northwest, a nonprofit dedicated to building courage and leadership in girls and women through the outdoors and the arts. Katie has worked in leadership roles with the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, Ashoka/Youth Venture, and Harvey Gantt’s 1996 U.S. Senate Campaign in North Carolina. She has been an active volunteer with the Northwest Girls Coalition, the Women’s Funding Alliance, Seattle University, and as a Board member for OutRight. Katie supported the Washington state marriage equality campaign in 2012, hosting a fundraiser and filming TV ads with her family. She holds a Masters degree in Nonprofit Leadership from Seattle University and a B.A. in International Studies from the University of North Carolina. Katie is originally from San Francisco, and now lives in Seattle with her wife and three children. Read our interview with Katie here.

What makes you a Nasty Woman?

I’m a lesbian, a wife, a mom, a feminist and a warrior for justice. I will never stop fighting and speaking up for and with all womxn.

Share an experience that shaped your views or helped get you involved in activism.

My activism has always been rooted in and driven by a deep belief in womxn’s equality. I got involved with OutRight Action International because OutRight is a feminist, queer organization that is committed to thinking and working intersectionally, and because I’ve had the chance to meet and develop friendships with LGBTIQ people all over the world. I’ve witnessed the gap between the experience of LGBTIQ people in the most tolerant places and those living in the rest of the world. For me, this gap is both unsustainable and intolerable.

What advice do you have for people who want to help enact change and push progress but don’t know how to get involved?

None of us are perfect, but we can all do something. Don’t feel guilty – just start wherever you are. The first thing is to stay informed – for example, you can follow @OutRightIntl for news about what’s happening around the world and opportunities to do something. Second, pick one or two small things you can do, and keep doing them. Monthly donation or postcard writing or canvassing or volunteering. Third, pick at least one thing you can do locally and one thing you can do globally – remember that our local and global movements for equity and justice are connected and we must stay in solidarity with each other. Finally, practice self care so that you don’t burn out. Turn off the news, take a walk, find your community, and do whatever fills your bucket so you can keep going.  

If you could look into the future, 10 years from now, and see that real progress has been made, what does that look like to you?

It’s still illegal to be LGBTIQ in 70 countries – but things are changing. In the past year we’ve seen several countries decriminalize homosexuality, and I can envision that in 10 years there could be many more that follow, allowing LGBTIQ people to live with legal freedom and less stigma. Hearts and minds have also been changing and I envision a world where LGBTIQ people are more accepted, everywhere. The catch is this vision will take focused and sustained effort and conviction, and support from our allies. Join us!

Share with us favorite wine moment, memory, or pairing.

I enjoy wine but I’m not picky. The best wine is anything that I can drink with a dear friend over a long conversation or meaningful celebration!

Tell us more about OutRight Action International.

I joined OutRight Action International as a supporter, Board member, and now West Coast Director, because I believe that LGBTIQ people everywhere deserve freedom, equality, safety, and love. I’ve been fortunate enough to see acceptance and legal recognition advance tremendously in my lifetime, but our communities still face violence and persecution on a daily basis. It’s an honor to amplify the voices of grassroots activists all over the world who are leading our movement forward. P.S. Support local and national womxn candidates; women athletes; womxn small business owners!


Learn more about @OutRightIntl and follow Katie on social media here @kghultquist.

Emily Davis