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Creating Change

Young activist takes a stand for fairness

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For Moey Newbold, activism is a family tradition. The 24-year-old Outreach & Communications Coordinator for Central Oregon LandWatch says she learned from a young age the importance of basic fairness as she watched her family members engage in the political process, and heard them talk about the work being done by her now-boss Paul Dewey, to protect Central Oregon's natural spaces. For the last several years, Newbold has been focused on Bend's contentious surface water project, but lately she's focusing on how to better tell the story of COLW. "The majority of my time is spent working with my awesome co-worker Gail Snyder to work on communications strategy and plan awesome events to get people engaged with the great work we do at Central Oregon LandWatch," Newbold says. It's a big job for a young activist at a bare bones non-profit, but Newbold balances out the intensity of working on such sensitive issues by maintaining a colorful sense of humor and trying new things. At the moment, she's learning West African drumming, training for a half marathon, taking up rock climbing—and calling out online dating faux pas.

"I am also waging an ongoing battle to call out all of the guys on Tinder who post pictures of themselves petting exotic animals," Newbold says. On the smartphone-based dating site, she explains, nearly 1 in 10 men are depicted posing with a "drugged up animal," as if to highlight their sense of adventure. Newbold's not impressed.

While the Tinder crusade is a mostly lighthearted aside, it reflects Newbold's Robin Hood-like passion for fairness and equity. More than anything, her work is motivated by a desire to ensure that the vulnerable don't suffer for the profit of the comfortable, that the costs and benefits of growth are spread equitably. Newbold is still mapping out her professional future, but she knows one thing for sure: "I want to be doing something where I'm working with people and bringing about change."

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