HarperCollins Speakers Bureau

Shannon Watts

Founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America


  • Gun Violence Prevention
  • Women and Gun Violence
  • Movement Building
  • Social Media and Activism
  • Feminism


California, Colorado
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Shannon Watts is a mother of five who, prior to founding Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, was a stay-at-home mom and former communications executive. The day after the Sandy Hook tragedy, Watts started a Facebook group with the message that all Americans can and should do more to reduce gun violence. That online conversation has grown into a nationwide grassroots movement of Americans fighting for public safety measures that respect the Second Amendment and protect people from gun violence. Moms Demand Action has established a chapter in every state of the country and is part of Everytown for Gun Safety, the largest gun violence prevention organization in the country, with over 5 million supporters. Watts tells the inspiring story of how her rallying call-to-action grew into a social movement powered by mothers to protect children from America’s gun violence crisis and offers lessons for others who want to make a difference in their community in her debut book Fight Like a Mother: How a Grassroots Movement Took on the Gun Lobby and Why Women Will Change the World (HarperOne).

Bringing activism into the everyday, One Tough Mother will inspire everyone—mothers and fathers, students and teachers, lawmakers, and every citizen outraged, angry, and motivated to work for change—transforming hearts, minds, and laws, and most importantly, show them how to honor their values with action. Along with her observations and wisdom, Watts shares inspiring messages of perseverance, courage, and compassion, and outlines the core mantras and principles that Moms Demand Action has used to battle the NRA and the intimidating tactics they use to prevent gun safety progress. Watts proves that a woman with a laptop can be more powerful than a man with a gun.

Watt’s fiery and sharp social media presence promotes awareness and brings important issues to the forefront. With the same candor, Watts frequently leads passionate and informative keynotes and conversations across the country to audiences ranging from parent organizations to women’s leadership conferences to colleges and universities.

In addition to her work with Moms Demand Action, Watts is an active board member of Emerge America, one of the nation’s leading organizations for recruiting and training women to run for office. In 2018, she was named one of InStyle Magazine’s Badass Women, one of People Magazine’s 25 Women Changing the World and a Yerba Buena Center for the Arts 100 Honoree. Watts’ writing has appeared in Vogue, Refinery 29, Time, The Washington Post, The Hill, and others.

Praise for Shannon Watts & Fight Like a Mother:

“Shannon is an inspiration to every mom fighting to build a better, safer country for our kids. Her story reminds us that, together, we can be a powerful force for change – and that you should never underestimate a mom’s ability to get things done.”
-- Governor Gina M. Raimondo, Rhode Island

“Shannon Watts is one of my personal heroes, a true activist for our time. After Sandy Hook, she channeled her despair and fury into action. Fight Like a Mother will inspire you to take an issue on and ultimately, change the world.”
-- Katie Couric

“There’s never been more energy behind America’s gun safety movement than there is today, and Shannon Watts and Moms Demand Action are a big reason why. Shannon is fearless, and her story shows that change – even on the toughest issues – really is possible.”
--Michael Bloomberg

“The world needs angry women right now. It’s time we embrace the passion and action behind saying ‘enough is enough.’ Fight Like a Mother is a testament to the positive power of women’s anger and using it as an unstoppable force for change.”
--Soraya Chemaly, writer, activist, and bestselling author of Rage Becomes Her