On the ground advocacy in Vermont is directed by the Vermont Adoptee Rights Working Group. Here are the the people behind it.
The Vermont Adoptee Rights Working Group formed in early 2022 to organize around opposition to H.629. It formed quickly in response to discriminatory legislation in the state. Its members are all adopted people, and Ellie Lane is a Vermont-born adoptee. VARWG is a core partner in the New England Adoptee Rights Coalition.
You can contact the Vermont Adoptee Rights Working Group directly at [email protected].
Rebecca Peacock Dragon was born, adopted, and raised in Washington DC. She currently works as Communications Liaison for a municipality in Vermont and is a student in the Mountainview MFA program for fiction. She is Vice President of PEAR (People for Ethical Adoption Reform) and their Director of Education and Domestic Adoption Matters. She is also a founding board member of Adoptees For Choice and their Director of Media Relations. The work that takes most of her energy is parenting three teenagers. She can be found on twitter: @JuniaDragon and IG/FB @mythsmisgivings and @GuaranteedHappyAdopteeTM.
Rebekah (Bek) Henson
Rebekah is a content and digital marketing professional with more than a decade of experience creating and managing content projects for start-ups, small businesses, and universities. In 2016, she moved herself, her spouse, and her three cats 300 miles from Philadelphia to a tiny town in Vermont to serve as the editorial and digital content manager in Dartmouth College’s Office of Communications. She is also an active voice for adoptee perspectives online, raising awareness for adoptee rights and justice issues that have very little public visibility and independently studies the history and cultural attitudes that have shaped adoption over the past century.
Mary Anna King
Mary Anna King is one of seven biological siblings who were separated by adoption and raised apart. Her memoir, “Bastards,” published by W.W. Norton in 2015, chronicles the story of her siblings’ separation and their subsequent reunions. Mary was adopted by kin at the age of 10 and grew up in Oklahoma. She now lives in Vermont where she works as a writer and editor. You can find her elevating adoptee voices on Twitter as @maryannaking.
Spokesperson & Founding Member
Ellie is a Vermont-born adoptee. She works at the Vermont Commission on Women as a Policy Research Analyst and Business Manager. Previously she served as staff attorney at Have Justice – Will Travel, where she represented victims of domestic and sexual violence in family law matters. Ellie earned her JD from Vermont Law School and her B.A. in political science from the University of New Mexico. She lives in Braintree with her husband Jeff, her dog Bailey, and her rabbit, Nutmeg.