Sister Simone Campbell, Sisters of Social Service, a former Executive Director of NETWORK, received the Presidential Medal of Honor. A prominent advocate for economic justice, immigration reform, and healthcare policy, she led the Nuns on the Bus campaign and her lobbying helped pass the Affordable Health Care Act under the Obama Administration.
In the face of restrictive voter laws sweeping the country, Sisters and justice-seekers organize “Team Democracy” events in six states, calling on their Senators to pass legislation that protects the right to vote.
Mary J. Novak becomes the first non-Sister to serve as NETWORK’s executive director in April 2021. In July, Joan F. Neal joins the Executive Team as NETWORK’s first deputy executive director and chief executive officer.
Ahead of the 2020 presidential election, NETWORK publicly calls on voters not to re-elect Donald Trump. Countering the idea that Catholics must vote solely on one political issue, NETWORK publishes the “equally sacred” scorecard, using Pope Francis’ words naming concern about economic inequality, racism, and the situation of migrants as “equally sacred” to defense of the unborn.
Following Donald Trump’s 2017 inauguration, NETWORK activated members for advocacy at an unprecedented scale to protect people and programs threatened by the President’s agenda. This included the arrest of 70+ Catholic Sisters and lay people inside the Longworth Senate Office Building to protest immoral immigration policies.
Throughout the year, NETWORK organized 17 rural roundtables in 16 states, meeting and listening to a diverse group of 250 people living in rural parts of the country. Their hopes and hardships were published in a report titled “Raising Rural Voices” to help guide federal policy decisions.
2012’s first “Nuns on the Bus” tour — to speak out against the immoral federal budget proposed by former House Speaker Paul Ryan — wasn’t the last. NETWORK launched six more tours in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018, and 2020 and mobilized hundreds of thousands of people across the country to address important justice issues like voting, healthcare, immigration, and tax policy.
Following Donald Trump’s 2017 inauguration, NETWORK activated members for advocacy at an unprecedented scale to protect people and programs threatened by the President’s agenda. This included a 21-hour vigil on the lawn of the U.S. Capitol to defend access to health care.
The Senate passes the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, a comprehensive immigration reform that NETWORK strongly supported, in a bipartisan vote. The bill is never brought to a vote in the House.
Pope Benedict XVI resigns; Jesuit Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, SJ, is elected, taking the name Francis.