sections and see how much they'd have to climb. That summer they cycled 1,000 miles and climbed from sea level to 14,000 feet, enjoying the hospitality oflocals from Guayaquil to Quito and parts in between. They'd pedal into a town at 4 p.m., two hours before dark. If they asked for a nearby inn or a place to camp, often they'd be invited in and given plates of rice and even fish. Once they slept in a mayor's office. Mulvey called home from Ecuador at he end of her trip. Her housemate had been offered two teaching jobs in Chin
nd asked if Mulvey wanted one of thelTl. Mulvey had no background in teaching or Mandarin, but she said yes. Three weeks later, Mulvey arrived in Guangzhou armed with three pieces of paper. One was the letter introducing her friend to the school, with no indication that Mulvey had been assigned to take her place. The others said: "Where is the bath- room?" and "Take me to the Guangdong Economic Management Cadre Institute." The students were workers from a local sugar factory, doctors, architects and others, and their age range, 18 to 46, was significant: The 18-year-olds had grown up in a more open society, while some of the older stu- dents had not been allowed to go to high school. They nodded their heads as they lis- tened to their teacher, and it took Mulvey two weeks to realize this was nervousness, not understanding. Soon she began to use the few people in the class who knew some English as a bridge to the other students. She taught for nine months, until the 1989 massacre at Tiananmen Square ended the pro-democracy demonstrations and shook all of China. Guangzhou was about as far from Beijing as Boston is from Mianu, but Mulvey's school and the city shut down. She knew her friends could be targeted for their ties to an American ifshe stayed. "My fanUly was really concerned about me and thought I was in danger," Mulvey says. "I didn't particularly think I was in danger, but I could see why they were freaked out." She left five days later, feeling weird, she says, because she was heading for safety and idn't know what would happen to those she left behind.
Mulvey settled that summer's job search
with a move to California to work as a
field organizer for lnfact. It was fall 1989,
five years into the campaign to pressure GE
to stop producing and promoting nuclear
weapons. Infact orgaIuzed consumer boy-
cotts of GE products, including light bulbs
and refrigerators, and organized hospitals to
boycott GE's medical equipment. Mulvey
and other staff members attended annual
meetings by proxy (representing sharehold-
ers on behalf of several religious organiza-
tions that held GE stock) to publicize the
1nfact reports that at the campaign's
peak, 4 nUllion people and 500 organiza-
tions took part in the boycott. The group
estimated that the campaign cost GE $100
nUllion in lost sales. GE reported that the
canlpaign had no impact, but it sold its
nuclear production business in 1993.
Infact wasn't an instant fit for Mulvey.
She had a "nunor crisis," she says, about six
months into the job.
"There was a time that I thought,'I
really believe tlus work is inlportant, but I
don't know that I can do it: " she explains.
"You have to be on all the time, and I did-
n't know tllat I could do that."
She wasn't easy to work with back
then. "I struggled with figuring out how to
be a member ofthe team:' Mulvey says. "I
knew 'teanl: and I understood 'tearn,' so I
wanted to be participating and contribut-
ing, but 1 wasn't quite getting there on the
Mulvey says she always was "kind of a
shy person" but knows now how to play to
her strengths. She still marvels that the staff
at Infact believed enough in her to give
her a second chance.
She worked as a field organizer for
about a year before moving to the Wash-
ington, D.c., office to become research
director and then moving to Boston in
1992 when the offices consolidated.
In 1993, a year before the heads of seven
U.S. tobacco companies testified before
Congress that nicotine was not addictive,
Infact took on the tobacco industry, begin-
ning with campaigns against RJR Nabisco
and Philip Morris. Infact challenged
tobacco companies to stop marketing
efforts that appeal to youth, to stop spread-
ing tobacco addiction internationally and to
stop denying me dangers of tobacco, and it
challenged them to pay the healm-care
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CA11.0 LIN A A LU M N IREV lEW
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