This month’s ‘HollaWHO?’ is HBack O-Town’s Director, Julie Lalonde!

Crossposted from

Meet Julie Lalonde, the eternal optimist fighting street harassment in Ottawa, Canada.

Why do you HOLLA? Because it’s what my grandmother would want me to do.

What’s your signature Hollaback? I’m sure your mother is proud!

What’s your craft? Feminist advocate.

HOLLAfact about your city: We are the home of the world’s largest skating rink! We’re also the city that fun forgot. Sadly.

What was your first experience with street harassment? When I was in middle school, my aunt surprised me with tickets to the ballet in Toronto. Being a small town kid, we decided to make it into a full on vacation. On one night, we stopped at a bank machine as we headed back to the hotel. My mom soon noticed that someone was following us.

I remember how panicked my mom and aunt were and how they quickly picked up their pace. We walked a few more blocks, trying not to look scared while the man kept following us. Finally, my mom dragged us into a local bar where she had to explain the whole situation to the bartender in order to justify having a minor with her!

Define your style: My voice is my weapon of choice.

My superheroine power is… eternal optimism.

What do you collect? Haters

Say you’re Queen for the day.  What would you do to end street harassment? I’d institute mandatory community service to anyone caught street harassing and a day at the spa for every victim!

If you could leave the world one piece of advice, what would it be? Don’t be afraid to take the lead! If you see a gap, FILL IT.

What inspires you? “Martin Luther King Jr. didn’t become famous for saying ‘I have a complaint’” I read this amazing motto by eco-activist Van Jones a few years ago and I couldn’t have said it better myself. I’m continuously inspired by people who see a problem and make an attempt to fix it. There will always be cynics and haters, but how many of them come to the table with a solution?

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