Shannon Coulter, a digital marketing specialist, did not set out to become the general of a digital army campaigning to boycott products associated with President Trump or his family.

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SAN FRANCISCO — Sitting in a basement office that she rents by the hour, Shannon Coulter ticks off the activities she gave up in defiance of President Donald Trump: renting movies with her husband on Amazon, and shopping at Nordstrom, Macy’s and other retailers that sell Ivanka Trump’s products.

A Nordstrom bag sat on a nearby table. It represents a victory lap of sorts for Coulter, who has almost single-handedly spearheaded a retail revolt against the president and his family. She was wearing a new silver Elizabeth and James lariat necklace purchased at the department store soon after it scrubbed Ivanka Trump’s name from its website.

“The goal,” Coulter said, “came originally from a place of really wanting to shop the stores we loved again with a clear conscience.”

Shannon Coulter

Age: 45

Home: San Francisco

Quote about ‘Grab Your Wallet’ movement: “We don’t even have a T-shirt, we don’t have stickers, nothing.”

Source: NYT

It’s been a wild ride these past few months for Coulter, who runs her shoestring movement from her home, or from cheerfully decorated work spaces like this one — surrounded by bright-blue furniture, clam chairs and decorative pillows that feel more Silicon Valley than anti-administration war room.

Enraged by a video that emerged in October of Trump bragging about sexually assaulting women, Coulter began a boycott of any sort of product connected to Donald Trump. At first, it was just a tweet — a list she had compiled of companies that sold Trump products — but the ember quickly turned into a coast-to-coast blaze.

Thousands of people have contacted the stores Coulter has on her boycott list, including Macy’s and Amazon. Retailers including Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus and T.J. Maxx have backed away from products connected to Ivanka Trump, the president’s oldest daughter, since Coulter’s efforts began.

A herd of activists and celebrities, including the feminist writer Gloria Steinem, the Olympic diver Greg Louganis and the actress Lucy Lawless of “Xena: Warrior Princess,” have expressed support.

The attention has transformed Coulter, 45, a digital marketing specialist, into the unlikely general of the digital army now supporting her campaign, Grab Your Wallet.

“People describe me as an activist in media coverage; I don’t know who they’re talking about,” she said. “I’ve never done anything this organized or structured or purposeful.”

The new role has taken up much of her time, and has made her the target of criticism and attacks from Trump supporters. She’s lost count of how many times she has been called a “bully” or a “disgrace.” The abuse gets more menacing with each victory; a recent email included her mother’s name in the subject line, with threats to publish more of her personal information.

In the latest twist, the boycott has drawn Coulter, a self-described progressive liberal, into a growing debate over whether targeting Ivanka Trump is sexist.

And she said she worries that people will think she is profiting from the venture. Coulter was particularly upset when a knockoff “Grab Your Wallet” group sold clothing and other merchandise on Facebook. “We don’t even have a T-shirt, we don’t have stickers, nothing,” she said, adding that she does not accept compensation from companies, or donations.

“I don’t think either of us envisioned that some of the things that have happened would happen,” said Sue Atencio, who helped Coulter get the site started.

In many ways, Coulter has embraced her new position. She answers emails at all hours and scours Twitter for tips on companies to add, or remove, from the boycott list. Then there are the phone calls — lots and lots of phone calls — from angry Trump supporters or journalists or the companies that want to get off her list.

There is no doubt that it has changed her life. She doesn’t sleep or socialize as often as she used to. Most of her work on Grab Your Wallet is done after she eats dinner with her husband, taking up what free time she has.

“She went underground, basically,” said Amie Penwell, a fellow San Francisco resident who hasn’t seen much of her friend of seven years recently.

The negative attention has made Coulter careful about her privacy. She insisted on meeting at the work space for an interview, to avoid having a reporter at her home, out of fear that it could be targeted. She would not let her husband, whom she met online in 2010, be interviewed.

Born in Indiana, Coulter studied journalism at Penn State. She said she began her career by “piggybacking” on the Bay Area’s technology boom, helping startups with their email marketing.

A year ago she started her own agency, DoubleKnown, which helps executives and small businesses build their online presence through blog posts, social-media feeds and other digital tools. The company has one other employee and a handful of education and technology clients, but has stopped taking on new accounts since Grab Your Wallet took off.

Political activism has not been a big part of Coulter’s life since college, when she spoke at a rally raising awareness about violence against women. Her most recent organized effort came after the shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon in 2015, when she circulated a list of lawmakers who had voted against tougher gun-control measures.

“Maybe that gave me a taste of what something like this would be like,” she said, describing herself as a chronic list maker. “I like the efficiency of them.”

After becoming incensed by the video, Coulter began searching retailers’ websites for Trump-branded products and collecting the names on a spreadsheet. Wondering who else might be interested in a boycott, she looked at Twitter, and found Atencio, who had tweeted “fashion not fascism.” Coulter contacted her and suggested they announce the boycott together.

Since then, most of the work has fallen to Coulter, though she refers to Atencio as her “spiritual guide” and sounding board. Atencio, 59, sees herself as the less visible half of a musical duo. “I feel like I’m the Garfunkel and Shannon is Paul Simon,” Atencio said.

Grab Your Wallet now includes a list of places to shop and not shop, and a short script for people who want to call companies to complain. As many as 32,000 people visit her site in an hour, Coulter said. When the women’s marches took place across the country in January, 350,000 people arrived during a 24-hour period.

In early February, Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus removed Trump’s name from their websites. Employees at T.J. Maxx and Marshalls were instructed not to display Ivanka Trump products and to throw her signs in the trash.

None of the retailers credited Grab Your Wallet with their decision — the department stores blamed poor sales of Ivanka Trump products — and it is not possible to know to what degree Coulter and her followers have influenced the companies’ decision making.

But in the waning days of January, Trump-related complaints, many of which mentioned Grab Your Wallet, were Nordstrom’s most common customer feedback, according to a person with direct knowledge who was not authorized to speak publicly. Nordstrom said it did not have “specific numbers” on the number of customers it had heard from.

“I attribute it directly to the Muslim ban,” Coulter said, referring to the executive order on immigration that Trump issued on Jan. 27. “I can see when the numbers spike when certain news events happen.”

Monitoring those spikes, updating her list and responding to emails, tweets and press inquiries have become Coulter’s second full-time job.

“My life is so completely here,” she said, gesturing to her MacBook, “that it all just sort of overlaps and is an endless stream of emails and tweets and Facebook posts.”

She does get some help from volunteers, like the woman who helps run the legitimate Grab Your Wallet Facebook group, which has more than 12,000 members. But for the most part, Coulter is on her own.

That means the threats and negative attention are also directed largely at her. People ask her why she’s “attacking another woman,” or call her a bully.

People like the Fox host Jeanine Pirro have argued that Ivanka Trump’s brand has nothing to do with the White House, and that she is being unjustly targeted. Defenders also point to a proposed maternity policy that Ivanka Trump developed with her father’s campaign, and her brand’s hashtag, WomenWhoWork, as examples of how she promotes women.

“We have to stop destroying women based on the men in their lives,” Pirro said during a recent episode of her show.

Coulter finds such comments perplexing. She pointed out that Ivanka Trump moved to Washington, D.C., and has taken on an informal advisory role in the White House. She frequently sits in on her father’s meetings with foreign leaders. Her husband, the real-estate developer Jared Kushner, is a top adviser to the president.

In addition, Coulter said, Ivanka Trump played a prominent campaign role.

“Someone who passionately campaigned for a man who likes to grab women by the genitals will never convince me that she’s on the side of women,” she said. “Ever.”