Smith and Wesson

Welcome to the NRA Women's Channel

Presented by Smith & Wesson

NRA Women is designed for female gun enthusiasts. It's a resource for news, education, events and more. And we're telling more stories of empowered women like you. Come explore, connect, celebrate and unite with the women of NRA.

Emily Houston Monroe


Sunapee, NH

Who or what got you into shooting?

Sibling rivalry got me into shooting. My dad is a lifelong target shooter and he started taking my older brother to learn to shoot with the Acorns Junior Rifle Team in Fairfax, Virginia. I got jealous and begged to be taken along!

Do you shoot handguns, shotguns, rifles or all of the above?

I shoot small bore (.22LR) and air rifles competitively. I have a .22 target pistol that I shoot recreationally.

NRA member since:

1999 (a life member since 2006)

Why are you involved with the NRA or how do you support their efforts?

I support the NRA because they support my sport and me. I am a NRA Life Member and a NRA Rifle Coach. As a shooter I was on the NRA Youth Advisory Board, served as a panelist for a shooting sports forum at the 2007 NRA Convention in St. Louis, and contributed an article to Insights magazine. I also coach junior shooters through the NRA/Winchester marksmanship qualification program.

Tell us about the first gun you owned or your favorite gun.

My favorite gun is my Feinwerkbau 700 air rifle. It shoots .177 pellets via a compressed air charging system. The rifle is totally adjustable to my body to ensure that each shot is set up properly. There is no recoil from the shot and the gun is so accurate that it can put several shots through the same hole at 10m - in offhand!

What's your current go-to gun?

My Anschutz 19-series action with a Lilja barrel on it. If I don't shoot it in the center, I know it's my fault, not the guns!

What's your favorite shooting range or place to hunt?

My favorite place to shoot, and frankly one of my favorite places to visit, is Camp Perry. No matter what the weather, no matter what the score, I always learn something about shooting when I shoot at Camp Perry. Plus I get to hang out with some amazing people who also come to shoot at Perry -- can't beat that!

Do you have a favorite accessory or clothing item you won't go shooting or hunting without? What makes it so important?

I won't go shooting without my shooter's diary. I have kept notes on positions, rifle settings, match conditions, etc. in the same notebook since 2003. There's a lot of knowledge in that notebook!

What's your most unusual gun-related item?

I have a few target-related home decor items, including a rug in the shape of a target. Also, my wedding cake had targets on it!

What's your best or most memorable moment as it relates to firearms?

The most memorable shooting experience I have is from Camp Perry in 2003. My junior rifle team, the Arlington Optimist-Acorns, won the small bore three position team matches. We beat some perennially good teams, including the Army Marksmanship Unit. After the match the AMU came up to my teammate and me and said, "I hope we didn't just get beat by a team of girls!"

I own a gun because:

I crave accuracy and precision. I love to see a shot go straight through the center of the target. There is no other feeling like that in the world!

Tell us the best (or worst) gun advice you've ever been given.

Take one shot at a time. Focus on the shot that is in your barrel now. Don't worry about any shots you've already taken or any you will take later. All that matters is here and now.

What would be your recommendation for best entry-level gun?

The Ruger American Rimfire (but I am biased!). It is an accurate rifle (free floating barrel, built-in bedding blocks, adjustable cheek piece and stock length) for an affordable price.

Who or what inspires you?

My family inspires me. My dad is a disabled veteran and a competitive target shooter and he has consistently encouraged and inspired me to keep pushing my limits with my sport. My mom is a breast cancer survivor and she helps me remember that a bad shot is NOT the end of the world. And my brother is the whole reason I started shooting in the first place!

What do you do to relax and unwind — watch TV, listen to music, go to movies, catch a game, exercise, something else?

To relax and unwind I knit. I picked that up in high school as a way to calm down and focus before a rifle match.