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League of Women Voters Leaders' Update

October 17, 2013

In This Issue:


  • Judge Admits He Erred when He Supported Indiana Voter Photo ID Law (NEW)
  • Remind Your Community about this Fall’s Election and VOTE411.org (UPDATED)


  • EPA to Hold Listening Sessions on Carbon Pollution (NEW)
  • EPA Announces new Carbon Pollution Regulations: Template Available (Reminder)


  • Make an Impact:  Become a National Coach (NEW)
  • LWVUS Recognizes New Local League in Illinois (NEW)
  • LWVUS Trains Leaders from North and South Dakota (NEW)


  • Agriculture Update Announcement (NEW)

convention 2014
The Mighty League Comes Together in Dallas in June 2014!

Imagine a headline like this in newspapers around the country as LWV members join together to Power: Our Voices, Our Votes in Dallas, Texas at our national convention!

Let’s take this opportunity to have representation from ALL 50 states join together, to network, train new leaders, plan for our future and show the country our unique and powerful local, state and national network of impact - protecting the right to vote and empowering citizen voices in our democracy.

See you in Dallas June 6-10, 2014!

Glad You Asked!

This section of the Leaders' Update is dedicated to providing the information that you want to know.

What do I do with the inactive member roster for my League in the LWVUS database?

This list is a record of individuals who used to belong to the League, and many Leagues find this list to be a great resource for building their numbers.  These are individuals who had an affinity for and relationship with the League; many are likely ready to rejoin if we just ask! 

Contact these individuals – maybe a few at a time, starting with the ones most recently added to the list – and invite them to an upcoming event.  Their renewal might just take their reengaging with League. 

For more information about using the database, read the user guide or contact database@lwv.org. You may also contact Kelly McFarland Stratman (kmcfarland@lwv.org)  with questions.

Dear Friend,

Protecting voting rights is vital wherever we are in the country, but there are certain iconic places, where discussing voting rights takes on particular significance. Memphis, Tennessee is one of those places. How can we ever forget that one vote in the Tennessee legislature gave women the right to vote in 1920? Nor can we ever forget that Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his life for equal rights, including voting rights, in Memphis one April evening in 1968.

The Lorraine Motel stands much as it did all those years ago. Catching sight of the sign rising out of the buildings of downtown Memphis sends a chill down the spine and reminds us of the importance of the task League members over the generations have undertaken to insure that our elections are free, fair and accessible to all eligible voters. The League of Women Voters of Memphis/Shelby County certainly has not forgotten. At the Benjamin Hooks Public Library on Monday night, the League sponsored a public event at which I had the privilege of speaking. Over 70 people engaged in a lively discussion of the current threats to voting rights and the opportunities that local communities have to stand up for our most fundamental right.

Not just the folks at the event, but also the local media recognized the importance of this topic. Two local television stations and the Memphis Daily News ran interviews addressing the threats and the League’s call for local vigilance and action. Sandwiched between interviews and the event, I had the opportunity to stand on the balcony where Dr. King last stood and reflect on the legacy that we commemorated in Washington this summer and that we League members uphold so proudly and so capably all across the country.

This was a very special trip for me. A short film at the Lorraine Motel Museum started with the words: “…a movement doesn’t begin with a movement, it begins with individuals.” In every state and in hundreds of communities throughout the country, the League is comprised of individuals creating real change in our own home towns and in the halls of power. 

In League,
Description: Elisabeth


League Leaders:
To help keep your members informed, please consider forwarding this weekly message. Please note that this is an internal communication that provides both announcements and opportunities meant only for your members and League, as well as updates on important news and events. This message should not be posted in its entirety on League social media channels or websites. Instead consider sharing the external (e.g. public interest/action) pieces such as blog posts, letters to Congress and press statements.


Education Fund


Judge Admits He Erred when He Supported Indiana Voter Photo ID Law (NEW)
A federal appeals court judge said he erred when writing a decision which served as a key precursor to the Supreme Court's 2008 ruling upholding the constitutionality of Indiana's voter ID law. Seventh Circuit Judge Richard Posner said his opinion finding the Indiana law constitutional was mistaken, due to the court not having sufficient information about how the law could be used to prevent or discourage people from voting.

Remind Your Community about this Fall’s Election and VOTE411.org (UPDATED)
Use these media templates (press release and letter to the editor) to remind the voters in your community about the importance of local elections this fall and the invaluable information found on VOTE411.org. Adapt the templates to help gain visibility for your League’s impact on the community every election.



EPA to Hold Listening Sessions on Carbon Pollution (NEW)
The Environmental Protection Agency will hold 11 listening sessions across the country to gather input from the community as they develop guidelines for existing power plants to reduce carbon pollution emissions. Listening sessions will be held in MA, PA, NY, GA, CO, KS, CA, DC, TX, WA and IL. If you are interested in participating in one of these meetings please contact Jessica Jones at jjones@lwv.org.

EPA Announces new Carbon Pollution Regulations: Template Available (Reminder)
On September 20, the Environmental Protection Agency announced the updated regulations on carbon pollution for new power plants. Use this letter to the editor template to bring attention to this life-saving measure that will protect our children, our nation and the world from the devastating effects of climate change. You can also read our statement praising the administration's steps to control carbon pollution. If your letter is published please email a link to Jessica Jones, jjones@lwv.org, so it can be included on the website.


Membership & leadership

Make an Impact:  Become a National Coach (NEW)

“The expansion of civic engagement and good government starts with one person doing one task. I'm honored to know and work with others who exemplify this concept.” –Charolette Fox, Shur Fellow (CA)

Want to join Charolette in making the League and our democracy strong? We are now accepting nominations for the 2014 class of Ruth S. Shur Fellows! The Shur Fellow team is a dedicated group of League leaders committed to the expansion of civic engagement by fostering League growth. If you are looking for a great way to enhance your League experience as an integral part of the MLD program, submit your nomination using this form. You also can find more information on the responsibilities and benefits of being a Shur Fellow on our website or by participating in an informational webinar on October 30 at 1 pm ET.

LWVUS Recognizes New Local League in Illinois (NEW)
LWVUS is pleased welcome the League of Women Voters of Roselle/Bloomingdale. This League has shown itself to be dedicated to protecting and strengthening our democracy and we look forward to their future successes. Special thanks are extended to LWV of Illinois for mentoring this new group!

LWVUS Trains Leaders from North and South Dakota (NEW)
Earlier this week, League leaders from North Dakota and South Dakota gathered in Sioux Falls for a two-day LWV leadership training. Facilitated by LWVUS staff member Kelly McFarland Stratman and national coach Linda Johnson (KS), participants explored ways to build upon their programmatic work to generate more visibility for their Leagues, attract new members, and develop new leaders.  According to LWV of Red River Valley (ND) leader Mary Tintes, It was wonderfully energizing meeting and learning together with all of you in Sioux Falls this weekend!”  The training is part of the Membership & Leadership Development Program and is funded by the Fund for Local League Growth.



Agriculture Update Announcement (NEW)
The Agriculture Update Committee wishes to announce that they are working hard to get study materials edited and published as soon as possible. Consensus questions and a Leaders' Guide will follow in December. Please try to be patient, since Leagues will then have more than three months until April 4th to report on their consensus meetings.

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