Report from AAUW Convention in St. Louis

Lilly Ledbetter, 2009 AAUW Convention Speaker

Lilly Ledbetter, 2009 AAUW Convention Speaker

By Doris Bernlohr and Nancy Shoemaker

Lilly Ledbetter energized the crowd at the opening session. Widely known as the “face of pay equity,” the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act was the first legislation that President Obama signed. Later in the convention we were urged to take the next step and help pass the Paycheck Fairness Act.

A large part of the convention was devoted to the new bylaws that would implement the merger of AAUW and the Educational Foundation as approved in 2007. The proposed bylaws were published in Outlook, and for the most part, they passed as published there. The open membership proposal did not pass: delegates restored the wording from the 2007 bylaws which requires at least an associate degree or equivalent for membership. Another change was that the number of elected/appointed directors-at-large was changed from 7 elected, 6 appointed to 10 elected, 3 appointed.

A big change in the new bylaws will be One Member-One Vote. Instead of using the delegate system and voting at convention, all members will have a vote. Policies and procedures for mail and/or electronic voting will be considered by the new board.

Sheila Bassoppo-Moyo, branch member and AAUW NC membership vice-president, passed out Tar Heel Branch information cards to all attendees at two different membership sessions. A number of us were marketing the Tar Heel Branch model to attendees. This effort has resulted in one new member, but also helped explain the idea to other states who may wish to start their own branch without borders.

Branch member Nancy Shoemaker participated in a panel on web tools and concentrated on ways to use Facebook for AAUW. You can find her handouts and slides at wiki.bbvx.org.

AAUW NC President Millie Hoffler-Foushee was appointed to the position of Finance VP on the 2009-2011 AAUW board.

Delegates elected Carolyn Garfein as AAUW’s new president for 2009-2011.  Here is her welcome message to the members:

Find videos and information about the convention at aauw.org/convention/conv2009. For other notes from NC attendees, see aauwnc.org/category/2009-aauw-convention/.

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