Thanks to branch members Joyce Gad, Grace Knechtel, Joan Robertson, and Nancy Shoemaker who donated to support the branch as a gold sponsor of the Wake County Women’s Agenda Assembly. In addition, branch members Michelle Evans and Judy Brunger are on the Wake Agenda Assembly organizing committee.
If you are in or near Wake County, please join them and other members of the branch at this event on January 29 at Peace College in Raleigh.
The Women’s Agenda Assemblies are sponsored by NC Women United as events across the state, and the branch has a goal for the year of having its members participate in at least five. If you’ve attended one in your community, please make a comment here:
Recently Roberta Madden, a primary member of the Asheville branch, replaced Judy Atkinson of Winston-Salem as director at large with responsibility for public policy when Judy needed to resign for personal reasons. Roberta “Robbie” Madden moved to Black Mountain last fall after forty-one years in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where she worked as Director of Racial Justice at the YWCA. A former Field Director for Common Cause, she lobbied for issues of open and accountable government, including the Equal Rights Amendment. She organizes Dialogues on Race in Black Mountain. She serves on the boards of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Swannanoa Valley, The Martin Luther King Memorial Corporation, Building Bridges of Asheville, and the Southern Mutual Help Association. She is married to writer David Madden and is the mother of photographer Blake Madden. She graduated from Ohio University in 1968.
The other members of the board (who thanked Judy for her service and approved Roberta’s appointment) are
Doris Bernlohr, president
Nancy Shoemaker, treasurer
Pat Abell, director at large with responsibility for AAUW funds
Mari Pino del Rosario, director at large with responsibility for membership
Our bylaws say that we may have 3-7 directors at large and a call has gone out to the branch for volunteers who are interested in joining the board. We’ve been growing steadily, and the board has agreed it is a good idea to expand its membership at this point rather than wait until July 1, 2011. These appointments will be until June 30, 2011, but those serving will be eligible to be elected to a term for 2011-2012. If you are interested in learning more about the board appointments, please look for Doris’s e-mail to the branch from this morning, or contact her for more information.
NC Women United, a coalition which includes AAUW North Carolina, will hold its annual Women’s Advocacy Day on Wednesday, April 1. Details will be announced soon, but the day will include
Opportunities to speak to active and knowledgeable advocates about bills related to NCWU priorities that are likely to come before the legislature
A press conference that will highlight the importance of these issues
Encouragement and materials to speak with your legislators on these issues
As individuals, you are, of course, free to pick and choose the issues you emphasize when you speak with your legislators.
AAUW of North Carolina does, however, endorse some specific issues that are likely to appear on the agenda and you are encouraged to be sure your legislators understand your support. For example:
Last spring the board voted to join the coalition supporting paid sick day legislation in 2008. [H1711 and S1092 failed to pass in the 2007-2008 session.]
Last fall the board voted to join the coalition supporting the successor to the School Violence Prevention Act [H 1366 failed to pass in the 2007-2008 session; this gives support if a new bill is introduced.]
If you would like to participate in helping to shape the AAUW NC 2009-2010 public policy program, please contact AAUW NC Public Policy/Advocacy Chair – Elaine Ostrowski. [See www.aauwnc.org/contacts/state for her contact information. ]
Becky is on the staff of the Women’s Resouce Center of Alamance County, the group that has coordinated the Agenda Assemblies for many years. Branch president Doris Bernlohr also lives in Alamance County, and she recruited other branch members to attend this year’s event with her. Even though the AAUW Alamance County branch folded several years ago, this new branch provides a way for AAUW members to participate in efforts that advance our mission and collaborate with others in our local communities.
For more information on the Women’s Agenda Assembly process and NC Women United, see www.ncwu.org.