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Sep 2021-“Redistricting, Gerrymandering and Voting Rights”

Tuesday, September 28, 2021, 12:00-1:30 pm via Zoom
Registration Link

The CWI noon zoom meeting on September 28th is an opportunity to learn more about “Redistricting, Gerrymandering and Voting Rights.” Population data from the 2020 Census identified states whose population increased and states whose population decreased. That information informed each state with their share of the 435 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives until the next census in 2030. Knowledgeable speakers at this meeting will discuss the variety of State processes for drawing lines to identify their Congressional Districts, including possible gerrymandering.

Discussion on how voting rights of minority, poor voters and women political candidates are being targeted. These can be complex and opaque processes with massive ramifications, starting with an impact on the 2022 mid-term elections. Speakers will also discuss the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act HR-4 and HR 1 to counter the effect of the States who have enacted laws to inhibit voting rights.

This meeting was organized and will be moderated by CWI VP Legal Affairs, Jeanette Lim Esbrook with assistance from VP Diversity, Alotta Taylor.

Scheduled speakers are: Gerardo Vildostegui, an advisor with the Brennan Center’s Voting Rights section; Demetrius Fisher from the League of Women Voters’ “People Powered Fair Maps” campaign; Toni-Michelle Travis, a professor of political science at George Mason University; and Joseph N. Posimato, an Associate with Perkin Coe’s Political Law Group who is litigating state voting law cases.

Please join our first meeting of this year by registering and coming to our noon 9/28 zoom meeting.

 

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June 2021-“Celebrating Title IX’s 49th Birthday with the Reintroduction of the Gender Equity Education Act in the 117th Congress”

Tuesday, June 22, 2021, 12:00-1:30 pm via Zoom

Registration Link

Moderator: Sue Klein, Co-President Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues and Education Equity Director, Feminist Majority Foundation.

Presenters:

Representatives from the Office of U.S. Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI) and the Office of U.S. Representative Doris Matsui (D-CA) will discuss the reintroduction of the Patsy T. Mink and Louise M. Slaughter Gender Equity in Education Act (GEEA).

Ben Strand, Senior Policy Advisor, U.S. Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI), Laura Forero, Legislative Assistant, U.S. Representative Doris Matsui (D-CA), and others who have been working to update and expand GEEA will discuss reintroduction for the 117th Congress (2021-2022)—which will coincide with Title IX’s 49th Anniversary on June 23, 2021.

They will address the following:

  • What is the Gender Equity Education Act (GEEA)?
  • What changes have been made to GEEA since the 116th Congress (2019-2020)?
  • Who has cosponsored GEEA for the 117th Congress (2021-2022)?
  • Why do we need this legislation?
  • How can we increase support for the bill?
  • What is the path forward on the bill?

At the end of the meeting members of the CLEARINGHOUSE ON WOMEN’S ISSUES (CWI) will be invited to stay a few minutes to elect half the CWI BOARD for 2yr terms July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2023.

The following CWI board members’ terms end in June 30, 2021 but they have agreed to stand for election at the June 22, 2021 CWI meeting.

  • Co-Presidents Sue Klein and Connie Cordovilla have agreed to run for reelection and Connie has also agreed to serve as VP membership.
  • Anne Martin has agreed to continue as VP Organization Management
  • Alotta Taylor, has agreed to continue as VP Diversity. Linda Fihelly has agreed to continue as a Board Member.

Next CWI meeting Sept. 28, 2021

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May 2021-“Update on Global Gender Issues highlighting a Strategy for Progress, D.C. for CEDAW: The Time is Now!”

Tuesday, May 25, 2021, 12:00-1:30 pm via Zoom
Registration Link

Presenters:

Karen Mulhauser, President, Mulhauser and Associates, Past President NARAL, Past Chair United Nations Association of the USA, Past President United Nations Association, National Capital Area, will provide a brief history and update on the Convention for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) including plans to gain US ratification of this important treaty and how it would work with the ERA when both are passed. She will then describe progress made with the Cities for CEDAW movement and why it is important to make DC a City or hopefully state for CEDAW.

Shayna Vayser, Managing Director of Advocacy and Policy Strategy at the United Nations Association of the National Capital Area (UNA-NCA), will share a call to action for gender equity in Washington, DC. DC for CEDAW is a campaign to have the principles of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) adopted into city legislatures across the National Capital Area, starting with the District of Columbia. The legislation’s primary focus requires government agencies to report gender analysis data and develop a citywide plan to ensure equality for women and girls in all arenas. Shayna, representing UNA-NCA’s DC for CEDAW Initiative, will provide a presentation on their efforts to work with coalition partners and DC City Council pass and sign CEDAW into local law. DC for CEDAW is coordinated by the United Nations Association of the National Capital Area (UNA-NCA), a non-profit dedicated to advancing the values and priorities of the United Nations locally and globally.

Megan Corrado, Esq, CWI’s Vice President of Global Issues, Director of Policy and Advocacy with the Alliance for Peacebuilding, and Co-Chair of the U.S. Civil Society Working Group on Women, Peace, and Security will provide an update on the Biden-Harris Administration’s foreign policy accomplishments and challenges related to gender over its first few months. From the creation of the White House Gender Policy Council and rescission of the “Global Gag Rule,” a devastating anti-abortion and reproductive rights policy that undermined the health and freedoms of women around the world, the Administration has made important strides in reversing the harmful policies of the last few years. However, the Administration has been slow to advance some gender laws and policies, such as the Women, Peace, and Security Act, or issue a revised USAID Gender Policy. The recent decision to withdraw all U.S. forces from Afghanistan will have significant implications for the tremendous strides Afghan women and girls have made over the last 20 years. Megan will review and reflect on what has and has not yet been achieved and outlined key policy priorities for the Administration to advance a feminist foreign policy.

Next CWI zoom meeting noon Tuesday, June 22, 2021

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Apr 2021-“The First 100 Days of the Biden/Harris Administration: Accomplishments, Challenges and Issues”

Tuesday, April 27, 2021, 12:00-1:30 pm via Zoom
Registration Link

The Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues is delighted to offer an examination into the actions of the first
months of the Biden/Harris Team. The foci will be on economics, civil rights, education and the
transition requests for the priorities on women’s and family issues. Many of us worked hard to ensure
that 2020 elections would bring about a change in the administration and the direction in which our
country and our society were moving. Through pandemic and voting rights challenges, we persevered
and, in fact, were able to bring a fresh perspective and reasoning to the highest level of US Government.
We want to know what the administration is accountable for and what remains to be done.
Accountability for all the projected changes promised is being demanded.

Shiwali Patel, Director of Justice for Student Survivors & Senior Counsel at the
National Women’s Law Center
will address the gains made on the recognition and
elimination of sexual harassment and sexual assault. Following #MeTOO as well as the
latest reports from the Governor’s office in New York, the threat of harassment or
actual assault has raised the consciousness of many people and moved legislative
action. But more is needed. Most recently, NWLC published NWLC Leads Civil Rights
Brief in Support of Students’ Rights to Be Free from Harassment and Unfair Discipline.

Ariane Hegewisch, Senior Research Fellow at IWPR, will discuss the economic progress in the
first one hundred days. IWPR has done the research to expose the economic impact of
covid on women and families, especially women of color and the steps needed to help
women overcome the struggles of fair pay, job preparation and “glass ceilings.”. How it
will affect gender equality has been discussed in the recent IWPR Report, BUILD(ING)
THE FUTURE: BOLD POLICIES FOR A GENDER-EQUITABLE RECOVERY

Mindy Grimes-Festge, Secretary/Treasurer of the United Teachers of Dade, will discuss
the educational needs of students, especially the impact of the forced virtual learning in
the face of the pandemic and re-opening schools safely.

UTD has been advocating for state and federal resources to support students’ social and emotional needs in addition to legislation and regulation focused on public health and economic recovery. The predominantly female workforce is facing stigmatization for advocating for healthy schools and state legislative attacks against its very existence.

Finally, Jeanette Lim Esbrook, CWI Vice President, Legal Affairs will provide the list of women President Biden has appointed or nominated for leadership positions in his administration during the first 100 Days.

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Mar 2021-“Next Steps in Creating the Smithsonian American Women’s History Museum”

Tuesday, March 23, 2021, 12:00-1:30 pm via Zoom
Registration Link
(Please register for this free public meeting by 6pm on 3/22/21)

The Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues is delighted to celebrate Women’s History Month by sharing information on the recent passage of the Smithsonian Women’s History Museum Act to create a museum for which the federal government will pay half the development and operating costs of this museum under auspices of the Smithsonian Institution.

Many of us have supported the development of this museum mainly via the privately funded and mostly virtual National Women’s History Museum (NWHM) incorporated in 1996. To show equal treatment of women, many believed the museum should be partly supported by the federal government and be part of the Smithsonian. We are delighted that this is now to become a reality. A Congressional Commission created in 2014 to study the establishment of the museum issued a detailed report http://AMWH.us) in 2016 recommending not only that the U.S. needs and deserves a physical women’s history museum but that it be part of the Smithsonian and located on or near the National Mall in Washington, DC. The bipartisan Commission was created by a bill sponsored by Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney.

Congresswoman Maloney then introduced H.R. 19 in the 115th Congress and H.R. 1980 in the 116th Congress based on the Commission’s recommendations. The bipartisan Smithsonian Women’s History Museum Act passed the House in 2019. The legislation was then included in the bipartisan omnibus spending package at the end of 2020, which was signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. Representative Maloney will outline key
accomplishments and next steps for funding and building the museum.

Wendy Pangburn, who served as the Executive Director of the American Museum of Women’s History Congressional Commission will add brief insights from the Commission to help guide the museum’s creation.

We are delighted that both Holly Hotchner, President and CEO of the National Women’s History Museum, and Museum Board Chair, Susan Whiting, will join us to highlight NWHM’s historic role in getting legislation passed for a museum. They will also discuss NWHM’s current programming and how the Museum will continue to shine a light on women’s contributions to American history while the plans for the Smithsonian develop.

To conclude, we will hear from Julissa Marenco, Assistant Secretary Communications and External Affairs and Chief Marketing Officer for the Smithsonian, who will share an early-stage update for the Smithsonian American Women’s History Museum and the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative. Sign up for their enewsletter: womenshistory@si.org.

We hope to reserve time for the presenters to comment on each other’s presentation and for some audience questions to them.

RSVP to the March 23, 2021 Zoom meeting here. (Please register for this free public meeting by 6pm on 3/22/21) At meeting time (noon), remember to join without activating your video and or audio if you do not wish to be seen, heard, or recorded. You may also want to rename your participant name to first name and last initial. This meeting will be recorded and posted to YouTube, and possibly also to Public Access Television.

Next Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues Zoom Meeting will be Tuesday Noon, Apr. 27, 2021 on The First 100 Days of the Biden/Harris Administration: Achievements, Expectations and Challenges.

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Feb 2021-“Wise Aging – Living with Joy, Resilience, and Spirit”

Wise Aging: Living with Joy, Resilience, and Spirit www.jewishspirituality.org (based on the book Wise Aging by Cowan and Thal.) Wise aging is a senior program that considers mindfulness and contemplative practices such as meditation, text study, journaling and gentle movement as key tools.

This CWI meeting is organized and led by Harriett Stonehill, past CWI Co-President, mega skills trainer of trainers, professor at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC), author, and an experienced Wise Aging facilitator. She has arranged for the following trained Wise Aging Facilitators who are active nationally and internationally to lead us in various interactive activities in this CWI meeting.

Evi Beck, is a retired professor of Women’s Studies at University of Maryland, author and long-time Circle Dance teacher who conducts programs across the country and world. She will lead us virtually in some dances.

Harriette Kinberg, is a retired Federal Government Manager who worked at FEMA and a Wise Aging Facilitator in DC, Maryland and Virginia. She will provide an overview of the Wise Aging program and describe what happens during a typical Wise Aging group session using power point materials.

Francie Schwartz, retired from the Union of Reform Judaism, where she worked as the Adult Jewish Learning Coordinator and still loves to teach all things Jewish to our community. She is now a Wise Aging Facilitator at Temple Micah in DC. She will focus on using meditation.

The majority of participants in the Wise Aging Programs are women so the focus has mainly been on their needs as they grow older.

This session will be interactive with a discussion after the presentations. Attendees will be able to join and focus on various strategies. Please have a pen and blank paper handy.

Questions may be addressed to Harriett Stonehill. Invite your friends to join us.

RSVP to the February 23, 2021 Zoom meeting here. At meeting time (noon), remember to join without activating your video and or audio if you do not wish to be seen, heard, or recorded. You may also want to rename your participant name to first name and last initial. This meeting will be recorded and posted to YouTube, and possibly also to Public Access Television.

Next Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues Zoom Meeting will be Tuesday Noon, Mar. 23, 2021.

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Jan 2021- “Successful Collaboration in Feminist Women’s Organizations: How Much Is Racism at Play?

“The Constitution they wrote was designed to protect the rights of white, male citizens. As there were no black Founding
Fathers, there were no founding mothers – a great pity, on both counts. It is not too late to complete the work they left
undone. Today, here, we should start to do so.”
– Shirley Chisholm, 8/10/1970 [SC, 11/30/24-1/1/05]

“Can’t we all just get along?” – Rodney King, 5/1/1992 [RK, 4/2/65-6/17/12]

The current pandemic has exposed great inequity and injustice in our country. We all face the deadly virus which can
only be controlled when we come together to fight it collaboratively.

So it is timely for the Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues to focus this month on aspects of women and race to examine
what the thinkers above urged us to address. Please note that the “today” of Shirley Chisholm’s words was more than
fifty years ago. The urgency seems to grow and especially with the events of recent days.

We are indeed fortunate to have these three women share their experience and expertise to guide us in this discussion
through an intergenerational lens.

Sheila Coates is a sixth generation Virginian activist on behalf of African American women and families for more than
four decades. In 1985 she founded Black Women United for Action (BWUFA), a community service volunteer
organization which she still serves as president. BWUFA has grown from 14 Northern Virginia members to an
international organization with ties in Africa, Canada and Europe. Her many accomplishments as the leader of BWUFA
include the development of the annual observance of the Slave Memorial Wreath Laying Ceremony at Mount Vernon.
The annual ceremony, developed many years ago, has grown from a few local guests to travelers from all over the
world, including Africa and Canada. Ms. Coates has successfully advocated for the appointment of an African American
woman to the Board of George Mason University (a first in that institution’s history). She has testified numerous times
on behalf of African American families before official committees and commissions and has been invited to the White
House under two administrations to speak on public policy issues and family preservation. She is a member of the Board
of Directors of the Stan Lee Foundation, devoted to promoting literacy, diversity, culture and the arts. Ms. Coates has
received four gubernatorial appointments, including the Virginia Commission on Women, the George Mason University
Board, and the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association Advisory Board. In addition, she has served on several other
community boards and commissions and has received numerous awards.


Thu Nguyen serves OCA-Asian Pacific American Advocates National as its Director. A graduate from Rice University with
degrees in Chemistry and Sociology, Thu found her way into the nonprofit sector through organizing Asian American
students on campus and bridging partnerships between student groups and local Houston community organizations.
Previously she freelanced for non-profits and Asian-owned start-ups to do community outreach and marketing. As
Director, Thu oversees storytelling, relationships, and operations for OCA. She brings a unique understanding of
grassroots organizing and design to her work at the national level where she focuses on the intersection of advocacy
with small businesses. She works 5-9 in hospitality, cosmetology, and zine-making. You can find her exploring how to
spacemake via thudawin.org.

Christian F. Nunes, MBA, MS, LCSW, in August 2020, became the president of the National Organization for Women
(NOW), the largest grassroots feminist organization in the country. She was previously appointed Vice President by the
NOW board in May 2019. Christian is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Consultant, and a Woman-Minority Business
Owner. She received her BSW degree from Northern Arizona University, Master of Science from Columbia University,
and Master of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix. An active community organizer, she has spoken
at events such as the March for Black Women in 2018. Along with her activism for mental health, she also has over 20
years of experience advocating for children’s and women’s issues. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Consultant,
and Woman-Minority Business Owner. In 2006, she founded a behavioral health and consulting practice where she
assists social service and behavioral health companies, and provides direct mental health services to individuals and
families. As an advocate for social justice and mental health policy, she took up the role as Chair of the Phoenix Mayor’s
Commission on Disability Issues and co-authored a community survey on police response to crisis. Additionally, she has
worked tirelessly to elect progressive candidates to school boards and local office positions. She is often featured in
many media outlets such as Ebony, Black Enterprise magazine, AZ News Channel 3, and Yahoo News.


We hope you will join us in this important discussion which is co-sponsored by Montgomery County Maryland NOW and
that you will bring your questions to that conversation.

RSVP to the January 26, 2020 Zoom meeting here. At meeting time (noon), remember to join without activating your video and or audio if you do not wish to be seen, heard, or recorded. You may also want to rename your participant name to first name and last initial. This meeting will be recorded and posted to YouTube, and possibly also to Public Access Television.

Next Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues Zoom Meeting will be Tuesday Noon, Feb. 23, 2021.

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Nov 2020- Feminist Priorities in the Biden-Harris Administration

The election is over and the country is holding its breath as we move into a new era in the government. What the change of administration (and the election of the first woman Vice President) mean for feminist goals and aims? The CWI will explore the areas of health, economics and education as well as the process the transition team will  utilize to nominate new leaders in these policy areas to  accomplish the vision developed in the Biden Agenda for Women  (https://joebiden.com/womens-agenda/# )

Meeting speakers:

Ben Strand, from Senator Mazie Hirono’s office (D-HI), will discuss the Patsy T. Mink and Louise M. Slaughter Gender Equity Education Act, (GEEA), which Senator Hirono reintroduced during the 116th Congress (2019-2020) with Representative Doris Matsui (D-CA). GEEA would provide additional resources, training, and technical assistance to support the full implementation of Title IX. Ben Strand is a Legislative Assistant for Senator Hirono, and in his current policy role, covers education, arts and humanities, science and technology, workforce development, and related issues. He graduated from Villanova University with a B.A. in Political Science and American History, and a M.A. in Political Science.

Donna Lent, President of the National Women’s Political Caucus, has agreed to share her political savvy and wisdom as to how the nominations process for the new Administration’s feminist leadership team will unfold under the Coalition for Women’s Appointments which she is re-establishing. Donna Lent, a member of NWPC for twenty-seven years, was elected to an unprecedented third term as President at the NWPC Biennial Convention in 2019. As president, Donna has successfully reduced overhead for the National office while maintaining and expanding programs. Prior to this position, Donna served as First Vice President of the National Board and Vice President of Political Planning. She also served as President of the New York State NWPC. Donna is currently the elected Town Clerk of Brookhaven, NY, a role she assumed in 2013 and was elected to a second four-year term in 2017.

The Institute for  Women’s Policy Research has just released a new report entitled “Build(ing) the Future: Bold Policies for a Gender-Equitable Recovery” (https://iwpr.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/Policies-for-a-Gender-Equitable-Recovery-Finalsm2.pdf ) which thoroughly covers stressors and solutions facing working women in the wake of the economic downturn caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Connie Cordovilla will share information on their report. report.

Dr. Diana Zuckerman, PhD, President of the[SK1]  National Center for Health Research received her PhD in psychology from Ohio State University and was a post-doctoral fellow in epidemiology and public health at Yale Medical School. After various academic positions she worked for a decade as a Congressional and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) staffer and Clinton Administration adviser on heath programs and policies. She will address a wide range of priorities, such as improving testing, treatments, and vaccines for Covid-19; improving access to reproductive health; improving the ACA; how lack of diversity in clinical trials harms women of color; the lowering of safety standards for medical products (speed and greed vs. safety and effectiveness); and the need for rebuilding and strengthening the clout and independence of the Offices focused on women’s health in the various federal health agencies.

Megan Corrado, Esq.,  CWI’s Vice President for Global Affairs, will address some key priorities to achieve a feminist foreign policy to ensure women’s meaningful participation in all facets of decision-making and improve the lives of women and families around the world, including recent recommendations on the Women, Peace, and Security Agenda and efforts to address reproductive health and gender-based violence on a global scale. Megan, an international human rights attorney, currently serves as the Co-Chair of the U.S. Civil Society Working Group on Women, Peace, and Security, and previously worked as the Director of Advocacy with Women for Afghan Women and Program Director and Counsel with the Public International Law and Policy Group, in addition to roles in the U.S. Department of Defense, U.S. Congress, and British Parliament.  

These and other issues are also covered in Women Demand More: A Letter to Federal Elected Officials and Candidates From the Women’s Community (https://nwlc.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/Womens-Community-Transition-Letter-Draft-10.15.2020.pdf ) which was created and endorsed by a number of women’s groups.

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Oct 2020-The Electoral College: Perils & Possibilities for the 2020 Presidential Election

CWI’s program for the October 27th virtual meeting, “The Electoral College: Perils and Possibilities for the 2020 Presidential Election” will provide information on the Electoral College, its history, current practice, and future possibilities.  Contrary to what many assume and what we have witnessed in past elections it is not the popular vote but the votes cast by the Electoral College that elects the President of the United States. Professor Gerardo “Jerry” Vildostegui, a lawyer specializing in voting rights from the Brennan Center will explain the legal underpinnings of the Electoral College and how States determine their Electoral College votes. Pam Wilmot from Common Cause will provide information on how The National Popular Vote Compact would make the country’s popular vote determine the Presidential election outcome and other solutions including proposals to end the Electoral College. Ronnie Pawelko from The Alliance for Justice will discuss other concerns relating to the Electoral College system and provide a reminder of the rules for 501 (c) (3) and 501 (c) (4) organizations advocacy during and after elections and provide examples of activities that may and may not be engaged in.  The meeting is organized and moderated by CWI’s Vice President for Legal Affairs, Jeanette Lim Esbrook.  

Pam Wilmot is Vice President of State Operations for Common Cause where she oversees a nationwide network of 30 state offices and advisory boards. She has added this responsibility to her longstanding work as Massachusetts Common Cause Executive Director.  She is an expert on the electoral college, campaign finances, ethics, elections and transparency laws. She also is the Director of the National Popular Vote initiative to ensure the winner of the popular vote receives 270 Electoral Votes and becomes president through the National Popular Vote Compact. She has a J.D. from Northeastern University, a Masters in social work from Smith College and a Bachelor’s degree from Brown University. She received the John Gardner Public Service Award in 2017.

Ronnie Pawelko is Senior Counsel for the Bolder Advocacy program at The Alliance for Justice and is based in AFJ’s Washington, DC office. Through trainings and technical assistance, she provides nonprofit advocacy organizations and foundations with accessible information, resources, and information so organizations can safely navigate complex laws and rules as they pursue systems change. Ronnie received her J.D. from Albany Law School and her B.A. from Russell Sage College. Before joining AFJ, Ronnie was General Counsel at Family Planning Advocates of New York State. Previously, Ronnie served as Health and Human Services Team Counsel for the New York State Senate and as staff attorney for the MergerWatch Project.

RSVP to the October 27, 2020 Zoom meeting here. At meeting time (noon), remember to join without activating your video and or audio if you do not wish to be seen, heard, or recorded. You may also want to rename your participant name to first name and last initial. This meeting will be recorded and posted to YouTube, and possibly also to Public Access Television.

Next Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues Zoom Meeting will be Tuesday Noon, Nov. 17, 2020 to Discuss Post Election Priorities for Women’s Issues.

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Sept 2020- Get Out the Vote Strategies to Promote High And Diverse Voter Turnout

During the June 2020 meeting of the Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues (CWI), Karen Mulhauser discussed the critical work of her new organization, Every Women Vote 2020, as well as the current and historical challenges women face casting their ballots this year. With the upcoming most important federal election of our lifetime, CWI aims to continue the conversation led by Board Member, Megan Corrado to explore in further detail how we as organizations and individuals can mobilize to increase voter turnout amongst women and marginalized communities.

Please join CWI and a distinguished panel, to explore strategies to increase voter registration and ensure the voices of all Americans, particularly those from communities that have the most at-stake in November. The discussion will highlight the legal, economic, practical, and—now, in light of COVID-19—health barriers their communities are facing in exercising their right to vote, as well as lessons learned from previous mobilization efforts, opportunities for others to engage and help increase voter registration and turnout. Confirmed Panelists are:

Eleanor Smeal, President of the Feminist Majority and Feminist Majority Foundation (feministmajority.org and feminist.org) and former President of the National Organization for Women, (NOW). She has fought on the frontlines for women’s equality for more than five decades. In the 1970s, as President of NOW she spearheaded the drive to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment, the largest nationwide grassroots and lobbying campaign in the history of the modern women’s movement. Smeal also pioneered the use of the Internet as a feminist organizing and research tool by launching the Feminist Majority Foundation Online in 1995. Today, she is working hard and successfully navigating the unique challenges posed by COVID-19 to ensure the momentum of Feminist Majority Foundation, its 501(c)(4) affiliate Feminist Majority, and Ms. Magazine continues ever forward in the fight for gender equity. Always the organizer and practical realist, she will speak about her team’s efforts to mobilize young people through campus outreach in targeted states.

Christine Chen, Executive Director of Asian and Pacific Islander Vote (APIAVote.org). APAI focuses its research and action on Asian American and Pacific Islander voters. It provides regional training and field programs to enhance local grassroots efforts to mobilize these constituencies for the 2020 census as well as elections. Ms. Chen serves as the President of Strategic Alliances USA, a consulting firm specializing in coalition-building, institutional development, and partnerships amongst the corporate sector, government agencies, and the non-profit and public sectors. She has more than two decades of experience in organizing and advocating on issues such as immigration, hate crimes, affirmative action, census, racial profiling, voting rights, election reform. Chen serves on the Steering Committee for National Voter Registration Day, Kennedy Center Community Advisory Board, and the board for the Center for Asian American Media. Ms. Chen will speak about efforts to enfranchise the Asian American and Pacific Islander voters.

Ms. Janice Mathis, Esq., serves as the Executive Director for the National Council of Negro Women (NCNW), Inc., an 85 year old non-profit organization of organizations ( comprised of 300 campus and community based sections and 32 national women’s organizations). Ms. Mathis has broad based experience as a lawyer, negotiator, advocate, administrator and team builder. Prior to joining NCNW Ms. Mathis served as the VP of the Citizenship Education Fund (CEF) and also served for decades with Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. as General Counsel and Chief of Staff to the Rainbow Push Coalition. Ms. Mathis earned a BA in Public Policy Studies from Duke University and is a graduate of the Lumpkin School of Law at the University of Georgia.

NCNW was founded by Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, later led for decades by Dr. Dorothy I. Height, and currently by Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole. NCNW’s mission is to Lead, advocate for, and empower women of African American descent, their families and communities. Ms. Mathis will describe successful strategies used by African
American Women and their male allies to get out the vote.

RSVP to the September 22, 2020 Zoom meeting here. At meeting time (noon), remember to join without activating your video and or audio if you do not wish to be seen, heard, or recorded. You may also want to rename your participant name to first name and last initial. This meeting will be recorded and posted to YouTube, and possibly also to Public Access Television.