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Leader's Update

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Leaders Update

In This Issue:

April 7, 2011

TODAY: April 7, 1987 - Opening of the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC, the first museum devoted to women artists.

PRESIDENT’S CORNER

  • President’s Message: Celebrating Volunteers! (NEW)

ADVOCACY

  • League Opposes Obstructionist Provisions to Federal Budget (NEW)
  • League Strongly Opposes Legislation to Gut Clean Air Act (NEW)
  • Resources for League Action to Protect the Clean Air Act and Engage in Your Community on Earth Day (NEW)

EDUCATION (Studies; Elections; Global Democracy)

  • LWVUS Studies (NEW)
  • Elections: Public Advocacy for Voter Protection Update (NEW)
  • Global Democracy: U.S. Fellows Travel to Brazil (NEW)
  • Global Democracy: Volunteer Opportunities in Colombia (NEW)

MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP

  • Clearinghouse Website Plan Approved (NEW)
  • Register Now: Webinar on How to Conduct a National Study, Thursday, April 21, 3:00 PM Eastern
  • Honor Your League’s 50-Year Members (NEW)
  • On the Nominating Committee? LWVUS Can Help!  

OTHER

  • You Can Make a Gift That Helps Your League at All Three Levels!

PRESIDENT’S CORNER

Dear League Leader:

As we look forward next week to celebrating National Volunteer Week, I want to share some exciting news on the League election front along with recognition of the vital role of League volunteers.

Next week, several key local and state League leaders will join the LWVEF and national civic engagement leaders in Washington, DC, for a special High School Voter Registration planning event. The aim is to bring together a broad range of stakeholders to strategize how organizations at all levels can work together to encourage youth voter engagement in 2012 and beyond. At the same time, the LWVEF will introduce a brand-new High School Voter Registration training manual, compiled thanks to the hard work of League volunteers who participated in the 2010 High School Voter Registration project. The manual will be available online shortly and will be announced in a future Update. 

The role of League volunteers in the 2010 High School Voter Registration project is just one example of the many projects supported by League members. Truly, we are an organization of volunteers, so join the celebration next week and give yourselves a well-deserved pat on the back!

In League,

Elisabeth

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ADVOCACY

League Opposes Obstructionist Provisions to Federal Budget (NEW)
The League and coalition partners sent letters to the White House and Senate leaders urging rejection of provisions that erect obstructions in future 2011 spending bills.

League Strongly Opposes Legislation to Gut Clean Air Act (NEW)
In a just-released statement, League President MacNamara strongly voiced the League's concern about protecting Clean Air. Earlier in the week, the League and coalition partners sent a letter to members of the House of Representatives urging them to oppose H.R. 910, which would put America’s health, prosperity, and national security at risk.

Resources for League Action to Protect the Clean Air Act and Engage in Your Community on Earth Day (NEW)
The LWVUS Toolkit for Climate Action includes a set of materials to support your League's work on one of our 2011 advocacy priorities – Clean Air Defense. Earth Day (April 22) is a great opportunity to take action and connect with your community. The toolkit includes background information and suggestions of things your League can do to help safeguard the Environmental Protection Agency's ability to establish the urgently needed clean air protections called for by the Clean Air Act. Among the resources is a Voter-ready article about the Clean Air Act.

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EDUCATION FUND (Studies; Elections; Global Democracy)

LWVUS Studies (NEW)
Privatization Study: The LWVUS Board approved the following as the scope for this study: “The purpose of this study is to identify those parameters and policy issues to be considered in connection with proposals to transfer federal, state or local government services, assets and/or functions to the private sector. It will review the stated goals and the community impact of such transfers, and identify strategies to ensure transparency, accountability and preservation of the common good.” The Study Committee will be developing resource materials and preparing consensus questions, to be available in late fall 2011. Local Leagues will have from late fall 2011 until early spring 2012 to complete their study and take consensus.  
Education Study: The LWVUS Board has approved the consensus questions for the Education Study. Beginning this month, supporting research information will be posted on the LWVUS website, followed by posting of the consensus questions, a Leaders Guide and additional short papers. These will be announced in upcoming Leaders’ Updates. The deadline for completing consensus by local Leagues will be the end of November 2011. A webinar, “The ABCs of Doing a National Study,” is scheduled for April 21st at 3 pm Eastern Time. Register here.

Elections: Public Advocacy for Voter Protection Update (NEW)
The PAVP project is working in 22 states across the country fighting back voter photo ID bills in state legislatures. To date, we have seen bills defeated in CO, IA, VA and NM. Only Kansas has passed the bill in both houses and is now awaiting the governor’s signature. Leagues have been writing op-eds, contacting legislators, providing testimony at hearings and educating the public. So far, 122 bills in 36 states have been introduced. If you are working on this issue in your state and have not been in touch with Tim O'Brien, the PAVP project specialist, please contact him at tobrien@lwv.org.

Global Democracy: U.S. Fellows Travel to Brazil (NEW)
The fourth outbound group of U.S. Fellows will leave for Brazil on Friday, April 8. Denae Lyons (Wichita, KS, League), Anne Hoiberg (San Diego, CA, League) and Senator Roger Reinert of the Minnesota State Senate, who hosted Brazilian fellows in 2010, will travel to Sao Paulo and Curitiba, accompanied by Zaida Arguedas and Cristina Atencio from the national office. The Brazilian fellows who were in the United States in April and October last year have organized the agenda. In Sao Paulo, the group will visit the U.S. Embassy and attend the 6th Congress of Youth and Women. The trip culminates with the 3rd International Dialogue of Women in Politics on April 18 in Curitiba.

Global Democracy: Volunteer Opportunities in Colombia (NEW)
The Centro de Educación para el Desarrollo (CED) of UNIMINUTO University is looking for League members who may want to participate in their Volunteer Program. This program is very flexible and caters to the needs and interests of volunteers, with regard to their time, work, etc. CED provides continual support and follow-up for their volunteers; the program is free-of-charge. CED also offers a complete Summer School program. Learn details here.

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MEMBERSHIP & LEADERSHIP

Clearinghouse Website Plan Approved (NEW)
During its weekend meeting, the LWVUS Board authorized a Clearinghouse Committee of volunteers to proceed with developing a clearinghouse website that would initially include study documents and related materials. An ad hoc committee had worked for months on an analysis and preliminary design that was detailed in a 15-page report to the Board. (For a copy of this report, please contact Board member Norman Turrill at LWVTurrill@mac.com.) This website will take many more months of work before it is ready for use. The Clearinghouse Committee could now use the support of additional members who are knowledgeable about computers or website development. If you think that you have or know of a member with appropriate skills, please email Norman Turrill.

Register Now: Webinar on How to Conduct a National Study, Thursday, April 21, 3:00 PM Eastern
If you would like to learn more about the process surrounding a national study, we welcome you to sign up for this webinar. Learn how to help your League get ready to participate in national studies directly from Education Study Committee chair Peg Hill and national Education Fund and Privatization Committee chair Janis McMillen.

Honor Your League’s 50-Year Members (NEW)
During this time of year, many Leagues recognize their 50-year members. A 50-year member is one who has paid dues for 50 cumulative years. These years do not need to be consecutive. Since the LWVUS does not have JOIN DATES going back 50 years in our membership database, we rely on local Leagues to contact potential 50-year members for their JOIN DATE information. If you have not yet received an LWVUS certificate for your 50-year members, please send their names and member IDs to Betty Taira at BTaira@lwv.org so that a certificate can be processed. Allow at least 10 business days to receive the certificate.

On the Nominating Committee? LWVUS Can Help!  
Resources for nominating committees are available on the LWVUS website, including the “Little Green Book…Everything You Need to Know about the Job of the Nominating Committee” and a webinar presentation. Access these resources now. Thank you to all those serving on nominating committees for their important work in identifying League leaders!

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OTHER

You Can Make a Gift That Helps Your League at All Three Levels!
Some things never change even in these challenging economic times. The League of Women Voters Education Fund continues to be at the forefront of public policy issue education which allows citizens to thoughtfully engage in the democratic process. By making a gift of cash or securities of $5,000 or more to the LWVEF Pooled Income Fund, you can receive an immediate income tax deduction for a portion of the gift's value and continue earning a quarterly return on the interest earned for life. Best of all, you can name your state and/or local League, along with the LWVEF, to benefit from the residual funds when you're gone. For more information, please contact the Development office at 202-263-1355 or plannedgiving@lwv.org.
"Like" the League on Facebook at www.facebook.com/leagueofwomenvoters
Donate to the League on our Facebook Causes page.

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