Dear NWPC Members and Friends,
October and November have been busy months for NWPC, with a very successful Exceptional Merit in Media Awards in New York City, a quarterly Board meeting of NWPC held in conjunction with EMMAs, and other activities of NWPC affiliates across the country. See the EMMAs news in the newsletter, and go online for additional information on EMMA winners, as well as check out the Out and About section to see what other Caucuses have been doing.
At the EMMAs, we had not only a fabulous event, but made great strides for the 2014 EMMAs, as the NBC red carpet personality who served as our emcee for EMMAs, Joelle Garguilo, said she is ready to join us again for next year’s EMMAs, and also Shellie Hunt, of Success is by Design and Women of Global Change, wants to serve again for the EMMAs. Shellie had a car accident that prevented her from attending the event in October, but Christy Carpenter stepped in to substitute onstage to present the EMMA Awards in Shellie’s absence. The New York Host Committee agreed to continue and expand, so we know the EMMAs will grow next year. Long time NWPC supporter, feminist and filmmaker Jen Myronuk joined us for the EMMAs, videoing the entire evening, taking many photos of winners, guests and NWPC Board members, so check out the website for those photos and footage. Jen’s company, Wireframe Pictures, is credited for some wonderful media for the event, and we appreciate her work and generosity for NWPC.
For the Quarterly Board meeting, we also heard from Jen Myronuk in her proposal for doing a collection of NWPC history interviews and videos, something she has done for almost two decades. We will provide additional information as the plans move forward, but I am very enthusiastic about her proposal, as were others who heard and saw her presentation.
I have been traveling again on behalf of Caucus, with two events in Atlanta last week when I spoke at the launch of a new program called Step IT Up America, by UST Global, that will select 100 inner city Atlanta young African American women, provide funds and support for training at a local college there in high tech skills programs, and then hire the graduates to work for UST Global. Some of you met UST Global CEO Sajan Pillai, who was honored as a Good Guy 2013 during our Convention in Austin, and also met UST’s Director of Marketing, Nikki Arora, who has become the most recent addition to the Board of the NWPC Foundation. In the launch lineup of speakers, they had former US Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez, former mayor of San Francisco and former Speaker for the CA Assembly Willie Brown, NWPC Foundation Founding member Edie Fraser, who is CEO of STEMconnector, and asked me to represent NWPC. Step IT Up America will launch next in Philadelphia and the UST plan is to train and hire 5000 young women across the country. I was thrilled to have Marion Sullivan, former NWPC Board officer and former President for NC NWPC who has moved to Atlanta come join us for the launch—I have enclosed a photo of Marion with Nikki and me.
The second event in Atlanta was a luncheon entitled When Women Succeed America Succeeds Initiative, and I was keynote speaker. Dr. Lei Lewis, CEO of Women of Wealth Magazine, had local sponsors and the event was held at the Westside Cultural Arts Center. One of the purposes of having the event was to showcase NWPC, as Lei and others are working to expand and strengthen efforts in Atlanta, and to become active with local programming there. The event included an art show, vendor booths by women owned businesses, and appearances by numerous arts, music and television professionals who have programming related to women’s issues. Lei also shared that she wants to become involved at the National level, so we will be sharing additional information on Dr. Lewis soon.
During the first week of December, I will be back in DC, first to attend the retirement party for a wonderful friend of feminist efforts, Susan Scanlan, who is retiring from her post as Executive Director for the Women’s Research and Education Institute, which is the policy arm of the Congressional Caucus for Women’s Issues that Susan helped to found. Susan will also step down as Chair of the National Coalition of Women’s Organizations, and there will be big shoes to fill for that role as well. Susan has been an amazing leader for so many initiatives on the national scene, and was the friend who came to provide swearing in for the officers of NWPC during the 2011 Convention, even leaving unexpected house guests while she came to fulfill those duties for us. The party will be held at the Sewall-Belmont House, from 6 to 8 pm. On the 6th, I will be in meetings with federal agency officials related to STEM programming to serve more women, and bring more young women into STEM fields.
Thank you again for all you do to promote women for elected office, and for your work for the Caucus.
Janet Yellen named Chair of the Federal Reserve!
Janet Yellen, Obama’s nomination for the Chair of the Federal Reserve, was approved by the Senate Finance Committee in a 14-8 vote on Thursday, November 21st. Ms. Yellen is the current Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve and will be the first Chairwomen of the Federal Reserve if confirmed. She is expected to be confirmed by the full Senate after a vote takes place shortly after Thanksgiving.
The Senate Finance Committee held a hearing on her nomination on November 14th, where she reiterated that she would largely continue Ben Bernanke’s policies of quantitative easing and will continue to keep short term interest rates low as long as unemployment remains above 6.5 percent and inflation does not rise above 2.5 percent.
Victory in Albuquerque
Big news is coming out of Albuquerque, New Mexico after voters struck down a referendum that would ban abortions after 20 weeks of gestation. The referendum was rejected 55 percent to 45 percent. Albuquerque legislators patterned after other state’s restrictions that suggest after 20 weeks the fetus feels pain. This is the first attempt to restrict abortions on the city level and the fear is that it is not the last. Anti-Choice groups believe that placing heavier restrictions on abortion begins at the local level, and Albuquerque was just the beginning.
NWPC’s own VP of Political Planning and 1st VP Donna Lent won her race as Brookhaven Town Clerk!
An atmosphere of excitement is an understatement here at NWPC! We are proud to announce that our own VP of Political Planning and 1st Vice President Donna Lent won her bid for town clerk! With 59 percent of the vote, Donna easily became the newly elected Brookhaven Town Clerk. She ran as the Republican candidate in this race, with her opponent Democrat Cathy Schatzer receiving 41 percent of the vote. We are extremely proud of the hard work that Donna has put into this race and also into her work for the NWPC. Congratulations, Donna!
Launching the ERA Education Project!
The NWPC recently partnered up with filmmaker Kamala Lopez to develop a national media campaign to support the ratification of the ERA. The campaign is a series of fun and engaging Public Service Announcements produced by Kamala and her team. The project’s goal is to create 20 such videos, featuring celebrities and some great talent discussing their personal views of equality and women’s rights.
The first batch of ERA videos have gone viral! Click below to see.
But we still need the help of ERA supporters! The campaign needs to raise $15,000 to fully turn this project into reality. Your support will ensure that all 20 videos are created.