Playwright Ginger Rutland to Speak at 2019 Author’s Luncheon by Deborah Dunn and Cathy Locke

Playwright Ginger Rutland, whose work is being staged this month by the Sacramento Theatre Company, will be featured at the 2019 Authors Luncheon on Saturday, April 27, from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Plates Café.



Please note the election of our Branch officers for the 2019-20 year will also take place at this meeting.

Rutland, a former editorial writer for The Sacramento Bee, will talk about the challenges of transforming a book into a play and getting it produced. Her play, “When We Were Colored, A Mother’s Story,” is an adaptation of her mother Eva Rutland’s memoir of the same title. The production opened March 20 in Sacramento Theatre Company’s intimate Pollock Theatre, 1419 H St., and will run through April 28. Branch members wishing to see the play may purchase tickets by contacting the Box Office at 916-443-6722 or online at

The play tells the story of a black middle-class family, progressing from the Jim Crow South, through World War II, the civil rights movement, the black power era, and finally to the racially blended families of today.

Ginger Rutland moved to Sacramento with her family in 1952. Her father was a civilian administrator at McClellan Air Force Base. She is a graduate of Howard University and worked for KCRA-TV in Sacramento, as well as KRON-TV in San Francisco, before joining The Sacramento Bee Editorial Board in 1988 as an associate editor. She lives in Sacramento with her husband, Don Fields. They have a daughter and a grandson.

There are two ways to register for the Authors Luncheon. Either register on Eventbrite here and pay with a credit card or, if you prefer,  to pay with a check, download the registration form by clicking here and mail it with your check to Dawn Boyd.

April 2019 President’s Message By Liz Jordan and Donna Holmes

Liz Jordan

It’s so exciting!! From May 29 to June 1, 2019, our Sacramento Branch embarks on a whole new effort in providing leadership opportunities to college women. The Board has voted to send our first student to the National Conference of College Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL). Gloria Yost has been working with sophomore Billie Veerkamp, a member of the California State University, Sacramento AAUW branch, who has applied and will attend NCCWSL. Billie is an officer in that AAUW Affiliate and is interested in serving in a leadership role again next year. We are hoping Billie will be accepted for a scholarship to the conference. Regardless, we are confident she will make new friends, learn new skills, and come back to help grow AAUW among women in her age group. This was another of the Board’s goals set last August. CHECK!

Donna Holmes

We want to spur you to action. The easiest way to do that is to make you feel guilty. So here goes: We have between ten and 12 Interest groups. Many of you attend only these groups; sometimes you attend a branch meeting such as the Holiday Luncheon or Author’s Luncheon. Many, many give generously at Membership Renewal to Projects, Fellowships and Grants.


We have 29 leadership positions to fill now between April and July 2019. About 30 members regularly step up to do all the organizing and planning of branch activities, such as monthly meetings with speakers, panel discussions, tours, and food. Within our approximate 230 members, the Sacramento Branch has a large demographic of older women who have volunteered in the past. We also have a growing membership of women in their 20s, 30s, 40s, and 50s, many of whom are stepping up to serve.

We have learned a common truth: In any organization, about 10% of members do all the work. Many of you are part of that 10% in other organizations to which you belong. But AAUW Sacramento NEEDS YOU.

We will be filling those leadership positions over the next few months, and we encourage you to look on p. 8 of your directory and volunteer to take a position. Some require attending the monthly board meeting. Some require submitting a brief article to Capital Ideas 1-9 times a year. We ask you to serve this LOCAL, 100-year-old and most wonderful women’s organization. Find a friend and share a position! Make some new friends.

Contact Liz Jordan: 916-354-9608; Email Please help your local AAUW branch today.

Board Briefs March Board Meeting, March 4, 2019 by Cherril Peabody

Here are the highlights of the March AAUW Sacramento Board Meeting:

  • Co-President D. Holmes announced that beginning this spring, AAUW members will be able to make their dues payments online, at least for National dues. More details will be available soon.
  • Nominating Committee representative N. McCabe presented the slate of officers that has agreed to serve as Board members for 2019-2020. The Board made and approved motions to allow termed-out officers T. Ardisana and K. Asay to continue in their positions as Secretary and Co-Funds Director respectively. (See elsewhere in this issue for the complete list of nominations.) The Branch election will be held at the Authors Luncheon on April 27.
  • Holmes reported that the Scholarship Committee will meet to choose next year’s scholarship recipients on March 23.
  • Funds Co-Director K. Asay reported that Branch members donated approximately $8,800 in 2018, most of it designated to complete the fund honoring Branch member Alicia Hetman. Half of the $8,800 came in with dues.
  • Tech Trek Co-Director A. Gilreath reported that there are 12 applicants for the Tech Trek camp this summer, and interviews with the applicants will be held on March 23.
  • Program Co-Director C. Locke announced that the March 30 Branch program at the Sacramento History Center will include a tour of the archives and a display of some of the Branch historical documents. The sign-up deadline for the Author’s Luncheon is April 17 for the April 27 event at Plates featuring journalist and playwright Ginger Rutland.
  • Speech Trek Co-Director S. Beck announced that Esther Joy Turay, a senior at Laguna Creek High School, won first place in the Speech Trek contest on Feb. 16. Esther will give her speech at the May 18 installation meeting.
  • Membership Co-Director L. Patterson reported that branch members who have completed 50 years as AAUW members this year will be honored at the installation meeting in May. The Board approved a motion to add a line to the membership application for members who are willing to provide financial assistance for underwriting luncheon fees or other costs for Branch guests, such as scholarship recipients, at meetings where fees are involved.

Dark Money in Politics by Liz Jordan

On Saturday, March 16, Liz Jordan went to Lodi to attend their AAUW program with the League of Women Voters on the topic of Dark Money in Politics. Dark Money is undisclosed sources of money donated to political campaigns and became more prevalent after the Supreme Court decision Citizens United in 2010. To learn more about the topic, visit:

  • – Nonpartisan, nonprofit National Institute on Money in Politics and the Campaign Finance Institute
  • – The project of the Center for Responsive Politics
  • – A joint project of MapLight and the League of Women Voters of California. Nonpartisan online guide to federal, state and local elections in California


Get #5WomenYouKnow to Do Work Smart Online!

Let’s make salary inequity a thing of the past. Do you have a friend or family member who is applying for a new job or promotion and worried about how to ask for fair pay? Join AAUW in getting five women you know to sign up for Work Smart Online, our free salary negotiation course that teaches women how to ask for the salary and benefits they deserve. And encourage them to tell five women they know, too! Visit to get started and show us how you’re spreading the word by using the hashtag #5WomenYouKnow on social media.

Victorian Homes in Sacramento Saved Thanks to Sacramento Branch

Note: Reprinted from the March 1981 issue of Capital Ideas

The publication of Vanishing Victorians was the result of many months of hard work by branch members, led by the book’s editor Paula Boghosian. The purpose was to focus community attention on the rapid disappearance of the older downtown homes. For example, between June and October 1973, 30 were demolished.

Branch representative Carolyn Martin argued for a moratorium on demolition before the City Council when she said, “Victorian homes are worth saving for the boldness and vitality of the architecture, their historic significance and because of the character they lend to the downtown.” At the urging of AAUW and other groups, the City Council appointed a committee to prepare a preservation plan. This committee, which included Mrs. Boghosian and was chaired by Mrs. Martin, submitted a report in six months. Acceptance of the report and the implementing ordinance reversed the city’s direction from demolition to preservation. A full-time Preservation Director and appointed Preservation Board has had such a terrific impact that we can now point with pride to the increasing number of restored Victorians.

National recognition came to the Branch when the American Association for State and Local History awarded us a “Certificate of Commendation” in 1975. It was presented at a gala party that also marked the opening of San Diego Federal Savings and Loan Association’s office the restored Heilbron House at 704 O Street. Mementos for guests were copies of Vanishing Victorians.

Another edition was printed in 1977, this time in hardback. A later spinoff was the Victorian notepaper. Profits totaling approximately $6,000 from the sale of the book and notepaper have provided scholarships for women returning to college.

Last December the Branch authorized a revised edition. This paperback will cost $8.95 and be sold at local bookstores and branch meetings, according to Book Distribution Chair Judy Burns.

Imagine an America Without a Pay Gap by Archana Maniar

It is common knowledge that a woman in the United States makes 80 cents per dollar made by a man of similar qualifications. The pay gap is worse for women of color. In an era when women make up nearly 50% of the workforce, this pay gap burdens individual family finances and the economy. A recent study estimated the impact on society if the pay gap was corrected.

How would closing the pay gap be expected to impact families?

  • 60% of working women and 66% of single working mothers would see an increase in their pay.
  • Poverty rates for working women would drop by half, from 8% to 3.8%.
  • Poverty rates for single working mothers would drop from 28.9% to 14.5%.

How would the U.S. economy benefit?

  • Closing the pay gap would increase gross domestic product an estimated $500 million, roughly 2.6% of the GDP of our entire nation.
  • The increase in women’s earnings would be roughly 16 times what federal and state governments spent in 2015 for temporary assistance to needy families.

The pay gap adversely impacts American families. Closing it would raise many out of poverty and reduce the need for public assistance. The question to ask our elected officials is not whether we as a society can afford to pay men and women the same income for the same work. The question is, how can we afford not to?

Archana Maniar

Source: The Impact of Equal Pay on Poverty and the Economy 2017, Institute of Women’s Policy Research

Funds Updates: The Future Looks Different by Kathleen Asay and Danielle Metzinger

“The times, they are a-changing …” and AAUW has a new Strategic Plan designed to help it address challenges and opportunities as they arise for women and girls. To that end, you will see changes among your fund choices should you decide to donate when you renew your membership this spring.

First has been the designation of three prime areas of focus: Economic Security, Education, and Training and Leadership. The “green sheet” that comes with your renewal form lists new funds in these three areas. The names are similar to “old” funds, but the structure and content have been updated. In addition, Fund #9110, formerly called the AAUW Fund, is now the Greatest Needs Fund. It is designed to give AAUW the mobility to rapidly respond when needed, without the limitations written into the other more directed funds. Finally, you will see the Governance and Sustainability Fund, which is an operational fund aimed at ensuring AAUW’s strength, relevance and viability through modern technology, communication and diversity.

Three familiar funds are still open as well: #3999 – the Legal Advocacy Fund, #9170 – the Eleanor Roosevelt Fund, and #4337 – the Public Policy Fund. These funds will continue to operate as they have for many successful years. However, AAUW will have additional tools and flexibility to remain an outstanding voice and source of support for women and girls in a changing world.

More details will be contained in an eblast scheduled to arrive around the time of the renewal package. Watch for it. Call or email Kathleen if you have questions.

FYI – Sacramento Branch donated $8,792 in 2018. We completed our 100th Anniversary Research & Projects Grant Fund and helped complete the Alicia Hetman R&P Grant Fund. In all, California branches donated $471,581 to AAUW funds. We are a force for equity for women and girls.

Exploring Our Interest Groups: Singles Dining Out and Healthy Hearts by Cherril Peabody

Okay, last month I talked about Jane not being a dull girl if she is partaking of one of our interest groups that play games together. Also, our Jane enjoys eating with friends, and we have a couple of interest groups that specialize in doing just that: Singles Dining Out and – for the more health-conscious members – Healthy Heart.

Singles Dining Out meets on the first Sunday evening of each month (including summer months) at different restaurants. Some of these are California cuisine specialists, but most are ethnic restaurants that help the group members learn more about other cultures, or at least their food! These get-togethers also provide members with the chance to get better acquainted and to have a lot of laughs. Nancy McCabe is the chair of this group. Recently she has had her work cut out for her with last-minute venue changes caused by unforeseen circumstances at the scheduled restaurants, but everything turned out just fine. If you’d like to check out this group, contact Nancy at It’s not a group meeting that you are expected to attend every month, either, but you do have to be single.

Healthy Heart also involves food, but the members do the cooking themselves, and the goal is to prepare delicious food that also is healthy. They plan meals and meet in members’ homes. The hostess prepares the main dish, while the other members bring the remaining dishes. Because they meet in private homes, they limit themselves to eight members, and they don’t have any openings right now. However, they would be glad to help a second group get started. Jane Cooley is the chair of this group, and if you would be interested in starting another group, you can contact Jane at