Daily Archives: November 3, 2019

Our November Program Focusing on Homelessness By Karen Burley, Programs Co-Director

Join us Saturday, Nov. 16, for a special event focused on homelessness, especially as it impacts women. The event will be held from:

  • 10 a.m. to noon
  • In the community room at the Colonial Heights Library, 4799 Stockton Blvd., Sacramento (at the corner of Stockton Blvd. and 21st Street).
  • Light breakfast refreshments will be provided.

Our speaker is Lisa Culp, founder and Executive Director of Women’s Empowerment. Women’s Empowerment educates and empowers women who are homeless with the skills and confidence necessary to secure a job, create a healthy lifestyle, and regain a home for themselves and their children. Women’s Empowerment is located at 159 North A Street in Sacramento.

Lisa will cover topics such as the current state of homelessness in Sacramento, how she came to create Women’s Empowerment, how Women’s Empowerment aids women, and how AAUW members can engage with her organization. We will also hear from several graduates of the Women’s Empowerment program. You can find out more about Women’s Empowerment at their website, www.womens-empowerment.org or by watching this video:


To support Women’s Empowerment by donating wish list items, visit their website: http://www.womens-empowerment.org/take-action/donate-wish-list-items

You may register for the free event online here via Eventbrite (we only collect names, emails and occasionally phone #s) or by calling or emailing Karen Burley.


December 14 Holiday Luncheon to spotlight women artists’ initiative By Cathy Locke

Celebrate the holiday season and learn about efforts to increase women artists’ representation in gallery exhibitions at our annual Holiday Luncheon on Saturday, Dec. 14, at Northridge Country Club, 7600 Madison Ave., in Fair Oaks.

The event is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., with lunch served at 11 a.m.  (Please note that the starting time is an hour earlier than the time listed in the membership directory.)

Sacramento artist Katherine Lemke Waste will speak on the nationwide initiative by the nonprofit organization American Women Artists to place more art by women artists in museums over the next quarter-century.

According to the National Museum of Women in the Arts, only 3 percent to 5 percent of the artwork in permanent museum collections worldwide are works by women. Yet, Waste noted in a 2015 article in The Sacramento Bee, women make up more than half the working artists in the United States.

In 2017, American Women Artists launched “25 in 25”, an initiative to secure 25 museum exhibitions for its women artist members over the next 25 years.

In the spirit of giving, we will again collect new or gently used books for Love, Talk, Read at our Holiday Luncheon. The organization particularly seeks books this year for children age 5 and younger.

Menu selections are chicken piccata with whipped potatoes and seasonal vegetables, or cheese ravioli with baby carrots with lemon crème sauce (vegetarian). A vegan meal is available by request. Salad, bread, coffee, tea and lemoncello raspberry cake are included in the lunch. The price is $32. Parking is free, and there is a full no-host bar.

Reservations are due by Monday, Dec. 9. Click here to print the reservation form if you wish to pay by check made payable to AAUW Sacramento. Mail to Cathy Locke – her address is available in the directory – or click here to register and pay by credit card via Eventbrite.

Interest Group Updates

Kathy Papst has resigned from the board.  We are pleased to welcome board member Becky Anton, who has stepped in to take up the position.

The annual AAUW Showcase in September was a great beginning for our new year.  Several members signed up for interest groups. The full list of current groups can be found on pages 4-5 in the Directory.

Ellynrose Sheehan suggested starting a new dining group of members who are “foodies” and also who enjoy cooking.  The group could gather once a month or every other month at member’s homes for a dining experience. The group would also decide whether to meet on a weeknight or on the weekend.

Members interested in forming this new dining can email Ellynrose Sheehan ers1719@gmail.com or new Interest Groups Director Becky Anton at ranton39@sbcglobal.net .

New groups can be easily formed by identifying a group leader and gaining authorization from the Board through new Director Becky Anton.

President’s Message by Liz Jordan, Co-President

Liz Jordan

Take Back the Night

The Sacramento Branch partnered with Citrus Heights/American River Branch (CHAR) in participating in the 40th Take Back the Night on Saturday, Oct. 12. The celebration included a Resource Fair & Rally and a march through Midtown Sacramento. CHAR brought a few of their ARC affiliates and CSUS affiliates helped work the table. AAUW Sacramento has participated in this community event for many years.

Tech Trek Brunch

Saturday, Oct. 19 AAUW Sacramento’s October Branch meeting was a celebration of our very successful Teck Trek Program. The branch gathered with our young Trekkers and their families for a brunch provided by branch members at the Rancho Cordova City Hall. The Trekkers regaled us with stories about their weeklong camp adventure and Susan Wheeler, co-director of the UC Davis Tech Trek camp, addressed the gathering. Inspiring!

November Meeting – Empowering Women

Be sure to sign up for the November Branch meeting on Nov. 16 from 10 a.m. to noon at Colonial Heights Library Meeting Room. See the article in this issue. Your board and Program Committee have pledged to center program planning around our AAUW mission. Certainly, finding solutions to homelessness is at the heart of empowering women and girls.


Nominating Committee

The time is here already for branch Nominating Committee to regroup in search of leadership for next year’s board of directors. The committee is composed of five (5) members, three who served previously and one of whom is a past board member. The committee needs two more members interested in helping to keep the branch running. The committee meets approximately twice between November and February, compiles lists of members who could serve in the seven elected board positions, and contacting them to create a slate of candidates for the April vote. If you are interested in serving on the Nominating Committee, please contact Liz Jordan lizjord@msn.com, 916-354-9608 or Charmen Goehring charmineme@yahoo.com, 207-756-0406.

Book Groups Have Always Flourished in Our Branch by Gloria Yost

AAUW Sacramento – Empowering Women for 100 Year

For as long as the AAUW Sacramento Branch has been in existence, reading and discussing books together has been an important building block for developing friendships and lifelong learning among our members. When our branch was the largest in the United States, the number of book groups numbered into the 30s. Currently, we have nine different groups in various areas of town. Each has its own way of doing things.

The Cultural History group chooses a nonfiction book to be read over a period of 3-4 months, breaking the reading into sections. They then decide what to read next. Over time, they have read books on a wide array of topics from history to clothing to women’s rights.

The long-established Midtown/East Sac group holds a snack potluck in October to choose their nine books for the coming year. During meetings, each member states her opinion of the book before the moderator leads a general discussion.

Another long-time group, number 12, chooses books for about six months at a time. They also have an annual Christmas social at a restaurant where they dine and discuss their December book. Like other long-time groups, they have fond memories of past members and discussions.

Our oldest continuing group, number 2, began in 1959-60, and took over that number at the request of Catherine Patterson, a retired Sacramento City College professor who was a member of the original group 2. She wanted their group’s number to be carried on. Corinne Geeting and Anita Miller were among the very well-known Sacramento women active in group 2 at one time.

Book group 6 is geared to the lives of working women. The group begins each meeting with food and wine, which are enjoyed as books are discussed. Except for July, the group meets year-round and alternates monthly between fiction and nonfiction. Books are chosen in January

Formed in 1993, group 8 decided to read only women authors, picking 5 fiction and 5 nonfiction books each year alternating between them monthly. To finalize the decision of whether to meet at 7:00 or 7:30, they compromised by setting the time at 7:14 pm. Ruth Burgess was a member, and they are supporting a scholarship in her honor.

The second oldest group, 10, holds social gatherings twice a year at which husbands and significant others are included. During the year they keep a running list of possible book choices, which are then voted on at the May meeting. They choose a mix of fiction and non-fiction and try to include a “classic” every couple of years. Long-time members have many special memories of progressive dinners, the infamous punch, and the baby shower when nobody thought to check whether or not the expectant mother was coming. They did manage to have a successful event the next month.

Group 33 has no idea why they have that number, but they’ve been going strong for more than 10 years. They choose one biography, one “old-timer” and a mix of fiction and nonfiction to read. They thoroughly enjoy each other’s company and have developed close friendships.

Membership in group 4 has been centered in the Land Park area, and the group is going strong even though Pat Morehead and Nancy Lawrence are the only ones preventing a complete member turnover during their 25-year tenure. Like others, they suggest books a few months before selecting them and are one of the year-round groups.

Some groups meet during the day and others in the evening. All groups choose books that everyone reads and set up rotating schedules for hostess and moderator duties. They all enjoy the comradery of good friendships and shared intellectual discussions.

Board Briefs, Interest Groups, Book Groups, Branch Birthdays and Hardcopy Articles

Board Briefs October 7, 2019 by Cherril Peabody

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

  • Co-President C. Goehring reported that she attended an AAUW California Funds luncheon in Danville. She plans to attend the California State AAUW convention in April 2020 in San Francisco.
  • Co-President L. Jordan attended a Fundraising Committee meeting scheduled to develop a plan for the transition to using MPP (Members Payment Program) for membership renewal and developing a process for member donations that are not connected to the member’s renewal.
  • Program Co-Directors C. Locke and K. Burley reported that plans for the Tech Trek Showcase and Brunch on Oct. 19 and the Nov. 16 meeting about homeless families are progressing well. Books for Love, Talk, Read will be collected again this year at the Holiday Luncheon on Dec. 14.
  • Speech Trek Co-Director A. Arneill announced that Speech Trek contest workshops will be held at all Elk Grove high schools during the first two weeks in November.
  • Membership Director J. Stuter reported that she has set a goal to recruit 10 new members a month.
  • Scholarship Co-Director L. Patterson announced that a gift of $4,000 was received from a former branch scholarship recipient. The Scholarship Committee met on Sept. 28 and decided that March 2, 2020, will be the deadline date for 2020-2021 applications. Five $2,000 scholarships will be awarded, four Branch awards and one award in memory of Ruth Burgess. Thanks to the generosity of our members, four scholarships will be given in Ruth‘s name, the 2020-2021 award and one each year for the next three years.

Old Business

  1. Jordan presented the updated branch Policies and Procedures for board approval. She made a motion, seconded by J. Stuter, to include a new provision in the document: Spouses or significant others may attend more than two interest group meetings when transportation for the member is a consideration. The motion carried. J. Stuter moved, A. Arneill seconded, to accept the updated Policies and Procedures as amended. The motion carried.

New Business

  1. Jordan announced that the branch needs two Nominating Committee members and still is looking for a permanent Finance Director.

 Interest Groups, Book Groups, Branch Birthdays and Hardcopy Articles

  • Click here for Interest Group Calendar
  • Click here for Book Groups
  • Click here for Branch Birthdays
  • Click here for the Printable Version of the Articles
  • Click here for Holiday Luncheon flier

A Recap of Stronger California Advocacy Day by Ruth Ann Hines as well as AAUW CA legislative updates by Magaly Zagal

Sacramento AAUW branch member Ruth Ann Hines represented our branch in lobbying efforts at the Stronger California Advocacy Day at the Capitol on Aug. 26. The event was sponsored by The Women’s Foundation of California, which is “a statewide, publicly supported community foundation dedicated to achieving gender, racial, and economic justice.” AAUW Sacramento is a member of the foundation.

Ruth Ann attended along with another representative of AAUW CA. The Advocacy Day was an opportunity for the 55 groups and coalitions representing women’s rights groups to celebrate the passage of the 19th amendment, Women’s Right to Vote.

“We were divided into 10 groups to visit three State Senator’s offices to discuss three pending bills,” Ruth Ann said. “Our group lobbied for AB 9, a bill to extend the deadline for filing sexual harassment and discrimination claims from one year to three years; AB 749, which would prohibit retaliatory no-rehire clauses in settlement agreement workplace violations; and lastly an Assembly Bill to extend, from three days to ten days. the time to remove a car if it is ticketed.”

Governor Signs 14 AAUW-Supported Bills Into Law by Magaly Zagal, Legislative Advocate for AAUW-CA

The 2018-19 legislative season has come to a close, and by Oct. 13, 2019, Governor Newsom signed 870 bills out of the 1,042 bills that were presented to him.

These 14 bills that will become law due to the advocacy and research support offered by AAUW-CA:

  • AB 9 – Extends the time for filing harassment and discrimination claims under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) from 2 to 3 years, allowing survivors additional time to seek redress.
  • AB 51 – Prohibits an employer from requiring an employee to waive any right for a labor code violation as a condition of employment, continued employment or receipt of employment benefits.
  • AB 59 – Directs county elections officials to consider a vote center location on a public or private university with the intent to increase youth voter turnout.
  • AB 170 – Closes a gap in the law to ensure that employers do not resort to subcontractor agreements for purposes of avoiding liability for sexual harassment claims.
  • AB 218 – Increases the civil statute of limitations period for commencement of a sexual assault cause of action. This will give sexual assault survivors sufficient time to access civil remedies.
  • AB 381 – Ensures that prevention and bystander intervention outreach on dating violence information is made available to incoming students during orientation.
  • AB 543 – Ensures that all 9th through 12th grade students receive a written policy on sexual harassment information during orientation. AAUW’s report “Schools Are Still Underreporting Sexual Harassment and Assault” was critical in helping support the legislative analyses for AB 543.
  • AB 749 – Prohibits the use of “no rehire” clauses in settlement agreements that broadly restrict future employment opportunities for workers settling a sexual harassment or other claims.
  • AB 809 – Mandates that public postsecondary institutions provide notice to students to ensure that pregnant and student parents are aware of their Title IX rights.
  • AB 922 – Allows a woman providing human oocytes for research to be compensated for her time, discomfort, and inconvenience in the same manner as other research subjects.
  • SB 24 – Increases access to reproductive health services for students at public universities and colleges by providing medication abortion at student health centers.
  • SB 142 – Requires employers to have a written lactation policy and lactation spaces that meet minimum requirements for lactating workers. While existing law requires employers to provide parents with the time and space to express breastmilk, SB 142 places specific guidelines to ensure that parents are sufficiently protected in the workplace.

Membership Matters by Janice Cesolini Stuter, Membership Director


Did you know that AAUW membership is not just for women? In June 1987 at the Houston National Convention, AAUW members voted to extend membership to include men who were college graduates and who shared AAUW’s commitment to gender equity. The first male member was John Freeman. He purchased a life membership immediately following the successful vote to extend membership to males. His wife, Grace, was a member of the Rock Hill, S.C., Branch and he was an enthusiastic supporter of the activities and ideals of our organization as represented by his wife. He discussed becoming a member with his wife; she supported the idea, and he joined in order to provide, in his words:”…equal opportunity for all members of our society.” If you have husbands, sons, nephews, male associates, etc., please consider inviting them to join and/or gift them with a membership. We welcome them to participate in our program initiatives and in our interest groups.

Janice Stuter


National is no longer accepting checks from branches or individuals. Our branch will no longer be accepting checks either because of the charges imposed by banks. Members of the Board have been investigating how to best align our renewal and funding procedures with these new situations. The plan they are developing involves renewing memberships online using the Member Payment Plan (MPP). This will apply to membership fees and donations to the various funds listed on the renewal form. We will also be using Pay Pal for donations made to the Branch for our outreach programs such as Speech Trek, Tech Trek, and Scholarships.

Details on how members will do this will be presented in the near future. Donna Holmes and Angela Scarlett are going to set up the Pay Pal program. There is a special way to do it for non-profit groups so that we do not have to pay so much to use it. Our aim is to be good stewards of members’ money, and that means changing some of our habits.


Last month I expressed concern about what appeared to be a drastic reduction in the number of members in our Sacramento Branch. What I didn’t realize (members of the Board informed me) is that a lot of the size reduction of our branch occurred because of the proliferation of other local branches in our area, especially the Citrus Heights – American River (CHAR) Branch. CHAR, formed in 1960, serves the areas of Citrus Heights, Folsom, Rancho Cordova, Fair Oaks, Carmichael and Orangevale, providing scholarship opportunities for students of American River College. We’re all working together for the same ultimate goal: gender equity.


Funds: A Further Explanation of the Latest Changes By Kathleen Asay and Merrie McLaughlin, Funds Co-Directors

Kathy Asay

Kathy Asay

In the October issue of Capitol Ideas, we explained the establishment of the Strategic Plan and how the reorganization of AAUW Funds reflects those priorities.   The three new categories, Education and Training, Economic Security, and Leadership all aim to advance gender equity for all women and girls. In addition to these three, the AAUW Greatest Needs Fund (9110) is continuing, and the Governance and Sustainability Fund (4451) was established.

The Governance and Sustainability Fund’s purpose is to provide resources and support for the Education and Training, Economic Security and Leadership pillars of the Strategic Plan. An additional purpose includes the goal of modernizing AAUW’s technology to better support and serve our members. This fund is also a means for investigating other areas of funding. In essence, it is fundamental to the ability of the organization to use the best possible practices, innovative techniques and to strengthen our fiscal responsibility.

The AAUW Greatest Needs Fund continues to be important to the expansion of such programs as Start Smart, Work Smart and the National Conference for College Student Women Leaders (NCCWSL). This fund contributes to the “strength, relevance and viability of AAUW “ by ensuring the AAUW’s flexibility to meet challenges by conducting research and promoting initiatives in support of our mission.

The Strategic Plan’s three pillars as explained in October’s Funds article and the two discussed here emphasize flexibility and sustainability in the advancement of equity for women and girls through advocacy, education and research.


Merrie McLaughlin

Your Taxes, Your Donations – Redirecting Your RMD

At this time of year, we begin to think about taxes and how we can offset them by making charitable donations. Members who are accustomed to making their donations when renewing their membership may not have considered donating at other times of the year. However, many of us deal with an RMD (Required Minimum Distribution) from a non-Roth IRA or a 401(K) at year’s end.

AAUW members may make an RMD donation to Special Projects Fund (SPF), which supports AAUW California projects.  Information about SPF is available on AAUW CA’s website at specialprojectsfund-ca.aauw.net/.  Members can also direct their Required Minimum Distribution to be mailed directly to a Sacramento Branch project and/or scholarship program, such as Scholarship, Tech Trek or Speech Trek.

To facilitate the proper credit of RMD checks to the desired recipient, we recommend that members have their financial institution issue the check in the name of the fund, but have it mailed to the member for forwarding along with a note designating the project to which the monies are to be credited. If the donor is designating the monies to Tech Trek, it is imperative to indicate the camp and branch to be credited for the donation.  Members also need to print their member number on the check memo line.

Membership Number

A donor needs to include her/his membership number on the donation check. Member Numbers can be found on the AAUW.org website Members Services Database (MSD) or check with Donna Holmes, Finance Director, or Sharon Anderson, Membership Treasurer.

About MSD From aauw.org

The AAUW Member Services Database (MSD) is your online access to AAUW’s national database records. The MSD makes it faster and easier to control the accuracy of the membership records.

Individual Members can use the MSD to update their member record and contact information (except name changes contact connect@aauw.org), to make a contribution and track their membership and giving history for tax purposes. Additionally, branch members can view their branch member roster and leader contacts.

Speech Trek Updates by Ann Arneill, Speech Trek Co-Director

Speech Trek is getting into full swing with our fall busy season. We work with all nine campuses in the Elk Grove Unified High School District participating in our public speaking contest. Now is the time to recruit students to participate. We have distributed our promotional materials and scheduled our workshops, which Shari Beck, Kathleen Deaver, and Ann Arneill will be conducting. At these workshops, we inform students about the contest rules, present the topic, give them resources for researching the topic, and provide public speaking tips. Once the students who decide to participate have completed their speech drafts, we will give them feedback on their speeches. The topic this year is, ARE MEN AND WOMEN TRULY EQUAL TODAY? OR ARE THE SUFFRAGETTES OF 1920 STILL SUFFERING IN 2020? The contest will be held on Feb. 15, 2020, at Cosumnes River College, Room 150 at 9:00 am.