August Update From NWPC National
August 24th, 2000 Author: Annie
Greetings from Your New President
“NWPC: Life Begins (again) at Forty”
The NWPC 20th Biennial Convention in Washington DC celebrated the 40 years of service since the founding of the National Women’s Political Caucus. With messages from Founders and former NWPC Presidents, and presentations from significant leaders in media, women’s issues, public policy and organizational best practices, Caucus members and guests raised their glasses of champagne high to toast the first 40 years and to honor those who led us through them.
As we begin the next steps in our journey, we give appreciation to those who have gone before us. Our Founders were women who were not afraid to step out in front of an issue that they believed in. Those several hundred women gathered to begin a new organization — one that included all political parties that could represent all women and increase the role women play in our government. We thank Bella Abzug, Gloria Steinem, Shirley Chisholm, Liz Carpenter, Myrlie Evers, Ellie Smeal, Ann Lewis, and many, many others who stood for the idea that progressive women should be at the decision-making table!
The previous administration and board worked through many challenges for the organization, for which our former President Lulu Flores and her board are due appreciation and applause for all their hard work and accomplishments. In addition to the work of the Caucus to recruit, train and help elect more women get into office, Lulu also focused on bringing more efficiency and accountability to NWPC and helped stabilize and update processes. For her years of commitment and loyalty to NWPC, the Convention gave her a standing ovation and her husband presented her with four dozen red roses.
Our new slate of officers stand on the shoulders of those before us, and is energized to set and meet new goals for “the next 40 years” of NWPC. The climate of the country is one of movement, of change, and dissatisfaction with the status quo. Messages we heard at the Convention included a new fervor for pushing passage of the ERA “once and for all,” and a call for significantly increasing the numbers of women participating in framing legislation for our future. Some commented that now is our time, that this is the moment when our actions will count most and when we can affect the greatest change.
My goal is to lead our organization by serving and listening to our membership from local and state caucuses, to grow our numbers dramatically by inviting women of various political views, invite more sponsorship and involvement from industry and more cooperation with other organizations. At a time when states are holding recall elections for their legislators, and when more people are standing up to be heard, the NWPC must also ramp up our efforts in order to give these women the larger platform they need and deserve.
For the next 40 years, we plan to add more state Caucuses, and to multiply the number of College Caucuses around the country. Additionally, we plan to continue to outreach to other organizations with whom we share purposes and to partner to meet goals.
We appreciate the excellent work Bettina Hager has done for NWPC, and are pleased Bettina is going to stay with us as we begin this new term. Bettina did an outstanding job establishing an effective internship program, and continues to coordinate interns’ work for Caucus, providing strong support of our programs.
I would like to send my heartfelt “Thank You” to each of you who participated in the election of officers, and who continue to participate in your home Caucuses, serving in leadership roles there, recruiting new members to Caucus, working for our endorsed candidates, and so much more! Our new team is committed to helping us build our numbers and the effectiveness of our Caucuses, and to providing new resources for NWPC. We solicit your input and want to hear from you. Watch the website for new developments, and for exciting news about upcoming events.