Monthly Member E-News - March 1, 2017
CONTENTS OF THIS E-NEWS
MEMBER NEWS 
LWVGC Annual Meeting - June 3  
Deadline for Spring 2017 Voter - April 1 
New board member - Robert Bensen 
We have moved our office 
Membership good news - League is surging!

VOLUNTEER WITH THE LEAGUE 
Volunteer opportunities with LWVGC 
CTU election: we need ballot counters - March 16 
Redistricting reform is gathering support - join the effort 
Down ballot races in 2017 - train to be a forum moderator

UPCOMING EVENTS
LWVO Statehouse Day - March 7 (Register today - March 1)
Northeast Ohio Public Policy Forums: 
The Impact of State Budget Cuts - March 21 
The Foster Care System - April 18 
LWVO Convention - May 5 - 7

LWVGC MEMBER NEWS 
LWVGC 3rd Annual Meeting - June 3 

Mark your calendars now. Registration and membership materials will be sent late April/early May 
 
Saturday, June 3, 9:15 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. 
Sign-in: 9:15 a.m., meeting begins at 9:30 a.m. 
Lunch: 12 noon 
Speaker: 12:30 p.m. 
CanalWay Center 
4524 E 49th St, Cleveland, OH 44125 

Rep. Stephanie Howse (D), Ohio House District 11, will speak on ohio voting rights, women's health, and education issues. Rep Howse served on Cleveland City Council from 2008 to 2014 and was an administrator with Breakthrough Schools, the highest rated network of public charter schools in Cleveland. In 2002, she started Footprints, a non-profit leadership development and mentoring organization for girls. Her other community affiliations include Friends of the Thurgood Marshall Recreation Center, Cleveland NAACP, US Green Building Coalition, Urban League of Greater Cleveland, and Rotary District 6630. She has an undergraduate degree in civil environmental engineering from Florida A&M University and a master's degree in environmental studies from Cleveland State University.

Deadline for Spring 2017 Voter - April 1

Please submit articles to Wendy Deuring by April 1 for the Spring 2017 Voter, which should be in mailboxes by the first week in May. The Call to Annual Meeting will be in the Spring Voter and sent by email as well.

New board member - Robert Bensen

The board welcomes Robert Bensen, a new member of LWVGC, to an appointed position on the board. He tells us the following about himself: 
A lifelong native of the Cleveland area, Bob attended Kenyon College where he earned a degree in economics. He has one daughter, three sons, and two beautiful granddaughters. After college he held multiple positions with Ecotran Corporation, including his final position as president/CEO. Ecotran was a national software company that supplied software and services to school districts across the U.S. and Canada. They specialized in computerized bus route design and boundary redistricting. Since retirement Bob has supplied consulting services to area businesses. His primary, and most rewarding, retirement job is being a stay-at-home Dad for his 10-year old special needs son.

We have moved our office

Please note that we are using a P.O. box for mailing: 
League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland 
P.O. Box 5310, 
Cleveland, Ohio 44101 

We can receive mail at our new office at 2800 Euclid, but it is not secure - i.e. not a locked mailbox.

Our new phone number is 216 694-8108.

Membership good news - League is surging!

The official tally as of January 31 (i.e. the number used to calculate per member payments to the state and national Leagues) was a total of 371 total members for LWVGC, up from 353 last year. However, new memberships continue to come in and, as of Feb. 27, the total is 394. We have had 62 new members since September! Interest in League is clearly surging nationally and also here in Greater Cleveland due to current political events. See the following article from the Washington Post, "Why this nearly 100-year-old organization is seeing a resurgence..."
 
In today's political environment League's mission and values are our best MLD (membership, leadership development) assets! League's commitment to nonpartisanship, civic engagement, and civil discourse at the grassroots level provides the best antidotes to the current divisive atmosphere in our nation's politics. Hopefully, we can continue to grow and engage the public's newfound interest in national and local issues.
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
Please respond to the contacts listed. Do not hit reply. 
Volunteer opportunities with LWVGC

"Never let a good crisis go to waste." So said Winston Churchill. As many sense a deep crisis in our nation's politics, this is the best time to recruit new members and get them involved. To this end we have created a Volunteer Opportunities page on the LWVGC website to help people get involved with the League. This page is there to help visitors to the LWVGC website explore opportunities for engagement. If you are currently an active member, please welcome and encourage newer members to become involved. If you are a new member or an older member wishing to become more active, please feel free to contact us through the LWVGC website and with the contacts provided in this e-news. The three items below describe volunteer needs that are especially important now. 
CTU election: we need ballot counters - March 16

We will be counting ballots for the Cleveland Teachers' Union (CTU) election on Thursday, March 16, late afternoon to evening. This service to CTU is an important fundraiser for LWVGC. We need 50 people to help and are halfway there. Please join us for any part of the time. Bring a friend and/or family members. Members can designate a chapter to receive $10 for every hour that they work. Non-members are also welcome; come and meet many who are active in League. The work is easy and there is a great sense of League camaraderie. Dinner will be provided. 

Thursday, March 16, 4 p.m. to whenever, about 9 p.m. 
North Shore AFL-CIO Labor Building 
3250 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 44115 
Free parking 

To volunteer, please RSVP to Joanne Siegla at 216-524-7666. When you sign up, please provide a phone number, email address, and tell us what time you are available. 
Questions? Contact Meryl Simon at 216-932-9252.
Redistricting reform is gathering support - join the effort

More than 250 people showed up for the First Unitarian Church's Sunday morning forum on "Boundaries That Matter: Redistricting State and Federal Election Districts." Mark Salling, director of CSU's Northern Ohio Data and Information Service (NODIS), and Paul Moke, former president of the ACLU, spoke. A PDF of Dr. Salling's slides and a link to a video of the entire presentation are available on the LWVGC home page.

A petition drive to place the issue on the ballot, probably for 2018, will begin soon and many, many volunteers will be needed to collect about 600,000 signatures. Anyone can sign up now to help by either going to the Fair Districts = Fair Elections website or emailing LWVGC board members Penny Jeffrey or Becky Thomas

For updated news on the redistricting reform proposal and campaign go to the Fair Districts = Fair Elections or LWV of Ohio websites. 

Note: the Special E-News sent Monday, Feb. 27 said that " Mark Salling's power point will be available at the CSU Levin College website under NODUS." The Levin College webpage is for NODIS, not NODUS. However, as noted above, Dr. Salling's PowerPoint slides are also available as a PDF on the LWVGC homepage.


Down ballot races in 2017 - train to be a forum moderator

Fall 2017 will see local elections for mayors, city councils, school boards, and other contests. LWVGC hopes to train new moderators for candidate and issue forums for these upcoming elections. If you feel comfortable conducting a meeting, event, or class (for example, you have been a teacher, facilitator, team leader, or a leader of a local League chapter or other group) we would love to welcome you to our corps of moderators. Candidate forums are especially important and appreciated in these local elections, where candidates have few other opportunities to deliver their message and constituents have few other opportunities to get to know their candidates.  If interested, please contact Penny Jeffrey

For more detailed information about League forums and moderator responsibilities, please see our Voter Service Toolkit on the LWVGC website. To see moderators in action, you can also view videos of two past candidate forums on the LWVGC YouTube channel: the  Eastside Forum on Sept. 22, 2016 and the  Westside forum on Sept. 27, 2016 
UPCOMING EVENTS
LWVO Statehouse Day - March 7

Sign up now for the 2017 LWV Ohio Statehouse Day. Any sign-ups after today (March 1) will have to pay the walk-in registration price of $55. Come hear about important public policy issues directly from key policy-makers and experts, and ask them your questions. Any LWVGC member can attend but will not be reimbursed for expenses.

Attendees will have the option of requesting a meeting with their legislator through the LWVO office and, if desired, can be teamed up for the meeting with a member of the LWVO Lobby Corps. 

Tuesday, March 7, 9:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. 
Sheraton Columbus at Capitol Square
75 E. State St, Columbus, OH 43215 
Registration: Member $45, Non-member $50, Student $25, 
Walk-In $55. Walk-in price applies to anyone not registering at least one week in advance. 
For more information and registration click here

Prefer to drive in the night before? A discounted room rate is available at the Sheraton, click here
Northeast Ohio Public Policy Forums:
 
All forums are free and open to the public.

The Impact of State Budget Cuts on Northeast Ohio Communities
 
Brent Larkin, cleveland.com, will moderate. Panelists include: 
Sharon Dumas, director of finance, City of Cleveland 
Timothy J. DeGeeter, mayor, City of Parma 
Rich Exner, data analysis editor, cleveland.com 

Tuesday, March 21, 7- 8:30 p.m. 
Parma Snow Branch CCPL 
2121 Snow Rd, Parma, OH 44134 
Reservation is recommended; click here
 
The Foster Care System in Northeast Ohio - Is it Broken? 

Phillip Morris, columnist, Plain Dealer, will moderate. Panelists include: 
P rof. David Crampton, Ph.D., Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, Case Western Reserve University 
Edward L. Gilbert, author, attorney, and foster care advocate 
Kate Lodge, vice president , Strategic Initiatives; executive director, A Place 4 Me, YWCA Greater Cleveland 
Betsie Norris, executive director, Adoption Network Cleveland

Tuesday, April 18, 6:30 - 8 p.m. 
Lakewood Public Library 
15425 Detroit Avenue, Lakewood, OH 44107 
Reservation is recommended; click here

NEO public policy forums are co-sponsored by the Plain Dealer/cleveland.com, Case Western Reserve University Siegal Lifelong Learning Program, the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland, and the library systems of Cleveland Heights-University Heights, Lakewood, and Cuyahoga County. Corporate sponsor is First Interstate Properties, Ltd. 

LWVO Convention - May 5 - 7

The 2017 LWV of Ohio Convention, hosted by the Akron League, will be close to home, taking place in Cuyahoga Falls. 

Friday, May 5 to Sunday, May 7 
Sheraton Suites Akron Cuyahoga Falls 
1989 Front St, Cuyahoga Falls, OH 44221 

State convention is the time to come together in League, participate in dynamic workshops, share ideas and successes, plan for our League's future, catch up with old friends, and make new ones. LWVGC will be entitled to nine delegates. If you are interested in being a delegate to represent LWVGC at convention, contact one of our co-presidents, Marcia Goldberg or Susan Murnane. You do not have to be a delegate to attend. Delegates will be partially reimbursed for their expenses.

For more information, registration, and hotel reservations click here.

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