Volume 112 Issue 2
2020-2021 Theme:
Economic and Physical Well-Being for All
Message from the President
We now have the ball rolling beginning with the September monthly meeting and a rousing discussion on Voting in Bexar County 2020. We are grateful for the presentation provided by the Bexar County Elections Administrator, Jacquelyn Callanen. Make sure you read the article in this Newsletter about Jacque’s presentation – it answered a lot of questions we had on voting truths and myths! For our October 3rd meeting, we look forward to more discussion on this important subject with Madhu Sridhar, President of the League of Women Voters, San Antonio, who will speak on “Your Rights, Your Vote”. Her presentation’s focus will be on improving voter protection by combating burdensome restrictions; preserving voting locations; and fighting against voter roll purges, to name just a few of the issues her organization tackles.

With campaigning for the November 3rd election in full swing, we also are getting in gear to encourage our voting neighbors to take advantage, for those eligible, to vote by mail and also make everyone aware that early voting has been extended to run October 13-30. Eligible voters can expect their mail-in ballot in early October, as the County begins mailing ballots starting October 1st. Questions to the Bexar County Elections office may be addressed by calling (210) 335-8683 or www.bexar.org.

AAUW Texas has given us a heads-up that on September 26th at 10:00 AM a Webinar will be presented by Lisa Matz on “Challenges of Women in Politics”, focusing on how we can be allies who support and empower women. Lisa is the former AAUW Vice-President for Government Relations and Advocacy. Watch your email closer to the date for information on how to join the event. AAUW Texas and National plan to conduct sessions regularly, so keep watch and join in these very interesting and informative presentations. Respond to the invitations so that you receive the codes to enter into the webinar.

Members should expect the update of the Branch Directory and Bylaws delivered in the mail in September. Please provide any changes in your contact information to me by September 19.

Time for membership dues and we have a few members left who have not paid. Please contact Kathy Dicke (VP Membership) if you have questions. Kathy and our new Treasurer, Ann Marie Rehner, work together to ensure the process is pretty painless – whether paying online or by check.

I appreciate your participation in our remote, Zoom-assisted meetings and sincerely hope you have found it to be beneficial and helpful in supporting our AAUW program. I encourage you to provide feedback to me and to our board members on how you feel about this mode as well as topics discussed, and your suggestions are encouraged. Don’t forget – besides the monthly meetings we will continue to conduct the monthly Book Discussions and Wine, Women, and Wisdom, which are open to all members. As we recognize we are stronger together, we also know we improve with the participation and ideas of all of us!

Looking forward –
Cheryl Fuller
AAUW San Antonio President
AAUW is Zooming!

October 3, 2020
11:30 a.m.   

Speaker: Madhu Sridhar, President of the League of Women Voters of the San Antonio Area

Program: Your Rights, Your Vote

RSVP to Cheryl Fuller
(if you did not RSVP last month)
to receive the Zoom link.

Our speaker for the October 3rd meeting will be Madhu Sridhar, President of the League of Women Voters of the San Antonio Area.

The League is a nonpartisan organization that encourages informed and active participation of citizens in their government. Under her leadership, the League launched the Empowering Voters Project. The project strives to ensure that all voters in San Antonio area know their rights and responsibilities on Election Day and go to the polls informed and empowered. The Project especially focuses on those constituencies that are underrepresented in the electoral process and are most vulnerable to voting problems.

Madhu Sridhar has more than 25 years of leadership and management experience in the nonprofit sector. She served as the President of the Massachusetts League of Women Voters for four years. Under her leadership, the League drafted and passed election reform legislation that expanded the pool of Election Officers, ensured impartiality of Administration of Elections and mandated the League drafted Voters Bill of Rights be posted at all polling sites. Governor Deval Patrick of MA appointed Sridhar to the Commonwealth Corps Commission that engaged residents to rebuild communities. She was appointed to the MA Commission on the Status of Women by MA Senate President Theresa Murray. She served on several boards including ACLU and WGBH (PBS affiliate).

She was the founding President/CEO of the Akshaya Patra Foundation USA, an organization which provides freshly prepared mid-day meals to over 1.3 million under-served children daily in schools across India.
Invite Friends to Join

It was great to have so many members and guests at the September Zoom meeting. Please encourage friends and neighbors who may be interested in joining AAUW to attend the October Zoom meeting.

The website states "Membership in AAUW is open to any graduate holding an associate or equivalent, baccalaureate, or higher degree from a regionally accredited institution."

Kathy Dicke
Vice President, Membership
So What?
“So What?” is the title for a follow up article each month concerning the information presented by our guest speaker at the preceding month’s meeting. The article asks, “What take-aways do we have from what was said?" and, “How can we act on what we’ve learned?"

The September speaker was Jacquelyn Callanen, Bexar County Election Administrator, who dispelled some of the current myths circulating about voting requirements. She assured us that all Bexar County ballots, including Mail-In Ballots, are handled with integrity and security.

1. All Applications for Vote by Mail must be received by Bexar County Elections Department no later than October 23, 2020, 5:00 PM, so apply early to be guaranteed your Ballot is filled out and returned by Election Day, November 3.
2. Every Mail-In Ballot with a valid signature and a timely postmark will be counted.
3. Vote By Mail Applications may be used by anyone over 65, anyone with a disability, anyone who will be out of the county on Election Day, anyone in jail but not finally convicted.
4. Lack of immunity to Covid19 alone is not a disability, but prospective voters may take their health and health history into consideration in deciding to check the Disability box.
5. There will be only 1 drop-box site for voters to drop off their Mail-In Ballots should they decide not to put them in the mail. That is the Bexar County Elections Department headquarters at 1103 Frio Street. You must have a photo ID when turning in your ballot to the Early Voting Clerk. No one can drop off your ballot for you.
6. Mail-in Ballots do not have to be folded a certain way to be counted.
7. If additional postage beyond 1 Forever Stamp is required, law requires Bexar County Elections Department to enclose a notice informing you of the additional amount.
8. There is an Early Counting Board, half Democrat, half Republican that provides bipartisan teams to verify the signature and bar code on each ballot.
9. Do not vote at the polls after having mailed in a ballot. It is illegal to vote more than once.
10. If you have requested a Mail-In Ballot but decide to vote in person, bring your packet to the poll site to prove you haven’t used it. Provide photo ID.
11. The only way a deceased resident’s vote Is counted is when the resident voted and signed the Mail-In Ballot prior to death. Bar code and signature ensure validity of the voter.
12. Military Mail-In Votes may be counted up to 6 days after receipt. Civilian Mail-In Votes, 1 day.
13. Curbside voting is possible, but Dr. Ruth Bergeren, a local public health expert notes that this method is the worst voting contact for Covid19 transmission.
14. There is a paper trail backup for each electronic ballot. Furthermore, data duplicate to that sent to Austin on Election Day is kept “in house” on the Bexar County electronic server and this documentation of residents’ votes is safely secured.
15. A Homeland Security Officer inspects all Bexar County equipment and programming and tabulating procedures annually.
16. There will be large super site polling places where voting may take place as safely as possible by implementing all Covid19 precautions.
17. Poll workers will be required to wear masks, face shields, and gloves. Unfortunately, voters are not required to wear masks.
18. One deputy sheriff is required at each polling place to provide protection for the ballots. Ten deputies are on standby should there be a need to keep the peace or deliver additional forms.
19. Ballots have not yet been finalized. There will be a sample ballot online once all wording, punctuation and layout is completed.
20. If you want to be sure your vote was counted, there will be a State data base that lists everyone who has voted.

Acting on What We’ve Learned

Suggested actions:
1. Become a poll worker.
2. Apply now for a Mail-In Ballot.
3. Tell friends what you’ve learned; dispel untrue statements and relate accurate voting information.
4. Print pertinent voting information in newsletters of other organizations you belong to.
AAUW SA Monthly Programs in Review

Our AAUW Speaker, Jacquelyn Callanan, Bexar County Elections Administrator, opened our 2020-2021 AAUW SA Program Year. She enthralled and engaged us with her knowledge, integrity, and honesty about voting in Bexar County. She also answered all those lingering questions we had about mail-in ballots. We thank her for sharing her valuable Saturday morning with us. She was awesome!!!

This month’s speaker is Madhu Sridhar, President, League of Women Voters San Antonio. Join us Saturday, October 3rd to learn about the Voter Registration and GOTV strategies are for October, and, what we can do to help. Plus, hear issues the League will advocate for during the new state and federal legislative year.

November 7th, Dr. Richard Lewis, Jr, PhD, Professor of Diversity Training, UTSA, will discuss “America’s Challenge: Addressing Inclusion and Inequality.” Race is being thrust into the forefront with the death of George Floyd. The rise of “Black Lives Matter” is echoed around the world. The issues of race impact every fiber of our lives whether we acknowledge it or not. As Martin Luther King stated, “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.” Dr. Lewis addresses “biases”, “racist”, â€śanti-racist”, “inclusivity”, and “inequality.”

As VP Programs, I want to acknowledge the hard work the members and members of the Programs Committee who designed, researched, and planned this year’s program. They are continuing to work to ensure those programs provide information that help us to advocate for the economic and physical well-being for all.

Committee members are:
Patricia Tucker
Ann Marie Rehner
Fran Vetters
Mary Ellen Pratt
Ali Heller
Martha Steel

Remember to complete the “Membership Fun Facts Survey.” Because we cannot face-to-face meet new people as we would normally do during our monthly luncheons, the survey will provide information to introduce members to each other. Patricia Tucker, who used this ice breaker in the past, is incredibly good at developing a one-minute whimsical introduction using some of the interesting tidbits from the survey.

Diane Claiborne-Carr
VP Programs

It’s time to start thinking of scholarships. I will need six volunteers. Three for the graduate committee, three for the textbook committee. Please send your preference to me, Karen Reichensperger at jkreichen@att.net.

The scholarship deadline is the first Saturday in February 2021. In January, I will ask you about your schedules in February, so that I can schedule our “meeting” to discuss your reviews. Then, after I receive the scholarships, I will send the applications out to each on the committee along with a scoring sheet. This part is done individually, independently. At the committee “meeting” we will discuss our scores in order to make a recommendation to the Board of Directors who makes the final decision. (The Board highly respects our recommendations.)

It is not a big time commitment. It is a highly rewarding effort. It is an investment in our future.

Karen Reichensperger
Scholarship Chair
AAUW Public Policy

National elections are less than 60 days away. Voter turnout is sure to be high as people across the nation exercise the right to have their voice heard on topics that affect us, our loved ones, and our country.
Make sure you vote for candidates who support the values you believe in. Check out the paragraphs below for a quick take on language to look for that supports our mission of advancing equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, and research. For more in-depth information, click on the links provided and you will be taken to the national website with much additional information including research reports, lobbying activities, statistical information, and more.

Intersectional. Inclusive. Intergenerational. Empowering.

Though we are nonpartisan, we are not values-neutral: We fight to remove the barriers and biases that stand in the way of gender equity. We train women to negotiate for pay and benefits and to pursue leadership roles. And we advocate for federal, state and local laws and policies to ensure equity and end discrimination.


We’ve been working to narrow the gender pay gap, which greets women as soon as they enter the workforce and widens throughout their working lives. Unequal wages stand in the way of a woman’s ability to pay off student debt, build wealth and save for a secure retirement.


We champion equal opportunities in education. Though more than 60% of college graduates are women, they face barriers and biases throughout their schooling. From pre-school to graduate school, girls and women are unconsciously steered into certain fields of studies and away more lucrative ones, such as in STEM.

Our members, supporters and staff work on local, state and federal levels to support laws and policies that enable women’s success. Our work in statehouses and the U.S. Capitol has helped pass hundreds of pieces of legislation. Our Legal Advocacy team has supported plaintiffs in more than 125 gender equity legal cases.

The Two-Minute Activist
The Two-Minute Activist is a source of information on topics relating to women’s issues. It also enhances our ability to send emails and texts to legislators to fight for equal pay, family leave, stopping sexual harassment, equality in education and more. Sign up on the AAUW webpage to get regular alerts to be able to take timely action.
You can also text “AAUW” to 21333 to get AAUW action alerts via text.

Pat Sanford
Public Policy Chair
AAUW Texas Invites You to Virtual Conversation with Lisa Maatz
Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 10 AM

·      Exceptional Communicator
·      Sharp Strategist
·      Savvy Advocate
·      Dynamic Speaker
·      AAUW VP for Government Relations and Advocacy (15 years)

AAUW Texas is proud to present a webinar with Lisa Maatz speaking on Challenges of Women in Politics - how we can be allies who support and empower women.

Watch your email for the official invitation from AAUW Texas.
Don't Forget to Send Your Comments About the AAUW National Dues Increase by
September 25, 2020 to connect@aauw.org
Interest Groups
Cancelled until further notice.
4541 Fredericksburg Rd. 78201
Meet at 12:00 noon for lunch.
Start playing at 12:30 pm.
Contact Pearl Eng
Cancelled until further notice.
DoubleTree Hotel
37 NE Loop 410 at McCullough 78216
RSVP to Lola Hill
Saturday, Oct 17, 10:00 am
Sweet Little Lies by Caz Frear
RSVP by Oct 15 to Diantha Perelli cyclobabe1946@yahoo.com to receive the Zoom link.
Cancelled until further notice.
RSVP to Fran Vetters
Wednesday, Oct 14, 5:00 pm
Wednesday, Oct 28, 5:00 pm
RSVP to Helga Anderson handerson5@satx.rr.com to receive the Zoom link.
Cancelled until further notice.
Movie, time, and place selected by the group and announced the day before.
RSVP to Fran Vetters