University Woman Texas

Volume 74 l Issue 2 l October 2022

Message from the President

Happy Fall to all of you Texas AAUW members,

I am so happy that we have finally felt some cool weather all over Texas. The summer was brutal, and September continued, although we began to see a break in the drought. How to begin. So much has happened in the past two months. I have been encouraged as I have attended the Zoom calls of Membership, Funds, and Public Policy that so many of you are involved in empowering girls and women in many ways! I missed the Public Policy Zoom because my own branch program meeting was at the same time, and the speaker was the expert from Region IV on “Human Trafficking.” My apologies for missing. I will certainly be at the next meeting. My wish is that more branches attended these Zoom calls to hear the great ideas and to participate in the discussions about how to attract more new members, share what works in their branch, where to hold programs, what is your “ask” when fundraising, how to get out the vote, and what issues we going to support in the upcoming legislative session. I heard such wonderful ideas about what the different branches were doing across the state.

Our next Zoom calls are:

MEMBERSHIP: November 8           FUNDS: November 10

PUBLIC POLICY: November 15       PROGRAMS: November 17

The times will be announced later. Put these dates on your calendar so that you can join us.


We sent out a survey to you about what were the most important issues you wanted Texas AAUW to concentrate our energy on in the next legislative session beginning in January 2023. The graph below shows the results:

I reported in my last newsletter that Kevin Stewart was continuing as our lobbyist. He has resigned, so the Public Policy Committee has been interviewing candidates for the position of lobbyist. I have been impressed with how many clients the candidates for the job are already representing who have similar goals to ours. We are going to contact some of them and make connections with them to make our voice stronger.


With my attendance at the national Advancement Committee Zoom AAUW meetings, the leaders would like to reach out to all branches by having the state leaders appoint one person to receive our complaints and problems with the Community Hub. Margo Johnson has volunteered for the position. I will send her name, phone number, and email to your branch president. Thank you, Margo. Send her your problems with membership and other Community Hub issues and she will “try” to straighten them out. National believes that receiving only one call and email rather than 2500 will greatly help them catch up.


GET PEOPLE TO THE POLLS! I am so excited about how many people have been registered to vote by some of our branches that DID become Deputy Voter Registrars. Congratulations! They went into the high schools and registered seniors, into libraries, into colleges, and into malls and grocery stores. Kudos! You are mobilizing voter participation. ELECTIONS MATTER! Hopefully, some of you have volunteered to work at the polls. Please get out and vote. Early voting begins on OCTOBER 24! It is up to each of you to do what you can to make sure our elections continue to be free and fair.

I love this Democratic Republic I live in. God Bless the USA. GET OUT AND VOTE!

Mary Smith 

AAUW Texas President

November Zoom Conference Calls

Please RSVP to the Board Member who is hosting to receive the Zoom link.

Zoom calls can be accessed by phone for anyone unable to connect virtually.

November 8 - Membership

Sara Wood

November 10 - AAUW Funds

Margie Poole

November 15 - Public Policy

Pat Rehm

November 17 - Programs

Terry Whaley

Public Policy Update

Since mid-September, the AAUW Texas advocacy committee has been searching for a lobbyist to replace Kevin Stewart, who has decided to reduce his client load after the birth of a second child. So far, Gloria Long, Pat Sanford, Georgia Kimmel, Mary Smith, and Pat Rehm have spoken and exchanged emails with representatives of four firms, and they are willing to consider other prospects.


The September 13th Zoom meeting for public policy advocates from around the state focused on the upcoming mid-term elections and related activities, as crucially important issues are at stake. Here are some comments from the discussion.


Getting Out the Vote

Some of our members have taken Volunteer Deputy Registrar training and plan to use it. VDRs can still go to high schools to register seniors who are 17 yrs.,10 months of age. Some coaches in schools have invited VDRs to athletic events to register teammates. To avoid mail ballot rejection, voting officials recommend going to the polls if possible!


Important Dates Related to the November 8 General Elections

October 11                 Last day to register to vote

October 24-28          Early voting at the polls, 8 AM to 5 PM

October 28               Last day to request mail ballot (Clerk's deadline to receive it: 5PM)

October 29 (Sat.)     Early voting, 7 AM to 7 PM

October 30 (Sun.)    Early voting, 12 PM (noon) to 6 PM

October 31-Nov. 4    Early voting, 7 AM to 7 PM

November 7             'Hero Day'

November 8              ELECTION DAY, 7 AM to 7 PM


Non-Partisan Resources for More Information

Civic Holidays (non-partisan days and community activities) -

League of Women Voters and Vote 411 -

Texas Impact (webinars, meetings, and information) -

Harris County Library (Vietnamese materials; check other libraries for non-English items)

Voting Information -

Non-partisan Voter Guide -

Opportunities for Advocacy Leadership Training

Texas Woman's University has the Jane Nelson Institute for Women's Leadership. Upcoming events include three webinars on “Advocacy Basics,” available both in person in Denton and by Zoom.  If you or someone you know would be interested in registration information, I can forward it to you. Three sessions are available:

October 11 at 7:00 - 8:45 PM - “Ready to Research?”

October 18 at 12:25 -12:55 PM - “Advocacy Moment”

October 26 at 7:00 - 8:30 PM - “Tips for Success”


Pat Rehm

Public Policy

What's Happening in the Branches.........

The Southeast Harris County Branch is forty years old in 2022. Ruth Askine – along with her sister, Martha Julian, and another member, Jeanne Gelber, founded the branch. After making the decision to start an AAUW branch, they took out a newspaper ad––which brought a good response. The branch came into existence in 1981 with the name LaPorte-Pasadena Branch and Jeanne as first branch president.


The branch is fortunate to have some of the earliest members still active: Mary Ellen Harris (an AAUW Life Member, and Charter Member of Legacy Circle), Louise Peck, Margie Fullen, and Blanche Harrison, as well as Ruth.


One of the branch projects in which Ruth was instrumental was the organization of the 2010 Expanding Your Horizons – a STEM career conference – for girls in grades 7 and 8, held at San Jacinto College. Students from Pasadena and Deer Park ISD's participated.


Over the years, Ruth has served as president and longtime financial officer of the branch. Ruth continues to be one of the Southeast Harris County Branch’s most active and valuable members, and she says that she "Enjoys all branch activities, particularly the book group."


Ruth graduated from Rice University in 1958, where she majored in English and history. She earned her two master’s degrees in education and history from University of Houston at Clear Lake. She taught in California, where her husband (a Californian) earned his graduate degree. Ruth, her husband, and two children eventually returned to Pasadena, Texas, where Ruth previously had lived. 


Ruth had a successful teaching career teaching in several schools in Pasadena. She retired from Sam Rayburn High School in 1998. After retirement, Ruth worked in both the Pasadena Public Library and the University of Houston Library for four years.


Ruth has also been involved in many church activities, as well as working with Habitat for Humanity, the Pasadena Citizens’ Advisory Council (an amazing group, worthy of a story all their own), Pasadena Community Ministries, the Orphan Grain Train, and Pasadena Interfaith Manor. Ruth is also busy campaigning for candidates in the upcoming election. She is pictured here at a recent labor organizing rally and picnic.

Elected Officers  

Mary Smith

Terry Whaley

Sara Wood

Margie Poole

Diane Roberts

Lucy Barrington

Elected District Representatives

Betsy Calabro

Cheryl Fuller

Cheri Butler

Stephanie Jones

Standing Committees

Margaret Carlson

Pat Rehm

Appointed Positions

Shirley Selz

Margo Johnson

Communications Team

Malinda Gaul

Janani Janakiraman

Jerrilyn Woodard-Entrekin

Contact at:


Program VP

Membership VP


Finance Officer


South District

Central District

North District

West District


Public Policy

SHARE Grants Coordinator

Branch Services

UWT Editor