September 2019
Empowering Voters. Defending Democracy.

The League of Women Voters is a national, political organization that encourages the informed and active participation of citizens in their government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.  The League is non-partisan and as an organization does not endorse or oppose candidates or political parties.
National Voter Registration Day link
September is National Voter Registration Month. September 24 is National Voter Registration Day

Honor this month and day by asking your friends and family if they are registered to voter. They can check the Michigan Voter Education Center to see if they are registered. 

The Presidential Primary is coming up in March 2020. Be prepared by checking your registration now. If you have moved, you need to update your registration address.
New Web Page
When you next click on, you will have a new experience. This new page is more modern in appearance and in function. It will also incorporate more information from the national LWV. 

Currently, the site is still being constructed. There are pages that were set up with general information. I will be updating pages and adding new content as possible.

If you have any comments or questions, please email Katherine Redwine

image of
New Web Site
Our Belle Ringers
small bell
The Belle Ringers are non-competitive awards that give recognition to League members working in the trenches to improve our democracy. These awards are named for  Florence Belle Brotherton, the first president of the LWV of Michigan from 1919-1921.

These awards were presented at the State Convention in May 2019.

Karen Sherwood
Karen volunteered to testify in the LWV v Johnson lawsuit as a voter who was "harmed" by the current gerrymandering of State Senate District 36, and U.S. Congressional District 4.
Voter Service
Susan McCollister
Susan worked tirelessly to organize Vote 411 entries, a printed Voters Guide, and candidate forums for all local contested races in the primary and general elections of 2018.
Member Recruitment & Engagement
Carol McPherson
Carol provides a vibrant and enthusiastic service as our membership chair, bringing in many new members representing a younger and more diverse demographic.
Strategic Planning and/or Fundraising
Judy Donahue
Judy keeps us on track with event planning, including an eagle eye on the budget. She helps us narrow our grand ideas to doable and affordable events.

Thank you for your tireless contributions to Making Democracy Work.
Census 2020 / Fall Kickoff
Tues, Sept 24, 7pm
Creative 360 (1517 Bayliss Street)

The Fall Kickoff event features Chloe Updegraff speaking about the importance of the 2020 Census. 

As Census Hub Coordinator for the Great Lakes Bay Region, Updegraff works to ensure the region receives an accurate count in the upcoming 2020 census. To achieve this goal, she works with local non-profits, community organizations, colleges/universities, and local government officials. 

The primary purpose of the Census is the apportionment of districts for U.S. Congress and State Legislature. The State of Michigan and non-profit organizations expect to receive an estimated $1,800 per person per year in federal support for each person counted. 

Programs that use census data such as Medicaid, nutrition assistance, highway construction and planning, Title I and Special Education Grants, Foster Care and Child Care Grants, K-12 education, Section 8 Vouchers, Head Start/Early Start depend on census data to determine funding for their programs.

Please join us at 7pm for fellowship and refreshments followed by Chloe's presentation.

State News - LWVMI
Michigan Voters: New Rights in 2019

Register Anytime:
Register to vote anytime (until 2 weeks before the Election). 
Choices include: 
  • In person at Secretary of State, City/Township or County Clerk's office 
  • By mail (download an application at 
  • Voter Registration Drive 
  • Online (when it is implemented)

After the 15th day before the Election, you must register in person at the clerk's office with proof of residency. Proof of residency is

  • driver's license or personal ID card, 
  • or any of the following (if proof is current and has your name and address on it) current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check or government document (electronic ok). 

No Reason Absentee Voting 

  • Apply for an Absentee Ballot either by downloading an application at or in person at your local or County Clerk office, or the Secretary of State Office. 
  • Submit application for Absentee Ballot either in person or by mail to your City/Township Clerk's office. 
  • When your Ballot is received either in person or in the mail, mark your ballot. Don't forget your signature on the envelope (or your vote won't be counted). Signature must match the signature on the absentee ballot application. 
  • Make sure your Ballot is received in the Clerk's office before 8 p.m. on Election Day.  

Early Voting by Absentee Ballot 

  • Beginning 45 days before the Election you can vote early in person. Apply for an Absentee Ballot either by downloading an application at or in person at your local or County Clerk's office.
  • You can both apply for and vote in the same visit to your local City/Township Clerk's office (until 4 p.m. the day before the Election). Or you can take your ballot home (and return by 8 p.m. on Election Day).  

Extra hours! 

  • City/Township Clerk offices must be open for at least 8 hours the weekend before the Election to allow for registration and voting by Absentee Ballot. Check for your clerk's specific hours at
  • Election Day: Only Voters who need to register or update their registration address can register and vote in the City/Township Clerk office (until 8 p.m.). Voters already registered must vote at their polling location. 

Straight Party Voting 

The option to select all the candidates from one party by simply voting a Straight-Party Ballot will always be an option if there is a PARTISAN section to the Ballot. This box eliminates the need to check each partisan candidate individually. 


Automatic Voter Registration (coming) All eligible citizens who are not registered to vote will be automatically registered to vote if they conduct any business with the Secretary of State office, unless the citizen opts out. 


Online Voter Registration (coming) 

The Legislature passed legislation to allow for online voter registration. It is expected to begin in the fall of 2019. 


Other Voting Rights included in Proposal 3: Military Ballots, Secret Ballot, Election Audit (2020) 


Online PDF of this information 


--from Betsy Cushman, LWVMI Vice-President, Voter Services

Published in League Links August 2019

Women Who Made History

People needed to help transcribe Suffragist papers - diaries, letters, fliers, etc. Don't be shy, if you can read cursive, you have skills that are needed. See here.
Upcoming Events
Sep 24, 7pm - Kickoff! at  Creative 360. Featuring a talk about Census 2020.

Oct 9, 10-2 - Fall Senior Expo, Midland Mall. Look for sign up opportunities in Sept.

Oct 16, 7pm  - America's Renewable Energy Boom. Co-sponsored by and held at Chippewa Nature Center

Dec 5, 11:45am - Holiday Luncheon. Details to follow.

Jan 14, 2pm - The LWVMI VP for Advocacy will talk to us about advocacy priorities from the state League. Creative 360.
LWV logo
Board Members
The board meets the First Thursday of each month at Creative360, 9:30-11:30. No meeting in June or July. All members are welcome. 

President -  Kim Steinke
Treasurer - Karen Sherwood
Secretary - Judy McDowell
VP Membership - Carol McPherson
VP Program -  Judy Donahue
Director, Voter Service - Sue McCollister
Director, Natural Resources - Carole Swinehart
Director, Natural Resources - Sandy Collinson
Director, Sandy Haughton
Director, Webpage - Katherine Redwine
Director, New Media - Katherine Redwine
Director, Sharron Such
Director, Terry Townley
Director, Kathryn (Kathy) Miller
Director, Cindy LeVasseur
Board Changes:

Cathy Heng, our Director for Print Media for many years, has had to resign her Board position due to health issues. Cathy was our interface for publicity with Midland Daily News. With her journalism background she served us well, and we will miss her!

Julie Schmidt, a long-time Board member and an original member of our Midland LWV in 1969, has resigned from her Director and Webmaster position upon her move from Midland. She will be missed!

Quick Links
LWV League Management
LWV-Bay County (geographical unit of LWV Midland Area)
LWV-Lake Michigan Region
City of Midland
Midland County
Grace A Dow Memorial Library
Midland Public Schools logo
In This Issue
Our Sponsors
When you visit our sponsors, please identify yourself as a LWV Member
Everett Carpet logo
business card for Partners in Change
business card for Shirlene_s Cuisine
Link to Space Studios_ Inc
Michigan Advocacy
Know Your Rights: Voting
Michigan Owners Manual - Michigan League for Public Policy
Michigan Talent Crisis - The Education Trust - Midwest
Local Advocacy
National Advocacy
LWV Census Action Kit
The LWV of the Midland Area can always make good use of donations.

You can make unrestricted donations to the LWV of the Midland Area. These are not tax deductible.

You can make tax deductible donations to the LWV - Education Fund. These funds are used for educational activities.

You can also donate to special projects such as the Voters Guide or 100th Anniversary celebration.

Checks should be made out to LWV - Midland Area or LWV - Education Fund. Send to Karen Sherwood, Treasurer
6005 Millbrook, Midland, 48640


Interested in Joining? 
Use this form  here or email   Carol McPherson

League of Women Voters of the Midland Area  
P.O. Box 1203
Midland, MI 48641-1203