February 15, 2021 - verobeach-fl.aauw.net - PO box 2143, Vero Beach, FL 32961

President's Message
Jonnie Mae Perry
“Do not desire to fit in. Desire to oblige yourselves to lead.” Gwendolyn E. Brooks
Gwendolyn E. Brooks was an American poet, author, and teacher. Her work often dealt with personal celebrations and struggles of ordinary people in her community. Ms. Brooks won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry on May 1, 1950, for her book of poetry, Annie Allen, making her the first African American to receive a Pulitzer Prize.  

She was known around the world for using poetry to increase understanding about Black culture in America. Her books include Annie Allen, 1949; A. Street in Bronzeville, 1945; We Real Cool, 1960; Maud Martha, 1953; The Bean Eaters, 1960 and In the Mecca, 1968.

As we advance our mission of women and girls in Indian River County, we acknowledge Black History Month and Women History Month through pioneer Gwendolyn E. Brooks. 

Amid this pandemic, there is light at the end of the tunnel, thanks to the vaccines. Please stay safe
and encouraged! 

It's an Honor
Our Vero Beach President, Jonnie Mae Perry, has been nominated for the Zonta Yellow Rose Award for Excellence in Community Service for the upcoming Women Who Rock Awards, hosted by weVENTURE Women’s Business Center during Women's History Month. 

There are a record number of Women Who Rock nominations, and while only one woman from each category will be chosen as THE 2021 award winner, ALL of the nominees will be celebrated throughout the month and at the live webinar on March 23rd when the winners will be announced. Please join us virtually!

WHEN: March 23rd  from 11:30am – 1pm. 

WHO: We want to recognize the nominees' contributions to the community, celebrate their success and inspire others to follow in their footsteps.

WHY: All proceeds from this celebration support weVENTURE WBC and their mission to be the leading voice and resource for professional women in Brevard, Indian River and St. Lucie counties.

HOW: More information about the event and registration link-- > HERE

March Book Preview
On Monday March 1, 2021, at 10:00 A.M. on Zoom, Stanford Erickson will review The Accidental President: Harry S. Truman and the Four Months That Changed the World by A.J. Baime. Mr. Erickson will be introduced by Jane Howard.

With a Master's degree in Literature from San Francisco State University and a Master's degree in Business from Columbia University, Stanford Erickson has had an illustrious career as an author, interviewer, speechwriter, journalist, editor, publisher, poet, playwright, and businessman. He worked for Hearst, McGraw-Hill, Knight-Ridder, and The Economist Group. He has traveled throughout North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. For ten years he headed all public relations worldwide for Sea-Land Service, the world's largest container ship operation. He brings a wealth of experience to our Book Review. 

The Accidental President: Harry S. Truman and the Four Months That Changed the World is the breathtaking story of how an uninformed Vice President became the leader of the free world. Truman was exactly the right person for a very critical time in our country's history and the history of the world. He ended the war with Japan, fed and rebuilt Europe, recognized Israel as a nation, desegregated the armed forces, and stopped the envelopment of an Iron Curtain over much of Europe. 

Pick up the book at your library, pour yourself a cup of coffee, and come to our Book Review on Zoom. 

--Submitted by Leslie Carson
Zoom URL for AAUW Book Review

Phone in: 929-436-2866
Meeting ID: 996 4949 9198
Passcode: 864281

*****Need Zoom help? Call Linda_barker@comcast.net (703-898-8260)*****

Diversity in Black History Month
To Heal or Not to Heal,
That is the Question
by Crystal Morris, MS, CTRT-E
Do we want to heal? I know there are many calls from various platforms for our country to heal, but is that really what we want, or do we want to get past this uncomfortable moment we have found ourselves? As I write this, I see a scar on my thigh that has been my companion for over 30 years. I can still remember its origin. One of the reasons I remember it so vividly is because of the process it took to heal. Fast forward a few decades, and I remember holding the tears of my son as I swabbed his scar with an alcohol wipe. There is discomfort in the process that brings about true healing and slapping a bandage on an untreated wound only causes the infection to worsen and spread.
As we observe Black History Month in February, let us begin to lean into ways to become healers. This goal does not take us back to school to earn a new degree. Instead, it calls on us to adopt a new mindset and a new lens to view individuals and communities. Our minds are effective machines, and over ninety percent of our thoughts are birthed from the unconscious mind. Having that mindset change takes a deliberate choice to not go with a default response. Intentionality allows an opportunity to pause and reflect on our knee-jerk reactions, the source of those reactions based on our lived experiences, and the impact our reactions may have on those around us. Intentionality takes us from doing change work by title to being change agents.
The call to be the change can be a scary one. Participants engaging in this work, despite racial identity, will have critical concepts to grapple with constantly. It is easy to react with anger. Its muscles are well defined, and it opens the doors that shame and guilt or even fear cannot. Resist the urge to respond from a space of anger. Resist the urge to justify or engage in “whataboutisms.” Engage in meaningful dialogue with individuals outside of the circles you are most comfortable joining. Listen to their stories with curiosity and to understand, not with recommendations to seemingly fix. We will find ways to bridge the gap through active listening as we begin to see life through someone else’s lens. And when we have that vision check, we get to see how ill-informed some of our thought processes have been and how we can generate new understandings based on a complete picture.

Intentionality takes us from doing change work by title to being change agents.

So, for today, and all the days to follow, grow. Like healing, this is a process that will not happen with one act. But through small changes here, starting new habits there, and stopping ideas, judgments, and actions in other areas, that seed that will have the opportunity to grow and thrive and produce good fruit to benefit those around you. Why not start with using this month, Black History Month, to learn about American History omitted from textbooks and in classroom conversations. Observing Black History Month in other countries such as Canada and the United Kingdom shows the vast nature of exclusion that has happened to an entire race of people for centuries. Lean into learning. Lean into being. Live courageously!

Opportunities to Make a Difference
Can I help our chapter without being a board member?

So glad you asked! Board membership is not required to assist with single projects for membership, programs and media committees. Emails, paper mailings and public relations are some of the duties we need assistance with next year. If you can help, please contact one of the following board members:

Jonnie Mae Perry 772-985-7573
Carole Strauss 772-532-4712
Gail DeGioia 772-321-9156
When you shop on Amazon, please use Smile--

At no extra cost, you'll generate donations for Vero Beach AAUW
Immeasurable Rewards
N.B. For other virtual training dates, call 772-778-2223.

--Submitted by Linda Barker
Meeting our Mission
Tech Trek is a week long science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) summer camp for rising eighth-grade girls. It develops girls' interest, excitement, and self-confidence in STEM fields. This year's events will be virtual for the safety of our participants.

Member Spotlight
                                      Lois Miles 

I feel confident that I provided any number of men and women with opportunities to develop job skills, beat addiction, make better decisions, enjoy an honest life and embrace hope for the future.
A Passion for Public Speaking

Lois Miles built a wonderful career as a secondary teacher, field agent, Regional Manager and Deputy Warden in Michigan prisons because she had a passion for the disenfranchised. Much of her work required public speaking, an activity she learned to use to her advantage. That seems, and is, unusual since most people are petrified of presenting to strangers.
When asked how she came to ‘love’ speaking, she explains, “My volunteer work for The Team for Justice in Detroit was the catalyst. We provided a battery of community integration services, and recruited mentors for offenders coming out of prison, a career pivot which ultimately took me away from teaching at East Catholic, a private inner city high school. I dealt with students whose lives were impacted by social, economic and racial issues, and who could easily get caught up in the system. I got so involved that I became the Team’s full-time coordinator for community development and joined kindred spirits to create the power of lift so strongly promoted by Melinda Gates in her recent best seller.”
She organized conferences all over Wayne Country to eventually recruit an impressive 200+ volunteers. “The more I spoke, the easier it became,” she reflects.

On the Parole Beat

After a few years, she saw an opportunity to enter Civil Service, passed the exam, added to her education with two Masters degrees and initially worked with courts and the probation system, first as a probation officer, then a supervisor.
“I moved on to parole work with more than a hundred parolees on my case load. The job required being a liaison between a potential employer or drug treatment counselor or parent, paving the way for the offender’s successful reentry. My image in the public was sometimes difficult to navigate, but I learned successful ways to communicate.” She later supervised the opening of four new parole offices.
“In 1980, there were only two other female parole agents. Male colleagues worried that women would not be ‘tough enough.’ Luckily for me, when I moved into the prison system there were far more men who were willing to mentor and assist than those who weren’t. I made life-long friends and adopted a low-key, non-aggressive style, which worked well.”

Behind the Walls

As her experience grew, Lois served on a prison-opening team which created an opportunity to forge relationships with colleagues as they brought three new prisons on line in Detroit.
By the time she retired, there were five female wardens at the 32 Michigan prisons. “We tried to hire more women, especially Corrections Officers, because a female approach combined with the strong male hand calmed the prison environment. I created an acappella prisoner choir called ‘The Mighty Voices of Scott’ that performed for employees and prisoners on special occasions and an art club for Lifers that helped them structure years of institutional time and improved mental health.
“These are the things I remember and feel happy about. I loved it and would do it again. Eventually, deep budget cuts forced an emphasis on seniority priorities in government service, which usually favored the first hired. So, I decided to be proactive and move on.

I’ve always felt that the Michigan Department of Corrections did a commendable job of supervising offenders. It has long been ranked among states as one of the few avant garde leaders in the business. I was proud to be a part of it.

“I don’t have a bucket list, but I think about how much I’d like to ride around in a food truck and feed hungry children. Just saying ‘hungry children’ sounds like an oxymoron. That’s my next step."

I look forward to reading about some of our other members in forthcoming issues.--Lois

--Interviewer/Author: Elaine Spooner
Women in Science: Sally Ride
Sally Ride (1951-2012)

NASA astronaut Sally Ride became the first American woman in space, serving as a mission specialist on the space shuttle Challenger in 1983. At 32 years old, she was also the youngest American to ever leave the atmosphere. (She wasn't the first woman in space, though -- that title belongs to Soviet cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova.)

After the Challenger disaster in 1986, in which an explosion occurred shortly after takeoff and claimed the lives of seven astronauts, Ride served on the Rogers Commission, which investigated the tragedy. She also helped investigate the space shuttle Columbia disaster in 2003, during which the shuttle disintegrated as it re-entered the atmosphere, making Ride the only person to serve on both investigation commissions.

Ride went on to have an award-winning career as a public servant and as a physics professor at the University of California, San Diego. She also founded "Sally Ride Science," an organization that aims to inspire young people in STEM, and she wrote several books about her experience in space to teach kids about science.

--Source: https://www.cnn.com/2020/01/27/world/women-in-science-you-should-know-scn/index.html
--Photo: E Life Picture Collection via Getty Images
AAUW-FL Leadership Conference

Save the Date

Virtual Leadership Conference and Annual Meeting 
April 16, 17, & 18

"Women Together in the Sunshine State"

April 16th - Late Friday Afternoon
  • View video of branch successes
  • Announcement of Named Gift Awards
  • Hear keynote speaker, Janet Petro, Deputy Director, NASA, Kennedy Space Center - "Leadership - The Key to Change" 

April 17th - Saturday Morning
  • Session on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion 
  • Review the Tool Kit online at aauw.org
  • Learn the "16 Dimensions of Diversity" and the definition of “Intersectionality"

  • Session on Economic Security
  • Explore financial literacy for women at all stages of their lives.

April 18th - Sunday Morning
  • Branches share their 2020 highlights
  • Annual Meeting - Election of officers; review of proposed bylaw changes; and pros and cons of membership initiative.

The Leadership Conference is a Biennial Event

For more information about AAUW Florida contact
Patricia Dewitt, AAUW Florida President, aauwfldewitt@gmail.com
Bea Holt, AAUW Florida Director for Programs, beaholt45@gmail.com
Community Partners
For Updated information, Click Here

--Submitted by Linda Barker


P. 31-- Joan Edward's new email: joanedwards32960@gmail.com


All Season Fundraisers have been postponed:

Presidents and Their First Ladies February 28th
Vero Beach Theatre Guild

Senior Expo 2021 March 11th Intergenerational Center

Mah Jong: Play the New Card April 9th
Bent Pine Golf Club

ALL Book Reviews and Branch Meetings
will be held via Zoom for the rest of the 2020-2021 season.

Saturday, April 17th (date corrected)

Election Installation
Results of Interest Survey
Plans for 2021-2022 season

Put in Your Two Cents

We're planning next year's speakers, activities and interest groups and would love your input! Please phone, text or email your thoughts and ideas:

Carole Strauss: 772-532-4712  seaviewcl@gmail.com
Gail DeGioia: 772-321-9156  gail.degioia@gmail.com
Kathy Martin: 908-334-3648  k2014martin@gmail.com

--Submitted by Carole Strauss
It's Not Too Late
A special incentive is still available for new members who join after attending a ZOOM event--such as the ones featured above in this Hotline.

What is it? National dues will be reduced by 1/2 for new members for their first year. Applications and details are available at our website, or contact our Membership Director, Gail DeGioia by phone (772-321-9156) or email (gail.degioia@gmail.com.) 

--Submitted by Gail Degioia
A Little Free Reminder
Schools face a lot of challenges, especially during the the pandemic, and it is more important than ever for children to have books to read. Our mission to provide books to our young readers is getting a boost. Our board has has agreed to replace two of our older Little Free Library boxes. Each one costs $320. The investment shows our commitment to this important mission.
Please DON'T FORGET our
Little Free Libraries. Preschool books
needed at these locations (Click one for a map):

You can help make a difference!

In Memoriam
Former AAUW member Barbara (Bunny) Frey passed away at home on January 6th. Bunny taught in public schools in New York and Miami, served in the Peace Corps in Peru, ran youth groups, taught Sunday school and led Girl Scout troops.

She was a crucial financial sponsor and board member of El Hogar de Amor Y Esperanza, an orphanage and school in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

--Submitted by Lois Miles
'Til We Meet Again
HOTLINE Submissions
Due before March 5th to aauwverobeach@gmail.com
Subject: HOTLINE

Thank you!!!

--Hotline Editor, Dee Sattler
--Final Editor, Elaine Spooner