November 2019
President's Note: November 2019
Greetings Leaguers!

It's an exciting week for St. Petersburg and Seminole resident -- this Tuesday are general elections for local city councils. Our League will be providing voter and election support from our office and at various polls around the city. As we've done for almost 100 years, we're making sure that those who can cast a vote are able to do so.

We held a fun General Membership Meeting last week were team leads dressed up for Halloween and members were able to get to know each other and the issues we work on science-fair style! Thank you to our Membership Chair Stacey Jurewicz and Amanda Dodge for their hard work putting the meeting together.

Also, if you missed our Coffee in Common event on 10/26, please mark your calendars for 11/23 for our next monthly event in the series. In partnership with the St. Petersburg Alumnae Chapter of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and the Carter G. Woodson African American History Museum, we will be discussing what race and politics will look like a year from now. Don't miss out on the great conversation, meaningful dialogue, and great coffee!

In League,
Linsey Grove, President
M unicipal Elections: They're Almost Here.
Are You Ready?
We're down to the last days before the Nov. 5 municipal election! Make sure you're ready to cast an informed vote by checking out our voter guide at Make sure to share it with your friends and family who will be voting in this election!

If you've already submitted your vote-by-mail ballot, then good job! But if you haven't yet, make sure to take these steps:

  • Use black ink to fill in the bubbles.
  • Fill in the bubbles; don't use a check mark, circle the candidate's name or underline anything.

These were the most common voter errors as reported by Deputy Supervisor of Elections Julie Marcus, so make sure to take these steps when filling out your ballot, and make sure your friends and family do as well!

And if you're heading out to the polls on Tuesday, make sure to read this list of 6 things every Pinellas County voter should know. You may also see one of our friendly poll monitors out there at your polling place (identified by t-shirts and lanyards), so say hi when you see them!
Join Us for Our 5th Annual
Election Season Wrap Party!
Election season is always a busy time for the League, and this one was no exception.

This year, the Voter Services team= engaged dozens of volunteers, registered hundreds of voters, conducted six candidate forums, produced a Municipal Election Guide for the Cities of St. Petersburg and Seminole, and strengthened our community partnerships. We’re currently working to increase voter turnout in the Nov. 5 municipal elections.

And now, with the bulk of our 2019 election work behind us and before we gear up for 2020, it’s time to CELEBRATE and have fun!

This month's Cocktails & Conversation is dedicated to being a 5th Annual Election Season Wrap Party!

Join us Wed. Nov. 13 at 6 p.m. at the Hangar Restaurant & Flight Lounge, located at Albert Whitted Airport, 540 1st St S, in St. Petersburg.

We’ll be at the far side of the bar and adjoining patio balcony. Come on out and enjoy great conversation, good eats & drinks (for purchase), fantastic views of the city/waterfront and plenty of free parking! The more, the merrier, so bring your friends!
Plant Power: Tampa Bay Veg Fest Field Trip
& "Forks Over Knives" Screening
Our Plant Power team has two exciting events coming up later this month! These are a must if you love good food and you care about health and the environment (which is pretty much everyone, right?)
Tampa Bay Veg Fest
Saturday, Nov. 9 at 10 a.m.

Join thousands of people including a posse of your fellow LWVSPA-ers for the 10th Annual Tampa Bay Veg Fest, co-sponsored by the LWVSPA (and many others). This is one of the top veg fests in the country and will feature everything from cooking demonstrations to live music and entertainment to vegan cook-offs.

League members, led by our Plant Power team, will be meeting at the Allendale UMC parking lot at Haines Road & 38th Avenue N to Uber to Tampa together. We'll depart at 10 a.m., returning at 2:45 p.m. Enjoy the day on your own, and or join us under the food tent from 12-1 to share your experience.

Tickets for transportation are $10 per person round trip. Please RSVP and pay below to come with LWVSPA.
"Forks Over Knives" Screening
Thursday, Nov. 14 at 5 p.m.

"Forks Over Knives" highlights physicians and other researchers in their work as they explore the possibility that people changing their diets from animal-based to plant-based can help eliminate or control diseases like cancer and diabetes.

Hear from people in our own community who have changed their lives through food. Light refreshments will be served. No cost to attend this event, which will be held at the Sanderlin Center. More information is available at the Facebook event link.

Volunteers Needed!

This team needs eight volunteers to help with their "Forks Over Knives" event. Volunteers will set up at 4:30 p.m. and leave at 8 p.m. They need people to help usher participants from the parking lot to the auditorium, help serve food, table, and help to set up and break down supplies.

If you are able to help, please contact Julie Kessel or Jen Underhill .
African American Heritage Trail
& Coffee in Common
Coffee in Common
Saturday, Nov. 23 at 5 p.m.

The next installment of our new Coffee in Common series will focus on the future - specifically, what race and politics will look like a year from now.

This event is the product of a partnership between the LWVSPA and the St. Petersburg Alumnae Chapter of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.

Please join us for a great evening of meaningful conversation and coffee. This event is free and will be held at the Carter G. Woodson African American History Museum. 

African American Heritage Trail Tour by Trolley
Wednesday, Nov. 13 at 1 p.m.

Join us for this special League-only tour! Gwen Reese has invited the League to participate in the African American Heritage Trail Tour. Ms. Reese's partnership with the Downtown Partnership allows for this experience by trolley, adding accessibility to St. Pete residents.

The trail starts at the Carter G. Woodson African American History Museum. You must register if you wish to attend. The maximum capacity is 22. Tickets cost $12.
Prominent Scientist to Discuss
Climate Change and Florida
We're a co-sponsor of this event, which will feature Michael Mann, PhD, who will speak on climate change and its impact on Florida.

Mann is an American climatologist and geophysicist, currently the Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science and Meteorology at Penn State University and the Director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State. He has contributed to the scientific understanding of historic climate change based on the temperature record of the past thousand years.

Join us at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 15 at Temple Beth-El, 400 Pasadena Ave. S., St. Petersburg for this event.
Action Alert! Florida Legislators'
Twitter Town Hall for Reproductive Rights
Take advantage of this opportunity to hear from your elected officials on the subject of reproductive rights and justice!

Tweet your questions about reproductive rights, health, and justice using #AskFLLeg and #FLReproFreedom. You can even tag a legislator directly if you have a question for a specific legislator.

Join this statewide online conversation on Tuesday, Nov. 5 at 7 p.m.
What's Happening Around LWVSPA?

This cross-county action group is co-chaired by Nikki Fleming and Barbara Meloche of LWV of North Pinellas County. Their next meeting will be held Thursday, Nov. 21 at 10:30 a.m. at 2642 Sabal Springs Dr. in Clearwater. Contact the co-chairs if you are interested in working with this action group.

Election & Voter Protection

Members of the Election & Voter Protection action team recently underwent training to become poll monitors, and they will be out at select polling places throughout St. Petersburg for the Nov. 5 municipal election. If you're out and you see someone in an Election Protection t-shirt or lanyard, stop and say hi!

This action team recently co-sponsored a public event featuring Deputy Supervisor of Elections Julie Marcus, who answered questions about election security, administration and Amendment 4. If you missed this event, you can read a report of it at Bay News 9.

The action team will soon gearing up for post-election activities, including efforts around election security, Amendment 4, tracking legislation and more. If you're interested in getting involved, the team's next meeting will be held Tuesday, Nov. 19 at 6:30 p.m. at the LWVSPA office in the Sanderlin Center, located at 2335 22nd Ave S in St. Petersburg. Please contact Caitlin Constantine , Amy Keith or Stephanie Owens for more information.

Gun Safety

The Gun Safety Action Team is tracking firearm-related bills introduced for the 2020 FL Legislative session. To date, 15 bills have been introduced in the Senate, all of which we consider to be "smart" gun safety legislation; 12 bills have been introduced in the House, less than half are "smart" legislation.

We're throwing our most enthusiastic support behind an expansion of Risk Protection Orders (SB114 & HB47), strengthening of background checks and transfer of firearms through licensed dealers (SB94, SB270, SB460, SB548 & HB289) and safe storage of loaded firearms (SB266). 

Thanks to the diligent work of team member Kathy Phelan, we’ll update this page regularly and report on significant action through the end of session next spring.

The team's next meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 25 at Allendale United Methodist Church (Wesley Room), located at 3803 Haines Rd. N in St. Petersburg. Contact Team Lead Sharon Winters for more information.

To learn more about the issues and how to take action, visit

The Immigration Action Team sends its thanks to everyone who wrote postcards to Rep. Charlie Crist and Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott asking them to conduct oversight hearing about the child immigrant detention center in Homestead, Florida.

Those hearings first focused on the treatment of the children housed there, as well as the long term emotional impacts to them. By mid-August, those children were moved to smaller non-profit facilities or were reunited with a family member. Though no longer housing children, the Office of Refugee Resettlement still paid $600 per “empty” bed. 

Many groups - including our League - and the media raised concerns to our elected officials in Congress. On Oct. 28, it was announced the facility would be permanently closed.

Thank you — working together, we do make a difference.

This team's next meeting will be held Nov. 4 at 1:30 p.m. at a team member's home.

To help with our upcoming social media campaign or participate in other educational or advocacy projects on this very serious issue — please email Team Lead  Karen Coale.


The committee will be meeting Thursday, Nov. 7 at 5:30 p.m. at the LWVSPA office in the Sanderlin Center, located at 2335 22nd Ave S in St. Petersburg. Email chair Amy Weintraub for more information about joining this standing committee.

Membership Services

The committee meets every second Thursday, with the next meeting set for Thursday, Dec. 12 at 6:00 p.m. at the LWVSPA office in the Sanderlin Center, located at 2335 22nd Ave S in St. Petersburg. Email chair Stacey Jurewicz about joining this standing committee .

National Popular Vote

We are excited to announce a coalition: Floridians for National Popular Vote! National Popular Vote Inc., Make Every Vote Matter and Common Cause has launched their new website where you can sign up for updates, volunteer, donate or request a speaker.

In other NPVIC news, Rep. Joseph Geller has filed HB335 (Agreement Among the States to Elect the President by National Popular Vote) for the 2020 legislative session. Sen. Victor Torres will file a companion bill shortly. The two legislators are sponsoring a Learning at Lunch event at the State House in Tallahassee for Nov. 12. All legislators have been invited to hear Dr. Vikram Amar, dean of the University of Illinois Law School, speak on the law's constitutionality and fair voting attributes.

If you have a local group who would like a speaker, contact Marty Shapiro. If you are interested in learning more or joining the local committee, please reach out to Deb Mazzaferro or Marty Shapiro .


The committee will be meeting Thursday, Nov. 18 at 5:15 p.m. at the LWVSPA office in the Sanderlin Center, located at 2335 22nd Ave S in St. Petersburg. Membership on this committee is set by conditions in LWVSPA bylaws (election or Board appointment). Email chair Amy Weintraub for more information about this standing committee.
Plant Power
This team has been hard at work planning events for this month, including a screening of "Forks Over Knives" on Nov. 14 and a field trip to Tampa Bay Veg Fest on Nov. 9. You can get more details about these events above.

The Plant Power team will hold its next meeting on Nov. 18 at 7 p.m. at the Sanderlin Center, located at 2335 22nd Ave S in St. Petersburg. For more information, email Julie Kessel or Jen Underhill .
Reproductive Rights
This Reproductive Rights team group will meet for its monthly meeting on Thursday, Nov. 14 at 7 p.m. at the LWVSPA Office in the Sanderlin Center, located at 2335 22nd Ave S in St. Petersburg. Email Team Lead Stacey Kroto for more information about getting involved with this action group.
Email Carol Marks or Kal Marquise for more information about joining the Sustainability action team.
Voter Service

Aside from the the Election Season Wrap Party described above, this team's next meeting will be held Nov. 26 at 6:30 p.m. at the Allendale United Methodist Church, located at 3803 Haines Road in St. Petersburg. Email Team Lead Raechel Garafalo for more information.
Upcoming Events
Nov. 9: 10th Annual Tampa Bay Veg Fest 2019
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. @ Perry Harvey Sr. Park, 1000 East Harrison St., Tampa

Nov. 13: African American Heritage Trail Tour (by trolley)
Tickets cost $12; capacity limited to 22
1-2:30 p.m. @ Dr. Carter G. Woodson African-American Museum, 2240 9th Ave. S, St. Petersburg

Nov. 13: Cocktails and Conversation: A Post-Election Party
6-8 p.m. @ The Hangar, 540 1st St SE #2, St. Petersburg

Nov. 14: Forks Over Knives + a food tasting
5:30-8 p.m. @ Sanderlin Center, 2335 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg

Nov. 15: Michael Mann: "Understanding Climate Change and Its Impact on Florida"
Part of the Leif Nissen Social Justice Lecture Series
7:30-9:30 p.m. @ Temple Beth-El, 400 Pasadena Ave. S., St. Petersburg

Nov. 23: Coffee in Common
5-7 p.m. @ Dr. Carter G. Woodson African-American Museum, 2240 9th Ave. S, St. Petersburg
A nnual LWVSPA
Holiday Party
Saturday, December 14
2:00 - 4:00 PM
For Other Upcoming Events
Membership: Are You Up for Renewal?
Join us. Renew your membership. We make a difference.

We need your support to continue our work in the community and at state and national levels. Whether you want to be an active member or a supporting member, your dues help advance the League's mission.

We invite you to renew today !
We offer five levels of membership :
Carrie Chapman Catt (Gold) for $250*
Susan B. Anthony (Silver) for $125*
Household for $78* 
Individual for $52
Student for $26
*Includes two members residing at the same address.

Only $7 of your basic membership goes to the support the activities of the local league; a large percentage of what you pay for an individual membership goes to support our state and national Leagues. By selecting the Gold or Silver membership level, most of your dues will help support the work of our local League.

You can also offer your financial support by upgrading your membership, offering an additional monthly, quarterly or annual donation, and encouraging others to do the same. 

Consider including the League in your estate planning.  Your gifts allow us to continue our education, advocacy and leadership programs to forward our mission in Making Democracy Work in the St. Petersburg area. If you would like to discuss an estate planning contribution or other gift, please contact our office

The following memberships are up for renewal during this 3-month span. We invite you to  renew today !
October 2019
Faith Alford
George Banez
Jenna Burr
Doris Caitak
Nicole Carr
Jeanette Chaniel
Celia Clarke
Alexandria Domingo
Lynn Fruit
Corey Givens Jr.
Kitty Hahn-Campanella
Angela Harris
Cg Hawkins
Carol Heinen
M Diane Hodson
Chesney James
Meaghan Keeler-Pettigrew
Daniel Kelso
Rita Knorr
Thomas Lang
Liz Lebron
Deb Mazzaferro
Sandra Owens
Orlando Pizana
Marilyn Pocius
Kendall Reid
Dawn Rogers
Arlene Rothman
Jonathan Rowles
Sydni (Sydney) Ann Shollenberger
Elizabeth Updegraff
Jane Weagle
Sharon Winters
September 2019
Amy Ballou
Brooke Beeler
Ruth Crawford
Daisy Delatorre
Viviane Demilly
Edward Doyle
Brenna Dukes
Linda Gelinas
Martha Gipson
Marci Girard-Emerson
Susan Hardee
Bianca Hatten
Annette Hubbard
Marc Jensen
Lora Karas
Maxwell Kramer-Crespo
Samantha Lepore
Karen Lieberman
Meighan Monroe
Doug & Janet Morris
Tara Newsom
Bruce Nissen
Martin Normile
Stephanie Owens & Keith Royster
Jessica & Nicholas Panagakos
Imeshia Parkman
Melanie Powell
Anthony Robinson
Cynthia Rose
Emilia Soliman
Dave Spangler
Tina Spangler
Kelvin-Lloyd Stuck
Candi Taylor
Kai Tomalin
Maria Celia Villac
Sharon Wright
2019-2020 League Leadership
President: Linsey Grove
First Vice President: Robin Davidov
Second Vice President: Maryellen Gordon
Secretary: Ken Wrede
Treasurer: Caroline Bloodworth
Ama Appiah
Caitlin Constantine
Amanda Dodge
Raechel Garafalo
Stephanie Owens

Visit our website for more information about our local leaders.

Click here for more information about our education and advocacy groups.
Gun Safety: Sharon Winters
Immigration: Karen Coale
Reproductive Rights: Stacey Kroto
Census: Gina Gallo
Plant Power: Julie Kessel, Jen Underhill
Election Protection: Caitlin Constantine, Amy Keith, Stephanie Owens
Voter Service: Raechel Garafalo
Sustainability: Carol Marks, Kal Marquise
National Popular Vote: Deb Mazzaferro, Marty Shapiro
International Relations: Judy McSwine
Media/Publicity Lead: Amy Weintraub
Membership: Stacey Jurewicz
Office Administrator: Julia Sharp
League of Women Voters of the St. Petersburg Area
Telephone: 727-295-5255
The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization,
encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase
understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy .