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After winning the right to vote for women, the League of Women Voters was established as a grassroots organization in 1920. Fifty-five women organized the League of Women Voters of McLean County in 1933 under the leadership of Florence Fifer Bohrer, first woman elected to the Illinois State Senate.

From the beginning, the League has been an integral part of the political and civic life of our community. Within four months of its founding, the League held its first event to meet the candidates for elective offices. We continue to help everyone be an informed voter so that our elected leaders represent our entire community.

Summary of LWV of McLean Annual Meeting
by Alexis Kalish, Secretary

Highlights from May 26, 2015, Annual Meeting:

  • Passed advisory vote to raise local dues to cover state & national dues plus PayPal fees. A final vote to set dues at $65 for the primary member, $30 for an associate, and $25 for students will be held at a June Meeting. (This was approved at the Summer Members Meeting on June 29)
  • Approved clarifying edits to our Program Positions for 2015-16.
  • Approved two Program Studies for 2015-16.
    • Action Study submitted by Jan Hood - Availability of Recreation Facilities for Youth in the County
    • Consensus Study submitted by Sally Rudolph - Opportunity to evaluate government operations for improvements in efficient and economical operations of these entities.
  • Approved the 2015-2016 Budget.
  • Elected:
    • President: Kathy Nicholson-Tosh
    • President-Elect: Emily Vigneri
    • Treasurer: Olemuel Ashford
    • Voter Services: Phylis VerSteegh and Teri Liston
    • Programs: Maureen O’Keefe
  • Passed an advisory vote to join the LWV Upper Mississippi Inter League Organization, whose purpose is to address natural resource issues of the region. (This was ratified at the Summer Members Meeting on June 29)
  • Awarded Glen Ludwig the Leaguer of the Year award for redistricting and the Observer Team.
  • Awarded Judy Buchanan the Project of the Year award for the Mental Health Action Study.

Roadmap to Results:
Mental Health Action Update

Engagement and raising awareness continue to be the buzzwords and focus of the LWV Mental Health Action Committee. League Speaker’s Bureau members have presented "Mental Health Study - A Roadmap to Results" to organizations including:

  • Exchange Club
  • Kiwanis Golden K Club
  • Kiwanis of Normal
  • Rotary - Sunset Club
  • First Methodist Church, Vesper Circle
  • Mennonite Church
  • Sunday Evening Catholic Social Service Group
  • McLean County Women’s Club
  • Soroptimist Club
  • Luther Oaks
  • Women to Women, Prairieland Community Foundation
  • Unitarian Women’s Group
  • Additional programs scheduled include the New Covenant Community, Westminster, PEO and Delta Kappa Gamma
  • Committee members have reviewed the recently released McLean County Board Mental Health Action Plan. The report reflects the work of the County Board’s Executive Committee’s advisory groups. The County Board continues to recognize and embrace their role in leading a community dialogue on community mental health. Among the plan objectives are to expand community dialogue and to schedule forums to educate.

    The LWV of McLean County has had discussion with county officials about partnering on educational programs. In addition, the LWV will prepare a flyer to be posted on McLean County Government’s web site to promote the League’s program and encourage those wishing to learn more to contact the League.

    The LWV will continue to monitor the roll out of the McLean County’s Mental Health Action Plan and is currently revising the talking points of the League’s Mental Health Study program to reflect recent actions and initiatives.

                                           -Judy Buchannan

    League Legislative Interviews

    Each year, the LWV of Illinois develops a set of questions to be asked members of the General Assembly. The questions are then used by local Leagues as they interview their individual senators and state representatives. The questions cover a wide range of state issues including Fiscal Policy, Education Funding, Criminal Justice, Redistricting, Environment, Fracking, Gun Violence Prevention and Healthcare. Results are sent to the LWVIL. Here are links to the results of our local interviews:

    Links to Events of Interest

    LWVMC will again be participating in the spectacular McLean County Labor Day Parade. We will march, hand out candy, wave at our adoring public and generally have a great time!

    This year’s theme is "For More than Ourselves" which will emphasize community service and involvement. What a great way to get the League out in front of the public.

    If you would be interested in joining us or learning more, please contact Rose @ 309-275-7900 or e-mail her. Thank you!

    Pictures from Years Past at the Parade