Indiana AAUW
Last Updated March 

Indiana Bulletin

 ~Summer  2001 Articles~

Trailblazing Part II Phrases from Phyllis 2001-2003 Officers Are Your Branch Members Trailblazers? Public Policy Indiana
Resolutions Indiana
Legal Advocacy Fund
2000 Contributions
2001 Forum on Educational Equity 2000 Giving Report
Educational Foundation
Give a Grad a Gift
An Elite Group Diversity and Educational Equity – Is Anyone Out There? Diversity Statement Changes 21st Century Branch Recognition Program Branch News

Trailblazing Part II

Attention, all branch presidents, vice presidents for membership, and vice presidents for programs! You are hereby specifically invited to attend the Indiana AAUW Leadership Workshop planned for Saturday, July 28, 2001 in Anderson.

We’ll continue with the Trailblazing theme we began at the State Convention in April. You’ll learn ways you and your branch can blaze your own trail in your community.

Happenings at the Association Convention in Austin will also be discussed for those of us not able to attend.

Treva May, state director of membership, has graciously offered her home once again as the site for this summer workshop.

Plan now to attend! Registration is a mere $10, which includes lunch. Hours for the workshop are 9:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. The registration form and directions are elsewhere in this issue.

If you would like to spend the night in Anderson, here are some of the motels very near exit 26 of I-69:

Comfort Inn – 765/644-4422, Dollar Inn – 765/640-1356, Holiday Inn – 765/644-2581, Ramada Inn – 765/649-0451, Lee’s Inn – 765/649-2500, and Motel 6 – 765/642-9023.

Phrases from Phyllis

Phyllis Thompson, Indiana President

Periodically, I feel the need to return to a book or books I have read previously. Such is the case with one I am going to share with you. It is Thunderbolt Thinking by Grace McGartland. McGartland states clearly that in thunderbolt thinking, you do not need a life-threatening experience to get unstuck. What you need is the flexibility, awareness and courage to risk rearranging your thinking so you can make a transformational shift: the shift from one answer to a multitude of alternatives, from inertia to action, from resisting change to welcoming it.

Sometimes in our branches and boards, we lose opportunities because we do not embrace change. Stuck in the status quo, we miss major events that are occurring around us. Our mind-set to do what we have always done stunts our growth. We need to reshape our thinking and our planning so that we can move forward.

We need to continuously ask ourselves what do we want AAUW to look like and be in the next few years? Are we carrying out our purpose and mission? What outcomes do we want and expect? How do we move forward? Have we invited the people with the skills and information we need to help answer the questions? Have we asked people with a background different from ours to participate in our planning and programming?

Finally, we always need to be prepared. The story of Alice in Wonderland and the scene from the Mad Hatter’s tea party illustrates this very well. The innocent meeting in Wonderland turns into total confusion as "the seating arrangements are chaotic, the Mad Hatter speaks nonsense, the March Hare is rude, and the Dormouse sleeps through the proceedings. Nobody takes charge, the conversation goes in circles, nothing is accomplished and the Dormouse is stuffed into a teapot." This could have been avoided by preparation.

Grace McGartland closes her book by stating, "the time is now." The time is now to help break the gridlock of thinking that causes our organization to get stuck. The time is now for those of us who belong to AAUW in Indiana to move into action, change our thinking and our actions, be prepared and move forward together.

Always remember an AAUW woman is like a stone cast into the water, the influence of what she says and does can spread to unknown shores.

As you plan for a new year, build on the past and leave it there. Plan for today and tomorrow and be willing to change. Never lose sight of the fact that what is planned should be fun and focused. If we try and remember these things, we will be successful. Happy planning!

2001-03 Officers

State officers elected at the convention for the year 2001-03 are:

Donna Akin (South Lake County), Emily Stephens (Madison/Hanover), and Ophelia Shelton (Gary-Merrillville) were elected to the nominating committee. Mitzi Witchger and Michelle Chosney remain on the nominating committee for one more year.

Are Your Branch Members Trailblazers?

Mary Lou Thomas, director of finance

Trailblazing was the theme of the State Convention held April 21 in Fort Wayne and we will continue with that theme at the Leadership Workshop on July 28. Inspired by the stories of trailblazing women we heard, the Board of Indiana AAUW wants to encourage branches to launch a trailblazing project or event in your local communities.

Grants up to $500 will be available to supplement branch efforts to fund a trailblazing project or event. As you plan your programs for 2001/02, include a project or event that is new for your area or has never been done by your branch. Create a plan of action and write a financial plan. The purpose of your project should be the promotion of the AAUW mission statement: AAUW promotes equity for all women and girls, lifelong education, and positive societal change. You will be asked to explain why the project or event is considered to be trailblazing or, as the dictionary defines the term, pioneering.

Applications for grants will be available after August 1, 2001. To receive an application, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to Mary Lou Thomas, 11708 Redding Drive, Fort Wayne, IN 46814 between August 1 and September 15, 2001. Completed applications will be due to the same address by October 15. All monies must be used during the 2001/02 AAUW year. The Board of Indiana AAUW will serve as the selection committee.

Public Policy Indiana 2001- 2003

Following is Indiana AAUW’s Public Policy for 2001-2003. Additions made by the convention delegates at the 2001 state convention are shown in italics.

Indiana AAUW affirms AAUW’s long-standing commitment to passage and ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. We support:

Indiana AAUW believes that public education is the foundation of a democratic society. We support: Indiana AAUW promotes the social, economic, and physical well being of all individuals. We support:
Adopted by state convention delegates 4/21/01


Resolutions Indiana 2001- 2003

Following is Indiana AAUW’s Resolutions for 2001-2003. Additions made by the convention delegates at the 2001 state convention are shown in italics, deletions are shown crossed out.

WHEREAS, AAUW promotes equity for all women and girls, lifelong education, and positive societal change, and

WHEREAS, AAUW prohibits barriers to full participation in its organization on the basis of gender, race, creed, age, sexual orientation, national origin, or disability, or class

RESOLVED that all branches of the Indiana American Association of University Women be urged to become aware of the rights and opportunities to all persons and how they might assure their full participation in society.

RESOLVED that the Indiana AAUW continue to support efforts to aid the victims of domestic violence and abuse.

RESOLVED that all branches of the Indiana AAUW study and research environmental issues, and how we can make improvements and effect laws.

RESOLVED that all branches of the Indiana AAUW work toward an enforceable gun control policy.

Adopted by state convention delegates 4/21/01


Legal Advocacy Fund – 2000 Contributions

Branch Direct


Branch Contributions Other Contributions Total Contributions Per Capita
Calumet Area
Fort Wayne
Michigan City
South Bend
South Lake Co.

2001 Forum on Educational Equity

Lori Davis, coordinator, Forum on Educational Equity

The Technology Connection, Tuesday, July 24, 2001; 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., Wyndham Hotel, 1400 M St. N.W., Washington, D.C.

Register by June 1 to receive a discount. Registration deadline is July 10. Please visit for more information and to register online.

Join teachers, counselors, administrators, and researchers for a dynamic one-day seminar exploring the connections between equity, technology, and education. Developed in conjunction with AAUW Educational Foundation’s annual Eleanor Roosevelt Teacher Institute, the Forum on Educational Equity showcases the latest research and best practices in gender equitable education. The Forum provides an opportunity to network with nationally prominent educators and meet the Foundation’s outstanding 2001-02 Eleanor Roosevelt Teacher Fellows.

The third annual Forum on Educational Equity will feature:

Registration received before June 1, 2001 is $100 per person or $90 per person for teams of four or more. Registration received after June 1 is $120 per person or $100 per person for teams of four or more. Fee includes participation in all sessions, a copy of AAUW Tech Check for Schools, a light breakfast, and a formal luncheon. Continuing education credit may be available.

To register online, go to Or contact the Forum on Educational Equity Coordinator, AAUW Educational Foundation, 1111 Sixteenth St. N.W., Washington DC 20036; 202/728-7609, or via e-mail at

2000 Giving Report – Educational Foundation

Beth Leroy, Educational Foundation

The year 2000 was our first year of contributing for a full calendar year. This new system is still causing some confusion, as some branches waited until January, February, and March of 2001 to make their donation, thinking it would apply to 2000.

Indiana’s contributions went from $34,707.05 in 1999 to $23,694.78 in 2000. This difference is due in part to the confusion of changing the contribution year. It is hoped this year there will be full and complete understanding of the calendar year as the contribution year.

In the year 2000, 21 of 24 branches or 86.67% participated in giving. Next year let’s make it 100%. No amount is too small. Let’s make 2001 a banner year of giving by every branch.

Top Per Capita

Amount Given
No. of Members
1 Noblesville $97.692 13
2 Terre Haute $74.390 41
3 LaPorte $57.424 33
4 Brownsburg $52.852 15
5 Fort Wayne $33.374 167
6 Valparaiso $25.833 60
7 Indiana $19.343 1225

Top Totals

Amount Given 
No. of Members
Fort Wayne
Terre Haute

There was 100% board participation in giving. That combined with the sale of Girl’s Can t-shirts, the state of Indiana was able to give $750 to the MaryHelen Barnes International Fellowship in 2000. At the present time, the MaryHelen Barnes International Fellowship stands at about $84,146.54. We have until the year 2007 to complete this Fellowship at the $100,000 level. Thanks for helping us work toward our goal of completing this!

Remember, it is getting close to the time that the applications for 2002-03 will be available. Encourage your branch members to apply for Eleanor Roosevelt, Community Action Grants, or Career Development grants. Some of these go unused for lack of qualified applicants.

Remember that donations to the Foundation are now based on the calendar year. Some of you are still on the old schedule. You have until December 15, 2001 to get your donations to me.

Give a Grad a Gift

The Give a Grad a Gift free membership program is back online! Since this program’s inception in October 1999, 14% of all recent grads enrolled as MALs through the program have converted to branch membership! So let’s keep this great recruitment tool going.

AAUW members can give free 12-month AAUW memberships to as many recent college or university graduates as they please. Daughters, nieces, granddaughters, friends, and co-workers will truly appreciate this special and valuable graduation gift.

This limited-time free Internet offer is available from now through August 31, 2001. To give a recent graduate a free gift of AAUW membership, or for more information, visit

An Elite Group

Treva May, director of membership

The other day I heard a quote from Bo Shafer, Kiwanis International President, about what percentage of the people in the world have a college degree. We are in an elite and relatively small group of people. Mr. Shafer says .25% of the total population of the world have college degrees. Yes, ¼ of 1%. We have plenty of work we can do!

Someone asked me to tell you a story about a new member and myself. At the November board meeting, I fell. I stayed for the meeting but had to be carried up the stairs and helped in the car. On my way home, my husband met me at the Emergency Room. Yes, I had broken my clavicle and later had to have surgery. But in Emergency, my nurse was Roberta Gooding. She saw my name and already knew a little about me. She had applied for the Treva May Scholarship offered by the Anderson branch. Although she didn’t receive the scholarship, she was invited to my house for dinner but couldn’t come. I found out she had graduated in December 1999. So I processed a Give a Grad a Gift for her. To further encourage her, I paid her state and local dues. She is one of about 175 members in the Anderson branch.

The Give a Grad a Gift is available for a relatively short period of time. It has to be processed via e-mail at You must also know your membership number. If you don’t know your number, the website will help you. Also remember the other Association incentives. If a member joins at a meeting of your branch, her Association dues are reduced by $10. If two members join at the same time, the Association dues are $20 rather than $39. Furthermore, your branch gets free Association dues to use however they wish, but there is a limit to how many free ones are available. Let’s make good use of these incentives. Indiana has given at least 15 Grad Gifts and most of them are already members of a branch. If you recruit someone, let me know. I have a gift for you.

It was announced at the state convention that you should respond to my requests because you will really like your gift. The other request is if you see your name in my article in the Indiana Bulletin, let me know and you will receive a gift. Ways to contact me are on page 2.

Let’s try to honor some members. I was very proud of my fellow members from Anderson who spoke at convention, namely, Terri Austin and Carla Stoneberg. If you want to hear a true trailblazer story, have Laura LeRoy tell you her story. We should all be proud of this young lady. Beth LeRoy can be proud of her part in that story.

The following people I have culled from the newsletters I receive. First, I will name some newsletter editors or communication chairs. How about Jan Trust, Barbara Vinson, Jane Allerton, Marjorie Snodgrass, Lois Gumpper, Jane Anderson, Michelle Hammond, Louise (Susie) Spall, Alice Thomas, Joan Kempf, June Deal, Agnes George, Maxine Miller, Katherine Smith, Angela Elswick, Lael Littlefield, Gail Renaldo, Priscilla Hawley, Vera M. Murphy, Debbie Liani, and Janet Gray.

I know of a few of the women being name for Educational Foundation Named Gift Honorees. Here are some of them: Jean Moore, Carla Stoneberg, Pat Becker, Nan Getzin, Margaret Schemmel, Dr. Marjorie Sowers, Barbara Kanning, and Ruth Von Deylen. Two people were named honorees by the state, Joan Kutlu and Treva May.

Barbara Kanning and Meg Finnin did an excellent job of the convention arrangements. Esther Deal was in there with pictures. Thanks to Susan Wahls for preparing the program folders. Mitzi Witchger was one of the speakers. As well, Mitzi was in there helping wherever needed. And a "hat’s off" for Barbara Wellnitz, our bulletin editor who, as usual, did an excellent job with the last bulletin.

I hope to hear from some of you!

Diversity and Educational Equity – Is Anyone Out There?

Carroll Parsons, diversity coordinator and educational equity

In January I sent a letter to all the Indiana AAUW branches to introduce myself and ask what the branch was doing in the areas of diversity and educational equity. For those branches that had a designated member for diversity and/or educational equity, the letters went to those persons; the other branches had the letters addressed to the presidents. Response from every branch was definitely not even a hope, must less an expectation; however, no response from any branch was an unpleasant surprise!

Ask about the diversity and educational equity in your communities. If you think there are no problems and there is nothing to be addressed, perhaps you need to look more closely and ask others if they are involved in or aware of areas of concern to themselves or their acquaintances. Those branches that have no one filling the post(s) for diversity and/or educational equity because no one considers the community to have a problem may find that there are problems when someone is looking and listening. Consider filling the position an interesting and eye-opening experience.

I will be communicating with each branch again in the near future and hope that there will be more of you interested in these topics and motivated to help at your branch level. There are many tools available to help us start and it is possible for a few people to make a difference in a community. We all get the news about a few people who can "stand s community on it’s ear" – remember the recent events in Cincinnati – by the same efforts, good things can be done and certainly are being done every day. This news just doesn’t sell papers and raise ratings very often.

Please spend some time at a meeting to discuss your branch and community, talk about what you would like to see changed in the branch as well as the neighborhoods and entire community. Form an interest group (and this can be the entire branch if your membership is small), look at a few concerns that have been brought up, learn about them and seek opinions of others, then select one to work on. Make it a manageable one so no one gets discouraged and things you can never accomplish it. One success can easily motivate us to tackle something else.

As you have no doubt figured out, I can get carried away and tend to become philosophical; however, this helps me to be more clear about my position as well as increasing my own enthusiasm. Do contact me for any help you think I can give; as I have mentioned before, there is a great deal of information available from national and probably even more that they simply cannot send out to everyone.

Diversity Statement Changes

At the 2000 Conference of State Presidents, the Delegate Body (which includes the presidents and the AAUW Board members) voted to add "class" to the Diversity Statement. The Foundation and Legal Advocacy Fund Boards also voted to add "class" to their diversity statements.

This change needs to made at every level of the organization, although it’s certainly fine to wait until a publication needs to be reprinted to ensure that the new Diversity Statement is used. That wording is: In principle and practice, AAUW values and seeks a diverse membership. There shall be no barriers to full participation in this organization on the basis of gender, race, creed, age, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, or class.

Questions regarding implementation of the new Diversity Statement can be directed to Valerie Ducker, associate director of Diversity Initiatives, at 202/728-7610 or

21st Century Branch Recognition Program

In response to feedback on the 5-Star recognition program from more than 400 branch and state leaders, AAUW is launching the new 21st Century Branch Recognition Program. This initiative will replace the 5-Star program beginning in 2001-02.

AAUW leaders across the country felt the recognition program should:

Branches will be recognized for implementing one or more projects each year that result in progress in any or all of the following priority areas for AAUW: If a branch chooses to do so, it can be recognized for just one project or event that incorporate each of these priorities. Branches will receive points for their achievements in any of these areas, and will also garner points for attaining Foundation and Legal Advocacy Fund fundraising goals. Every branch that submits an application (which will be in narrative form, rather than requiring branches to complete an application) will be recognized through this program. Depending on the number of areas a branch chooses to focus on and the number of points it receives, the branch will be designated for recognition at the Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum level.

States will be recognized for their role in supporting and promoting branch achievements in the priority areas identified above, as well as meeting the Foundation and LAF fundraising goals for the state level. In September, states that wish to participate in the recognition program will send to the Association a brief overview of the priority areas they will focus on in providing support to branches, of their specific goals related to each focus area, and of anticipated needs for resources and technical support from Association leaders and staff. In April, states will submit a narrative describing the results of their efforts to support branches, along with information regarding the results of their fundraising for the Foundation and Legal Advocacy Fund. All states that want to be part of this program will be recognized for their efforts to help branches be recognized in the 21st Century Branch Recognition Program.

Detailed recognition program information will be available at the Austin Convention and launched on AAUW’s website July 1. Program materials will provide action strategies and sample goals related to each of the AAUW priority areas so that branches can use the program materials as a strategic planning tool.

Branch News


The branch is collaborating with Grace House of Madison County to produce "Building Self-Awareness for Life" classes for middle school girls at the three local public schools requesting the program. Its purpose is to provide girls an opportunity to continue their Sister-to-Sister Summit discussions using a self-awareness curriculum. Ten weekly after-school sessions are planned for each school.

The board became aware at the 11th hour that a 30-year-old single mother in their community was desperately seeking $400 to pay for her books at a local college. She had the money for tuition but without books could not matriculate on time. The board members individually donated nearly half the needed amount and then contacted the college. Solely on the strength of this donation, the college decided to take care of the rest of the book bill through one of their funds. The financial aid officer told the branch board member, "We are doing this only because of the impressive AAUW contribution. Without this community involvement, we would not have been able to help."

Members are co-hosting a Women’s Festival on June 2 to offer entertainment, educational, and creativity opportunities for local women.

The group hosted a membership recruitment meeting for soon-to-be grads at Anderson University.


Branch members supported the Girls in Science, Math and Technology program held at Marion College on a Saturday both through volunteering on that day and via scholarships for attendees.

Members also participated in the Amish fair and donated gifts to the Julian Center.

California transfer member Linda Vieira introduced the National Women’s History Essay project to two local high schools. Branch members volunteered to be readers for the submitted essays.


The branch held an Educational Foundation luncheon to announce their named grant honoree, Sandra Piech. The event was held in March to help celebrate Women’s History Month.

Thank you very much to those branches sharing their newsletters with the Indiana newsletter editor. To the rest of you – please share your news by sending your newsletter to Barbara Wellnitz.
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