THE NATIONAL LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS TURNS 85
AND HAWAII LEAGUE CELEBRATES ACCOMPLISHMENTS
The League of Women Voters (LWVUS) celebrates its 85th birthday on February 14, 2005. Founded by Carrie Chapman Catt in 1920, generations of engaged League members have dedicated their lives to making democracy work. Over the past 85 years, the League has achieved an impressive list of accomplishments in the fields of citizen engagement and political reform, and will continue to build on those successes in the future.
"The League strives to make democracy work for all citizens. We have spent 85 years – a lifetime – encouraging citizens to take part in their government and their communities," said Kay J. Maxwell, LWVUS President. "We will continue to help Americans understand the fundamental importance of citizen involvement in our democracy," Maxwell declared.
There are three local Leagues in Hawaii and a Member-at-Large unit on Maui. The League of Women Voters of Honolulu, founded in 1948, and the Kauai and Hawaii County Leagues, work on issues addressed by their county councils, mayors and county departments and agencies.
The League of Women Voters of Hawaii is a council of the local Leagues. Its programs cover those issues which are addressed by the state legislature and administered by the governor and appropriate departments and agencies. The current President of the League of Women Voters of Hawaii (the State league) is Sue Irvine, who resides in Hilo. The Hawaii Island League of Women Voters has been active on the Big Island since the 1960’s. The Hawaii Island League is under the leadership of Lois Cecil on the Hilo side of the island and David Holzman on the Kona side.
"As we enter our 85th year, we celebrate our history, but remain focused in the present as we encourage other citizens to join us in participating in the democratic process." said Sue Irvine, President of the League of Women Voters of Hawaii. "We continue to work toward making our democracy one that benefits and protects the rights of all citizens. This year, two of the topics we will be focusing on are citizen’s rights and campaign finance reform."
"Every day our members are making democracy work on the Big Island– educating voters about their democratic rights and responsibilities, helping protect our islands natural resources, improving our election systems, working on comprehensive public funding of campaigns and creating a public dialogue about other issues important to our communities." said Lois Cecil, President of the Hawaii Island League of Women Voters for the Hilo area.
Women and men are encouraged to join the League of Women Voters of Hawaii. League members are encouraged to research and advocate on issues that are important to them.