By Henrietta Saunders, League of Women Voters Lake Michigan Region
The League of Women Voters was born in 1920 out of the suffrage movement. Nineteenth Amendment activists envisioned an educated citizenry as key to better policy outcomes—and so do we. The League emphasizes water issues and climate change, working across four states through the League of Women Voters Lake Michigan Region (LWVLMR). Freshwater Future has been a consistent partner in our education and advocacy efforts. We were especially grateful for their help last year.
LWVLMR board members hail from every “corner” of Lake Michigan, representing diverse communities with a variety of interests. Jill Ryan consulted with us on strategic planning and did an excellent job, respecting our history and values while reinforcing the motivation and vision that guides our work. Jill facilitated an important board retreat where we hashed out goals. She provided support before and afterward so that we could translate the strengths, weaknesses and opportunities we face into constructive action.
One initiative that emerged from this work is to provide 100 community engagement meetings before 2020—the 100th anniversary of the League. Already exceeding our expectations, this broad outreach effort goes hand in hand with strengthening leadership and financial resources. Backed by the Freshwater Future-supported strategic plan, LWVLMR is more able to respond to community interests on water issues than ever before. Check out our website at LWVLMR.org and reach out to collaborate in your community. We plan to keep going for another hundred years—at least!