League of Women Voters of Seminole County

Making Democracy Work

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Increasing Youth Voter Turnout

CIRCLE (the Center for information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement) released an analysis of election data from the US Census and reports several crucial lessons for those who are gearing up to engage millions of potential voters before Election Day 2016. First things first–get young voters EXCITED about voting with issues that matter! Go to the League’s national blog to read other ideas from CIRCLE that can increase youth voter turnout.


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NPR today announced that the weekly “Intersection”news program will open up for live, call-in participation.  Today’s panel includes Orlando Sentinel Columnist Beth Kassab, Florida Trend Magazine’s Jason Garcia and Frank Torres, of the Orlando Political Observer, discussing politics, local land development and other issues relative to Central Floridians.  If you have an opinions, this is your opportunity to make it known; call 1-866-338-5252.

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On July 23, 2014 Orlando Sentinel announced a new feature they are developing as the result of a grant from the James L. tallahasseeKnight Foundation.  It will provide up to date information on the voting records and status of bills in the Florida legislature to news organizations and the general public throughout the state.

Per the announcement:  Tabs on Tallahassee will be available in time for the start of the Florida Legislature’s 2016 session in January.  “This is a huge win for the Orlando Sentinel and all residents of Florida,” said Sentinel Publisher Nancy Meyer. The Knight grants, totaling $3.2 million, went to journalism initiatives focused primarily on information about candidates and issues and voter engagement. For more about the tool and to share your ideas, go to OrlandoSentinel.com/tabsontallahassee.

Excerpt Quoted from the article by Scott Powers

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Seminole County Annual Meeting

Citing the meeting’s theme of “Celebrating the Past, Embracing the Future,” LWV Seminole President LaVonne Grayson introduced the afternoon’s guest speaker, Alicia Clarke, Curator of the Sanford Museum. LaVonne pointed out that 2015 marks the 95th anniversary of the League of Women Voters of the United States, which was formed about the same time that women in the United States achieved national suffrage in 1920.

With her audience in mind, Ms. Clarke not only described the resources available in the museum relating to the beginnings of the history of Sanford, but emphasized the roles that women played in its history.

In particular, she told how materials relating to women were often filed under their husbands’ names rather than under their own first names. For instance, a woman might be referred to as Mrs. John Smith rather than as Joan or Mary Smith or by her maiden name. Sources of information on women often came from obituaries. Historians had to hunt for good information on women because very few women worked outside the home. They worked, for sure, but mostly in unpaid volunteer positions in churches, and through the influence they had on their husbands. For instance, Gertrude Helen Dupuy Sanford, the wife of Henry Sanford, for whom the city of Sanford was named, donated bells to various churches. She also was instrumental in having the Sanford Museum built, partly as a resource to honor her husband. Mrs. Sanford died in 1902, before her husband’s papers were donated. Their daughter, Carola Sanford Dow, carried out her mother’s wish by donating the Sanford papers to the museum in 1957, and these provided the bulk of the Henry Sanford collection.

Statistics found in the museum show that newly enfranchised women were eager to exercise their privilege to vote in the election of 1920. Women made up over 40% of the registered voters in Seminole County that year. This included both white and African-American women.

At the League meeting, several attendees identified themselves as descendants of Sanford’s early residents, and a lot of interest was shown in this very rich resource for Seminole County’s history.

By Elizabeth Murphrey

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Watch Party at Rollins College

The Rollins Center for Health Innovation and the Winter Park Health Foundation are pleased to be co-hosting the White House Conference on Aging Watch Party on Monday, July 13th at 8 AM to 4 PM at the Bush Auditorium in the Bush Science Center at the Rollins College campus (please see flyer invitation and press release for more details).

This is a great opportunity to listen to the issues addressed including health, retirement security, elder justice, and long-term services and support. Attendees can share your questions and comments with White House Conference on Aging panelists on aging issues and policies that will be affecting Older Americans for decades to come.

You can come for as long as you like. This is a free event and prior registration isn’t required. Complimentary refreshments and healthy snacks will be available. Breakfast and lunch will be available for purchase from 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM at the Bush Café.

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Opportunity for Travel

Dear World Travelers & Crafts Enthusiasts,

Gwen Erwood and Serious Traveler Cultural Tours invite you to tour the Crafts & Culture of Ecuador with members of the League during October 1-12, 2015.

The New York Times has listed Ecuador as #7 in the list of the Top 52 Places to Visit in 2014. Mr. Mauricio Baus will show you his colorful country with crafts of all sorts from the highlands in Quito, to the Amazon region, and all the way to the Pacific Coast ending in Guayaquil. Allow Travel Concepts International to assist with your flight arrangements, whether a non-stop flight from Miami, or choose from one of the many other gateways all over the U.S.

If 2015 doesn’t fit your schedule, a tour is already in the works for September 29-October 10, 2016 in Ecuador, too, which may be combined with the Colombia tour. Brochures are available upon request via the Serious Traveler website.


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