Annual Meeting Public Program

Thursday, June 4, 2020, 6:30 – 8:30 PM Virtual Annual Meeting by ZOOM
I. (6:30-6:35) Welcome by President Ruby MacDonald
II. (6:35-7:40) Panel Discussion: “Meeting the Challenges of COVID-19”
Berkeley City Auditor Jenny Wong and BUSD Board VP Ty Alper
III.(7:40-7:45) Intermission
IV.(7:45-8:00) Presentation of Budget and Approval
V. (8:00-8:30) Election of Officers and Board 
 Contact for technical support on use of ZOOM League Office at 2530 San Pablo Ave., Suite F, Berkeley 510 843-8824

Reports on 2019-2020 Actions by Team/Group Leaders
Climate Change Team Leader Eric Arens
To promote electrification of residences and cars with renewable energy, the Team distributed its brochure at League tables at the Berkeley Electrification Fair, at the Citizens’ Climate Lobby Environment Fair and at voter outreach events, in addition to explaining to visitors how heat pumps, induction stoves, and electric cars work. A League-organized tour of the PG&E Fishnick demonstration kitchen in San Ramon introduced 50 people from the American Institute of Architects, East Bay,, the Berkeley Climate Action Coalition and City of Berkeley staff to induction cooking. The
Team’s high moment was Mayor Arreguin’s public recognition of LWVBAE’s letter to the Berkeley City Council supporting its recently passed ordinance banning natural gas hookups in new buildings.

LWVBA Observer Ken Bukowski (2019-2020 LWVBAE Board)
Observing Bay Area League meetings has allowed LWVBAE to follow consequential regional transportation and housing issues which are being and will be impacted by ongoing business expansion in the Bay Area. Reporting and making public comment on fair taxation to pay for this expansion and on development which should serve all sectors of the community fairly are sorely needed, especially during the COVID-19 crisis, to uphold League principles and priorities.

Communications Team Leader Linda Carothers (2019-2020 LWVBAE Board)
This has been an exciting and innovative year for the Communications Team. Intern Karanina (Laszlo) Zim, an Albany High School student, has brought speed, knowledge, and freshness to our work while making the most of her opportunity to boost her journalistic skills. This year we have produced over 100 articles discussed at weekly meetings. Main contributors have been Kandea Mosley, Ruby MacDonald, and Laszlo Zim.
We have contracted with a new Website provider due to withdrawal of the former provider. The weekly eBlast or e-mail bulletin begun by Nancy Bickel and continued with attractive new features by Kandea and Laszlo is a mainstay in drawing visitors to our site.  A huge peak of hits on our site has been recorded during election season.

Candidate Forums Coordinator Cynthia Chen (2019-2020 LWVBAE Treasurer)
Candidate forums for the March 3 Primary Election were organized by LWV Piedmont on February 11, 2020, at Piedmont City Hall and co-sponsored by LWVBAE and LWV Oakland. The candidates for an Alameda Superior Court seat, Alameda County District 5 Supervisor and state District 15 Assembly Member participated in the forum. However, the incumbent Assembly Member for AD15 was unavailable. LWVBAE therefore organized another candidate forum on February 19 with all 3 AD15 candidates at Belmont Village in Albany. Nina Senn, LWV Oakland, moderated, and Ken Bukowski, LWVBAE, recorded the forum which was posted on our website.

CivilTalk Group Leader Marybeth Falzareno
CivilTalk Team is continuing to work on training in and practice of the art of convening and moderating groups of polarized people so that they can communicate more effectively with each other. Only when we become more aware of our prejudices, can we open doors to more inclusive decisions. Offered quarterly, we meet in our League Office; in the last year we have happily coordinated with nearby Sierra Club and SEEDS organizations to better serve growing demand. We trained five new moderators this year and are looking at Coronavirus topics for our next gathering.

DEI Co-Leaders Adena Ishii (2019-2020 LWVBAE Board) and Kandea Mosley (2019-2020 LWVBAE Board)
Members submitted approximately 40 hardcopy and electronic Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) assessments to Justice & Logic consultants who are analyzing the results and will next conduct an organizational assessment before issuing a final report that will include recommendations for next steps this summer.

Acting Program Director Ruby MacDonald (2019-2020 LWVBAE President)
The following activities kept everyone busy in this centennial of LWV:
1) Voter Services activities included 6 Voter Registration/Outreach tabling events, campaigning for BUSD Measures E, G and H which passed in the March Primary, 3 Speakers’ Bureau talks and distribution of voter registration forms.
2) “Face the Future”, a series of monthly community interest talks were given by Berkeley City Auditor Jenny Wong, new BUSD Superintendent Brent Stephens, Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley, BUSD Board member Beatriz Leyva-Cutler and CalMatters economics writer Judy Lin.
3) History/Social Studies students of Teacher Jesse Sclafani at Berkeley Technology Academy had stimulating discussions with District 7 City Councilmember Rigel Robinson, Berkeley Police Community Outreach Sgt. Veronica Rodrigues, BUSD Board Member Beatriz Leyva-Cutler and South Berkeley historian and former LWVBAE member Willie Phillips at a Meet-a-Mentor event.
4) A get-together was held in February to thank Volunteers and welcome New Members.

Prop. 13 Reform Team Co-Leaders Elise Mills (2019-2020 LWVBAE Secretary) and Pat Tostenson
Prop. 13 Reform Team continues to work towards the November 2020 election to pass the “revised” Schools and Communities First! Constitutional Amendment put on the ballot with a million signatures gathered by LWVBAE members and Coalition partners! Even during this pandemic crisis, we still meet monthly on the 3rd Saturday of the month from
10am – 12noon (via teleconference meeting) to conduct trainings for speakers, write letters-to-the-editor in support of SCF and strategize. We look forward to this summer and fall to speak with community groups about the measure and share a new video made by energetic Prop. 13 Intern and Berkeley High School student, Cameron Amianda.

Social Media Facilitator Kandea Mosley (2019-2020 LWVBAE Board)
Our social media presence remains active four to six days each week on Facebook and Twitter. We continue to gain new followers on Twitter and, for select posts, have received positive recognition from LWVC and LWVUS CEO Virginia Kase, who have “liked” our posts on Facebook or retweeted them. Communications Intern Laszlo Zim has been a terrific addition to our messaging efforts by using her creativity in posts she publishes two or more times per week.

Intern Development Kandea Mosley (2019-2020 LWVBAE Board)
It’s been a year of learning, growth, exploration and service in the LWVBAE pilot internship program. Juniors and seniors from Berkeley and Albany high schools primarily researched issues and served as League observers at city meetings and town halls. Interns wrote about two dozen articles and created videos to share important information with members on our website and on social media. Each of the interns, all talented, young women who learned new skills and experienced the joys of public service, will carry with them the ethical political values fostered by LWVBAE.

Environmental Concerns Speaker Series Co-Chairs Carol Stone and Jeanette Zerneke
Speakers on second Mondays of most months this year were Christopher J. Herrera (9/2019) of Rainforest Action Network, describing RAN’s current campaigns targeting various Climate trouble spots; Berkeley Ecology Center Director Martin Bourque (10/2019), presenting a talk and video on “Plastics: Global Problems, Recycling and Alternatives”; Shirley Dean (11/2019), former Berkeley Mayor, describing her continuing involvement with Citizens for East Shore Park to address sea level rise and issues at its Waterfront; Trish Clifford (2/2020) detailing Citizens Climate Lobby’s aim to cut greenhouse gas emissions by means of a tax on carbon; and executive strategist and systems thinker, Sandra Kwak (3/2020) of 10Power and of Extinction Rebellion, working to mitigate and/or avert the Climate Crisis.

Criminal Justice Group Leader Christine Wenrich
Pat Kuhi, Lois Brubeck, Christine Wenrich and Jinky Gardner are exploring how the local Juvenile Justice systemand schools help young people in danger of breaking the law. We will follow newly introduced bills such as SB 889 which, if passed, will keep troubled youth up to age 20 with the Juvenile Court, tour Alameda County Juvenile Hall and interview BUSD School Board members, police, and others to update ourselves on Juvenile Justice.
Christine Wenrich and Sherry Smith attend biweekly Berkeley Police Commission meetings to monitor exploration of a ballot measure to transform the Commission. We will study and report on this emerging measure, as it may be on the ballot as AB292, Use of Force, in the November election.

Measures O and P Observers Charlotte Wheeler and Jinky Gardner (2019-2020 LWVBAE Board)
Continuing LWVBAE’s support of Berkeley’sefforts on Homelessness / Affordable Housing, we and LWVBAEinterns/Berkeley High students Sienna DeCarion and Minh Kai (KaiKai) Spencer have attended meetings of the City Council, Measure O Bond Oversight Committee and Homelessness Services Panel of Experts and related events. Both oversight committees have advised the Council on its budgeting of Measures O and P funds. Sienna and KaiKai have written website articles on their experiences. The Action Team will continue to monitor housing issues and report policy developments and significant events to the Board.