Report on Get Out The Vote Campaign Kickoff May 19 & Annual Meeting

A festive kickoff celebration of the League’s Get Out the Vote Campaign was held on Thursday, May 19, at Northbrae Community Church. At least 100 people attended. Many in the unusually large crowd came to celebrate the awarding of the Spirit of the League Award to Charles Austin. See companion story.

photo of Ira Marlowe Ira Marlowe opened the program with several humorous, satirical, and sometimes raunchy, political songs. Marlowe is  the composer, and lyricist of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. The Mime Troupe’s productions are satirical agit-prop street theater performed free each summer in Bay Area parks.  At his recently opened intimate private club, The Monkey House, on University Ave. in Berkeley, Marlowe hosts and performs musical programs. He has also launched a subscription series of new songs. Subscribers can pay a modes amount to hear one new song each month at

photo of Mindy S. Romero, Ph.D.Mindy S. Romero, founder and director of the California Civic Engagement Project (CCEP) at the UC Davis Center for Regional Change, reported on new demographic facts providing information that will help the League and other groups to encourage young people and under-represented communities to register and vote.  She answered to audience questions.

Dr. Romero’s scholarly work focuses on the relationship between political behavior and ethnicity. Her research is specifically relevant to California communities. Dr. Romero is a recognized expert on civic engagement and political rights, who has testified before the National Commission on Voting Rights and the California Legislature. She works with the League and other civic organizations to apply detailed demographic data to wage effective campaigns to expand the size and diversity of the electorate.   KQED is currently working with Dr. Romero to produce a series on voter engagement in several California communities. A political sociologist, she earned a Ph.D. in Sociology from UC Davis.

photo of Charles Austin

Charles Austen 2016

At 7:45, the League honored Charles Austin with the Spirit of the League Award, for his outstanding civic work, with the help of the Convening Committee, in organizing the community to rename the South Berkeley Library, as the Tarea Hall Pittman South Branch Library. See companion story.

A break allowed guests to leave.

At the annual business meeting, members adopted climate change and “Making Democracy Work” as public policy priorities for action and education. They voted to adopt the proposed budget.  Two bylaws changes were adopted: 1) Conflict of Interest provision to bring the LWVBAE, as a 501c3 organization into compliance with state and national law, and 2) a provision that will enable LWVBAE to adopt Positions of Other Leagues by concurrence.

The following officers and directors were elected for the 2016-17 League Year: President Deborah Malbec, Secretary Christine Wenrich, Treasurer Emily Beckhusen and Directors: Regina Beatus, Phyllis Gale, Jinky Gardner, Preston Jordan, Margo Schueler, Linda Diz Swift. Also elected: Nominating Committee for 2016-17: Nancy Bickel, chair, Cynthia Chen member.

The meeting closed at 9 pm. Links to background materials at below.

Members: You can download and read LWVBAE Annual Meeting Kit 2016–FINAL May 3.
Find our current Bylaws here.
Find our local policy positions here and links to state and national positions.

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