RATIFICATION OF THE 19TH AMENDMENT
AAUW is excited to announce plans for a series of virtual events in 2020 that will mark the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote, inform our members and supporters in a critical presidential election year, and move us all closer to a fully fair future for women and girls.
The various virtual programs will spotlight the work AAUW Branches are doing on behalf of AAUW to ensure women and girls everywhere have equal opportunities to learn, lead and earn the salaries they deserve. In January, AAUW National launches “A 2020 Vision for Equity,” which will bring together a panel with leaders from politics, business and beyond to share their insights about the progress we’ve made in women’s equity and the future of our movement. Although there will be no in-person national convention or major convening in 2020, we understand the importance of bringing women together to network and support AAUW and its mission—and our outreach will be designed with those goals in mind.
For example, we will engage members across the country — through livestreams, webinars, social media chats and other communications — to participate in important initiatives and events, such as recognizing Equal Pay Day to advocate for better laws and employer pay practices, rallying around landmark court cases for women, and launching research to continue the push for greater equity. Also, because 2020 is an election year, we’ll ensure women exercise the right to vote that so many fought so hard for a century ago. Our efforts will include a range of activities to support voter registration and get out the vote. As states and branches participate in myriad 19th Amendment commemorative activities, we’ll be working to galvanize the movement on a national scale and attract new generations and supporters for the future.
State and regional events and conferences are included in the 2020 plans, and AAUW National encourage all branches to work with National to promote your events to a larger audience.
AAUW’s decision to focus on virtual events in lieu of an in-person convening was guided by the AAUW National Convening Task Force and approved by the board of directors. The task force conducted a rigorous review of conventions, conferences and other events on gender equity taking place around the nation, with the goal of finding options that would:
- Ensure that more members can participate. Less than 1 percent (734) of AAUW members attended our last National Convention in 2017. While these gatherings are a rich part of our legacy and a unique opportunity for networking, the Task Force evaluated ways to convene that could engage many more members and supporters in our mission to achieve gender equity.
- Enable financial sustainability. All four of the most recent AAUW National Conventions have operated at a financial loss, and the deficits from the 2015 and 2017 meetings were substantial. The Task Force evaluated ways to convene members that would not pull resources away from our core work of creating lasting change for women and girls.
AAUW is looking forward to celebrating our progress in 2020 and working with you to ensure a future of equity for all.
AAUW 2018 STRATEGIC PLAN
The Task Force honed in on AAUW’s distinct areas of strength and opportunities, after researching almost 400 organizations dedicated to gender equity issues in the United States alone.
So, what’s next? Now that the AAUW Board of Directors unanimously approved the plan, AAUW members will help bring this plan to life. Every single member can make a difference. And, together — with 170,000 members and supporters in every state, territory, and congressional district as well as our dedicated staff — we will make this bold vision into a reality.
In the coming weeks, months, and years, there are countless opportunities to get involved and be leaders within your community, at the state level, and throughout the nation to advance our mission towards meaningful results.
One of the most audacious and exciting goals in the plan is to achieve pay equity by 2030, and this is one of our immediate areas of focus. We can lead the national conversation on pay equity — and all members can join advocacy efforts to advance policies in their states and communities and nationally. AAUW members have been instrumental in more than a dozen states passing improved pay equity laws in the past couple of years (see your state’s equal pay law status) and all of us can contact our policy makers by becoming an AAUW Two-Minute Activist.
As another key component of our pay equity agenda, AAUW will train 10 million women in salary negotiation by 2022. Our strategy is to build large-scale initiatives like we have in Boston; Long Beach, California; the Commonwealth of Massachusetts;San Francisco; Tempe, Arizona; and Washington, D.C., and we will be announcing more initiatives soon. We will be working with AAUW state and branch leaders as well as AAUW national members across the country to develop plans to engage mayors, governors, local employers, universities, and other civic leaders in the effort. We will also be launching an online version of the salary negotiation course in September — and we are asking every member to take the course and to share it with at least 20 of your family members, friends, and contacts.
Another priority is to improve workplace culture to advance women. As part of that priority, we are asking for your help with a new AAUW research report. Our forthcoming report will examine how sexual harassment disrupts women’s career paths and has a cumulative effect over women’s lifetimes. In particular, we will be focusing on how workplace sexual harassment impacts women toward the end of their careers. Your voice is important; we hope you will respond to our survey regarding your experiences with workplace sexual harassment. AAUW’s research reports have helped move policy and change norms for more than 100 years, and this project will help us connect the lessons we have learned over our lifetime to improve women’s workplaces and lives today.
These are just a few examples of the types of efforts we can all work on to advance equity and achieve our goals locally, regionally, and nationally. Additional opportunities for branch and national members for engagement at the state and national levels will be presented later this summer and regularly shared to ensure we are, together, meeting our goals. We will keep you updated with quarterly progress reports so we can all see and celebrate our collective impact.
On behalf of the AAUW board and the national staff, thank you for your support and commitment to AAUW and for all you do to advance gender equity. Today, this plan gives us our path forward. Together, we can — and will — lead the change we want to achieve.
Chief Executive Officer
AAUW was honored to receive the 2018 Global Citizen Award from the United Nations Association of the United States of America, Southern California Division at the 11th Annual West Coast Global Forum.
Task Force and BOD Report
On behalf of the AAUW National Convening Task Force and AAUW Board of Directors, we are pleased to announce plans for 2020 and a celebration that marks the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote, as well as an important election year and AAUW’s role for 137 years and counting as a national leader for gender equity.
Following the National Convening Task Force’s rigorous internal and external review of conventions, conferences, and other events on gender equity taking place around the nation, we are now planning a yearlong 2020 National Convening for AAUW. The various programs and events will spotlight AAUW strategic priorities — education and training, economic security, and leadership — focused on how we can have meaningful and lasting impact toward improving the lives of all women and girls. The series will include online and in-person events that will bring us together and keep moving us forward.
The 2020 National Convening will engage members across the country — through livestreams, webinars, and other communications — to participate in important initiatives and events such as marking Equal Pay Day to advocate for better laws and positive employer pay practices, rallying around landmark court cases for women, and launching research about the status of women on campuses today to continue to push for greater equity. Also, as 2020 is an election year, we can tap into the legacy of securing the right to vote by ensuring women exercise this right and by supporting voter registration and Get Out the Vote activities and events. As states and branches participate in a range of 19th Amendment commemorative activities, we can bring our energy and experiences together with national and regional convenings to help galvanize the movement and attract new generations and supporters for the future.
For those who are able to travel to Washington, DC, there will be a 1–2 day program that will include an AAUW National Awards event combined with a lobby day training and trip to Capitol Hill. Dates and venues are still being finalized and we will update you on these details as soon as possible so you can save the date!
Many of the digital concepts for the convening will begin to be tested at the end of 2018 and in 2019 to prepare for a fulsome program in 2020. We will be communicating regularly with state and branch leadership on programming plans, incorporating all of the great work being done at the local level.
Included in the 2020 year of convenings will also be your state and regional events and conferences. We encourage states and regions to work with us to simulcast and promote your events to a larger audience. We will be collecting data on your local, state and regional events to showcase the sheer volume of events and gatherings for members (and prospective members and stakeholders) to take advantage of in networking and growing.
We wish to thank the participants of the AAUW National Convening Task Force, which was comprised of AAUW members, board members, Younger Women’s Task Force members, supporters, and AAUW staff, who were brought together to consider options for a 2020 convening.
We believe that through the yearlong 2020 National Convening, in place of an AAUW National Convention, we will be able to include more members in more meaningful ways as well as provide more cost-efficient opportunities for the organization and individual members.
For our decision process, the Task Force took on two key charges:
- Ensure that more members can participate. Less than 1 percent (734) of AAUW members attended our last National Convention in 2017. While National Conventions are a rich part of our legacy and are a unique opportunity for some members to connect with AAUW national and network with each other, the Task Force evaluated ways to convene that could engage many more members and develop programming that would connect to our mission in meaningful ways.
- Review financial feasibility. All four of the most recent AAUW National Conventions have operated at a financial loss — and the losses for the 2015 and 2017 conventions were especially significant. The Task Force evaluated ways to convene members that would not have a negative budget impact and pull resources away from advancing our mission and core work.
We are grateful for your support and look forward to coming together for this exciting celebration in 2020. Onward and upward!
Malinda Gaul, Esq., AAUW National Convening Task Force Chair
Julia Brown, Esq., AAUW Board Chair