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Women's Vote at 100:
A Look Back at History and
Ahead at the Future

Thursday, September 12th at 6:30 PM

Please join the Women & Politics Institute and Women in Film & Video as we look back at suffrage history and the continuing fight for gender equity in politics. 

Along with a panel discussion with the filmmakers, we will screen excerpts of One Woman One Vote, the award-winning historical documentary about women’s suffrage, and get an exclusive preview of highlights from the upcoming film Resisterhood, which chronicles the Resistance Movement that caught fire in 2017 and is currently changing the face of U.S. politics.

Betsy Fischer Martin, Women & Politics Institute Executive Director, will facilitate a discussion on how past struggles for voting rights can inform today's struggle for representation with special guests:
  • Ruth Pollak, writer/producer of One Woman, One Vote
  • Cheryl Jacobs Crim, filmmaker of Resisterhood
  • Mimi Hassanein, political candidate featured in Resisterhood
American University Main Campus, 4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Malsi Doyle and Michael Forman Theater (McKinley Building)

Gender on the Ballot:
The Electability Question

Wednesday, September 18th at 12:30 PM


Discussion with U.S. Rep. Alma Adams
Tuesday, September 24th at 7:00 PM

Book Talk:
There's No Crying in Newsrooms:
What Women Have Learned About What It Takes to Lead

Thursday, October 3rd at 6:30 PM

Please join the Women & Politics Institute and the School of Communication for a book talk with co-authors and top educators Kristin Grady Gilger and Julia Wallace. The authors discuss what it takes to lead in the newsroom, along with Lisa Matthews (Associated Press) and Cory Haik (VICE). Betsy Fischer Martin, Executive Director of the Women & Politics Institute, will moderate the discussion.
American University Main Campus, 4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Malsi Doyle and Michael Forman Theater (McKinley Building)

Book Talk:
For Colored Girls Who Have
Considered Politics

Wednesday, October 9th at 6:00 PM

Co-authors and top political strategists Donna Brazile and Minyon Moore discuss their experiences as two of the most accomplished and influential African-American women in politics today.  Betsy Fischer Martin, Executive Director of the Women & Politics Institute, will moderate the discussion.

American University Main Campus, 4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
School of International Service, Founders Room

Film Screening:
Knock Down the House

Wednesday, October 30th at 6:30 PM

Please join the Women & Politics Institute and the School of Communication for a special screening of Knock Down the House, followed by a panel discussion with director Rachel Lears and executive producer Cherry Graziosi.

The Netflix documentary examines the 2018 primaries and midterm elections and follows the campaigns of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Amy Vilela, Cori Bush, and Paula Jean Swearengin and the reasons why they ran.
American University Main Campus, 4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Malsi Doyle and Michael Forman Theater (McKinley Building)

July 24: National Governor's Association Conference

Women's political leadership is front and center this year as we celebrate the Suffrage Centennial — 100 years since the 19th amendment was considered for ratification by states to enshrine women's right to vote in the U.S. Constitution.

WPI Adjunct professor Lucy Gettman moderated one such conversation this week at the National Governors Association Summer Meeting in Salt Lake City.  The panel included Governor Laura Kelly of Kansas as well as senior executive branch, private sector and local leaders. WPI continues the conversation for students at a Weekend Intensive course, "The Suffrage Centenary," in September.

June 20: Book Talk with
Jake Sherman & Anna Palmer

Betsy Fischer Martin spoke with Jake Sherman and Anna Palmer, senior writers for Politico and co-authors of the Politico Playbook newsletter, about their new book, The Hill to Die On: The Battle for Congress and The Future of Trump's America, during an event held at American University School of Public Affairs (SPA). Their book details the no-holds-barred fight to control Congress early in Donald Trump’s presidency.

This event was part of Jumpstart, a two-day preview of the SPA graduate program experience, which included panel discussions, tours, events, and classes.

Read more about the event here.
Gender on the Ballot Logo
The Barbara Lee Family Foundation and the Women & Politics Institute have teamed up to create Gender on the Ballot, a non-partisan project to examine and contextualize gender dynamics in the 2020 elections.  

Recent Highlights:
Watch out for Abortion...the sleeper issue of the 2020 election cycle WPI's Karen O'Connor writes that when women get riled up, "they don't just take to the streets, they vote."

Achieving Parity in Congress – One State At A Time WPI faculty member Lucy Gettman writes that states play a vital role in filling to the political pipeline of leaders.

Gender on the Debate Stage: July Night 2 Numbers Betsy Fischer Martin examines night two of the July Democratic debate by the numbers, with slightly better results. This time, 10 questions (out of 119) addressed women’s issues, and 5 of those went to women candidates.

Gender on the Debate Stage: July Night 1 Numbers  Betsy Fischer Martin crunches the numbers on the first night of the July Democratic debate, which included zero—that’s right, zero—questions about “women’s issues.”

What Does Electability Mean to Voters? Our new Gender on the Ballot poll, conducted by Benenson Strategy Group, suggests that voters are looking for "electable" candidates - but not in the way the media defines electability. 

Gender on the Debate Stage: Night 2 Numbers  Betsy Fischer Martin delves into the gender implications of the questions and answers on night two of the June Democratic debate.

Gender on the Debate Stage: Night 1 Numbers  Betsy Fischer Martin breaks down the questions from the first night of the June Democratic debate, sorting through gender implications.

What Qualities Actually Matter To Voters? In this blog post, WPI’s Betsy Fischer Martin breaks down how voters view the leadership potential of male and female candidates. 

At The Intersection Of 2020: A Lens Into Candidate Complexities Vicky Wilkins, Dean of AU's School of Public Affairs, asks why there has been little discussion of intersectionality so far in the 2020 presidential election. 
WPPL Certificate courses offered in Fall 2019 are now listed online.

Learn more about the Women, Policy, and Political Leadership Certificate Program.  
We are excited to welcome 40 new women to the WeLead campaign training program for 2019-20.  The program kicks-off on Saturday, September 21 with an orientation, and will feature remarks by American University alumna and DC Ward 1 City Council member Brianne Nadeau. 

In this era of an unprecedented number of female presidential candidates, we look forward to working with another generation of women to close the gender gap in political leadership.

WeLead Alumna Spotlight

Beth Roberts noted, "I loved learning from my fellow WeLeaders and the speakers throughout the series about the incredible number of paths that could be pursued in government, politics and civic engagement. Read More

WeLead Speaker Spotlight

Kristin Davison, VP & General Consultant, Axiom Strategies is known to push candidates and campaigns to work harder, grow outside their comfort zones, and advance to the next level. She has over a decade of campaign and policy experience, from local mayoral races to national presidential campaigns, from the White House to the British House of Commons.  Read More
Learn More
The WeLead Reader is a curated weekend newsletter packed with news and research about women in politics.

The email is delivered to inboxes on Saturday morning, so you can catch up on any news that you may have missed during your busy week.  If you haven't received it yet, please subscribe below.  You can also share it with interested family and friends.  Thanks for all the positive feedback so far.
Thank you for your continued support to help us close the gender gap in political leadership.
About Us: 
The nonpartisan Women & Politics Institute at American University provides academic training to young women that encourages them to become involved in the political process and facilitates research by faculty and students that enhances our understanding of the challenges and opportunities women face in the political arena.

Our mailing address is:

Kerwin Hall, Room 109E 
4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20016

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American University · 4400 Massachusetts Ave NW · Kerwin 109e · Washington, DC 20016-8001 · USA