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President's Newsletter - March 2023

Dear LWVOR Members and friends,

March is a time of optimism for me, a time to look ahead, eyes open, to face making the seasons ahead productive. We have our work cut out for us and it can be rewarding. Please read and think about how you can help a little more with the longer days coming.

Consider reaching out to lighten the load for another League member who can then build our leadership bench and help fill our concerning leadership gaps. Job sharing is a really good idea! Ask a friend to step up with you! More hands make light work and you’ll be glad you didn’t sit this one out.

Thank you for being part of the team by reading and helping as you are able!

Yours In League!

Becky Gladstone

LWVOR President


Table of contents:



Keynote Speaker Les Zaitz

Our Keynote Speaker for “Free Press and the Survival of Democracy” will be Les Zaitz, Editor of the Salem Reporter and The Malheur Enterprise.

Thanks to the Marion-Polk League for this:

Zaitz established an online subscription-based publication because he thinks requiring people to pay for journalism allows him to be aware of which stories attract readers and thus to know the community needs for news. The Salem Reporter covers city news, schools, politics, economy, community, and Oregon news so readers can look for articles that interest them and learn about local events before they happen. All articles are archived on the website.

The Salem Reporter will closely follow candidates before the next School Board election to provide unbiased reports on their campaigns; Zaitz believes news story readers should not be able to tell journalists’ personal views. Zaitz said the staff also relies on readers to let them know if a candidate is lying or hiding information about themselves so the journalists can check it out.

Convention Attendance Information

The LWVOR room block is active, make your reservation today! There are two ways you can make reservations using the League’s discounted group rate:

See the First Call to Convention in our February News.


We need a powerful, full slate of Officers and Directors to guide our well-organized Board and Committees. The President and First VP for Voter Service slots are still open. Some of our local Leaders would step up if they knew you could fill their shoes locally. This is about building our bench and we need you!

Our Nominating Committee took initiative with a Task Force as the “lateral communication” that is now strengthening most of our state-wide work, from local League Leaders to Membership, as directed at LWVOR Council 2022. The Task Force, with LWVOR Membership guidance, is bringing together local League Nominating Committee members from across Oregon. Read more in The VOTER and contact the Task Force and LWVOR Nominating Committee through our staff:


Thanks to Program/Study Chair Annie Goldner for organizing study and concurrence proposals for this year’s Convention. The LWVOR Board will review them for recommendation status at our March 10 Board meeting. Thank you also for re-invigorating our review of local League Program planning! Please see the full report in The VOTER and send questions to Chair Annie Goldner.


Thanks to our strong local League network and Chair Peggy Bengry, Voter Service will gather candidate and local ballot measure information for the May 16, 2023 primary election! We look forward to hearing who will step up to take Peggy’s place.


LWVOR Youth Liaison

We officially welcome Chris Walker to the Board. Read his bio and the ambitious service plans in The VOTER. You can reach Chris at

Youth Council

Our Youth Outreach Committee is establishing this Council, with a first project to support OSME, the Oregon Student Mock Elections. Celine Ioffe will lead a diverse team of Youth Council members to build effective power in their communities to achieve their goals. Read full coverage in The VOTER. Reach out to start Oregon Student Mock Election (OSME) local versions for this 2023 Primary!

To help develop an active presence in your local schools, reach out to:




This is week 7 of 24 for our 2023 long legislative session. We have reviewed and approved almost 80 pieces of testimony submitted so far. Subscribe for the weekly briefs linking to full Legislative Reports! We like to feature our Action Coordinators at Convention and hope they can attend and report, despite being in the middle of the session, at least on a weekend.

Facing legislative process deadlines, another thousand-odd bills dropped last week and we are busy sifting through them, advocating, and reporting. Day at the Legislature planning is stymied by Capitol access trimmed for construction, as reported last month, and for want of an organizer –is that you? Please contact our staff at if you are interested in spearheading this exciting event, where you can learn about League positions, priority legislation, and the latest happenings at the legislature.

The 2023 legislative session is well underway with over 2,000 bills filed. You can help! Worthy causes go unaddressed for lack of League volunteers. If you see a need and can offer your expertise, please contact our staff at


The People Not Politicians campaign is back with Initiative Petition 14, which would create an independent commission to draw Oregon legislative districts. This effort is supported by a broad coalition including LWVOR, Common Cause, Forward Oregon, business groups, and many everyday Oregonians.

This good governance effort needs our support! IP14 is a large endeavor and every volunteer will be needed to collect signatures and to database those signatures. Sign up to help here, and donate here. Download the signature petition. Contact Betsy Schultz for further information.


Caring for Our Children
March 22, 7:00pm

Join us for a webinar on the state of child care in Oregon! The topics will include: Why affordable, quality child care is critical for Oregon; challenges and successes of childcare providers; and a report from the nascent Oregon Department of Early Learning and Childcare. Our moderator will be Terry Styner from the League of Women Voters.

We are looking forward to an informative panel discussion from our knowledgeable speakers:

  • Martha Brooks, Oregon State Director, Western Region States Regional Director, Fight Crime: Invest in Kids and ReadyNation, Council for a Strong America

  • Julie Hurley, Co-Leader of the Child Care Coalition, Douglas County and Executive Director Early Learning, Douglas ESD and Heather Freilinger, Co-Leader of the Child Care Coalition, Douglas County | Program Coordinator Douglas ESD | Care Connections and Education Program

  • David Mandell, Chief of Policy & Research, Early Learning Division, Oregon Department of Education

  • State Legislator TBD


In the interest of defending the fun side of being LWVOR President, I can admit that a friend, a League member and Legislator, recommended this volume. I read it this past weekend: Eva Sleeps, by Francesca Melandri. I loved the German and Italian dialect, the place names familiar to me from high school. My husband appreciated the political history of borders and control shifting through upheavals.

No other recommendations for League reading landed on my desk this month! Lots of my screen time goes to reading bills, testimony, committee emails and so forth. We all need to balance our work and play.


Stay informed on League happenings at the state and local levels! You can sign up and manage your LWVOR newsletter subscriptions directly. Don't miss our event updates, Action Alerts, newsletters, and other important information. Questions? Contact our staff at

My best to all of you. Step up, it is your turn. Thank You for reading!

Becky Gladstone

President, LWVOR

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