Tag Archives: Women’s Equality Day

Empire State Virtual Branch Won Many Awards!

NY State Convention Logo 2016Congrats to all the ESVB members and friends who made possible winning so many awards at the AAUW NYS Convention April 15-17, 2016, Saratoga Springs Holiday Inn, NY


1) Award of Distinction for our quarterly Empire Virtual Times newsletter
2) Award of Distinction for our Website
3) Award of Merit for Social Media
4) Award of Excellence for Visibility
5) Membership Award with 10% increase for recruiting and maintaining members
6) 21st Century Program — Silver Award for the  Mentoring
at the College of Mount Saint Vincent
7) Public Policy Award for Voter Registration & Education Award
8) Public Policy Award for STEM
9) Legal Advocacy Fund (LAF) Star Branch      Fourteenth (14th) Place Per Capita
Contributions. Specials thanks to our generous members including Dot McLane,
Dr. Chigurupati Rani, Joan Monk!

NYSE: Empowering Women & Girls to lead

nyse-600x320 (1) NYSE Press Photos | American Association of University Women
March 30, 2016 | Opening Bell

It was with great pleasure that Edwina Martin, AAUW NYS president, Melissa Guardaro, UN representative and Maria Ellis, AAUW NYS C/U Director & ESVB President participated in the New York Stock Exchange Opening Bell on March 30, 2016.  Representatives and guests of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) visited the New York Stock Exchange to highlight Women’s History Month.  In honor of the occasion, AAUW CEO Linda D. Hallman, CAE and AAUW Board Chair Patricia Fae Ho, rang the NYSE Opening Bell®.

Attendees included AAUW’s national staff, our Public Relations manager, Ryan Burwinkel, Nicole  Phillips and representatives from Verizon and Symantec and other AAUW corporate partners.



The NYS Assembly unanimously passed NYS Equal Pay Bills on April 27, 2015. The NYS Senate  had approved them earlier this Session. AAUW and others have lobbied for Equal Pay Bills for well over a decade. When the Governor signs the Bills, he has said he will, in 90 days they will be law.

The Women’s Equality Coalition, of which we are a member, reports that A.6075 updates New York Equal Pay Law by creating robust wage secrecy protections, so that employees cannot be fired or retaliated against for sharing their wage information as well as allow for increased damages up to triple the amount of unpaid wages when an employee successfully proves that an employer has willfully violated the law.

These are essential components in achieving pay equity.  A person must know how much others who are doing equal/comparable work are being paid to institute a legal action. Having access to proof that wage discrimination on the basis of gender exists means cases can be won, thus forcing employers to face paying severe damages when they pay employees inequitably. The passage of this law means a reduction in the 86% gender wage gap in NYS.


 Thank your NYS Assembly Member for voting for A6075. Contact info at http://assembly.state.ny.us/mem/ fill in you zip & address, click and email your message.

  1. Ask your member of the House of Representatives to co-sponsor the Paycheck Fairness Act. How? Go to aauw.org; click on Take Action; enter your zip code then complete the Tow Minute Activist. AAUW Action Network members were asked to respond on April 17 to the e-mail titled “Ride the Equal Pay Day Wave”.
  2. It is certainly acceptable to contact your federal legislator more than once about an issue. To paraphrase the Tammany Hall quote ”Write Early and Write Often”

Congratulations on the passage of the NY Equal Pay Bills. It would not have happened without your support.

Nancy Mion, ESVB Public Policy Director

NY/NJ AAUW “WILD” Women Project

Eleanor Roosevelt
NY/NJ AAUW WILD” WomenProject

(Women In Leadership Development)

“Embracing Eleanor in
the 21
st Century”

1.  “Leadership the Eleanor Roosevelt Way”

  • Robin Gerber’s keynote resonated with the membership at the AAUW National Convention in New Orleans in June. She agreed to support us in a year long/month by month/chapter by chapter study of her book “Leadership the Eleanor Roosevelt Way.”
    Branch participation is encouraged via conference call by: -having a single member/6 members sharing calls & reporting back -Westchester Branch is mentoring college students with this book
  • This initiative will begin in January of 2014 for NY AAUW.
    If book groups are interested in reading this book, there is a reading guide by Robin.

2. Celebrating the International Day of the Girl on October 11th
There is no better way to honor the legacy of Eleanor Roosevelt than promoting this celebration of girls that falls on her birthday, October 11th. This celebration is in its’ second year and we are delighted to spread the word.

The Youtube video “The Girl Effect” is a good way to educate your members of the plight of young girls in developing countries. www.youtube.com/watch?v=1e8xgF0JtVg
Be sure to visit The Girl Effect website for more information.  www.girleffect.org
Build on the last two years to create a platform for this program – Girls Speak Out; 11 Days of Action; Celebrate Girls on 11th of Every Month.
For many branches, this may be their first introduction to this special day.  Remember to start small/expand gradually/think in terms of year.

3.  Developing your own Branch ‘UN Women” Initiative
It is our hope that branches will take these ideas and design programs/projects that speak to their membership and community.

We have two AAUW NYS members working at the UN – Melissa Guardaro, the AAUW Representative and Geeta Desai, on the Membership Committee of the IFUW (International Federation of University Women).

Geeta is also the Public Policy Convener for Women Graduates – USA and has a blog that focuses on current issues facing women and girls. Here is the website for interested members– www.wg-usa.org/advocacyblog.

The CTAUN Conference this year is on Friday, 1/31/14 and members are welcome to attend. Its focus is “Promoting Peace through Education.” (www.ctaun.org)

Mark your calendars – you are cordially invited to attend the parallel events that will accompany the Committee on the Status of Women (CSW) meetings during the first two weeks of March 2014.

Interested in becoming a WILD Woman?
Contact Joan Monk, AAUW NYS District Director – ftmaven@gmail.com or 914 245 7704

The Women’s Equality Agenda Once Again Has Governor Cuomo’s Support

NY Women’s Equality Coalition is in
Full Swing to work for its passage

Good News-We have another opportunity to achieve the passage of the Women’s Equality Agenda. The Governor in his State of the State Address committed himself to advancing women’s equality. Did you know that 89% of NY Voters agreed that equal pay for women should be a high priority for state leaders and 80% support updating New York’s abortion laws

The Women’s Equality Coalition, which includes the support of 860 women’s groups, one of which is the Empire State Virtual Branch, businesses, religious organizations, medical groups, and advocacy organizations from across the state, is united in its efforts to mobilize New Yorkers and push legislators to get the job done in 2014. AAUW-NYS is on the Steering Committee. The measures of the Women’s Equality Agenda reflect the complexity of women’s lives–securing equal pay, access to reproductive health care, and freedom from discrimination and violence are all essential to women’s equality. New York State needs to update and strengthen its laws to reflect the reality of women’s lives today.

The coalition formed last year almost succeeded in having the WEA passed in 2013. They have continued to be very active. This fall they developed a grassroots campaign utilizing social media to spread the word each week about various issues in the 10 point WEA, calling for an upgrade in NYS’s outmoded laws. They created a satiric two-minute video Illegal or Just Sleazy that everyone must see. View the video and share it with others http://nywomensequality.org/?utm_source=SOTS+WEA+Press+Release&utm_campaign=SOTS+Presser+WEA&utm_medium=email

NYWEC plans to build on the fall campaign and throw its full weight behind advancing women’s rights and making the Women’s Equality Agenda law.  Please do all you can to raise awareness among those you know. Encourage all to contact their NYS Legislators asking them to pass this needed legislation that will make a difference for so many.

Nancy Mion, Empire State Virtual Branch Public Policy Chair Myown220@aol.com