Volume 114 Issue 1

2022-2023 Theme:

Supporting Marginalized Women and Girls

During This Time of Change

Message from the President

Dear Members,

I am elated yet humbled to assume the duties of President of AAUW San Antonio. I hope I have the opportunity to meet at least 95% of you in person, online, or by phone over the next year. As we somewhat emerge from the ravages of COVID, I will work with our board to create and develop safe ways to gather in order to begin in-person meetings. I will follow the science.

Many “thanks" and heaps of praise to Cheryl Fuller for guiding us through two years of a pandemic of historic proportions. She smoothly guided us through implementing Zoom so we could continue to meet. She kept us engaged and united. Under her watch, members were contacted to ensure they were doing well. Also, over the last two years the membership grew!

Now, as we truly begin to gather outside the home and experience an entirely new normal, we are hit with slow supply lines, employee shortages, a war that impacts the world’s economy and food resources, high gas prices, inflation, shortage of baby formula, soaring housing prices, and wages that never increased or are not enough to offset inflation. Then, the Supreme Court decides that women cannot determine what happens to their bodies. All these conditions touches us all, but will do more damage and lasting harm to, low-income people, women of color, immigrants, people with disabilities, and LGTBQ+ people. These “marginalized” groups already face substantial hardships in accessing: health care, jobs, equal pay, adequate housing, childcare, reproductive services. And the list goes on.

This year our programs will address the needs of the marginalized and how we at the local level can provide support as individuals and as an organization whose mission is advancing equality for women and girls through advocacy, education, and research. Thus, we chose the theme “Supporting Marginalized Women and Girls During This Time of Change.” Vice President of Programs Monica Ruiz-Mills leads a team developing our Saturday morning general meeting programs.

Although our membership has grown, the average age of the group lowered very little. To ensure the perpetuity of our affiliate we must attract a younger, diverse audience. What do we look like and what do we do that would attract that diverse audience? To tackle that issue, we have added a new DEI (Diversity, Equality, Inclusion) Committee with a new chairperson, Kimberly Henry. This committee’s job is to ensure the goals and spirit of diversity, equality, inclusion, and intersectionality spreads across all our programs and participants.

To attract this diverse audience, we need to make our affiliate known in the local communities. That calls for marketing. A new Publicity and Recruitment Committee was established and we need a leader and workers for that committee. If you have any skills that will help - writing, telephoning, etc. - we need your help desperately. Our first recruitment effort will occur during “Can We Talk?” on August 27. Please sign up to help at the table, or to prepare the site, or develop the recruiting materials.

The other new committees are: Community Coordinator (establishing connections with other organizations with similar visions in order to partner and share programs, research, etc. and to attract new members); STEM Committee headed by Mary Ellen Pratt (determine if there are marginalized students of the community who cannot access the available STEM programs; what do they need; how can we help); Governance Committee (evaluate our governance practices to ensure we are executing as a nonprofit per bylaws and policies). The AAUW Funds Committee isn’t new, but we are relooking at our financial sustainability in light of existing membership. To market our affiliate and extend our programming to engage new and diverse applicants, we need new funding streams for operations and new programs. We cannot continue to only rely on members.  

Please support our new "Sharing" and “Volunteer” sections of the newsletter. Ruth Lyle provided some great information about one of our member benefits. These are ways we can continue to connect with each other. Meet one of our new members. We hope the Member Spotlight will be a regular section of our newsletter.

Lastly, I ask that you complete the Survey. Please help us serve you better.

Signing off for now. 

Thank you for your support,

Diane Claiborne-Carr

AAUW San Antonio President

Meet the 2022-2023 Branch Leaders

Executive Committee


Diane Claiborne-Carr       

President Elect


Vice President Membership

Ruth Lyle                         

Vice President Programs

Monica Ruiz-Mills               


Ashlee Martinez      


Adrien Frank  


Suzanne Benson

Standing Committees

Public Policy

Pat Sanford


Adrien Frank


Karen Reichensperger


Martha Steele


Kimberly Henry


Malinda Gaul


Mary Ellen Pratt


Kimberly Henry





Patricia Tucker

Community Coordinator



Betty Russell



Member Outreach

Kathy Dicke

May Program

Our last program of the 2021/2022 year ended our series on the theme of "Economic Security Through Pay Equity". Judy Trevino, our speaker, was awarded the Maura Women Helping Women Award by the Texas Women's Foundation for her leadership in advocating for financial empowerment of women. Her presentation, Building Wealth: Securing Futures, gave us an insight to the advice she gives young women in developing financial literacy and navigating the financial environment to a secure future. 

In an environment of gender discrimination, women tend to undervalue themselves. She urges them to learn negotiation skills. In addition to needing better salaries, women need to negotiate for flexible schedules.

The basic financial advice is this:

1) Have a budget, and make sure you spend less than you earn.

2) Maximize your contributions to your retirement fund. Make sure you are contributing enough to receive all of your employer's matching contributions.

3) Pay off your credit cards every month.

4) Have an emergency fund. If you can, save 20% of your salary so your savings can cover 6 - 9 months of expenses.

5) Increase your education to increase your pay.

Her advice to us was:

1) Make connections with young women and mentor them.

2) Invest in education.

3) Support women-owned businesses.

4) Recommend women for higher-level roles.


San Antonio Branch Recognized at AAUW Texas Convention

Contributions to AAUW Funds


# 6 Total Contributions $5,327.00

#4 Per Capita Contributions $71.03


#1 Total Contributions $10,586.60

#3 Per Capita Contributions $130.69


Can We Talk?:

On Saturday, August 27, 2022, from 9:00 am - 3:00 pm, there will be a Can We Talk? Summit regarding the current issues facing women: Gun Violence, Title IX, and Reproductive Rights and how to turn issues into action. The venue is currently scheduled for Texas A&M University San Antonio. More information to come.

Membership Survey

Our Board of Directors serves you, our members. We want to hear from you! Please take a few minutes to complete our survey. Let us know what types or programs, speakers, and interest groups you would like us to provide by answering a few questions.

Click Here to Take the Survey

AAUW Takes Action

“The times they are a’changin.” This unmistakable fact is before us in every newscast, newspaper, on all social media, and in our own conversations. Total women’s health care is being eroded.

AAUW - national, state, and our own branch - is not standing by idly. We received a position statement from national stating in unequivocal terms that our organization will fight against the eroding of women’s total health care brought on by the Supreme Court reversal of Roe v. Wade. Texas AAUW quickly followed suit by issuing a statement aligned with national. And newly seated AAUW San Antonio branch president, Diane Claiborne-Carr, invited our membership to attend a Zoom meeting on July 2nd to plan actions we can take here in San Antonio.

Sixteen members attended with five more interested, but not able to be there. The meeting was productive with action steps developed and volunteers stepping forward to take the lead. 

•Encourage the community to register and vote.

o Members are volunteering to be trained to be Volunteer Deputy Registrars. Jeanette Pearce is taking the lead. Those voicing interest are Suzanne Benson, Diane Clairborne-Carr, Mary Ellen Pratt, and Pat Sanford. Additional volunteers are welcome!

o Partner with the League of Women Voters to get information on when and where to set up voter registration tables or to be part of their efforts.

•Publish AAUW response in local newspapers and on-line outlets. Diane is taking the lead on this.

•Obtain and publish information on which legislators and candidates support AAUW positions. Pat is taking the lead on this.

•Band with other groups to get out the vote, protest, and advertise.

•Develop AAUWSA 2-minute by using Constant Contact to provide members with information they need to send protests to state and federal congresspersons.

The committee will meet again in a week. If you would like to be included, contact Diane.

Our theme for this year is Supporting Marginalized Women and Girls During This Time of Change. This aligns directly with AAUW mission, policy, and priorities. I co-authored the state response to Roe v. Wade, and I think one sentence is particularly apropos.

“Reproductive health enables women to lead their lives, not struggle through lives they did not choose.”

AAUW has been advocating and working for women’s rights since it was founded in 1881. To quote AAUW CEO Gloria Blackwell, “We are in this for the long haul. We are running a marathon, not a sprint.” AAUW San Antonio concurs!

Pat Sanford

AAUW San Antonio Public Policy Chair

Membership News

Please welcome new members: Felice Sieffert and Gabrielle Aragon. We look forward to getting to know you.

A special Thank You to Judy Branch for becoming a Lifetime Member of AAUW.

Congratulations to Mary Ellen Pratt – Early Bird Winner of a Free Membership to AAUW for the 2022-2023 year.

If you have not renewed your membership, you can renew online or by sending a check (made out to AAUW-SA) to Adrien Frank, 140 Patterson Ave., Apt 104, San Antonio, TX 78209.


email, call or text.....

Ruth Lyle

Membership Vice President



AAUW’s Member Benefits Can Save You Money

LTC Global will save AAUW members time and money on their long-term care insurance quotes.

Visit the below link to find details for discounts for pet insurance, car insurance, rental cars, hotels, tours, UPS, Office Depot and many others.


With each purchase, AAUW receives a royalty that supports equal-pay advocacy, community programs, leadership development tools, the student leadership conference and so much more!

Member Spotlight

Introducing Antonina Duridanova

Let me introduce you to Antonina Duridanova. Antonina is a new member of our affiliate. She moved to Texas in 2002 and has lived in Dallas and Houston. Her family moved to San Antonio in 2009. Antonina is married to Mitt. They have three adult children; Vanessa who lives in San Antonio, Annabelle who is in Kentucky, and Richard who resides in Michigan. They also have six grandchildren.

Antonina was borne in Bulgaria during the time of serious communist rule. In fact, she is the author of a book, “New Beginnings: From Behind the Iron Curtain to America” which chronicles her life under communism and her escape from Bulgaria while a student at the University of Belgrade in Yugoslavia, to an immigration camp in Austria. She met two Americans in a coffee haus in Vienne just before she had to turn herself into the immigration office because she did not have the required documents. She explained her situation to the American women who said they would sponsor her in America. They did and she ended up in Ann Arbor, Michigan with $20. 

Antonina went on to gain a BA in French and Russian languages and literature, BBA in accounting, and MA in International Business and Spanish. During all of this she taught high school in Detroit but ended up working for the United States Treasury.

As a tax expert and expert in both Bulgarian and Russian languages, Antonina was selected to work on a project devised by US Treasury and Bulgaria to help Bulgaria (and Russia, Macedonia, Romania) set up a tax system after the fall of communism. Being able to apply knowledge gained in the United States to help her mother country was a dream come true. Antonina’s daughters lived with her in Bulgaria during her time working in the Baltic countries. Antonina retired from government service in 2014.

Antonina recently returned from a book tour through Bulgaria. Her book has been translated to Bulgarian. She stated she was greeted with warm welcomes, applauds and many questions. She was a guest on different stations of the Bulgarian National Radio and Television throughout the country.

What an interesting life! You can read all the intriguing ins and outs in her book, which is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iTunes, and Google Play.

Her future Meet and Greet the author events:

August 27th from 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm at Barnes and Noble bookstore, 321 Northwest Loop 410, San Antonio, Texas

October 1st from 10:00 am - 4:30 pm at Boerne Book and Art Fair, 100 N. Main St., Main Plaza Park, Boerne, Texas

Next time you see Antonina, say hello!                                               

AAUW San Antonio Scholarships

Looking forward to scholarships again this year? Last year we had a record four Graduate and ten Textbook scholarships. I am Karen Reichensperger, a 50+ year member of AAUW. I have chaired the branch scholarship program for several years; I have also been Secretary and President of the SA branch, College/University representative for both SA and TX, member of the national Branch Resources committee, and a member/officer of other branches.

AAUW SA has had a vigorous scholarship program for some time. I am privileged to have been a part of the committees that read the student submissions. The students are all fabulous so it is always hard to choose who is awarded. The process includes both a statistical objective part and a subjective part so that it flows smoothly. In October, we will be asking for volunteers for both scholarship programs. Do consider the opportunity to be a part of this committee.

Look forward to the fund raisers so that we can continue to offer such deserving women a scholarship.

Karen Reichensperger

Scholarship Chair



Have your read an interesting book? Binged a great tv series? Listened to new music? Visited an exciting city, country, art exhibit, music festival, restaurant?

Let us know so we may share it in our newsletters.

Click Here to Share


Here are some shared entries:

From my Kindle, I am currently reading:

While Justice Sleeps: A Novel

Author: Stacy Abrams

Genre: Fiction Thriller


I’ve been watching a Prime series, Pretty Hard Cases.

This Canadian series on Prime is about two female detectives that are so opposite yet find that they are ideal partners. Their personal lives are as intense as the cases they work. Humor threading the episodes makes it enjoyable.


Road Trips!

Texas Pie Company

202 W. Center St.

Kyle, Texas 78640

Pies, Baked Goods, Quiches, Casseroles, Lunch, Daily Specials

Monday-Friday: 10:30 AM -5:30 PM

Saturday: 10:30 -4:00 PM

Sunday Closed

5 YUMs!


Local pick your own fruit!

Love Creek Orchards


14024 TX-16

Medina, Texas 78055

Closed Wednesday and Thursday

Weekdays 10:00 AM-5:00 PM

Weekend 9:30 AM-5:00 PM

Pure Fun! Go as early as you can.


American Red Cross

When there is a fire and the victims need assistance, the Red Cross sends out volunteers to open a case and provide immediate financial assistance. Two or three days later a caseworker is assigned to call the victim, check on their status, and provide referrals for further assistance, if needed. It usually involves two or three calls which are documented on the computer in a Red Cross program called RCCares.

The nice thing about volunteering as a caseworker is the work can be done on your schedule. You are asked if you want to take cases and how many you want to take at a time….if you are not available then you can say no. Again, the work is done on your schedule.

The Red Cross does on-line training and then on-the-job training before a volunteer works on their own.

Please take a minute to review the opportunities to be a Red Cross volunteer, especially caseworker


Or call Malinda Gaul at 210.410.8992.

Dr. William Conan Davis

In March 2022, AAUW members Ocia Davis and Dr. Cheryl Davis lost their husband/father. He was a remarkable man and we want to share his accomplishments.

William Conan Davis (August 22, 1926 - March 16, 2022) was a professor emeritus and was chair of natural sciences at St. Philip's College in San Antonio, Texas. The William C. Davis Science Building is named in his honor.

He is best known for his research in food chemistry. He discovered arabinogalactan and used it to create instant mashed potatoes. His discoveries also improved potato chips and soft serve ice cream. He developed an organic glue for use in particle board. More recently, he co-developed the formula for Dasani water.

In addition to his scientific work, he was a Lutheran lay minister, served during the Korean War, and received the Purple Heart.

For More Information

Interest Groups


Will return in September.

RSVP to Helga Anderson



Thursday, August 11, 11:30 pm

Seoul Food (Korean Restaurant)

2456 Harry Wurzbach Road 78209

RSVP if you are attending to Ali Heller by August 9 at noon.



Join us as we have a wonderful lunch at Seoul Food, recommended by our own Wondra Chang. She will help us navigate the menu and help us choose spicy or not spicy, vegetarian or bbq rib selections. We will be dining inside.



Saturday, July 16, 10:00 am

The Night Watchman

by Louise Erdrich

Saturday, August 20, 10:00 am

Harlem Shuffle

by Colin Whitehead

RSVP to Diane Carr 


to receive the Zoom link.


Contact Pearl Eng



2022-2023 Officers

President Diane Claiborne-Carr

Vice President Programs Monica Ruiz-Mills

Vice President Membership Ruth Lyle

Secretary Ashlee Martinez

Treasurer Adrien Frank


You can donate to the AAUW San Antonio Branch for Scholarships by making a check out to AAUW SA and sending it to Treasurer Adrien Frank, 140 Patterson, #104, San Antonio, TX 78209.

You can donate to AAUW Greatest Needs

by clicking HERE.

The Two-Minute Activist
The Two-Minute Activist is a source of information on topics relating to women’s issues. It also enhances our ability to send emails and texts to legislators to fight for equal pay, family leave, stopping sexual harassment, equality in education and more. Sign up on the AAUW webpage to get regular alerts to be able to take timely action.
You can also text “AAUW” to 21333 to get AAUW action alerts via text. 

Current AAUW Funding Opportunities

For More Information

American Fellowships 

Funding: $6,000–$30,000

Opens: August 1

Deadline: November 1

2019-2020 American Fellow Kelsey Lewis

Career Development Grants 

Funding: $2,000-$12,000

Opens: August 1

Deadline: November 15

2019-2020 Career Development Grantee Samentha Gunn

Community Action Grants 

Funding: $3,000-$10,000

Opens: August 1

Deadline: December 1

This is available to AAUW affiliates.

2018-2019 Community Action Grantee Marisa Madison

Follow AAUW San Antonio on:

Facebook www.facebook.com/aauw.sanantonio

Twitter @AAUW_SanAntonio

LinkedIn AAUW San Antonio

For more information visit the AAUW websites: