League of Women Voters of Oak Park & River Forest Newsletter May 2022 Volume 9 Issue 9

Co-Presidents' Letter

Dear Friends, 

Welcome to late spring! The forsythias are blooming, chives are in abundance, and is there anything more cheerful than a clump of bright yellow daffodils? We hope you were able to shop the League fundraiser this last weekend at the Good Earth and are beginning to fill window sills, balconies, and backyards with flowers. Or perhaps you were more ambitious and already have carrots sprouting and a potato bed planted. Whatever your horticulture interests, we agree with Margaret Atwood that “In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.”


On Thursday, April 7, the Senate confirmed Judge Ketanji Brown-Jackson’s appointment to the Supreme Court, where both she and we note the progress her confirmation to the Supreme Court represents. Leading into the hearings, Justice Ketanji-Jackson enjoyed broad support with a Gallup poll showing that 58% of Americans supported her nomination. An impressive coalition, including the NAACP and at least 187 other organizations representing women, civil rights groups, attorneys, environmental organizations, and members of faith communities stood united behind her nomination. Heck, even three Republicans joined all Democrats to support her in a 53-47 final vote. In a press conference with President Biden, Justice Brown-Jackson said, “It has taken 232 years and 115 appointments for a Black woman to be selected to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. But we’ve made it. We’ve made it. All of us.” Please take a moment to rejoice in this historic, hopeful event.

A hat-tip to our Environmental Committee for being included on Wednesday Journal's list of Here’s who is leading green in Oak Park and River Forest. The committee is dedicated to discussing and raising awareness on environmental issues, including sustainable practices and programs across the three villages. Brava! Want to get involved? Contact Beverly Graham or Marsha Borders. Another hat-tip to the Voter Services Committee, which continues to register voters and has organized a Get Out the Vote Campaign by distributing flyers to businesses, restaurants, and public places in our communities. Can you visit a few blocks in our villages to see if they will put up a voter registration flyer? Democracy could use your help. See below to sign up. 


The Civil War ended in the spring of 1865, when Robert E. Lee surrendered the last major Confederate army to Ulysses S. Grant at the Appomattox Court House on April 9. Over 620,000 soldiers died in the four-year conflict. A year later, Illinoisan General John A. Logan selected May 30, 1868, as a day to pay tribute to the fallen. While it has come to signify the unofficial beginning of summer, Memorial Day is a somber holiday in which we recognize all the men and women who died while fighting in the US armed forces. River Forest will hold its 96th annual Memorial Day Parade on May 30 beginning at 9:30am starting from Augusta and Ashland Avenues. 


Playing for Change was created to inspire and connect the world through music. The idea came from a belief that music has the power to break down boundaries and overcome distances between people. Utilizing mobile devices, it records musicians in separate locations around the world as they interpret the same song, then mixes it into a single tune. Memorial Day is a fitting occasion for this one:  "Peace Train" featuring Yusuf / Cat Stevens | Playing for Change | Song around the World - Bing video


Jane and Joan 

Final Registration for Candidate Forum

This is the final registration notice for this Wednesday's, May 4 Candidate Forum. From 7:00-8:00pm, LWV OPRF is partnering with LWV La Grange Area and LWV Chicago to hold a virtual candidate forum for the 7th Illinois Congressional District Democratic Primary Candidates. At this time the three candidates are Kina Collins, Danny Davis, and Denarvis Mendenhall (objection pending). You can send questions for the candidates to the La Grange League by putting CD7 in the subject line. You can register for the candidate forum here

Final Second Tuesday Forum

The Second Tuesday Committee invites you to join us on May 10 at 9:30 am for our final Zoom meeting of the 2021-2022 season: "Looking Back, Looking Ahead." We will review the topics that were presented, and we very much want your feedback. Which presentation(s) had the biggest impact? Which did not? Just as important: Which topics would you like to see discussed in the future? Please join us and let us know what you think by registering for the meeting here.

Mothers and Others For Peace

What if we sat down face-to-face and learned to Listen. Connect. Grow.  Mothers and Others For Peace invite you to experience The Circle Process: Creating Deep Conversations on Friday, May 6, 2:30 - 4:00pm, at the Oak Park Public Library. Doors open at 2:30pm, welcome at 2:45pm, and circles begin at 3:00pm. Stephen Jackson, Restorative Justice Practitioner and Oak Park Public Library Director of Equity and Anti-Racism, will facilitate this interactive introduction to how circles can become part of our families, schools, workplaces, and communities. Everyone will be able to take part in a circle. Register here for this free program. All ages are welcome.

Mothers and Others For Peace ascribe to Julia Ward Howe’s proclamation of a Mothers Day For Peace dedicated to stopping war. They are a local group of activists who work to support this message of peace in this 21st Century.

LWV OPRF Annual Meeting

Our Annual Meeting will once again be virtual this year and is scheduled for Thursday, June 2, at 6:00pm. Laura Davis from LWV-Palatine will be speaking on the upcoming Cook County Forest Preserve Referendum and why passing it is so important. We are putting together the packet, which will include the Board slate, Bylaw changes, the 2022-2023 budget, program update, and Hazel Hanson Award nominee. The packet will be included in the May 16 Week in Preview and will also be posted on our website. Please make sure you look for it. It will also include the registration link for the meeting.

Voter Registration Flyers

The Voter Service Committee now is in the process of distributing flyers to businesses, restaurants, and public places in our communities. We could use your help. Can you visit a few blocks in our villages to see if they will put up a voter registration flyer? Just a few per block will get the information out. Using the QR codes provided, citizens can register to vote and/or sign up for a mail ballot. Check out the spreadsheet with the areas still available. Sign up for one or multiple areas. Just put your name in a space and then pick up copies of the flyers from Peggy Kell's front porch. Here is an example of the flyer. Contact Peggy Kell with any questions.

Sustainable Future

POLITICO's second annual sustainability summit will be taking place in person in Washington, D.C., or you can watch the live presentations online Wednesday, May 18. There will be discussion on the policies, strategies, and innovations that government, the corporate sector, and local communities are implementing to accelerate climate progress. POLITICO will bring together leading voices from Washington, local and state governments, civil society, and corporate America to discuss the most promising approaches that can leverage the current momentum to get us to a sustainable future much faster. Join them Wednesday, May 18, 9:00am CST, for this second free annual sustainability summit.

National Popular Vote

The League of Women Voters of Wisconsin is launching a series of informational

webinars about the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact throughout the summer.

The first of this series is titled, “The National Popular Vote: What, Why and How?" It is an introductory look at this legislation and how it can improve our democracy. Join the League at 6:30 p.m. on June 7 for this virtual event The first webinar will feature Eileen Reavey, the National Grassroots Director of National Popular Vote. Eileen also co-founded the grassroots advocacy group campaigning for Oregon to pass the National Popular Vote bill in 2016. For decades, the League of Women Voters has supported the direct-popular-vote method for electing the President and Vice President. And in 2010, the League adopted a position of support for the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (NPVIC) proposal.

For those who cannot make the live events in this series, the recordings will be posted to the League of Women Voters of Wisconsin’s YouTube page and website.

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