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The DC Voter
League of Women Voters of the District of Columbia
Vol. 80, No. 9, October 2004

Making Our Voices Heard — Making Our Votes Count

733 15th Street, N.W., Suite 432, Washington, DC 20005
202/347-3020,  fax: 202/347-2522
Website:, E-mail:

President's Message
Healthcare Committee
Voter Services Committee
International Relations Committee
News from LWVUS
Unit Meetings Begin
Member News
LWVDC Membership Form
Calendar October 2004
Making Health Reform Happen


As Election Day 2004 approaches, let me remind you to pick up a League yard sign from Judy Smith (see page 2 for directions) so you can place it in a prominent place in front of your house. Mine sits right at the sidewalk, and can be read from either direction. I'm proud to display this very attractive sign, both for its message and its design. Thanks to Judy for her perseverance in realizing this idea. The sign, which was available for the September 14 Primary Election, says simply "Vote Tuesday", "For our neighborhood..." and "DC League of Women Voters. It can be used more than once and for more than one election year.

As the Presidential debates approach (the first, on foreign policy, will take place September 30, the day before this VOTER is mailed) let me remind you of some important DC elections and urge you to vote for the sake of our city and our neighborhoods as well as that of our country. If you are registered before October 4, you may vote for DC Delegate to the House of Representatives; for two at-large members of the DC Council; Wards 2, 4, 7, and 8 members of the DC Council; Districts One and Two members of the Board of Education; United States Representative (shadow) and ANC Commissioners.

October Units (October 19-21) will arrange informal meetings with candidates (School Board, ANC, or Councilmember candidates) invited by individual Units. The Chevy Chase-Ingleside Unit has already received acceptances from all seven School Board candidates and its local ANC candidate for its Unit meeting to take place at Ingleside on Thursday, Oct. 21, at 10 am, and all other Units are invited to join that meeting. See page 3 for more details. Call the League office (347-3020) or Joan Wilson, 2376264. no later than Friday, October 15 to accept their invitation.

Continuing our focus on healthcare begun with the Opening Fall Luncheon, I urge you to attend the healthcare forum on October 29. As you can see by the agenda (see flyer insert), it is a comprehensive forum with outstanding speakers. You can choose to attend the whole day, or the morning or afternoon sessions.

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Plan to attend!!

Making Health Reform Happen

Friday, October 29, 2004
8:00 am - 3:00 pm

Cafritz Foundation Conference Center
George Washington University
Marvin Center

Buffet Luncheon - No Charge
(See flyer/ reservation form)

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The DC League's Opening Luncheon on September 23, an event co-sponsored by the DC Primary Care Association (DCPCA) and DCLWV, attracted a record attendance of 140 to the Gallery of The Apartments at Ingleside, including city leaders such as Council Chair Linda Cropp, Councilmember Adrian Fenty, and others in health care positions in government; for example, Gina Lagomarsino, senior policy advisor to the City Administrator, and Cheryl Edwards, Chief of Staff, DC Department of Health. Among representatives of community organizations was Sharon Baskerville, Executive Director of DCPCA; Rolando A. Andrewn, American Lung Association of the District of Columbia; and Jerry Kasunic, director DC Long Term Care Ombudsman Program (which is affiliated with AARP).

Deputy Mayor Herbert Tillery, who served as interim Director of Health, introduced Orlene Grant of DCPCA, who introduced guest speaker Gregg Pane, MD, incoming director of the Department of Health (DoH). Mr. Tillery set an optimistic tone for what we might expect from DoH as Dr. Pane takes the reins.

Dr. Pane said he wants the department to be a leader in innovation, citing as examples more immunization of children and reduction of infant mortality as well as fostering medical homes. He said he has laid out five goals for DoH:

Improved care at the neighborhood level, which in turn will require education to change behavior (so patients will go to the nearby facility instead of the emergency room), and better health literacy;

Quality, safe, and coordinated care for children and the elderly in particular, which means high standards of licensing and consistent care, among other essentials;

Community preparedness and the need to involve the community a lot more with regional and federal efforts;

A safe and healthy environment, including clean water ad a toxic-free environment for children;

Making government work, and being a good custodian for the $1.5 billion budgeted for health care in DC. Dr. Pane wants Department of Health to "be a model".

Goody Braun, Co-Chair, Health Committee; Goody Braun (723-2477) & Rene Wallis (638-0252 w), Co-chairs

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Voter Guide: Beginning October 15, you can see where the Council candidates and School Board candidates stand on the issues by attending the Unit Meeting on Oct 21 (see p.3) or by visiting the League's Elections 2004 website at WWW.LWVDC.ORG. The questions were developed by the Voter Service and other League committees with help from Madlyn Calbert, Frances Gemmill, Naomi Glass, and Pat Hallman. The candidate contact team of Debby Hanrahan, Laura Harris, Naomi Glass, Jane Varner Malhotra, Kathryn Ray, Kathy Schmidt, Judy Smith, Geraldine Whitley, and Sheila Willet made sure the candidates responded. 

Candidate Forums: The Voter Services Committee has busy with assisting other organizations with Candidate Forums; registering people to vote several Saturdays at various metro stations as well as various organizational meetings; giving presentations on the importance of voting to several organizations in the city. For instance, using demonstration ballots received from the Board of Elections and Ethics, Geraldine Whitley and Sheila Willet gave a demonstration on how to fill out a ballot and registered 12 young women to vote who are participants in a Catholic Charities young woman rehabilitation center in the Southeast. On September 30 Elinor Hart and Frances Gemmill will give a presentation to the evening student body at Ballou High School. 

League Observes Ballot Counting September 14: Four representatives of the DC League volunteered to observe the work at the Board of Elections and Ethics (BoEE) on the evening of the September 14th primary election. Those who responded to the Board's request (a regular request to the DC League) were Anna Marsh, Suzanne Campagna, and Ed Levin with his wife Margot Levin. The comments of the observers will be forwarded to the BoEE.

Pick Up Your "VOTE" Sign: Have you picked up your DC League yard sign from Judy Smith? If you didn't get around to it before the Primary, do so now for the November 2 general election. In red-on-white lettering, they send a timely message to remind people to vote.

They were noted by a League as far away as Wisconsin, whose representatives wrote to ask us to share them, which we were happy to do. The signs measure 16" x 26" and are double sided, with a wire frame that slips inside the sign and goes into the ground.

They can be picked up at Judy Smith's house, 7628 17th St. NW (one block off 16th St. at Jonquil, across and down from Lowell School). Call ahead, if possible, but if you drop by and no one is home, just go around to the back porch. If the dog is out, talk to him, his name is Bandit, and he should be fine. Make sure to save your sign. It can be used again in 2 years. — Elinor Hart (387-2966) & Judy Smith (882-3021), Co- chairs

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Mark your calendars now for UN Day Week: October 1824, 2004. UNA-NCA (The United Nations Association of the National Capital Area, in partnership with LWVUS and other organizations is planning a week full of discussion, entertainment, advocacy, and information In addition to celebrating the 59th anniversary of the United Nations, this year's UN Week will focus on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The events being planned include:

  • An opening ceremony at the Marie Reed Marie Reed Community Learning Center
  • A panel discussion at the Woodrow Wilson Center on the role of the US in achieving the MDGs
  • A display of the UN flags along Freedom Plaza and Pennsylvania Avenue
  • A series of panel discussions on the MDGs and the role of the UN in Africa
  • A Model UN Training Session at the University of Maryland Baltimore Campus
  • Debates at various University Campuses
  • A building experience with DC Habitat for Humanity
  • A gala reception at the French Embassy and 
  • A closing ceremony at Carlos Rosario International Center.

Look for more details online at or call the UNA-NCA office at 202-518-0471.


The IR Committee meeting that was scheduled for October 3 to discuss the book Paris 1919 at the home of Susan and Firoze Rao was postponed. It will be re-scheduled - keep reading the book and watch coming VOTERS for the new date. — Susan Rao (636-1688) and Anne Porowski (364-0556) Co-chairs

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Units have been urged to invite candidates to their October Unit Meeting. Call the Unit Chairs listed below to find the location of the Meeting. Members of Northwest Day, Northwest Evening, and Upper 16th Street are also expected to join Chevy Chase/Ingleside on the 21st. Other Units are invited to attend also.

The Unit Chairs are:

Chevy Chase/Ingleside, Ruth Allen 362-8953, Joan Wilson 237-6264
Capitol Hill Evening, Betty Pierce 544-5547
Northwest Evening, Joan Domike 966-3865, Jean Hall 362-4526
Southwest, Leona Rumsey 863-7484, Gladys Weaver 554-3055
Upper 16th Street, Paula McKann 829-0656, Connie Tate 882-0387

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Gladys Herschel, a DC League member who was active in the (former) Capitol Hill Unit, has informed us of the death of her daughter, Marguerite (Peggy) Herschel, MD, associate professor of pediatrics and medical director of the general care nursery of the University of Chicago Children's Hospital. Dr. Herschel died on July 6, 2004, after a six-year battle with breast cancer. She was 64. She was a respected neonatologist and clinical researcher. Gladys writes: "This will give you an idea of my life in the last few, years. I am just beginning to carry on..." We extend our sympathy.

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MEMBERSHIP FORM TO JOIN OR RENEW: Questions concerning League membership can be directed to the League office at 347-3020.

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Have you received your October NATIONAL VOTER? Page 9, The HILL Bulletin, contains several stories of interest, for example:

DC Voting Rights: Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA) held a hearing in the spring on four bills that would provide the District of Columbia some measure of congressional voting representation. Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D DC) authored a bill, supported by the League, granting full Senate and House representation by statute. Be sure to turn to page 9 of the National Voter for the rest of the story, plus other news about the League's legislative priorities. Civil liberties, Election Reform, and Campaign Finance Reform are also discussed on page 9 as of current interest.

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          1 1
3 4 Voter registration deadline to vote on Nov. 2 5 6 10:00 am LWVDC Board Mtg at Cleveland Park Library 7 8 9
10 11 12 9:45-11:00 am, Voter registration at naturalization ceremony for new US citizens
October DC Voter deadline
13 14 15 16
17 18 19 Unit meetings 20 Unit meetings 21 Unit meetings 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 8 am-3 pm, Making Health Reform Happen 30

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