LWV of LAFAYETTE
On November 7, 1945 in the home of Mrs. Hollis Long, nine women met with representatives of the state and national League of Women Voters. These nine women became the founding members of the Lafayette League:
On January 27, 1946 the bylaws proposed by these founders were amended and 33 members joined. By the very next month the membership had swelled to 88, and by July, 1946 to 106 members.
The new League almost immediately began lobbying the state legislature, the city council, and the school board and sponsored public forums on their key issues. In that same first year the League's Canning Committee processed 651 cans of food for the people of Europe, and moved on to discussing control of nuclear weapons, sent 35-40 telegrams to State Senators in regard to the civil service bill, discussed appointment vs. election of the State Superintendent of Education, and recommended beginning a school survey as its first project and initiated its second project, "Your Town's Future," in December.EMERGING YEARS
Know Your Local Governments
The Leadership Team is the governance model utilized by the LWV-Lafayette in lieu of the traditional board of directors/officers model. The Leadership Team members manage and supervise the business, affairs, and activities of the LWV-Lafayette. The Leadership Team works through shared responsibility. A significant difference between the Leadership Team and traditional board of directors is evident in how the traditional duties of president are divided among the appointed spokesperson and team members. With the Leadership Team, a spokesperson is elected to represent/ coordinate/ communicate with the public on behalf of the league when needed. The responsibilities for planning and leading each of the team meetings is divided among team members who each serve as facilitator for the respective meetings. The facilitator of the meeting solicits input for the agenda and directs the meeting. The Leadership Team has been an excellent way to continue to keep the league active and viable. Sharing of responsibility keeps any one person from being overwhelmed and experiencing burnout. This model has worked well for several years and no one has expressed a desire to return to the traditional governance model.
HOW WE "WORK"
The league has standing and ad hoc committees that do the "work" of the league. Committee chairs do not have to serve on the Leadership Team, but many do at some point. Flexibility in matching members' skill sets with their interests and time availability has provided a workable balance. As needed, committee chairs keep the leadership team apprised via the spokesperson and facilitator. These communications ensure that continuity of business is maintained by the subsequent facilitators.As a league member, there are limitless opportunities to:
There is a place for everyone and each member's schedule. The League does its work is through its Leadership Team, committees, study teams and individuals. Every Lafayette member participates as time and preference permit.