February/March 2024 Newsletter

Newsletter mast head

Volume 80, Issue 4

President’s Message


Dear Arlington AAUW members,

Happy 2024! I hope that the new year has gotten off to a great start for everyone. Your branch
officers have been very busy preparing a series of winter activities that you are sure to enjoy.
Besides our book discussions on Striptease in January, Ancestor Trouble: A Reckoning and Reconciliation in February, and Founding Mothers in March, we will have a program on genealogy in February. In March, at our annual meeting, we are planning to have a panel of Arlington leaders discuss issues with us in addition to our annual election of officers. You can find more information on these programs further down in this newsletter.

The VA-AAUW policy section has organized a Lobby Day in Richmond on January 31 and is encouraging local branches to have a virtual lobby day with our local delegation on February 28. Crossover Day is scheduled for February 13. VA-AAUW is focusing on issues related to reproductive rights, economic security and equity, affordable childcare, full funding for public schools, and protecting voting rights. Members are encouraged to contact your local delegations with your thoughts on these issues.

Our annual meeting where we elect our new officers is scheduled for March 16. Open officer positions include Secretary, VP for Communications, and VP for Membership. The Nominating Committee has met, and a slate of candidates for these positions will be sent out to the membership in early February. Kudos to those members for their willingness to take on these leadership roles in our branch!

At our January Board meeting, Treasurer Teri Doxsee reported the wonderful news that we have received $4255 to date in donations to our Scholarship, STEM, and Teacher awards fund. I am very appreciative of all who have made donations. If you forgot, don’t worry! It’s never too late to send in your contribution.

Best wishes for a not too cold February and March — spring will be here before we know it!!


Terry Bratt, Arlington Branch President

Hope to see you at these upcoming Branch meetings

  • CalendarSat., Feb. 24, at 10:30 am, Lubber Run Community Center – Eileen Bogdanoff, an experienced genealogist and an expert on using Ancestry.com, will share information and tools for learning about your family’s roots. She gives monthly talks on genealogy as part of Arlington’s 55+ Program.
  • Sat., March 16, at 10:30 am, Lubber Run Community Center – Special Program for Women’s History Month.  Mary Margaret Whipple, a former Virginia State Senator, will be the featured speaker. She will discuss the current social, political, and economic issues of interest to women in the Commonwealth and how these issues are being addressed by our elected representatives in Richmond. Additionally, representatives from the League of Women Voters and the Arlington Commission on the Status of Women will talk about their respective organizations and activities.
  • Monday, April 15, 7 pm, via Zoom, Presentations by the high school and middle school young women whose projects at the Northern Virginia Regional Science and Engineering Fair in March 2024 received awards for excellence by judges from the Arlington Branch of AAUW.  Also speaking will be Jennifer Swann, Director of Information Security at Bloomsburg Industry Group, who presented the program on AI/ChatGPT at our September meeting.

Barbara Gallagher and Barbara Smith, Co VPs Program

Let’s Talk About Books


The February meeting of Let’s Talk About Books will be
Tuesday, February 27, 2 pm, at your regular Zoom
location.  Terry Bratt will send an invitation with the
Zoom information. So, watch your email and come join
the fun! Our book selection is Ancestor Troubles: A
Reckoning and a Reconciliation by Maude Newton.

Our March meeting is Tuesday, March 19, 2 pm, at the
home of Terry Bratt. Please let Terry know f you will be
attending.  Our book selection is Founding Mothers:
The Women Who Raised our Nation by Cokie Roberts.

Opportunities for hosting are still available on 2/27,
4/16, 5/21, and 6/25. Please let me know if you are

Happy reading!

Barbara Gallagher, Let’s Talk About Books Chair

Northern District Meeting

Saturday, March 9, 2024
10:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Ellen Coolidge Burke Branch Library
4701 Seminary Road, Alexandria

Just in time for Cherry Blossom Season in Washington, DC.!

Diana Parsell, author and member of the AAUW McLean Area Branch, will introduce us to Eliza Scidmore, the Early AAUW Member Behind Washington’s Cherry Blossoms. As Diana’s book reveals, Scidmore was an extraordinary journalist and travel writer who got her start as a newspaper correspondent in Gilded Age Washington in the 1870s. She wrote authoritative books on Alaska, Japan, Java, China and India; was an activist in the burgeoning U.S. conservation movement, in association with major figures like John Muir; and was the most influential female at the early National Geographic, as the first woman elected to the board (in 1892) and to publish photographs in the magazine. In 1920, Scidmore became an AAUW member. Copies of the book will be available for sale.

A business meeting will follow.

Lunch Bunch

We have been meeting with a great group of young women monthly at the new site of the Arlington
Community High School on Fairfax Drive in Ballston since September. These young women each have their own journey that led them to this alternative high school program. We continue to acknowledge and celebrate the fact that they take the time each month to hear from various role models and to consider their own next steps in creating their future selves.

Our Lunch Bunch program has a strong focus on self-care, mental health and overall well-being.   This month’s speaker will be a part two for Ms. Jennifer Gross of APS.
Earlier this school year, she shared her very own compelling journey as an EL learner dealing w/ cross cultural issues. As coordinator for Social Emotional Learning for APS, Ms. Gross will focus on “Calming Strategies for Stressful Times” and The Healthy Mind Platter for self care.

Our students found our December speaker, chef Daniela Hurtado of Kitchen of Purpose, highly relatable. Amongst sharing stories of her personal journey as an EL student, she spoke about opportunities for bilingual culinary training and courses on how to launch a small food business.

The 15 -20 young women each month are focused, eager and forward-looking!  Come join us on the third Thursday of the month to meet some of our wonderful lunch bunchers!

Mary Beth Pelosky and Meg Tucillo,, Lunch Bunch

AAUW-VA Public Policy Update

Public Policy

The VA-AAUW policy section has organized a Lobby Day in Richmond on January 31 and is encouraging local branches to have a virtual lobby day with our local delegation on February 28. Susan Senn will work with Denise Murden on this project. Crossover Day is scheduled for February 13. VA-AAUW is focusing on issues related to reproductive rights, economic security and equity, affordable childcare, full funding for public schools, and protecting voting rights. Members are encouraged to contact their local delegations with thoughts on these issues. Use this link to read Denise Murden’s speech at a hearing where the ordinance for creating Grayson County, Virginia, as a “sanctuary for the unborn” was defeated. LINK

Active planning has begun for the AAUW Women Legislators Reception on January 30, 2024, and our Lobby Day on January 31, 2024.  AAUW VA has reserved a block of rooms at the Hampton Inn in Richmond for the night of January 30.  You can make reservations here:   https://group.hamptoninn.com/xfvxmr. You can find advocacy information you need in our AAUW-VA Public Policy drive, which will be frequently updated throughout the General Assembly session:  https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1t0LQU80E0C5y_eroidKw_SZxicPYziPR?usp=sharing


Friends of Arlington’s Planetarium Seeking Volunteers

The Friends of Arlington’s Planetarium announce multiple vacancies on its all-volunteer Board of Directors beginning in January 2024.

The Friends of Arlington’s Planetarium (FOAP) is a 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to supporting the public-school system planetarium in Arlington, VA, and promoting science
education for the general public. The group raises funds to sponsor a college scholarship and grants for teacher professional development. It also helps purchase program licenses and supports the creation of original programming for the planetarium. As part of its ongoing public education mission, FOAP hosts a variety of science-themed public events, shows and full dome videos at the planetarium.

FOAP’s all-volunteer Board of Directors does much of the planning and guidance work of the organization. The Board holds monthly meetings (conducted on Zoom) and there are occasional other online meetings and email correspondence. The Friends are looking for individuals who can commit a few hours per month to assist in the planning and execution of fundraising, event planning, public outreach, and other administrative and logistical tasks required to maintain a vital and sustainable organization. Enthusiasm and a willingness to be actively involved on various projects are the primary requirements of the position. No prior experience or special science knowledge is required, though interest in both science and education are desired. Board members serve a three-year term.

To learn more about the Friends and this volunteer opportunity, please contact
elections@friendsoftheplanetarium.org. Visit the website – friendsoftheplanetarium.org – for the latest on events and astronomy news!

AAUW Calendar

Our AAUW Calendar has moved to google which means you can check it online from the website or subscribe and see it directly on your phone or laptop! Additional information about the events is available by clicking the item.  Contact newsarlvaaauw@gmail.com if you have any questions.

Arlington AAUW Executive Committee 2023-24

Term begins July 1, 2023

Note from the Editor – April/May 2024 Newsletter

Any articles for publication should be emailed to newsarlvaaauw@gmail.com with the SUBJECT line: Newsletter by March 15, 2024


Advancing equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy and research.