Making Democracy Work


The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization encouraging informed and active participation in government. It influences public policy through education and advocacy.


Upcoming Ann Arbor Lunch and Learn Events

JULY 26: League member Margaret Leary will talk about the 2020 Census, what will happen, what the League is doing to ensure a complete count and how you can be involved. Sandwich and salad or vegetarian lunch with coffee and soda at $7 cash or BYO lunch. Seating is limited to 30 and Reservations are required: Click HERE to sign up.

AUGUST: No Lunch & Learn in August

SEPTEMBER 27th: Start reading now so you are ready to discuss "The Woman Behind the New Deal: The Life of Frances Perkins, FDR's Secretary of Labor and His Moral Conscience." Even if you can't join us, you might want to pick up a copy of the book written by Kirstin Downey. It's a fascinating look at some little-known history of the New Deal. Signup information for this L&L will be posted in late August.

June Ann Arbor Lunch & Learn continued County Government series

Catherine McClary, Washtenaw County Treasurer, was our guest for Lunch & Learn on June 28. She explained that The County Treasurer is authorized by the Michigan Constitution and State law to serve as the County's Banker and Investment Officer. Her primary responsibilities are to safeguard public funds and to collect and account for the revenue used to operate programs for County residents. The Treasurer is also responsible for: Managing cash and investments Receipting, recording, and depositing revenue for all County services Certifying deeds Issuing dog and kennel licenses Collecting delinquent real property taxes

This includes issuing delinquent tax notices and, when necessary, foreclosing on properties with unpaid taxes. There were 111 foreclosures at the height of the recession; last year there were 24; and she foresees the trend declining to the level of 12 or so which was the typical number in the 1990's. The Treasurer's office has systems in place to help delinquent homeowners avoid foreclosure and even has a social worker on staff to provide counseling.


Click HERE to see the unofficial list of county and local proposals.


Tuesday, July 23, 2019 4:00 p.m. Ann Arbor District Library Downtown Branch

Meeting Room A (fourth floor)

343 South Fifth Avenue, Ann Arbor

LWVAAA Board Meeting. The public is welcome and there will be time for public comments at the beginning of the agenda.

Annual Meeting was May 14

A capacity crowd listens attentively as Zoe Clark and Rick Pluta shared insights about current Michigan Politics. Zoe is Program Director for Michigan Radio (97.1 FM). She and Rick, co-host It's Just Politics, a weekly look at Michigan politics airing Monday mornings on Morning Edition.

(L) Sue Smith, out-going LWVAAA President

(R) Joan Sampieri, in-coming LWVAAA President, cuts the cake celebrating the 100th anniversary of the year Michigan women first got the vote in 1919.

Implementing Election Reform in Michigan

Wondering about how those Michigan Constitutional Amendments are being implemented?

Proposal 2 established a Commission of Citizens to draw district lines for the Michigan legislature and Michigan's members of Congress. Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson has issued a Citizens' Guide describing how to volunteer to serve on the commission.

Proposal 3 contained a number of changes that will improve voter access to the polls. The flyer New Rights for Michigan Voters describes changes in voter registration and the process for voting absentee.

WEMU interviews continue

On July 15, 2019, Lisa Barry talked with League member Terri Wilkerson about Line 5 and why the League supports complete decommissioning of this 66 year-old pipeline that takes a 645-mile shortcut through Michigan and then back to Canada with the majority of the 22,500,000 gallons of oil it carries. Terri's research is documented on the website she created, Click HERE to listen.

Planning for Centennial Celebration is Underway

To join the Planning Committee, contact Nancy Schewe at

Centennial Resources

BUILDING A MORE PERFECT DEMOCRACY is the theme for celebrating the passage of the 19th Amendment of the US Constitution in 1920 after more than 70 years of effort. The Amendment simply states :The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. We'll also celebrate the 1920 founding of The League of Women Voters to support the new women suffrage rights.

Not everyone had voting rights after the 19th Amendment:

  • Many African Americans were denied the right to vote until the Voting Rights Act was passed in 1964.
  • Asians were denied citizenship and therefore could not vote until 1952.
  • Native Americans were not considered citizens until 1924 but did not gain the right to vote until 1947
  • And even today some people are denied the right to vote. For example, felons who have already paid their debt to society are denied the right to vote in some states.
  • Residents of Washington D.C. can vote for the President, but do not have a representative in Congress

Our work is not done. That is why the anniversary is relevant.

Brews & Views hears about money in MI politics

At February's Brews & Views at Pointless Brewery and Theater an attentive crowd braved the cold, snowy night to hear Craig Mauger, Michigan Campaign Finance Network, describe the growing influence of money in Michigan politics.

MCFN's work to assist the public in understanding the role that contributions to politicians play is critical to the healthy operation of a democratic system of governance. The primary tools of this effort are transparent, timely and fact-based research and analysis made available to the general public, voters, policy makers and those people and organizations who are attempting to shape public policy.

LWV MI adopts LWV US statement

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Policy LWV is an organization fully committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in principle and in practice. There shall be no barriers to full participation in this organization on the basis of gender, gender identity, ethnicity, race, native or indigenous origin, age, generation, sexual orientation, culture, religion, belief system, marital status, parental status, socioeconomic status, language, accent, ability status, mental health, educational level or background, geography, nationality, work style, work experience, job role function, thinking style, personality type, physical appearance, political perspective or affiliation and/or any other characteristic that can be identified as recognizing or illustrating diversity. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are central to the organization's current and future success in engaging all individuals, households, communities, and policy makers in creating a more perfect democracy.

Two New Leagues are sponsored by LWV-AAA

A new League has formed in the Brighton-Howell Area, joining the Tecumseh League formed in 2017. These small, but enthusiastic units will operate for two years under the sponsorship of the Ann Arbor Area League, after which they can become separate organizations. Their events are included in the LWVAAA Calendar.

To learn more about LWV Tecumseh, you can email Their website is under development.

To learn more about LWV Brighton/Howell Area, contact They have a website and a Facebook page


For order form, go to FORM

More volunteers at LWV art fair booth July 2012

YOUR ELECTED OFFICIALS (printable brochure)

YOUR ELECTED OFFICIALS 2018-2019 shows the results of the November 2017 election and also upcoming election dates for 2018 and 2019. The printable brochure gives names and contact information for elected officials for this area including local, state and national.