The Pine - February 2020

The Official Publication of AAUW MN

  • A Message from our President
  • AAUW Funds
  • AAUW-MN Public Policy Update
  • AAUW Art Contest
  • Around the State - St. Cloud, Brainerd Lakes, Minneapolis, Ely & Faribault share what they are doing!
  • International Women's Day at the Minnesota Timberwolves Game
  • Share your AAUW Branch experiences
  • AAUW MN website link

A message from our president, Lisa West

Dear Members,

I feel compelled to reach out to you and remind you of a couple of key aspects that make AAUW such an effective organization. As you’re aware, AAUW is a very politically active organization. And, as you’re aware, AAUW is a nonpartisan organization. AAUW welcomes members who hold a wide range of views and beliefs. And, that’s a big part of what makes AAUW such a dynamic and effective organization.

As we begin to move deeper into this year of elections, please be reminded of those key aspects of AAUW – politically active – nonpartisan. As a politically active organization, AAUW works with elected officials, on both sides of the aisle, with its strong focus on women’s issues, not the stances taken by specific political parties on those issues. As an organization, AAUW must remain open to all ideas, welcoming, and comfortable for all our members.

Additionally, AAUW strongly supports women leaders and leadership training as an important part of the current National Strategic Plan. Women running for political office is something we should promote and support. HOWEVER, partisan election candidate announcements and activities should not be approved content during branch business meetings. Partisan content in AAUW meetings should only be part of a Board-approved, carefully balanced, factual presentation. Promoting a partisan candidate, in any way, should be conducted outside of your AAUW branch meeting space, where members can willingly approach if they wish.

I encourage all AAUW members to express understanding and respect toward each other, now and into the future. Let’s work together, with a strong focus on women’s issues, and empowering women and girls in our lives and in our community.

February Quote:

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do SO much.” ~ Hellen Keller

AAUW Funds

Barb Wonson Liukkonen


$86.427.93 !!!

Yes, $86,427.93. That’s how much Minnesota AAUW contributed to our AAUW Funds during 2019. Congratulations and thank you to everyone who worked so hard on fundraisers, and to everyone who contributed. Imagine how many amazing opportunities these funds will provide for the future of women and girls.

Altogether, we contributed to a dozen different AAUW funds, with our largest contribution to the Greatest Need Fund. Funds were received from all but two branches across our state and nineteen branches gave enough to be eligible to recognize a Named Gift Honoree. Here is the list of how your contributions were distributed, by fund.

Big picture

Awards recognizing the Top Ten Branches and Top Ten Per Capita Branches will be announced at the annual meeting on April 25, along with the Named Gift Honorees.

Stay tuned!

AAUW-MN Public Policy Update

Jan Carey, AAUW-MN VP of Public Policy

The entire March issue of The Pine will be dedicated to Legislative Day 2020.

As the AAUW Public Policy committee formalizes its Legislative Day 2020, there are key areas members should read to prepare for our day at the State Capitol.

Report the following to your branch members:

  • How to Host a Rally. The public policy committee has not yet considered a Rally. However, the information is useful if your branch is interested in forming a local event.
  • How to Hold a Meeting with Your Elected Officials.
  • How to Organize a Voter Registration Drive. If you do anything in 2020, it should be this. When I worked at my local college, I organized Voter Registration Drives every election year. Seek out faculty instructors for assistance and support. They can be your best allies.

2019-2020 MN AAUW Grant Application Period EXTENDED

Running this article again as there have not been any requests since October.

AAUW MINNESOTA will award several grants during 2019-2020 to support branch projects that further the AAUW mission of advancing equity for women and girls. The Branch Project Grant Evaluation Committee will consider the following criteria in rating the applications.

Click the link below to open it and print it.

This document is also on our AAUW-MN state website.

AAUW's Art Contest

Minnesota AAUW's own, Jan Carey submitted TWO watercolor painting in the National Art Contest.

Search them by title:

  • Abandoned & Rusty
  • Trees in Pink Autumn

Members must login with their AAUW ID number to vote
Branch membership chairs should have member ID numbers.

Let's VOTE!!!

Around the state...

St. Cloud Branch is sending a group to NCCWSL in May

The NCCWSL committee (Mary Lou Lenz, Jerilyn Petersen, Kathie Laakso, and Mary Harlander-Locke) reviewed the nineteen applications received in December for the 2020 conference which will be held at the University of Maryland, College Park, MN, on May 27-30. There were twelve applications from the College of Saint Benedict and seven applications from St. Cloud State University.

The committee utilized a rubric to select the following five students to attend:

· Oyuky Aragon-Flores (First Year - College of Saint Benedict)

· Aemah Igbal (Sophomore – St. Cloud State University)

· Anna Panek (Sophomore – St. Cloud State University)

· Kayla Vang (Sophomore – College of Saint Benedict)

· Anne Zweber (First Year – College of Saint Benedict)

We’re excited to sponsor these women to attend the conference and look forward to getting to know them when they join the Saint Cloud Area Branch as student members. We are pleased to offer St. Cloud area college students an opportunity to attend the 2020 National Conference for College Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL) through our local branch’s scholarship program.

The scholarship covers the full cost of the conference including round trip airfare from Minneapolis. Freshman or sophomore SCSU or CSB students interested in leadership are

eligible to apply. This year nineteen students wrote applications. Faculty endorsements are required.

NCCWSL is a two-and-a-half-day conference that helps college students hone their leadership skills. Over the past few years, the AAUW - Saint Cloud Area (MN) Branch has sponsored 4-5 college women to attend and participate in workshops, learn networking skills, and interact with over 800 other college students from around the U.S.

Also, in St. Cloud...

The Named Gift for Fellowships Awarded to Jackie Crever

The Saint Cloud Area (MN) Branch donated $700.00 to AAUW on behalf of designee, and past president, Jackie Crever. She assumed the presidential leadership role as a newer member with vigor and creativity. Additionally, she served at the AAUW State level as editor of the Pine newsletter. Jackie's positive, can-do attitude and warm personality endured her to our members. She is competent, hard-working, and a pleasure to know. Jackie started a theme for our annual fundraiser called, An Evening of Inspiration & Empowerment. We will build on that theme as a foundation for this year's fundraiser, Oct. 8, 2020 at the Courtyard by Marriott.

On a personal note, Jackie involved her mom, Mary Jo and dad, Jerry, in many AAUW activities. Her mom worked many hours on the annual fundraiser and has attended programs. Her dad constructed two different-sized easels for use by the Marriott and the branch to display posters. Much thanks to the Crever family for their help and support!

On every level, Jackie was an excellent leader. She worked with AAUW on reinstating the 501(c)(4) retaining our tax-free status, she organized celebrations, like Equal Pay Day, and Anniversary Happy Hours. Jackie built consensus at board meetings for smooth operations. As the VP of Membership, we worked together on many projects including plans to grow our membership and on Pine articles.

Jackie recently opened a Farmer's Insurance Agency, in Buffalo, Minnesota and is also celebrating her engagement to Nick Flattum. We wish Jackie the best and are grateful for everything she did to make our branch successful.


Brainerd Lakes website

The Brainerd Lakes website team has been hard at work updating their website. Check it out here.

Excellent job! (from your state website person)

The Minneapolis Branch is still collecting books for South Africa Elementary Schools

The Minneapolis branch of AAUW is working on a special project in conjunction with our International Day on So. Africa May 4, 2020.

We are asking all AAUW members and interested people to donate used and new Children’s and Teen’s books (and monetary donations for shipping costs) to be sent in an ocean shipping container from Atlanta to three elementary schools in So. Africa. As many of you know kids in So Africa have zero books…..children have a teacher who has one book in the classroom. This project will help school libraries have books that can be borrowed. Experts there believe that then each book is read by 20 children. The project is being supported by Books for Africa which has an office and warehouse in St Paul. Our current donation level is $3552 and over 2300 books.

You can donate to our project in the following ways:

  • Going to their website and clicking on the category South Africa and seeing “AAUW South Africa Container Project for Memel, Global”.
  • Drop off books at the warehouse at 717 Prior Ave N. St. Paul MN 55104 Phone 651-2518896.
  • Donations can be sent online or to Carole Patrikakos, Deputy Director,370 Selby Ave, #305, St, Paul, MN 55102.
  • Send books to our location: Minneapolis Branch AAUW 2115 Stevens Ave, Minneapolis MN 55404

If you do donate books or funds please label them as AAUW donations.

Please contact me, Mary Moriarty, at, 763-494-8554 for assistance or information.

Thank you, everyone, for any interest you have in our project!

Big picture
The Brunfelt-Sainio Memorial Fund and AAUW Ely

SAVE THE DATE! “Women’s Lives Transformed – the 19th Amendment to Today”

Please join us for a Women’s Suffrage Conference Let’s Celebrate the 100 Year Anniversary of our Right to Vote!

When: June 26 and 27, 2020

Where: Vermilion Community College, Ely, Minnesota Speakers Dr. Sara Evans, Author and Historian Dr. Annette Atkins, Author and Historian Linda Wharton, JD, Political Scientist (concentration in gender discrimination and the law)

This conference is made possible through the generosity of the Brunfelt-Sainio Memorial Fund.

Download the flyer for more information.

Faribault AAUW Celebrate Social Saturday in January

Coffee - Meditation - Jewelry Making - Painting - Dinner

On our January 18, “Social Saturday”, about 11 women gathered at Glass Garden Beads to make some lovely bracelets. Apparently, they were camera shy, as there are no pictures of the group's only picture of bracelets. These smiling ladies are proudly displaying their finished snowmen pictures at the Upper Eastside. After a busy afternoon of beading and painting, the ladies regrouped at the Gran Plaza for a January meeting and dinner.

Due to a weather alert this year - coffee and meditation were postponed to January 25, so it was Social Saturdays this January.

Big picture
Big picture

Let's Celebrate International Women's Day!

Join AAUW and the Minnesota Timberwolves in celebration of International Women’s Day!

Prior to the game, there will be special networking opportunities to mingle with other AAUW members.

Tickets available at on the AAUW-MN website.

Share your AAUW branch experiences

What fun idea does your Branch do to get together with your AAUW Sisters? Let Cyndy know by emailing