2020 Headlines & Highlights


The American Association of University Women Idaho commends Gov. Little for his implementation of paid parental leave for Idaho’s executive branch employees. May other state entities and businesses follow his lead. Paid family leave is a basic structural support that must be put in place to ensure the health of our children and make motherhood compatible with the workplace. The new executive order reinforces Idaho’s strong family values and sends a vital message everywhere that Idaho provides young parents and their families with the critical support they need to thrive.

Sylvia Chariton and Bonnie Pfaff, co-presidents, AAUW Idaho, Boise

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2019 Headlines & Highlights

Women’s Groups to celebrate Idaho suffrage with voter information effort

BOISE, Idaho (Oct. 27, 2019) — Idaho women’s groups will commemorate the state’s leading role in giving women the right to vote with a statewide Get Out The Vote on Saturday, November 2 from Noon- 4:00 pm.  Since Election Day is Tuesday, November 5th, these groups will offer voter registration information and aid community members in finding their polling places.  The designated sites in southwest Idaho for voter information will include the following local libraries: Ada County, Boise (downtown), Eagle, Garden City, Kuna, Meridian, Mountain Home as well as Roots Zero Waste Market in Garden City and the Star Merc.

Throughout Idaho many women will be in period costumes and all will wear traditional “Votes for Women” sashes honoring the valiant Idaho suffragists who came before them. The Idaho Women’s Right to Suffrage  was approved on the November 3, 1896, Idaho ballot, twenty-four years before national women’s suffrage was granted by the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution.

Idaho can be proud that its courageous past, it was the 4th state in our country to give women the right to vote. Idaho, and the western states of Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, and Washington, led the country in the effort of women’s suffrage. Come and celebrate locally with the American Association of University Women (AAUW-Idaho), Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), GFWC Boise Columbian Club and the League of Women Voters of Idaho (LWV). They are part of Idaho Women 100, which is coordinating centennial suffrage events in Idaho now through 2020.

Additionally, as a tribute to early suffragists who sold recipe books to further their cause, women’s groups will distribute an authentic Idaho Suffragist Era Apple Crisp recipe. The back of the recipe card will include the website of Idaho’s Secretary of State for voters to reference. The goal of this statewide event is to get everyone to the polls on Tuesday, November 5th and to have Idaho Suffrage Era Apple Crunch on Idaho Thanksgiving tables everywhere!

Coeur d’alene members celebrate Idaho suffrage

On November 2, 2019, Coeur d’alene members partnered with the League of Women Voters to greet people entering the Public Library as part of the Get Out the Vote event and the commemoration of Idaho suffrage. They had voter information on display and gave out literature, which included a recipe from a long-ago Idaho homemaker. What nice exposure in the community this was!

Supporting STEM Activities for Girls

Through hands-on problem solving and encounters with women role models in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), our 5 Coeur d’Alene 8th grade girls never had a dull moment during their Tech Trek camp at EWU the last week of July 2019.  The girls spent their days in fascinating workshops studying robotics, cybersecurity, and pondering clues in a forensics lab, while developing enthusiasm, self-confidence, and independence.  Tech Trek offers a great program for girls to participate and provides them with life-changing knowledge that will continue to grow with them.

Coeur d’Alene AAUW members helped support the event as dorm monitors, workshop and field trip attendants, and supporting and lending a hand behind the scenes .

Anna transferring her “bath bomb” preparation to a take-home container at her chemistry workshop


New voter registration: AAUW members went to Boise High School to register new voters. According to Chris Stokes, “The photos represent an event at one school on one day. Over the past 8 weeks, teams of volunteers have conducted voter registration activities at 10 high schools and three college campuses. A fabulous positive experience!”

Incoming AAUW officers, led by Co-Presidents Sylvia Chariton and Bonnie Pfaff, took office July 1, 2018.  Visit our Contact Page to get in touch with board members.

View our Photo Gallery for images from the 2018 AAUW Idaho State Convention and Business Meeting, featuring special visits from the dynamic AAUW CEO Kimberly Churches and AAUW Board Chair Julia Brown. The convention was hosted by AAUW Boise Area Branch and led by our fabulous AAUW Idaho Co-Presidents Julie Custer and Kathy Scott.

From the March 9, 2018 edition of AAUW’s Washington Update, AAUW Idaho received a HUGE shoutout in the State Spotlight!

AAUW of Idaho members have been working hard at both the legislative and executive levels. Members of the AAUW of Idaho Statehouse Lobby Corps have testified in committee and visited legislators’ offices to advocate on a wide range of issues, including reproductive rights, public education, and legislation to close the health insurance coverage gap in their state. At the executive level, co-presidents Kathy Scott and Julie Custer, published letters to the editor in both the Idaho State Journal and the Idaho Press-Tribune outlining the problems with a recent executive order that would permit discrimination in state health insurance plans. Advocating for AAUW priorities at multiple levels of government is a great approach, and we applaud AAUW of Idaho’s efforts!

Photos from Membership Meeting in Boise, February 17, 2018

Adrienne Evans, UVI

Adrienne Evans, UVI

Adam Scheerer, Idaho Power

Adam Scheerer, Idaho Power

Rep. Caroline Troy

Rep. Caroline Troy

panelists discuss journalism

Dr. Jessica Roberts, BSU; Rhonda Prast, The Idaho Statesman; Samantha Wright, Boise State Public Radio; and Betsy Russell, The Spokesman-Review

Kathy Scott, Julie Custer and CDA members

State Co-presidents visit Coeur D’Alene Branch, January 22, 2018


Maribeth Alder presents Julie Custer with the ‘Keep the Ball Rolling Award’ – February 14, 2016

Washington D.C. Scotus Marriage Equality Celebration

Washington, D.C. SCOTUS Marriage Equality Celebration

Learn about AAUW’s work on Title IX here.

The state and Boise Area Branch actively support STEM education. Visit the Boise Area Branch’s Special Projects page to see what STEM Chair Donna Looze has accomplished.

“Women, Their Rights, and Nothing Less”
How can you use AAUW’s free online learning module about the suffrage movement? Ask for access to our webinar to learn how to implement this material into local high school and college and university partner classrooms.

AAUW is working to end sexual violence on campus.  Check out this resource for students, schools and advocates.

 A special thank you goes to the incomparable Lisa Maatz, former AAUW VP of Government Relations, for her dynamic presentation in Boise on February 11, 2016:  Advocacy Can Change the Course of Public Policy.  As AAUW’s top policy expert and a familiar face on Capitol Hill, Maatz shared stories and offered insight into strategies to advocate more effectively on issues that impact women and families. We also thank esteemed Idaho legislative reporter and Spokesman-Review journalist Betsy Z. Russell for moderating the Q&A session.
To listen to a podcast of Maatz’s remarks during her appearance at the Andrus Center for Public Policy’s “Politics for Lunch” series on February 11, 2016, click here.

Read more about 2016 AAUW Idaho Highlights, including Maatz’s Idaho visits.