Happy Birthday, League of Women Voters

One hundred years ago, after a long and difficult fight, women in the United States were given the right to vote with the adoption of the 19 th amendment to the Constitution. That centennial is being celebrated wide and far this year. But you may not know that another milestone for women’s rights happened that year. On February 14, 1920, the League of Women Voters was created by the leaders of the suffrage movement. They wisely recognized that the 20 million new voters would need help to carry out their new responsibilities.

The enfranchisement of women was one of the largest peaceful revolutions in history. Women were finally recognized as full citizens.  The League of Women Voters was created with a mission of ensuring that the new voters were educated and informed about issues and candidates. The League encouraged women to use their new power to participate in shaping public policy. They believed that maintaining a nonpartisan stance would protect the fledgling organization from becoming mired in party politics. 

And 100 years later, that is what we do. The Princeton Area League has members — both men and women — from the Central New Jersey communities of Kendall Park, Kingston, Montgomery, Plainsboro, Princeton, Rocky Hill, South Brunswick, and West Windsor. Our league is one of around 40 chapters in New Jersey and more than 700 in the United States. We work with our national, state and local chapters to continue to register new voters, hold candidate forums, fight voter suppression efforts, and educate our communities about public policy so citizens have the facts they need to make informed choices. We supported New Jersey legislation for online voting and an end to prison gerrymandering. We are working to ensure a complete count in the upcoming census and the creation of fair legislative districts. Our agenda also includes activities related to the environment, women and family and immigration.

Please join us as we celebrate this important year in the history of our nation and our organization. There will be gatherings and celebrations to mark this centennial. And we will continue to respond to our 100-year old mission of defending democracy.

For information about the Princeton Area League of Women voters, please visit www.lwvprinceton.org

Cindy Gordon
LWV Princeton Area