On November 12, 1975 the Poughkeepsie Branch held a dinner at the Vassar Alumni House to commemorate the International Women's Year and to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of our branch. Eight women were honored for outstanding service to the residents of Dutchess County. Since that time, the Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW has selected a local woman to honor as our Woman of the Year. These women exemplify the goals stated in AAUW's mission statement:
The American Association of University Women advances equity
for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy, and research.
We invite you to nominate candidates for consideration of this honor using the form linked below to print, fill in and mail. Your nomination will be in consideration for two years from the date you submit the form to one of the Woman of the Year Committee Co-Chairs: Margaret Ouart, 26 Broad St, Fishkill, NY 12524 or Gail Sisti, 313 Forest Rd, Wallkill, NY 12589
From The Branch, September 1988:
The Woman of the Year committee announced the selection of Earline Patrice for its annual honor. Mrs. Patrice is known for her work with the City of Poughkeepsie's children, elderly, poor, and lonely. For twenty years she has given annual Christmas parties for the city's underprivileged children. These involve a toy drive, collecting money, preparing food and wrapping hundreds of presents, many of which are stored in her apartment. She is now hosting the children of people who attended her parties as children.
In spite of physical problems, including a heart murmur and arthritis, she has continued to host holiday parties on Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas with the food prepared and donated by area restaurants and the help of the Lower Main Street Civic Association. Dinner is offered "until the last person is served or-we run out."
Mrs. Patrice refers to herself as a "professional beggar" and her almost childlike enthusiasm about the help and recognition she receives has not waned with time. When she was contacted regarding the Woman of the Year award she mentioned that she had not fallen asleep until 6:00 am because of the hot summer night. Despite being awakened after only six hours of sleep, the news "made her day."
Mrs. Patrice has been honored by numerous local organizations and AAUW is proud to be among the many who recognize her tireless efforts.