The Branch

Poughkeepsie Branch of the

American Association of University Women, Inc.

P.O. Box 1908, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603


Volume 24, Number 10                         Our 56th year of publication.               June 2011



  Online Calendar at

May 25 The movie “Gasland.” See page 7.


June 1   Board Meeting: 7:00 pm

Hostess: Barbara Van Itallie (462-3924)

2     Aventures en Soleil: 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

       Stonecrop Gardens ($10) by 5/21 &

              Optional lunch, Hudson House 1:00 pm

       Reservations: Peggy Kelland (297-0507)

       Coordinators: Peggy Lombardi (635-9091)               & Ruth Sheets (473-6202)

2     Pins & Needles: 7:00 pm

       Planning Meeting - bring ideas!! 

       Hostess: Arlene Seligman (297-0006)

       Coordinators: Arlene Seligman (297-0006) &

              Jane Toll (463-2712)

5     Trekkers: All day trip - NYC

Woodlawn Cemetery & lunch on City Island

       Organizer: Roz Werner (462-0630)

       Coordinator: Karen Haynes (297-5700)

6     Word Games: 2:00 pm

       Hostess: Pam Gartland (452-0812)

       Coordinator: Eleanor Aronstein (462-6452)

8     Membership Meeting (Next column) 

9     Diversity: 5:00 - 6:30 pm

       “Fun at Five” Reserve by 6/2, $7.95

       “Wokking with Norma,” Norma Chang

       Reservations: Susan Htoo

9     Gourmet: Out & About: 6:30 pm

       Le Pavillon, Poughkeepsie

Contact: Jeanette Cantwell (452-4188)

10  Daytime Literature: 11:45 am

       Lunch at Shadows, Poughkeepsie

Reservations: Sheila Close (266-4714) or


Coordinators: Diana Gleeson (229-8458)

              & Tiz Hanson (229-9394)

11   Trekkers: 9:00 am - Rt. 9, left of S&S, Pok.

Minnewaska State Park Preserve Hike

       Organizer: Pat Luczai (463-4662)

       Coordinator: Karen Haynes (297-5700)

13 My Sister’s Keeper: 5pm

       Movie “Safe Passage”

       Oakwood School, Turner Hall, Spears Room

       22 Spackenkill Road

       Contact: Joan Monk (914/245-7704)      

Calendar continued on page 2...



Topping Off a “Berry” Good Year!!!           


Join us for our annual program planning meeting by sharing a sundry of sweet ideas for next year along with fresh berry sundaes!


    Program Planning Meeting


                        June 8, 2011 

                            7:00 pm


                            St. John's Lutheran Church

              55 Wilbur Blvd., Poughkeepsie, NY 12603


       Please RSVP to Sue Osterhoudt



Come and welcome the new VPs for Programming Shelby Outwater and Barbara Hugo.


Bring along your ideas for monthly programs that you will sponsor and coordinate. All programs need to support the AAUW’s mission: AAUW advances equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy, and research.


Please be prepared to share specific details about the programs you will coordinate. It is especially important to know which months your presenter is available.


If you cannot attend but have the perfect idea that will thrill our members, please email the details to Dina Gleeson:


We will not be voting or selecting the programs at this meeting – all ideas will be forwarded to a committee who will be responsible for planning the schedule for the upcoming year.


Hope to see you there!



Aug 20 & 21 RibFest, have fun and raise funds for AAUW. See page 5.

Sept 14 Open House. See page 8.

Oct 15 Barnes & Noble Day, sponsored by “Leading to Reading”

Oct 22 Woman of the Year, 12-3 pm Villa Borghese

Nov 5 Live Your Dream Girls’ Conference. See page 4.









Calendar Continued...                                                                    

Online Calendar at

13   Movie Night: Time TBD by show

Movie: Group members will be notified the Thursday before - be sure to sign up with Sue.

       Discussion: Eveready Diner, Rt. 9, Hyde Park

       Director: Susan Osterhoudt (889-4469)

       Producer: Kim Butwell

15   Bridge I: 1:00 - 4:00 pm

       Hostess: Gloria Gibbs (454-7262)

Coordinators: Linda Ronayne (897-9745)

              & Mary Ann Ryan (897-9679)

16   All those books...: 6:30 pm

          Dinner and Book selection

       Thai House Restaurant, 728 Violet Ave, HP

Reservations: Carol Loizides (452-3208)

       Coordinator: Carol Loizides (452-3208)

18   Bridge For Beginners: 10:00 am

       Hostess: Gloria Gibbs (454-7262)

       Please response to coordinators (y/n).

       Coordinators: Donna Reichner Mintz &

               Betsy Vivas (485-2379)

20   Manderley Literary Society: 6:00 pm

       Annual Pot Luck Dinner and Book Selection

       Hostess: Peggy Kelland (297-0507)

       Coordinator: Ellie Burch (297-7828)

21   Cuisine: 6:30 pm

       Dining out - Restaurant TBD

       Reservations: Mary Lou Davis (223-5544)

Coordinator: Barbara Van Itallie (462-3924)

22   Art on the Go: 9:00 am - 1:00 pm

       TBA - weather dependent, contact Mary Coiteux

       Coordinator: Mary Coiteux (226-8275)

22   Mah Jongg: 1:00 - 4:00 pm

       Hostess: Leslie Leventhal (297-4430)

       Coordinator: Amy Schwed (462-2269)

January - March: Gerry DiPompei (635-2050)

23   Bridge II: 1:00 - 3:30 pm

       Uno, Brunch (12 noon), Lesson and Bridge ($15)

       Coordinators: Cathy Kinn &

              Janet White (462-6675)

25   Trekkers: 10:00 am - Rt. 9, left of S&S, Pok.

Wethersfield Gardens Walk, Amenia $4.00 pp

       Organizer: Pat Luczai (463-4662)

       Coordinator: Karen Haynes (297-5700)

28   Professional Women’s Networking: 5:30-7:30 pm

       Mastering LinkedIn..., Jan Wallen          

       DCC, Hudson Hall Room H214/216. See page 8.

       Coordinators: Kim Butwell &

             Jacqueline Goffe-McNish

Contemporary Literature:

       Next meeting in September!

       Coordinator: Ann Wade (229-5267)

Tee Off: Seeking volunteers to coordinate!!

       Coordinators: Dorothy Evangelista (677-9046) &

               Linda Ronayne (897-9745)

“The Branch” is not published in July and August.



The dates below are also listed on the website and in online calendar at


Aug 10: “The Branch” deadline for September

Aug 20 & 21 RibFest, have fun and raise funds for AAUW

Art on the Go:

     Jul 27 Contact Mary Coiteux (226-8275)

       Aug 31 See page 6.

Aventures en Soleil:

       Jul 12 Cloisters by 6/20, Peggy Kelland (297-0507)

       Aug 11 Gertrude Jekyll Garden & Glebe House

              Maria DeWald (266-4960)

       Sep 24 Troy’s Tiffany Window. See page 7.

Bridge I:

       Jul 20 Jeanette Cantwell (452-4188)

       Aug 17 Linda Ronayne (897-9745)

Bridge II:

       Jul 28 & Aug 25 Uno Restaurant,

       12 noon lunch & play, $15

Bridge for Beginners:

       Jul 30 Peggy Hansen (473-8453)

       Aug 27 Joanne Dyson (297-1046)


       Picnic in Jul or Aug, contact Barbara Van Itallie (462-3924)

Girls’ Conference Crafting: 12 noon - 3 pm

       Aug 24 & 31 Marcine Humphrey’s home. See page 4.

Mah Jongg:

       Jul 27 Amy Schwed (462-2269)

       Aug 24 Flo Mondanaro (454-0352)

Movie Night: Time TBD by show

       Jul 11 & Aug 8 Movie: Group members will be notified

       the Thursday before - Susan Osterhoudt (889-4469)

Professional Women’s Networking

       & Diversity Initiative

       & My Sister’s Keeper

       & Thinking Globally, Acting Locally: See page 8.

       Jul 26 Film “Real Women Have Curves,” DCC

       Aug 23 Cocktail Party Networking, Hostess: Kim Butwell


       Jul 9 Mills Norrie State Park Hike, 8:00 am

              Rt. 9, left of S&S, Pok., Cathy Lane (229-1036)

       Jul 23 Dutchess County Rail Trail

              Newly opened section TBD, Cathy Bala (227-7293)

       Aug 6 Appalachian Trail, 8:00 am

              Karen Haynes’ Driveway, Irene Keyes (227-6686)

       Aug 20 Roosevelt Farm & Forest Walk, 8:00 am

              Trail head Val-Kill, Peggy Kelland (297-0507)           

A Warm Thank you..........               


to our many friends who brought stuffed animals to the annual dinner for the Leading to Reading project! Thanks to your generosity, we have a great collection. We'll be distributing our "Fuzzy Friend" book kits to children at several community sites shortly.






Geeta Desai *297-7589 *


Our year is almost at an end and I am once again struck by how much we have achieved. There is nothing truly determined women cannot accomplish. Here, briefly, is our year in review.


We hosted five spectacularly well-attended events: Open House, Woman of the Year, Fair Trade Marketplace, Writers’ Tea, and the Annual Dinner. We launched three brand new community programs: Stand Up to Domestic Violence (Court Watch), My Sister’s Keeper and Thinking Globally, Acting Locally. We expanded our early childhood literacy program and began to partner with Woodside Manor. And, we also laid the groundwork for our first STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Program which will begin with the new school year and provide after school help for approximately 100 middle and high school children, making Science and Math a fun, hands-on experience. Our monthly programs were the usual success; particularly well attended were “The Other Side of Slavery” and “My Sister’s Keeper” which featured AAUW members who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in helping women and children in developing countries.


We are also proud of our new website. The Website Development Committee created a blueprint for a new, compelling, modern website that would attract members and non-members. AAUW Member Mary King and her husband Dave spent countless hours building the site and members of the Committee wrote and uploaded the information. This was a group effort that saved the organization thousands of dollars and launched a website that takes us into the 21st Century. Bravo! If you have not visited the site, please do so when you have a moment. The address remains the same The board has recognized Mary and Dave King’s efforts by naming two EOF (Educational Opportunities Fund) scholarships after them for the coming year.


The Professional Women’s Networking Group which met regularly every month, provided brief but helpful seminars on topics that are relevant to all women as they juggle work and family responsibilities. A valuable addition to our mix of programs, this group has been responsible for attracting and recruiting a number of our new younger members.


At the end of this month, we reluctantly say good-bye to five wonderful members of the Board: Sue Osterhoudt, Dina Gleeson, Pat Luczai, Bergie Lebovitch and Cathy Lane. I thank all of them from the bottom of my heart and hope they return to the board soon in another capacity.


In July, we welcome aboard the equally wonderful Barbara Hugo and Shelby Outwater our new Program Co-VPs, Linda Roberts, EOF Co-VP, Amy Schwed and Kathy Brown, Membership Co-VPs and Cathy Kinn, Interest Group Coordinator. I know that all of these women are going to be

spectacular. They are smart, motivated, fearless, innovative thinkers and hard –workers.


So, have a wonderful, safe summer and let’s look forward together to a new year that provides fun and cerebral programming that supports, entertains and encourages all women.



Bergie Lebovitch *298-4045*


A Gigantic THANK YOU for all of the wonderfully talented women you have added to our PHABULOUS, PLATINUM BRANCH! Over the past four years, YOU have brought us from #2 in the State, to #1 in the Country!!! The Poughkeepsie Branch has added some very exciting community outreach programs, which appears to be attracting even more fascinating women from Dutchess County and beyond. Everyone is finding a home in our “sisterhood.”


Mega thanks to all who have helped and served so selflessly on our membership committee. The reigns are being passed on to two very capable friends, Amy Schwed and Kathy Brown. Please continue to support them, as you have me, for low these many years.


Before you head out for vacation, please don’t forget to renew before the end of May, and get a chance at one of our 3 free national memberships (we earned them for bringing in 6 new members - actually we brought in 86 but 3 free national memberships was the limit!)


Speaking of new members, please join us in welcoming:

Linda Dombroski

Karen Lunstead

Ellen O’Sullivan 

Brenda Schaffer

Hilary Schneck

Kadiatou (Khady) Sidibe



Thank you to the Supporters of

The Branch!! 


A special thank you to the members listed below who have faithfully contributed to our newsletter for fiscal year 2010-2011. To add your name to the list for 2011-2012, mail a check payable: “Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW, Inc.” to Margaret Nijhuis, 9 McAllister Drive, Pleasant Valley, NY 12569.           



  Catherine Albanese Lula Allen Mary G. Bagley

Joan Cordani Joan Fay Betty Harrel Irene Keyes

Leola Mason Jean Miller Lila Mitchell

Ellenora Oberhofer Jacqueline Prusak Esther Reisman Margaret Ruggeri Sarah Shouse

Phyllis Teasdale Mary Louise Van Winkle


 Marion Effron Ruth Gau Gloria Gibbs

Sandra Goldberg Vicki Greenburg Mildred Jones

Peggy Lombardi Catherine Pété Terry Schneider






Doris Kelly


This is our last issue of the Branch until September. We will be taking the summer off, but Congress will not and the New York State Legislature will not. There will be continued attacks on women's healthcare and continued attacks on what is essentially “women's work.” It is time to be vigilant. It is time to be heard.


The so-called “Stupak on Steroids” bill, HR 3, passed in the House of representatives on May 4. All House Republicans and 16 Democrats voted to pass H.R. 3, an alleged "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortions" bill introduced by New Jersey Senator Chris Smith.


Two of our Congressional representatives, Chris Gibson 20th Congressional District and Nan Hayworth 19th Congressional District, voted in favor of this bill which allegedly was to prevent funding of abortions. Under present laws, abortion cannot be federally funded, so what does this law change?


H.R. 3 goes well beyond these safeguards by interfering with consumers’ private health care choices. The new law, if passed by the Senate and signed by President Obama, would impose new restrictions on existing taxpayer subsidies for health plans that cover abortion. How many of you remember the 1950s and 1960s before Roe vs Wade was decided in 1973? It wasn't a pretty picture.


We have seen several states attack public sector workers' right to negotiate and right to organize. A majority of these jobs are held by women and minorities who are our teachers, social workers, and caregivers.


In Rep. Paul Ryan's budget Medicare would be changed to a “voucher” system. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said that the GOP Medicare privatization proposal might make seniors "die sooner" because many more who can't afford it would likely go without needed health care. Seniors "will run out of money very quickly," she told a Congressional hearing.


Enjoy your summer, but remain mindful of what is happening in our government. Support our AAUW mission.



Hello Crafty Ladies! Live Your Dream Girls Conference Needs You!


Would you like to help decorate journals and prepare gifts for 7th grade girls? Join us for “crafting,” conversation, snack food, and giggles on August 24th and 31st from 12 to 3pm at Marcine’s house.


Call Marcine at 845/485- 7697 or email



Please enjoy and celebrate with Mia Mask (one of our amazing authors at the April Writers’ Tea) the wonderful news below from an email I recently received!

Margaret Nijhuis, editor.


I am emailing with some good news. My book (DIVAS ON SCREEN) was partial inspiration for a new play by Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Lynn Nottage. Her off-Broadway play is about to open at Second Stage Theater. The first link below is a NYTimes article.


At the links below you'll find the 5-minute, tongue-in-cheek documentary for Lynn Nottage's new play. Vera Stark, the main character in Lynn's play, is a (fictional) Hollywood actress played by Sanaa Lathan. Vera's a composite of Black actresses working in Hollywood during the 1930s and 40s. I'm interviewed along with two other people: director Peter Bogdanovich and cinematographer Stuart Dryburgh. For the documentary, we are all playing along -- if you will. This “mocumentary” reel will be online and run in the Second Stage Theater lobby as patrons wait to enter the theater before the play begins. The idea behind the film was to create metatextual backstory or metatextuality for a play that is based on (but not actually) Hollywood history. There's also a section of the play in which academics debate the question: "What Happened to Vera Stark?" That section is a friendly parody of academic debate and of academics. I saw it Friday and it was hilarious. or or,com_plays/task,viewPlay/id,140


Best, Mia



Marcine Humphrey


Would you like to inspire girls to be strong and smart? Would you like to help shape their character, encourage empathy and courage, develop ability to make good choices, and be a role model? It is time to “sign on” and join the Girls Conference Team!


Live the Dream on November 5th at Dutchess Community College! We need women to help organize, chaperone, register, and act as liaisons with the local middle school principals. We also need women to make phone calls and help design gifts. At this time, we are signing up facilitators for the ten 50 minute workshops.


The day, filled with crafts, workshops, food and girl talk circles will follow the same format as we have had in the past. This is your chance to help shape the future of “girl events.”


Please call Marcine Humphrey if you are interested in joining the “Dream Team.” I can be reached at 845/485- 7697 or




Margaret Nijhuis, editor - from project reports and our website


The Court Monitoring Project of “Stand Up to Domestic Violence” started in the court system on May 5, 2011. This is one of Community Outreach Programs of our Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW.


The goals of our program are:


To document systemic failures in the local justice system that result in the re-victimization of women and children who have suffered domestic abuse


To facilitate a dialogue, based on this documentation, between representatives of family and criminal courts, law enforcement, the District Attorney’s office and non-profits that serve victims of domestic violence



The AAUW members involved in the Court Monitoring are: Elaine Andersen, Marge Barton, Beth Devine, Eva Eberhard, Leah Feldman, Carol Foy, Karen Gomba, Mary Lou Heissenbuttel, Bergie Lebovitch, Carol Loizides, Judy Lombardi, Debbie Michaud, Jeanne Mosely, Ann Pinna, Dessie Rosiak, and Sandy Sherman. Debriefers are: Kathy Graham, Rochelle McDonough, and AAUW members: Leah Feldman, Mary Lou Heissenbuttel and Judy Lombardi.


The planning for this new AAUW initiative has been ongoing since November with many hours spent in the process. In February and March the monitors were involved in four training sessions. The first training focused on the dynamics of domestic violence. The next two trainings focused on the details of the criminal and family court systems. The final training contained specifics about the actual court watch program. Attendance at all four trainings was required so there would be an overall understanding of the project.


The wheels of progress were slow as the Judges had to be notified of the monitoring project, the steering committee had to meet with Judge Posner, and the monitors had to take a tour of D.C. Family Court.


Now the work is really beginning as the monitors have a schedule of courts to observe. The monitors will be in Town Courts and Family Courts. Each court monitor will be assigned a "de-briefer" to call if there are any immediate concerns or questions. "De-briefing" meeting for all court monitors will be held on a regular basis.


Trainings are offered three times a year. If you are interested in becoming a court watcher, please contact program co-chair, Mary Lou Heissenbuttel at 845/462-1406 or



Contact Sharon Clarke (473-9468) to volunteer to “work” at the ribfest for a few hours one of these 2 days. You are guaranteed to have fun and AAUW gets “paid” for your work - bring along your friends and family to volunteer with you.




of Poughkeepsie AAUW, Inc.

Margaret Nijhuis, Editor

From Board Reports and emails.


Poughkeepsie AAUW has taken the lead in forming a STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) committee of community partners. Several meetings have taken place and many plans have been made. Represented at the meetings, in addition to AAUW, were IBM, the Regional Science Fair, MathCounts, Society of Women Engineers, Girls in Engineering, Math and Science (GEMS), Ecosystems Institute, and Marist College.


All have agreed to partner with AAUW to put together and then implement an after school program for middle-school kids that focuses on STEM. These children will be identified by the Poughkeepsie schools based on their risk factors. The Liberty Partnership has a track record of working with the Poughkeepsie schools and providing after school help for middle and high school students. We will be enhancing Liberty Partnership's existing after school program for middle school.


The program will be non-traditional consisting of gadgets and toys and experiments, other fun activities and field trips that will introduce and reinforce principles of STEM and will also encourage these students to consider careers in STEM. In addition to teachers in this program, there will be guest speakers from local STEM societies, like the Professional Engineering Society, the Chemical Society, Society for Biological Sciences, etc.


We will be reaching out to as many girls as possible but there will also be boys in the program.


Our new Education Chair, Kris Puzza, will take a leadership role in this new AAUW Community Outreach Program. Kris has been assisted by Geeta Desai in forming the coalition of community partners. Kris is eminently qualified to lead AAUW in this endeavor as she has been a volunteer with GEMS in a program at Van Wyck Junior High School.


Although much work still needs to be done, the program is expected to start with the summer program of the Liberty Partnership. It will continue in the fall with their after school program.


Gems, the Society of Women Engineers and IBM have agreed to help put all of the gadgets and toys and tools together. Ecosystems will work on field trips. Math Counts and representatives of the Science Fair, Liberty Partnership, and a couple of teachers from the Poughkeepsie Middle School have agreed to work on curriculum development.


Keep up with Poughkeepsie AAUW events over the summer by checking our website:



Shaheda Azher and Mary Louise Van Winkle


This year was again an exciting year for the young students of Dutchess County to show their creativity and talents at the 52nd Annual Dutchess County Regional Science Fair which was held on April 2nd at Dutchess Community College. AAUW has traditionally given an award to both a seventh and an eighth grade girl to recognize their achievements and to encourage them to continue their studies in science and math. Each student selected was presented with an award from AAUW and a gift certificate to Barnes and Noble. This year, we are happy to report, the value of the gift certificate was increased from $25 to $50.


After carefully reviewing all the science projects of the seventh and eighth grade girls, your two reviewers, Shaheda Azher and Mary Louise Van Winkle, compared their observations and made the difficult choice of picking a winner from each grade.


The 7th grade winner was Sahana Natesan, from Van Wyck Junior High School. Sahana explained how, while watching TV, seeing submarines diving into and coming up out of the ocean made her think about developing a project using eggs to explain the principle of how submarines worked. She explained that the ability of eggs to float in a liquid depends on their weight and the density of the liquid in which they are immersed. We were impressed with her project which was both simple and “egg-citing” [note the pun]. Sahana told us that she would like to pursue a career in either science or medicine.


The 8th grade winner was Katherine Hacthoun, from Holy Trinity School. Her subject was “Does Music Affect Plant Growth.” Katherine was meticulous in her methodology and made an excellent presentation. She said that she would like to explore this topic further by adding more plants and additional variables. Katherine would like to become an architectural engineer.


It was “egg-citing” for us to review so many excellent projects. We know that there will be an increasing number of young women pursuing careers in math and science in the future, particularly with the support and recognition that we in AAUW are able to give them.




I want to thank all of you who have been so supportive of me during my illness. I can’t thank you enough for all of the kind thoughts, prayers, greetings, gifts, calls, and some very special needlework from some very talented ladies. I am still involved in Chemo, but I am getting stronger every day and am looking forward to seeing you all in September.



Mary Coiteux *226-8275*

An expression of admiration for someone's achievement or

contribution and our acknowledgment for it.


“Hats Off” to Elaine Andersen, for her poetry reading at the Taconic Writers Annual Reading. Her piece was about her attempt to save the tree outside her school from being destroyed.


“Hats Off” to Doris Kelly for being honored by the Hyde Park democratic Party for her commitment to Democratic Values.


“Hats Off” to Student Affiliate member Khady (Kadiatou) Sidibe who spoke at the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day (March 8) and to all the Poughkeepsie Branch members who showed strong support through their participation in this event.


“Hats Off” to “Art on the Go” members Ellie Burch, Mary Coiteux, Norma DePalma, Karleen Dorn, Carol Loizides and Carol Mastropietro for their art display “In this Moment” exhibited at the East Fishkill Community Library.


“Hats Off” to Sandra Goldberg and Jane Barber Smith who received the Eleanor and Franklin Award from the Dutchess County Democratic Committee. The award is for their many years of service to Dutchess County and the Democratic Committee.


ART ON THE GO: A Special invitation to All Branch Members.

Mary Coiteux *226-8275*


On August 31st, at 11:00am, Art on the Go invites all interested members to join us for a special tour. The summer exhibition at the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center at Vassar College, A Taste for the Modern: Gifts from Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller, Edna Bryner Schwab, and Virginia Herrick Deknatel, will showcase 48 paintings, drawings, prints, sculptures, and photographs that have been donated to the Art Center by three Vassar alumnae. This exhibition will examine for the first time the modern art collecting of these three generous alumnae and the development of their tastes for the modern. These women were very interested in education and donated much of their collections to Vassar for educational purposes. The exhibition will explore how all three of their collecting histories affect and influence the viewer’s experience of exploring modern and contemporary art at the college. Artists represented in the exhibition include: Paul Cézanne, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Paul Klee, John Marin, Alfred Stieglitz, and William Baziotes.


Nicole Roylance will conclude the tour with a brief description of the benefits of volunteering at the kiosk for any interested members.


Please contact Mary Coiteux if interested. There is a 20 member limit.


A note of interest: Art on the Go made a visit to the newly reopened Francis Lehman Loeb Art Center at Vassar in February 2011. Student Annie Massa was the docent leading the group. The group was thrilled to hear that she had been awarded an AAUW prize for literature when she graduated from her high school.

“GASLAND” - Film and Discussion

Marcine Humphrey and Margaret Nijhuis


The movie “Gasland” is a documentary about the dangers of hydraulic fracturing. “The extraction of...” natural gas from the shale layers “... demands an awkwardly named technique known as hydraulic fracturing (sometimes called “frac'ing” and pronounced “fracking”). Fracturing, developed by Halliburton in the 1950s, uses a high-pressure blast of fluids to open cracks in gas- or oil-bearing rock formations, allowing trapped fuels to flow out of the underground rock and to the surface.” Michelle Nijhuis,


The movie is about the dangers of water pollution inherent in this practice of “fracking” and the danger of certain toxic chemicals that are used in the process.


There is presently a temporary moratorium on “fracking” in New York State while the DEC conducts a study of the impacts of this process. This moratorium ends on June 1, 2011. 


Poughkeepsie AAUW, Inc. Public Policy Committee will present this film on:

May 25, 2011

6:30 pm


St John’s Lutheran Church

55 Wilbur Blvd, Poughkeepsie


Our guest, Joanne Steele of the Sierra club will be there to answer questions.


You can take action and request that Gov. Cuomo and the state legislature impose a ban on fracking or at the least extend the moratorium. Safe drinking water to anyone within the New York State watershed system should be a priority. Please take a moment and lend your support and voice to this incredibly important issue that faces our state and all of its wonderful natural resources. Contact information for the governor and all your state representatives can be found on our website at under Public Policy.


Questions: contact Doris Kelly, Public Policy Chair,




Sarah Shouse *462-5663*


Editor’s Note: I am sure that Sarah speaks for each of us when she says:

“My thanks to the four women who created and presented the program (“Coming to America”) at the AAUW Annual Dinner. They gave me a deeper appreciation of the beauty and value of sharing our stories.


The alternating telling of their stories was very poetic. It blended their similarities and differences and wove a beautiful picture of each one as unique but also universal in many ways.”









Thirty-eight members of our branch helped in this effort. We want to thank each of them for their many hours of labor! Gloria Ghedini’s committee found wonderful authors. Linda Roberts and her auction committee raised more than half of this total with Gloria Gibbs leading the charge selling raffle tickets. Saranne Ratner endured hours of table changes and last minute reservations. For publicity, Mary Coiteux and her committee made many phone calls and follow-up emails as did Margaret White and the venue committee. Marcine Humphrey and Gwen Higgins worked for hours making the wonderful table arrangements and Margaret Nijhuis and her committee sent numerous emails and spent hours producing the flyers, programs and nametags.


With appreciation, 

Lula Allen and Linda Beyer, Co-Chairs         





Soleil invites all AAUW members and friends to its third tour of Troy. The morning tour of Oakwood Cemetery, 9-12, starts at the opulent Gardiner Memorial Chapel. The building as well as the windows and appointments were designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany for this memorial. The Oakwood tour also features a spectacular 100 mile view of the Hudson River and other interesting historical sites.


The afternoon tour features three churches, a chapel and a library with stained glass by Tiffany. Visiting with the afternoon sun behind the stained glass is a breathtaking experience. The final visit, St. Paul's, has not only Tiffany windows but the entire altar and much of the interior is Tiffany's design.


Each trip is individual and you may sign up for one or both. The Cemetery tour is $15, the afternoon Tiffany Treasures is $20. Since these tours are listed in the Hudson River Valley Ramble - it is important to decide promptly if you wish to go. The trip by car is about 2 hours each way but is easy driving and pleasant.


For more specific information and details about eating and payment contact Joan K. Cordani: email, phone 845- 855-5259, or regular mail 38 Old Route 55, Pawling, NY 12564.




Kim Butwell *914-489-6400* and

Jacqueline Goffe-McNish *845-471-7220*


AAUW Professional Women’s Networking Group is looking forward to sharing summer events with other AAUW members and groups as well as the Dutchess Community College University Women’s group. One of our goals is to meet other members in different groups and see how we can enliven the discussion by bringing variety to the table. We will co-host with the Diversity Committee, My Sister’s Keeper and Thinking Globally, Acting Locally to offer the whole membership an excited selection of summer fun. On June 28th Jan Wallen, the author of “Mastering LinkedIn in 7 Days or Less,” will discuss how to make social networking work for you. This June 28th meeting will be at DCC in Hudson Hall Room H214/216. On July 26 we will have a viewing of the film, “Real Women Have Curves” with a facilitated discussion by Erika Kastel. On August 23rd we will all get together for a Cocktail Party and Actual networking at the home of Kim Butwell, 28 Contour Lane, Salt Point, NY.


Open to members and non-members, we encourage you to invite your friends on this journey of discovery, learning, and practical advice that can collectively strengthen us in our personal and professional lives.


The Professional Women’s Networking Group meets throughout the year on the fourth Tuesday, 5:30 – 7:30 pm

Meetings will take place at Dutchess Community College, Poughkeepsie. Please check the AAUW website for room assignments!


Hudson Valley Home Matters,

Year Two!

Linda Rashba, Member of Poughkeepsie AAUW


Hudson Valley Home Matters (HVHM) is one of a growing number of “aging in place” membership organizations that enable older adults to stay independent in their own homes by providing quality support and access to pre-screened services. We are a nonprofit organization, with 70 members, and 40 volunteers.


Membership is open to those who are fifty and older. We provide services in the City and Town of Poughkeepsie, Hyde Park, Pleasant Valley, Lagrange and Wappingers Falls. Plans to expand to other area of Dutchess County are part of our long range strategic plan. An annual fee covers the cost of our Member Services Coordinator and office.


With one phone call, members receive personal attention, such as assistance with local transportation and shopping arrangements, basic help at home with bills and electronic equipment, friendly visits and referrals. to preferred vendors for home repairs. Social, cultural and educational programs are available, as well, such as a boat cruise on the Hudson

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River, an evening at the Bardavon, dinners at local restaurants and a recent timely lecture on de-cluttering your home.


Volunteers are the core of our program, and we welcome more folks to join our ranks. Our training program helps facilitate matches between our volunteers and members.


HVHM has the support of the Dutchess County Division of Aging, and other area service organizations to ensure that our members have access to the best services and support. We welcome your participation as a Member or Volunteer. Please call Linda Rashba, 297-6923, for any questions, or visit our website:



Amy Schwed *462-2269*


Those of you fortunate enough to have heard Geeta Desai, Cecilia Dinio-Durkin, Erika Kastel and Wendy Maragh Taylor share their “Coming to America” stories at the annual meeting on May 10th were privy to a once-in-a-lifetime treat. Our fabulous co-members brought us to both tears and laughter, as we learned how each came to live in the Poughkeepsie area. You could have heard a pin drop in that large dining room as everyone was enthralled listening to them relate their tales. How lucky we all are belonging to the AAUW Poughkeepsie sisterhood. I realized that at 400+ members, “We Are Women, We Are Invincible,” as Helen Reddy sang. We can do anything, we are strong. (A little poetic license used.)


If you haven’t sent in your renewal yet, so that our bond of sisterhood remains invincible, please do so right away. Remember that $62 of your $78 renewal fee is tax deductible, plus you might still be eligible to win a free national membership (a $49 value). The check should be made out to “Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW, Inc.” and should be mailed to : Amy Schwed, 7 Panessa Drive, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603. Any questions? Contact Amy at: 845 462-2269 or There is a renewal form in this newsletter for your convenience. Also spend the next few months thinking of new members who joined us this past year and how YOU can reach out to them to include them in our branch activities.




Now onto a different topic: SAVE THE DATE. Our 2011-2012 Open House will be on Wednesday, September 14, 2011. This is your opportunity to invite potential new members to join us and learn about the largest AAUW branch in the country! (Yes, we’re no longer just the largest in New York State !) Reach out to other members as well and rediscover together that “we can do anything; we are strong, we are invincible.” How can anyone resist us? I look forward to seeing you on September 14th, at a location to be named at a later date.




Taking office, June 30th, will be Program VPs: Barbara Hugo and Shelby Outwater; Membership VPs: Kathy Brown and Amy Schwed; and Education Opportunity Foundation VPs: Trish Prunty and Linda Roberts. Others officers will continue for the second year of their two year term.



Poughkeepsie Branch of the American Association of University Women, Inc.

Dues for the Year 2011 - 2012

Deadline: June 15, 2011


It is time to renew your AAUW membership! And ... look forward to next year, meeting and enjoying new friends again, participating in excellent programs, and having fun with special interest groups!

Each year in AAUW is better than the year before!

National dues.......................$49.00 ($46.00 is tax deductible)

NY State dues............................ 13.00

Poughkeepsie Branch dues...... 16.00 ($16.00 is tax deductible)

Total dues..................................$78.00 (of which $62.00 is tax deductible)

Save this information for your taxes!









We have a potential bargain for you! (And what woman doesn’t love a bargain?) The Poughkeepsie Branch will be giving away three (3) free National memberships, worth $49.00 each. Here’s how you can win one:

Send your dues in by May 20, 2011 and receive 2 chances to win.

Send your dues in by May 30, 2011 and receive 1 chance to win.

It’s worthwhile to be prompt - it could save you $49.00. Winners will be drawn on June 8th.


Please make check payable to: Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW, Inc.

Send check, the bottom of this form and your completed member profile to:

                                                                        Amy Schwed

                                                                       7 Panessa Drive 

                                                                        Poughkeepsie, NY 12603


*Note: 3rd party checks must have Amy’s name and address on the mailing envelope.

Questions: Call Amy at 845/462-2269 or email


Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW, Inc. Officers 2010-2011


President                               Geeta Desai            297-7589

Program V.P.                        Susan Osterhoudt   889-4469

                                                Diana Gleeson        229-8458 

Membership V.P.                  Bergie Lebovitch    298-4045

Educ. Opportunity Fund     Patricia Luczai        463-4662

                                                Trish Prunty 

Secretary                               Virginia Marcus     223-5246

Treasurer                              Barbara Van Itallie 462-3924

Assistant Treasurer              Elizabeth Moesel    896-9426

Association website:  

NY State website:

AAUW advances equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy, and research. 

In principle and in practice, AAUW values and seeks a diverse membership. There shall be no barriers to full participation in this organization on the basis of gender, race, creed, age, sexual orientation, national origin, disability or class.

The Branch is published ten times a year, September through June, by the Poughkeepsie Branch of the AAUW, Inc. Send articles to the editor: Margaret Nijhuis, (635-8612).              

Dues/Membership Information

If you have had any changes in your information, please be

sure to include them below so that the Poughkeepsie Branch

Membership Directory and our mailing list can be updated.






Home phone:____________________________________


E-Mail address:

 (Please print clearly and keep the Branch updated)



Dues:     ___ $78 Regular Membership

                ___ $62 Honorary Branch

                ___ $0 Honorary Life

               ___ $29 Paid Life

               ___ $20 Student Affiliate