The Branch

Poughkeepsie Branch of the

American Association of University Women, Inc.

P.O. Box 1908, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603


Volume 25, Number 10                              Our 56th year of publication                                           June  2012





Now It’s your turn to…




…at the annual AAUW



Our June membership meeting will focus on


For the 2012-2014 season of

Monthly membership programs.


Come and tell us what’s important to you,

what you’d like to learn more about,

what fascinates you these days.


Do you have a friend with special

knowledge of an intriguing subject?

We want to know!


When:  Thursday, June 14th, 7:00 pm

Where: St. John’s. 55 Wilbur Blvd, Poughkeepsie




 Online Calendar at


May 30  Tee Off:  8:15 am See below for details.

        AAUW Golfers meet at Vassar Golf Course.

        Coordinators: Terry Schneider (849-1122) &

               Carol Mastropietro  (221-8862)

2     The Ediss Book Group: 11:30 am –  Saturday

        Planning Session for next year and luncheon

        Babycakes Restaurant/Café

        Coordinator: Celia Serotsky (473-8426)

3        Gourmet: Out & About: 11:30 am

  Sunday Brunch

  Henry’s Farm to Table, Milton, NY

  Contact: Kay Saderholm (229-8545)


5     World Travelers: 7:00 pm

        Presentation: Russia/Mongolia

        Presenters: Beth Devine

        Hostess: Beth Devine (297-5032)

        Coordinator: Jeanette Cantwell (452-4188)


7     Board Meeting: 6:00 pm- Thursday- Dinner

        All members of boards 2011-12 and 2012-13

        are encouraged to attend at St. John’s Lutheran

        Church on Wilbur Blvd.

8     Daytime Literature: 11:45 am

        Lunch at Shadows on the Hudson

        Reservations: Sheila Close (266-4714) by 6/2

        Coordinators: Diana Gleeson (229-8458) 

               & Tiz Hanson (229-9394)

9        Bridge 3: 10:00 am

  Hostess: Patty Cerniglia (298-7655)

         Coordinators: Donna Reichner &

                   Betsy Vivas (485-2379)

9     Trekkers:  9:00 am, Meet at Rt 9,  S & S

        Minnewaska State Park Preserve

        Organizer:  Jeanette Cantwell (452-4188)

        Coordinator: Karen Haynes (297-5700)

14   Membership Meeting- Thursday

19     Cuisine: 6:30 pm

         Brunch for Dinner

         Recipes: Barbara

         Hostess: Betsy Kopstein-Stuts (485-7044)

         Coordinator: Barbara Van Itallie (462-3924)

20   Bridge I: 1:00 - 4:00 pm

        Hostess: Lillian DePasquale (462-4729)

        Coordinators: Linda Ronayne (897-9745)

               & Mary Ann Ryan (897-9679)


Calendar continued Below...




Jul 20-22: AAUW-NYS Leadership Conference, see below  Geeta Desai will present the featured workshop.  Join us!


Aug 18 – 19 Hudson Valley Ribfest, see below.  Volunteer, have fun and raise money for AAUW.


Sep 13 - Reunion After the Summer/Open House. Note this is a Thursday.


Oct 20: Woman of the Year 2012, mark your calendar.


Nov 3:  Live Your Dream Girls’ Conference, see below.  You can be a member of “The Dream Team.”


Calendar Continued from above…

Online Calendar at

20   Manderley Literary Society:  6:00 pm

        Annual Pot Luck Dinner & Book Selection

        Hostess: Peggy Kelland (297-0507)

        Coordinator: Ellie Burch (297-7828)

21      All those books...: 7:00 pm     

         Book: Age of Innocence

         by Edith Wharton

         Pot Luck dinner, book selection

         Hostess: Kim Butwell (689-1855)

         Coordinator: Kim Butwell (698-1855)

23      Trekkers:  Time TBD

         NYC Lower East Side, Hi-Line Walk & Lunch

         Organizer: Kathy Brown (486-4605) &

                  Margie Krems (473-3580)

         Coordinator: Karen Haynes (297-5700)

27      Aventures en Soleil: 11:00 am at the museum

  The Cloisters, Fort Tryon Park, NYC, see page 5

         Reservations: Peggy Kelland (297-0507)

         Coordinators: Peggy Lombardi (635-9091)

                  & Ruth Sheets (473-6202)

27      Mah Jongg: 1:00 - 4:00 pm  

         Hostess:  Flo Mondanaro (454-0352)

         Coordinator: Amy Schwed (462-2269) &

                  Gerry DiPompei (635-2050)

28     Bridge II: noon - 3:30 pm

         Uno (on the arterial) - Lunch ($15)

         Coordinators: Cathy Kinn &

                  Janet White (462-6675)

27      Art on the Go: 9:00 am - 1:00 pm

         Vanderbilt Mansion, Hyde Park

         Coordinator:  Mary Coiteux (226-8275)

Contemporary Literature: No meeting in June.

         See you in September!

         Coordinator: Ann Wade (229-5267) &

                  Linda Freisitzer (266-5427)

Movie Night: See you in September!

        However, if something irresistible comes around we     

        might send out a "SSS" – “Spontaneous Show to See” invitation.

        Director: Susan Osterhoudt (889-4469)

        Producer: Kim Butwell

Pins & Needles: Look for our September meeting.

  Coordinators: Arlene Seligman (297-0006) &

                  Jane Toll (463-2712)       

Word Games: No meeting in June.

        Enjoy the summer. 

        Coordinator:  Eleanor Aronstein (462-6452)


Women’s Personal & Professional Development

5:30-7:30 pm at DCC


Contact coordinators to be placed on the email list for date, subject and  room number


Coordinators: Kim Butwell &  

 Jacqueline Goffe-McNish




Geeta Desai *297-7589*  


This is my final message as President and as such, I feel the pressure to say something “important,” something wise, even. So, for the last week or so, as I’ve gone about my daily routines, I’ve turned over in my mind, a number of thoughts I might share with you. But nothing seems to suit the occasion. Now I’ve decided to just simply speak to you from my heart.


This, then, is what I want you to know: I am convinced that our branch of the AAUW is extraordinary because you are all extraordinary women. Intelligent, educated and far-seeing, you collectively embody the AAUW mission to advance gender equity for all women and girls. Individually, you are women who care deeply about each other and the organization and demonstrate this in a million different ways. In fact, you have created a community of friendships, creative pursuits and a strong volunteer ethic. Your community is open and unconditionally welcoming to all who want to participate. For me, however, the very best part of belonging to this community is the sheer joy and laughter that rings in my ears long after I’ve spent some time in your company.


I predict, as far as we have come as an organization, we will be surging much, much further on the wings of your hard work, sense of common purpose and good humor. How fortunate then, are the countless women and girls who seek gender equity and are served by you, the members of the Poughkeepsie AAUW.


Many of you have asked me what I will do after my term is over. I will continue to work for the cause of women, only in a different arena. The International Federation of University Women recently appointed me a member of its NY- based team of representatives to the UN. There I will strategize and work with a number of UN agencies to continue to press for the rights of women in underdeveloped countries and emerging democracies. I hope to travel and meet some of these women face-to-face in the countries of their birth and to bring compelling descriptions of their plight back to decision-makers at the UN in the hopes of securing services and support for those most in need.


So you see, you and I will be travelling on parallel paths, all of us doing what we must, what we were destined to do. But I hope to see you frequently, at as many AAUW events as possible, to enjoy great programs and to strengthen my valuable friendships with so many of you.


As I take your leave as President, I thank you and the board for your patience, friendship and support. You have given me more gifts than you can ever imagine and the pleasure of serving you was entirely all mine.




Thank you to the Supporters of The Branch!!


Each year some wonderful members of our branch send money to support the publication of our newsletter.  I am very grateful for their support.  Through email and their contributions what was once our branch’s largest expense has become self-supporting!  Thank you!



Catherine Albanese  Lula Allen  Mary Bagley

Marge Barton  Sharon Clarke  Joan Cordani

Lillian DePasquale  Joan Fay  Ruth Gau  Gloria Gibbs Sandra Goldberg  Elizabeth Harrel  Susan Htoo

Doris Kelly  Jean Miller  Lila Mitchell  Catherine Pété

Jacqueline Prusak  Esther Reisman  Margaret Ruggeri  Terry Schneider Sarah Shouse 

Mary Louise Van Winkle



Marion Effron  Mildred Jones  Margaret Lombardi

Marti Shaw


To add your name to this list of supporters, mail a check payable: “Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW, Inc.” to Margaret Nijhuis, 9 McAllister Drive, Pleasant Valley, NY 12569. 

Thank you, Margaret



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 very moving interview video with the Poughkeepsie Journal on April 24, 2012 by John W. Barry.  You can find the link to this video from our website select Programs/ Community Outreach / Domestic Violence.


COME - JOIN IN THE SUMMER FUN August 18th & 19th

Sharon Clarke *473-9468* LAF Chair


The Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW will again be participating in the 8th Annual Hudson Valley Ribfest.  This has been an ongoing event for us that gives our members a chance to be part of a fun event with great food and entertainment.  Volunteer and give 3-4 hours of your time to work at the Ribfest and help us raise funds for Legal Advocacy Fund  (LAF).  Our hours of volunteering will earn LAF money to go toward defending women's rights which are increasing coming under attack.  Bring along your spouse, friend, and/or significant other to volunteer with you.  More details will be coming soon.   



Linda Roberts *227-52878  VP EOF


Each year, our Branch renews its commitment to helping women access quality education.  One way in which we do this is by contributing to the national AAUW Educational Opportunities Fund (EOF).  The EOF is one of the world's largest sources of funding for graduate women, and provides more than $3 million for more than 200 fellowships and grants to outstanding women every year.  Since 1888, the EOF has been instrumental in the academic and career successes of over 10,000 women across the globe.


Every year we name these scholarships after deserving members to honor their work in the Branch.  This year's honorees are Mary Coiteux, Mary King, Dave King, as well as three members in memoriam; Irene Keyes, Susan Kemp, and Elizabeth Moesel.  Each of these people have, in their own way, had a positive influence on AAUW.


These honorees each had their own distinctive experiences with our Branch. They all served in leadership roles and were committed to serve the organization and to support the causes of gender equity.


Mary Coiteux is a member who wears many hats in AAUW and is presently our Publicity Chair.  Mary is an educator who, for many years has had a profound effect on her many students.  She is a very accomplished artist who enjoys her wonderful family as well as traveling the globe.  She is a natural leader who is an important member of our Branch.  Mary and Dave King spent many hours implementing our new and improved website.  Mary King has been a long-time member who doesn't even live in our area now but still serves on our board as webmaster. Their work has saved our branch thousands of dollars.


In memoriam we honor three members; Susan Kemp, Liz Moesel, and Irene Keyes.  Susan Kemp was actively involved in many organizations, including AAUW.  She  provided Grant Services to AAUW for no charge. She was a woman who was dedicated to community service.  Liz Moesel served as Assistant Treasurer for the past 3 years.  She was very involved in helping to encourage new members to join AAUW and was always an active, positive role model.  Irene Keyes was a teacher for many years who was instrumental in establishing many new programs.  She served as AAUW President from 2006-2008, enabled our local branch to earn a 501(c)3 designation and laid the foundation for our long-term vision to achieve gender equity.  Irene's family was her greatest love.  These women will be missed and their contributions to AAUW greatly appreciated.


The Poughkeepsie Branch of AAUW recognizes and appreciates the hard work of these honorees.  As volunteers and leaders they have paved the way for many others to become instruments of change for women all over the world.  We applaud their efforts and appreciate their commitment to the AAUW goals and ideas.




Our branch is supporting the AAUW mission and honoring a past President Irene Keyes.


We are proud to announce that a grant from the Irene Keyes Memorial Fund has been awarded to Domonique Garrett, a local Marist College student. She will attend the 27th annual National Conference for College Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL), which will be held at the University of Maryland from May 31 to June 2, 2012.  It is expected to draw more than 500 campus student leaders.


In addition to her studies, Domonique Garrett is the Director of Youth Services for D.I.V.A.S. of Sister 2 Sister of Poughkeepsie.  She has co-coordinated Project S.W.A.G (Society at War Against Illegal Guns and Violence.)  Involved in several community projects, she is committed to encouraging young people to be productive citizens, make responsible decisions, and avoid violence.  Domonique enjoys acting as a mentor and empowering youth.  She hopes to complete a Master’s Degree in Social Work and continue to support victims of domestic violence, youth, and the “at risk” population with whom she currently works. She is very excited about meeting other “like minded young women.”  Look for her reflections on the conference in a future issue of The Branch.


NCCWSL has provided a platform to help thousands of college and university women develop leadership skills, network with other student leaders, and interact with women who hold leadership positions. Hosted by AAUW at and NASPA at the conference features inspiring keynote speakers and nearly 50 dynamic workshops on a variety of topics such as advocacy, leadership skills, financial management, and health and wellness. Women can read more about NCCWSL at


Our goal is to provide an annual scholarship to a student leader. Additional donations can be made to the Irene Keyes Memorial Fund by sending a check, payable to Poughkeepsie Branch of the AAUW, Inc., with “Irene Keyes Fund” in the memo line to:


Barbara Van Itallie, Treasurer

17 Croft Road

Poughkeepsie, NY 12603.

Email for the Editor


My email address is

Please delete any other email address you have for me!


Thanks, Margaret (Nijhuis)





Check our website  for any update in summer activities.  The next newsletter will be published at the end of August for September activities.


Aug 10     The Branch for September


Art on the Go: 9:30 am, bring snacks or lunch

Jul 25       Cooperative Home Extension, Millbrook

Aug 22     Wallkill Bridge, New Paltz

                  Lunch at Harvest Café


Aventures en Soleil                           

Jul 30       Norman Rockwell Museum, Stockbridge, MA

                  RSVP:  Linda Beyer (462-0345) &

                           Linda Ronayne (897-9745)

Aug 12     Tanglewood, Lenox, MA at 2:30 pm

                  Program:  Beethoven, Mozart and Strauss

                  Meet at main gate: 12:30pm

                  Buy lawn ticket at gate: $19

                  RSVP: Pat Aglietti (413/623-2276) in Jul & Aug

                  Coordinators:  Peg Lombardi (635-9091) &

                  Ruth Sheets (473-6202)


Bridge I: 1:00 - 4:00 pm

Jul 18         Susan Fink (473-3168)

Aug 15       Barbara Lalli (677-5363)


Bridge II: noon - 3:30 pm

Jul 26         Uno (on the arterial)

Aug 23       Uno (on the arterial)



Bridge 3: 10:00 am

Jul 14         Raina Maissel

Aug 11       Mary Lou Davis


Mah Jongg: 1:00 - 4:00 pm  

         Jul 25       Mary Lou Davis (223-5544)

         Aug 22     Janet White (462-6675)



Tee Off: Contact Terry Schneider (849-1122)


Trekkers: 8:00 am

Jul 14       Sterling State Park

                  Peggy Kelland (297-0507)

Jul 28       Croton George Park & Aqueduct

                  Karen Haynes (297-5700)

Aug 11     Falling Waters Preserve

                  Cathy Bala (227-7293) &

                  Jeanette Cantwell (452-4188)

Aug 25     Historic Walking Tour of N. Paltz

                  Pat Luczai (463-4662)


 Sep 13     Reunion after the summer/Open House

                  Membership Meeting – invite your friends to

                  come learn about AAUW – special dues rates available.     




Personal and Professional Development

Strategies for Success


July  20 – 22, 2012

Cazenovia College, Cazenovia, NY


Come and enjoy a workshop on Personal and Professional Development Strategies for Success.  Your $100 registration fee will include two nights stay at the college and six meals.   You will learn to apply new strategies to AAUW programming,  help plan the AAUW-NYS Convention for 2013, and  participate in a computer workshop or learn more about exciting programs.  There will  also be time for an ice cream social, movie, and other occasions to get to know AAUW members from around the state.  The registration form can be found at  Join us!


Poughkeepsie’s Mary Lou Davis will start her term as AAUW-NYS President at this event.  Geeta Desai will present a day long workshop on Personal & Professional Development which she does for organizations throughout the country.  Any questions, contact Margaret at or 845/635-8612.





Join The Dream Team

Cecilia Dinio-Durkin *849-1858*


Lucky Number 7 – This year will be the 7th Live Your Dream Girls’ Conferences for 7th Grade Girls! This year’s Conference will once again be held at Dutchess Community College, on November 3, 2012, from 9:30 am to 2:30 pm.  It is limited to first 100 girl participants.


Join us by signing up to help organize, chaperone, register, and act as liaisons with the local middle school principals.  Also, we need women to make phone calls and help design gifts.


The day, filled with crafts, workshops, food and girl talk circles will follow the same format as we have had in the past.


Please contact Cecilia Dinio-Durkin if you are interested in joining the “Dream Team” 845/849-1858 and .




Saturday, September 22, 2012


Soleil invites all AAUW members and friends to its third tour of Troy. 


The morning tour begins at 9:30 am to 12:30 pm.  It features three churches, a chapel and a library with stained glass by Tiffany.  The final visit, St. Paul’s, has not only Tiffany windows, but the entire alter and lighting are Tiffany designed.


The afternoon tour of Oakwood Cemetery begins at 1:30 to

4:30 pm.  The tour starts at the opulent Gardiner Memorial Chapel.  Louis Comfort Tiffany designed the building as well as the windows and appointments for this memorial.  The Oakwood tour also is a walking and driving tour.  It features a spectacular 100-mile view of the Hudson River and other interesting historical sites.


Each trip is individual and you may sign up for one or both.  The fees must be paid to confirm a reservation.  The Tiffany Treasure tour is $20 and the Oakwood Cemetery tour is $15.  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 it is easy driving and a very pleasant ride. 


For specific information and details about traveling, eating and payment, please contact: Joan Cordani or 845-855-5259 or by mail:  38 Old Route 55, Pawling, NY  12564



June 27, 2012

Peggy Kelland *297-0507*


The branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art devoted to the art and architecture of medieval Europe, the Cloisters was assembled from architectural elements, both domestic and religious, that date from the twelfth through the fifteenth century. The building itself and the five cloistered gardens are part of the collection housed there, comprising approximately three thousand works of art dating from the ninth to the sixteenth century.


The museum, accessible by car or by train and subway, opens at 9:30 am.  We have a group guided tour reserved at 11:00, for which we need a minimum of 15 reservations by June 1st.  We can take up to 10 additional members/guests.  The price is $18 seniors/$26 adults.  Please send checks to Peggy Kelland, 13 Susan Lane, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603. Your check is your reservation.


We can bring bag lunches, buy sandwiches there, or eat at The New Leaf, a restaurant in Fort Tryon Park about 10 minutes walk from the museum.  If people are interested, I will make reservations there for lunch. 



Doris Kelly


Here we are again at the end of this year's publications of The Branch before our summer break.


During this year we had a chance to view the movie, Gasland, a documentary which showed the environmental effects of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas.  The gas companies continue to extol the benefits of this “clean” energy while ignoring the numbers of families whose water has been contaminated by the radiation and toxic chemicals in the fracking water.  These companies are also ignoring the effects of storing the fracking wastewater which has caused several blowbacks during the year and ignoring the effects of polluted water and air on wildlife and human life.  They insist there is no proof that their process has caused any problems.  We once again are being lulled into complacency by those who reap the profits and leave the residents with the dangers which follow.


Isn't that the way everything works today?  As long as these companies and politicians have access to the airwaves, to television, to written media, as long as they have the wherewithal, the money, they can repeat falsehoods over and over until we accept their version.


But we can fight back.


Alliance for Quality Education had several lobby days in Albany to convince the NY legislators to increase funding for education.


Several local branches of AAUW-NYS attended a Lobby Day in Albany on April 17.  We met with two Legislators, Ellen Jaffee and Addie Russell.  After we were instructed on the basics of lobbying, we visited two state legislators to express our concern about the need to pass legislation on women's issues including pay equity, women's reproductive health, and violence against women.


I hope you're all aware of which districts you are now in since the redistricting took place.  The changes affect Congressional, State Senate, and State Assembly districts. You can find the new districts at the following website:  You can also find this linked from our website (Public Policy/ Representatives)


During the summer, please keep up with legislation being passed which can have a great effect on women's lives and please don't forget the 2-Minute Activist, which can be found on our Poughkeepsie AAUW website under Public Policy.  It's an easy way to let your representatives know how you feel about these issues.


Have a great summer!  See you all in September.




 BOARD 2012-2013

Welcome to our new board members and thank you to those members continuing on the board for another year, without your willingness to serve our organization would not exist.


Elected Positions


*President                                             Jackie Goffe-McNish

VP Programming                        Barbara Hugo

                                                      Shelby Outwater

VP Membership                          Kay Saderholm

                                                      Amy Schwed

VP Education Funds                           Linda Roberts

VP Communications                           Joanne Scolaro

*Treasurer                                   Barbara Van Itallie

Assistant Treasurer                    Jeanette Cantwell

*Secretary                                            Peggy Hansen


*These officers will serve through June, 2014.


Appointed Positions


The Branch Editor                            Margaret Nijhuis

Community                                       Maria DeWald

Diversity                                            Gwen Higgins

Education                                          Kris Puzza

Historian                                            Eileen Hayden

Hospitality                                        Volunteer(s) needed!!!

Interest Group Coordinator            Cathy Kinn

International Relations                    Cecilia Dinio-Durkin

Legal Advocacy Fund                     Sharon Clarke

Nominating Chair                             Mary Lou Davis

Public Policy                                     Doris Kelly

Publicity                                            Mary Coiteux

Website                                              Mary King

Woman of the Year Chair                              Marge Barton



Terry Schneider  *849-1122*


AAUW Golfers please join us on Wednesday, May 30,

8:15 am at the Vassar College Golf Course.  Tee-off at 8:30 am.  Please contact Carol or Terry if you plan on joining us.  We need a head count.  Looking forward to a great season.


Coordinators: Terry Schneider (849-1122) &

                  Carol Mastropietro (221-8862)




Four women of history came alive at Christo’s on Tuesday night, May 8. 


Carmen McGill was Sojourner Truth as she gave the famous speech “Ain’t I a Woman.”  Eileen Hayden made us understand the times of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and how she was so far ahead of her times in seeking rights for women.  Sherre Wesley in her “judicial robes” took us from Jane Matilda Bolin’s early days as a Poughkeepsie High School student to the first black woman judge in the US.  Geeta Desai gave us glimpse at the advantages and disadvantages for Katherine Meyer Graham growing up in a famous publishing family.


It was an evening not to be missed!







Bernadette Barrett Luber died in her home on Tuesday, April 24, 2012 at Woodland Pond at New Paltz, New York.  She had been a Poughkeepsie resident and loved the Hudson Valley for more than forty years. 


Bernadette was born on May 22, 1934 in Manhattan, New York.  She graduated from the State University of New York at Plattsburgh with a Bachelors of Science in Nursing Education and pursued graduate work at St. John's University.


On September 30, 1961 she married Kevin J. Barrett who predeceased her on March 20, 1992. On August 14, 1999, she married John C. Luber at St. Mary's Church in Fishkill. He died on May 6, 2009.


In her earlier years, Bernadette, worked as a school nurse-teacher in Bethpage and Garden City, Long Island and also

at the Haviland Junior High School in Hyde Park, NY until 1965.  While raising children with Kevin Barrett, Bernadette was employed at the Mental Health Association in Dutchess County as Program Director of the Community Friends Program, a one-on-one supportive program for persons recovering from a mental illness.  She retired after 16 years of service in 1996.  She was a member of the Mental Health Subcommittee of Dutchess County Department of Mental Hygiene until 2005.


She was a member of AAUW in the 60's and 70's and rejoined in 2009.  She served as a Eucharistic minister at St Martin de Porres Church.  Her faith led her in a life of commitment to others which included being a member of the Cursillo community since 1960 in Spanish Harlem, a spiritual mentor on weekends for those in prison and as a Religious Education teacher to high school students in the 1970s.  Bernadette served on the Board of Directors of Hudson River Housing, a non-profit organization for 25 yrs.  While volunteering in the Dutchess County Overnight Shelter for the Homeless, she met John Luber and after years of working there together the newly renovated Hillcrest House, was officially named the "Barrett-Luber Wing," to recognize and honor their commitment.  They shared a love for learning and travel through involvement in Elderhostels.  Bernadette was also active with Marist College Center for Lifetime Study.


Her love for being busy, the outdoors, nature and art kept Bernadette walking beaches, enjoying gardens, spending time in galleries, museums, historical sites, yoga, and swimming. The family of Bernadette would like to acknowledge that she was also a connoisseur of desserts.


Published in the Poughkeepsie Journal from April 27, 2012




Amy Schwed *462-2269*


What a treat the annual meeting in May was for all of us.  We thoroughly enjoyed the marvelous program, “Ain’t I a Woman,” featuring Sojourner Truth (Carmen McGill), Elizabeth Cady Stanton (Eileen Hayden), Jane Matilda Bolin (Sherre Wesley) and Katharine Meyer Graham (Geeta Desai).  They were all New York women who helped shape both our state and the nation.  They led the way; now we must all continue in the Poughkeepsie branch to foster the continued growth for women’s equality and equity in all that we do.


Geeta Desai reminded us that our organization is made up of all volunteer women.  So, not only does membership matter, but volunteerism matters.  Without you giving your time, your ideas, your support, your willingness to take on both elected and appointed positions, coordinate special interest groups, initiatives and events, we are nothing.  We need your active support.  I hope you come to the June 14th program planning meeting at St. John’s Church on Wilbur Blvd., Poughkeepsie and share your ideas and thoughts for programs to be presented during the upcoming 2012-2013 year.


Sojourner Truth, in her “Ain’t I a Woman” speech summed up our position as women in this country so succinctly.  She said, “If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down, all alone, together women ought to be able to turn it rightside up again.”  That’s what we’re all about - women together.  Be sure to send in your dues renewal right away, so you won’t miss out on any of the exciting things our branch does.  You still have an opportunity to win a free national membership if your dues arrive by May 31st.  The drawing will be on June 14th. 


Have a great summer and I look forward to seeing you all at our “Reunion after the summer/Open House” on September 13th.  Join us for a great evening.




Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW, Inc. Officers 2011-2012


President                              Geeta Desai        297-7589

Program V.P.                      Barbara Hugo     876-6686

                                             Shelby Outwater 206-2083  

Membership V.P.                 Amy Schwed         462-2269

Educ. Foundation V.P.        Trish Prunty

                                             Linda Roberts        227-5287

Secretary                             Virginia Marcus     223-5246

Treasurer                            Barbara Van Itallie 462-3924

Acting Assistant Treasurer Mary Lou Davis     223-5544

Association website:                               

NY State website:

Poughkeepsie Branch 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).