100 years of women voters in Oregon celebrated at OSU conference

Abigail Scott Duniway signing Oregon's Equal Suffrage Proclamation on Nov. 30, 1912, while Governor Oswald West and Viola M. Coe look on. (Source: Flickr Commons project and Women of the West Museum, 2008)

For Oregon women, the sixth time was the charm. That’s how many times the question of women’s suffrage was put before Oregon voters, and in 1912, women narrowly achieved the right to vote by a mere 52 percent. It had first been put on the ballot in 1884.

The rich and rocky history of women’s suffrage in Oregon is being explored in a two -day conference at Oregon State University on Nov. 1-2 in the LaSells Stewart Center, Construction & Engineering Hall. The free conference, “Woman Citizen: Past, Present and Future,” brings scholars, elected officials, activists, and community organizers to OSU to explore women’s roles as citizens and women’s political impact in the local, state, and national arenas.

Former Oregon Governor Barbara Roberts will be giving the keynote address at noon Friday, titled “Celebrating Our History, Making New History.” A full list of events is below. For more information, http://blogs.oregonstate.edu/womancitizen/

Thursday, Nov. 1.

8:30 a.m.: Light breakfast in the Guistina Galleria

9 a.m.: Opening remarks, Marisa Chappell, Associate Professor of History, Oregon State University

9:15 a.m.: “The Hand That Rocks the Ballot Box: Women Vote” Susan Scanlan, President, Women’s Research & Education Institute and Chair, National Council of Women’s Organizations

10:30 a.m.: “How Women Won the Vote in Oregon and Why that Victory Matters,” Kim Jensen, Associate Professor of History and Gender Studies, Western Oregon University

11:30 a.m.: The Suffragists, A screening of the new Oregon Experience documentary, followed by a discussion/Q&A with the film’s director, Kami Horton, and Kim Jensen.

12:30 p.m.: “Is the Personal Still Political? Women’s Private and Public Lives,” Stephanie Coontz, Professor of History, The Evergreen State College and Co-Chair and Director of Public Education at the Council on Contemporary Families.

2 p.m.: “Women Changing Communities: A Roundtable,.” Participants include: Sobia Paracha (OCADSV); Laura Isiordia and Brenda Mendoza (CAPACES Leadership Institute); Debbie Vought (Citizens for Safe Schools, Klamath Falls); Toni Ryan (CARDV); Jo Anne Trow (Corvallis League of Women Voters). Facilitator: Lorena Reynolds, Instructor of Women Studies, OSU

4 p.m.: “Economic Citizenship for Women: Progress and Possibilities,”Alice Kessler-Harris, Professor of History, Columbia University

Friday, Nov. 2

9:30 a.m.: Light breakfast in the Guistina Galleria

10 a.m.: “Women in Government: A Roundtable.” Participants include: Barbara Roberts (former Oregon governor and Secretary of State and current Metro Council member); Julie Manning (Corvallis mayor); Sara Gelser (state representative); Jackie Winters (state senator); Delores Pigsley (chair, Confederated Tribes of Siletz). Facilitator: Sarah Henderson, Associate Professor of Political Science, OSU

Noon: “Women and Leadership: Looking to the Future,” Barbara Roberts, former Oregon Governor

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