AAUW Corpus Christi Branch opened its New Membership Fall meeting on September 5, 2020, at 10:30 a.m. via Zoom. There were 22 members and one guest in attendance. President Shirley Selz welcomed everyone and asked Dr. Catherine Cox, Vice President of membership, to introduce our new members. Catherine mentioned that in lieu of our typical gathering to meet-and-greet new members, she has organized small Zoom parties with new members, and she is putting together a welcome package of goodies that will be delivered to each new member.
President Shirley Selz called on each Board member to give a report about their respective areas of responsibility. Annie Huckabee reminded members that September 15 will be the official cut-off time to get renewals and changes in contact information to her for inclusion in the 2020-21 directory. Annie will be mailing the yearbook to all members by the end of the month.
Dr. Diana Cardenas, Chair of the Bylaws committee, presented the proposed changes to the bylaws that were distributed to members on August 22, 2020. President Shirley Selz asked if there were any questions and, hearing none, called for a vote by a show of hands. More than two-thirds of those present voted in favor of the changes. The bylaws will be recorded as adopted on September 5, 2020.
President Shirley Selz introduced our guest speaker, Dr. Amy Aldridge Sanford, Associate Provost for Academic Affairs at Texas A&M University Corpus Christi and author of a recently published book, From Thought to Action: Developing a Social Justice Orientation. Dr. Amy Aldridge Sanford is also an active member of AAUW Corpus Christi Branch, President of the YWCA Corpus Christi Board of Directors, and host of the local Centennial Celebration of Women’s Right to Vote held virtually on August 26, 2020.
Dr. Amy Aldridge Sanford spoke about the Black Lives Matter movement, highlighting its history, goals, and tactics. She acknowledged that it can be an uncomfortable topic, but urged us to welcome the discomfort and embrace the opportunity to learn and grow. Dr. Amy Aldridge Sanford outlined three primary steps to being a good #Black Lives Matter Ally:
- REFLECT – think about your own racism and privileges and take an implicit Bias test: https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/takeatest.html
- EDUCATE – read books, watch relevant shows, and learn more about the BREATHE act
- ACTION – show support through donations, letters to legislators, wearing t-shirts, posting signs, and attending events
Read more about Dr. Amy Aldridge Sanford’s presentation by accessing her PowerPoint here. She also encouraged us to support Black-owned businesses in Corpus Christi. You can view a list and get links to local Black-owned business at this website: http://www.thebendmag.com/2020/06/01/317085/black-owned-businesses-to-support-in-the-coastal-bend?fbclid=IwAR1c6EOQWAmxBaO0yvoqbWSDjugeabdMKYHaNis2p2xEN8Peq_qhMTmbhy8
President Shirley Selz thanked Dr. Amy Aldridge Sanford for her insightful presentation and for sharing her resources with us. Shirley reminded members that our next meeting is scheduled for October 3 at 10:30 a.m. on Zoom.
Story by Dr. Vickie Natale