Weekend Planner: Let's hear it for women in politics

Weekend Planner: Let's hear it for women in politics

The day after President DONALD TRUMP was inaugurated, the Champaign County Young Democrats hosted a Women's March on West Side Park in Champaign. Up to 5,000 people showed up.

"We were really inspired by all the people who showed up," said ADANI SANCHEZ, the group's treasurer. "They really have an interest in making their voice heard. We found an abundance of women politicians in this area who had been out doing this work, who wanted to run for office, and who faced incredible odds."

So the Young Democrats organized a panel discussion for this Sunday featuring four female politicians from Champaign County. Here's more, courtesy staff writer MELISSA MERLI:


Former state Rep. NAOMI JAKOBSSON and former Champaign County Board Chair PATRICIA AVERY, announced this week as running mate of gubernatorial candidate TIO HARDIMAN, will be part of the panel.

"Naomi and Patricia have both been in public service through all these changes when women were not treated well in public places," Sanchez said.

The group also enlisted State's Attorney JULIA RIETZ and state Rep. CAROL AMMONS, D-Urbana, who was elected to Jakobsson's seat when she retired.

"By discussing the personal political experiences of the panelists, I think it will be easier for women to see themselves running for office some day," Sanchez said.


The Young Democrats, who wanted an extensive discussion at Sunday's event, found it hard to narrow down the number of panelists but were excited there were so many women from which to choose.

"The Young Democrats are about encouraging other young people to be interested in politics," Sanchez said. "The way things are going at the national level makes it hard for young people and especially women to see themselves in those positions. By highlighting these women's experiences, we hope people will see something of themselves in them."


The panel discussion will be from 2:30 to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Champaign Public Library, 200 W. Green St., C. Admission is free and open to the public.

The discussion, which will be followed by a question-and-answer session, will be hosted by WDWS "Morning Show" host ELIZABETH HESS.

According to the Young Democrats, women make up about 20 percent of Congress and nearly 25 percent of state legislatures — "poor representation for 50 percent of the population."

More women nationwide, though, have shown interest in running for office since the 2016 presidential election, Sanchez said.

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Ruralman wrote on August 12, 2017 at 10:08 pm

Could have had 5 leaders if not for the young dems throwing Pattsi under the bus, and Astrid,,,,ect.....