Friday, February 13, 2009


Oldtown News
Vancouver, BC


Hello Jamie Lee:

I notice on your website that you're hoping to be a student at the Women's Campaign School this year, and we're delighted that you're planning to attend. You'll join a great roster of past graduates including Constance Barnes, Ellen Woodsworth, Sophia Woo and Mary Woo Sims... amongst hundreds of others.

I think you'll find that it's a lively, thought-provoking forum where women from a wide range of experiences share and learn together.

You're a voice for diversity in Vancouver's political life, and we join you in that commitment.

That's why I'm writing today.
I noticed that your blog states that we have issued our list of speakers for the Women's Campaign School and that there are no women of colour on the speakers list.

The speakers list is not yet final.
Many of the speakers are still to be announced.
As you'll see on the School's 2009 Schedule section, there's still a lot of TBA on our panels and segments.

As is the case every year, having women from many backgrounds is important to us. We're still waiting to hear back from a number of women from the First Nations and other communities who have been asked to speak at the School. The school's itinerary includes a segment devoted to First Nations Governance, and we hope to offer that this year.

Libby Davies, Penny Priddy, Andrea Reimer and Mary Collins are amongst our speakers this year, and have been great supporters of ours over many years. As soon as we have confirmations from our other speakers, we will be releasing those names, as well.

We've been very honoured in past years to have as speakers Hedy Fry, Jenny Kwan, Patty Sahota, Wendy Grant-John, Chief Bonnie Leonard, Leah George, and Kim Baird, amongst others. We greatly appreciate it when these very busy women are able to make time for the school, and we look forward to welcoming women from diverse backgrounds again at the 2009 School and in the future.

Please feel free to contact me anytime if you have questions.

I do hope you'll update your blog site with this information. With so much work still to do to get gender balance in the political sphere, we want women from all communities to feel encouraged to attend what has been... for over a decade... a very positive experience for participants from all backgrounds and walks-of-life.

We look forward to welcoming you in March.

Jennifer Sweeney, President
Canadian Women Voters Congress