A Salute to Women Past and Present

Presented by the Kane County Democratic Women

Welcome to the June issue of a Salute to Women Past and Present, our first issue. We begin by featuring three women candidates running for county-wide election this November. KCDW is truly excited by the news that fifteen members are running for office in Kane County! Leading up to election day November 3rd, three of the fifteen candidates are to be featured each month. 

At the same time for your reading pleasure, a monthly selection of women past and present. Selections illustrate women who advanced issues central to the substance of who we are: passionate, courageous and bold. Often, their untold contributions to American society never highlighted. Today we honor them by illuminating their stories, as we reap the rewards of their hard-worn efforts.

KCDW is excited to kick off the first Women Past and Present biography in celebration this month of immigrants and the important role they play in our nation. Featuring Dolores Huerta, the biography is written by Linda Willet. Our public relations/marketing committee hopes readers will enjoy learning about Huerta’s story.

Salute to Women Past and Present

Featured Biography: Dolores Fernandez Huerta

Dolores Fernandez Huerta is a Mexican immigrant who moved to Stockton, California at age 3 with her mother and brothers. Her mother, Alicia, saved for years to buy a small hotel where she offered rooms at low rates to immigrants. Alicia encouraged her daughter to become involved in community affairs from an early age. After working as a teacher, CLICK HERE to read the rest of this story.

After working as a teacher, Dolores found her life’s work as an organizer. While working for the Stockton Community Service Organization (CSO), she founded the Agricultural Workers Association and set up voter drives. Through CSO, she met Cesar Chavez, and they launched the National Farm Workers Association, which later became United Farm Workers. Chavez could rally a crowd, and Huerta was a talented speaker, organizer, and negotiator. Through lobbying, she obtained unemployment and disability insurance for farm workers, reduced harmful pesticides, and helped to bring about the Agricultural Labor Relations Act of 1975.

While directing a boycott, Dolores met Gloria Steinem in New York. The feminist movement rallied behind Dolores, and she began to focus on eradicating gender discrimination. From the beginning, Dolores insisted on nonviolence, but at age 58, she was attacked by a policeman with a baton and almost died. Community outrage led to a change in San Francisco police policies. After a long recovery, Dolores went on a speaking tour, advocating for women running
for office.

In 2012, Dolores accepted the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama and stated, “The great social justice changes in our country have happened when people came together, organized, and took direct action.” At age 90, Dolores continues to work with campaign leaders on legislation that supports equality, civil rights, and social justice.

For more information about Dolores Huerta:
Sources: http://doloreshuerta.org/

Dolores Fernandez Huerta

Legislative News

The first three of fifteen candidates running for Kane County elected office.

Lauren Underwood

Congresswoman Underwood represents Illinois’ 14th Congressional District, a suburban, exurban, and rural district west of Chicago. She flipped this seat from red to blue in 2018, defeating 4-term Republican incumbent Congressman Randy Hultgren. Congresswoman Underwood is the first woman, person of color, and young adult to serve this district and the youngest black woman to serve in Congress.

As a registered nurse and healthcare expert, she brings a critical perspective to Congress. A hard worker, she has proven herself to be an effective leader: she has personally introduced 41 pieces of legislation, passed 14 out of the House, and had 3 signed into law, all in her first term in Congress.

Prior to her election, Congresswoman Underwood spent her career implementing the ACA and was appointed by President Obama to serve as a Senior Advisor at the Department of Health and Human Services, where she helped communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to disasters, bioterror threats, and public health emergencies.

Learn more about Congresswoman Underwood.

Lauren Underwood official portrait

Martha Paschke

Martha Paschke is a first-time candidate running for IL House District 65. She is a working mom and actively engaged community member. She is a certified middle school teacher and worked for over 14 years as a childbirth educator and labor doula. She currently works in mental healthcare.

Martha’s volunteer work includes serving on the Geneva Library Foundation, being a founding member and co-leader of Kane and Kendall County Moms Demand Action, and serving for 18 years in her church, Fox Valley Presbyterian.

Martha holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Family Studies from Concordia, University in St. Paul, MN and a master’s degree in teaching from Aurora, University.

Learn more about Martha.

Martha Paschke

Sandy Kaczmarski

Sandy Kaczmarski is running for Kane County Board District 18 to bring civility back to local government and also to represent the good people of Kane County, and not fall in line behind special interests and costly policies.

She expects no special favors as an elected official, asking only for Kaneville’s confidence in her commitment to hear their concerns, work to better their lives, and to preserve the beauty of this diverse and exciting place we all call home. Kaczmarski is committed to protecting Kane County’s natural resources and exploring renewable energy opportunities; determines to find new revenue sources to keep taxes down; and will be a champion of the prevailing wage to ensure workers are paid fairly.

Learn more about Sandy.

Sandy Kaczmarski

Book Reads

Our KCDW marketing committee has selected a few books to stir your activism hearts:

We the Resistance: Documenting a History of Nonviolent Protest
author: Michael G. Long, forward by Chris Hedges, afterword by Dolores Huerta
City Lights Publisher

Learning Activism 
author: Aziz Choudry
University of Toronto Press

Road Map for Revolutionaries
author: Elisa Camahort Page
Crown Publishing Group

Memes to Movements: How the World’s Most Viral Media is Changing Social Protest and Power
author: An Xiao Mina
Beacon Press. Boston

How to Be Antiracist
author: Ibram X. Kendi
Random House, a division of Penguin Random House

A is for Activist
author: Innosanto Nagara
Seven Stories Press

Important Dates

July 16, 2020 FUNDRAISER
KCDW Fundraising Committee
It’s My Party and We Can Zoom If We Want To
(Admission: $1 for every year of your actual age, or $1 for every year of age you would like to be.)

July 29, 2020
KCDW Candidate Action Committee
ZOOM Post Card Writing Event

For more information email:  kanectydemwomen@gmail.com or go to our Facebook page!

Next KCDW Meeting

The next Virtual meeting of the Kane County Democratic Women will be on Wednesday, July 22, 2020.

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