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Knox Voter
Citizen EngagementFebruary 2011
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In This Issue
-From the President
-Buy Your Tickets Today for Petticoats in Politics
-Observer Corps Report
-State Legislative Breakfast
-Voter Services...Peoplepower needed!

What's Your League Story?
The League is building the
 LWV Storybank.  Go to the online form ( and share why you joined or what you've learned or why you love the League.  They will send your story to us at the Knoxville/Knox County League. 

LWVKKC Board of Directors 

Jamey Dobbs

1st Vice-president:
Laura Cole

2nd Vice-president: Barabara Nicodemus

Mary Headrick


Robin Brown
Lisa Carroll
Rynn Dupes
Susanne Dupes
Parci Gibson
Kelly Pemberton
Lee Ann Rodgers
Casey Self

Quick Links

Comments or suggestions?
 Contact the editor at
From the President

Jamey 2122100Hey everybody!  It's redistricting time in Tennessee!  I'm guessing you haven't made plans for a "pre-game" tailgate in front of the City County Building, but I hope you'll set time aside to come to the League's Redistricting Workshop this Saturday morning, Feb. 19 at 10:00 am.  More details are found below, but I want to encourage you to attend and help us grow some momentum for open government.


Watching the scenes of Egyptian people of all ages taking their stand for democracy the past few weeks has been very humbling and inspiring for me, as I'm sure it's been for many of you.  The Egyptian people are now considering in a very focused way the practical tools of democracy-- like voting methods and practices.  We can take their lead and learn about our own electoral process, starting with redistricting.  It's so fundamental, I've been told by one savvy politician, that if votes are the "mother's milk" of political life, redistricting IS the mother! 


Lifelong learning is an important benefit offered to League members. We share insights into political and community life that you won't get anywhere else in Knoxville.  And we have a good time!  I invite you to enjoy a night out with friends and support the League's new projects by purchasing tickets to our Tribute to Women's History show on March 4 at Hilton Knoxville.  We'll start with a dessert/appetizer mixer at 7:15 pm, followed by the musical theater event Petticoats in Politics at 8:00 pm.   See the details below and listen to B97.5 this week.  The League is on the air! 



-- Jamey Dobbs, President  548-0818


Redistricting 101--Come and bring a friend


Don't miss our Redistricting 101 workshop this Saturday, February 19th, from 10am-12pm.  We have organized this free educational workshop as a public event, so please bring your friends.  It's being held in the Small Assembly Room of the City County Building.
Taking place every ten years, redistricting is the process of adjusting the boundaries of all political districts in the state to changes in population documented in the census.  This process affects every County Commission, City Council, School Board in the state, and the State Legislature.  How the boundaries of these districts change will influence our democratic representation...a rather important issue!  So come out Saturday and get a little continuing education in open government... over a nice breakfast.  Our presenters are:

  • Rick Emmett, Knoxville's Urban Growth Manager
  • Tim Kuhn, the Metropolitan Planning Commission's GIS Manager
  • Greg Mackay, Knox County Election Commission Administrator
  • Wanda Moody, former Knox County Commissioner
  • Harry Tindell, State Representative
  • Jamey Dobbs and Barbara Nicodemus, League of Women Voters leaders 

The workshop will focus on the redistricting processes taking place this spring with an overview of the state redistricting set for 2012.  Our presenters will explain the law, cover the basic principles used in redistricting, and will demonstrate how census data is used and how maps are generated.  You will also learn ways to get involved in the redistricting process and effective ways to communicate with your decision makers to support openness.


A breakfast of muffins, bagels, juice and coffee will be provided starting at 9:45 am.  If you have questions, contact our League president, Jamey Dobbs, at


This is a basic workshop--you don't need to know anything about redistricting to attend.


  Buy Your Tickets Today for Petticoats in Politics

Friday, March 4, 2011   Hilton Knoxville

Reception 7:15 p.m.

Performance 8:00 p.m.


Tickets $35 available at or

from League Board Members  



The Women of Petticoats in Politics     

By Rynn Dupes 


By now you should've all heard about our special event, Petticoats in Politics, coming up in March. Kate Campbell Stevenson is coming to perform her one woman show in which she portrays five different women from history: Abigail Adams, Marion Anderson, Rose Crabtree, Alice Paul, and Eleanor Roosevelt. While some of these women are both well-known and well-loved, some of them may be less familiar to you.


The first, Abigail Adams, is famous for the letters she wrote to her husband, bio-adamsand our second President, John Adams. In her letters, she urged him to "Remember the Ladies, and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors." She even declared that women would "foment a rebellion" if they did not have a voice.


bio-andersonMarion Anderson was also known for her voice, but in a very different sense. Marion was a talented singer. She was invited to sing at Carnegie Hall, and then turned away by the DAR. Eleanor Roosevelt, then president of the DAR resigned in protest and arranged for Marion to sing at the Lincoln Memorial, and for the performance to be heard by people all over the country. This was the first in a long series of successes for Marion.


Rose Crabtree was a special, but probably much less famous, woman frombio-crabtree the early twentieth century. She is best known for beating her husband, Henry Crabtree, in a race for a seat on Jackson Hole, Wyoming's Town Council. This was a great victory, considering her husband was the town's Mayor at the time of the election.


bio-paulAlice Paul is a name well known in women's rights circles. She was a leader of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, as well as one of the founders and leaders of the Congressional Union for Woman Suffrage. She was one of the women associated with the "Iron Jawed Angels" incident. Her efforts helped women gain suffrage, and after that goal was achieved, she turned her attention to the ERA, which she would live to see passed (but of course not ratified).


And last but certainly not least is Eleanor Roosevelt. Arguably the most bio-rooseveltfamous of the women Kate portrays, she is known not only for her status as first lady, but also for her dedication to work for human and civil rights. She was an advocate for women's issues, a constant source of support for her husband, a proponent of civil rights, a delegate to the United Nations, a founder of UNICEF, and, under Kennedy, the head of the Commission on the Status of Women.


These women demonstrate the power of the individual, and can help us to appreciate the great strides that have been made to get us to where we are today. To learn more about them, visit Kate's website,, and please join us in celebrating them on March fourth.


Observer Corps Report: Weather Predictions Supports a Call to Observers   

By Barbara Nicodemus, Observer Corps Chair


Famous groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, and ABC weatherman, Sam Champion predict an early spring is on its way. Yes, with the holidays over and this prediction of better weather on its way, I would like to rally our 20 plus Observers to kick into gear.  The last two months we have had a significant decline in Observer reports submitted, and understandably so.


I'd like to welcome Casey Self, our newest observer, to Observer Corps.  Casey shadowed me to a City Council meeting and has joined our troops.  I would like to invite anyone who may be interested in becoming an Observer to attend a public meeting with one of our Observers.   I would gladly pair you with a seasoned Observer to a meeting of interest.   If you are interested in learning more about our Observer Corps or want to join up, please contact me at 865 805-1091 or  Check out reports and our Observer Manual on our website, via Observer Corps links.


Last Minute Bulletin - Observer Corps has received 5 reports in less than 24 hours, has someone been reading my mind!

  Donate to the Ed Fund!

Want to make a donation to the League that is totally tax deductible?   


We use the Ed Fund to help  

inform and educate our members and the public.  


 Make your checks out to LWV Ed Fund.


Voter Services...Peoplepower needed!

By Kelly Pemberton 


The League encourages informed and active participation in government and is committed to citizen education.  In order to achieve these goals this year, the Voter Services Committee needs your help!   


With the city mayoral election quickly approaching, there is much to do in the realm of Voter Services.  Some of the exciting activities that Voter Services Committee accomplishes through out an election year are voter guides, co-sponsoring candidate forums and creating and sponsoring our own debates.  


The basic principle of the League's voter service work is non-partisanship- providing unbiased and factual information to help citizens make their own informed decisions on Election Day.  If you're interested in making a difference in your community and building citizen participation in the democratic process, we need you on the Voter Services Committee!  No experience or previous knowledge necessary- just a desire for civic engagement.   


If you have questions or are interested in joining the Voter Services Committee, please call or email at 865.680.6549 or

  Suggest a HOT TOPIC for the April Meeting!


If you have an issue you'd like us to organize our April

meeting around, let us know NOW. 


To suggest a Hot Topic, send an email to

or call Jamey Dobbs at 548-0818. 

 The deadline for meeting suggestions is Friday, March 11th



Project Nominated by Our League Wins National Award  

By Jamey Dobbs 


With our interest in improving planning and land use in Knox County, the League is involved in a pilot program to bring an innovative planning and land use class to students in Knox County Schools.   The League was invited to observe and then to nominate the "Go to 2033" program for an international competition sponsored by the International Union of Architects (UIA). 


"Go to 2033" is modeled on a 1920 manual written to introduce children to the vision and master plan for the city of Chicago.   With a modern manual written by West Valley art teacher Suzanne Widekind, and with help from local planner Gene Burr, the MPC staff, and the Knoxville Museum of Art staff, the program transforms eighth grade art students into teams of architects, urban designers, entrepreneurs, politicians, and planning commissioners.  Using as their palette the Bearden corridor, art students developed an impressive plan and set of skills and conceptual understanding. 


Although the project fell behind the top three winners going to the international contest, the judges of the national competition were so impressed with  "Go To 2033" that a new category was created for its Honorable Mention.  With the other partners, we hope to help expand the program into more Knox County schools and the rest of the country.

First Legislative Breakfast a Success! 

By Rynn Dupes

On February 11, the League hosted a successful Legislative Breakfast. Although, we unfortunately got last minute news from Senator Campfield that he had a conflict that kept him from attending, we were lucky enough to have lots of time with Senator Woodson.


She covered issues as diverse as making Tennessee a more inviting place for business to education, a subject close to her heart. We hope to have more of these in the future, including possible district-by-district meetings with representatives.


Thanks to those who came, and a special thanks to beautiful Blount Mansion for hosting the event!


CALENDAR of Meetings and Events



Feb. 19: Redistricting 101 

Feb. 22:  Board Meeting

Mar. 4:  Tribute to Women's History Event: Petticoats and Politics


Mar. 15:  Membership Meeting. Open Discussion to Set League Priorities

Mar. 22:  Board Meeting

Apr. 19:  Membership Meeting. Hot Topic suggested by members

Apr. 26:  Board Meeting

May 17 or 19:  Annual Membership Meeting

June 18:  LWVUS Council. National Council - all members invited

Did You Know?
Each Voter snail mailed to a member costs $1.34 + labor.  You can stretch your membership dollar by receiving the Voter by email.  If you agree to receive the Voter by email, contact any board member.  But if that would stop your Voter perusal, don't do it! 
Contact Info
League of Women Voters of Knoxville/Knox County
P.O. Box 31825
Knoxville, TN 37930-1825