Join Us for the LWVGO & LWVNE Annual Meeting on April 27

LWVGO’s 2019 annual meeting will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 27 at the AIM Exchange Trading Floor, 7th Floor, 1905 Harney Street.

Annual Meeting Schedule of Events

Immediately following the LWVGO annual meeting will be a taco-bar luncheon, featuring a talk by LWV national board member Melissa Currence. Following the luncheon, LWVNE will have its annual meeting in the same space.

  • 8:30 a.m.: Check-in
  • 9 a.m.: LWVGO annual meeting begins
  • 11 a.m.: Lunch begins
  • 11:30 a.m.: Speaker begins
  • 1 p.m.: LWVNE annual meeting begins
  • 3 p.m.: Day concludes

Register for the LWVGO annual meeting (and pay for the lunch) by no later than 5 p.m. on April 19 to guarantee entry. Register using the form below or by sending a note and check to LWVGO.

To attend the afternoon LWVNE meeting, send a check for $10 to LWVNE at 4600 Valley Road, Suite 306, Lincoln, NE 68510. (This additional fee covers the cost of workbook printing.)

Please send any questions to vicepresident@lwvgo.org.

Featured Speaker: Melissa Currence

Melissa Currence has served as a Ruth S. Shur Fellow for the League of Women Voters of the United States (LWVUS) since 2015, serving the states of Illinois and New York. She also co-Chaired the Young People Task Force for two years. Melissa joined LWV when she was 18 and has served on LWV Cincinnati Area board in several capacities including president, vice president of voter service, and is currently vice president of development.

She served on the LWV Ohio for two years on membership engagement committee and starting the state’s social media presence.  In addition, she serves as vice president of the Cincinnatus Association, a membership organization providing civic leadership and improving the long-term vitality of the Cincinnati region.  Melissa has a B.A. in Political Science from Xavier University (2001) and a Master’s of Arts in Journalism from The Ohio State University (2004). She has worked in the nonprofit public relations/marketing field for 14 years, and is the Community Impact Marketing Director at The Greater Cincinnati Foundation. She has several writing projects at melissacurrence.com and stubbycurrence.com. 

Parking at Our New Office in the AIM Institute Building

Parking is available on the garage roof, leading into a second-floor entrance to the building. Overflow parking is available across the street at the Omaha-Douglas Civic Center garage.

Register for the Annual Meeting

Register for the annual meeting, and pay for taco lunch, by filling out and submitting the form below. Once you submit, you’ll see our PayPal gateway appear in your browser. Use this to pay for your lunch(es). (You do not need to have a PayPal account to complete payment.)


Join LWVNE for Legislative Day on Feb. 19

The League of Women Voters of Greater Omaha participates in the yearly League of Women Voters of Nebraska legislative/lobby day and encourages all interested folks — members and nonmembers — to join as well.

The goal of LWVNE Legislative Day is to learn about how to effectively lobby state legislators as well as to put theory into practice. The day finishes with a “lunch and learn” presentation.

Read more about the 2019 priority bills that LWVNE members will lobby for.

This year’s Legislative Day takes place from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 19, in Lincoln. The full schedule is listed below.

The featured luncheon speaker is Danielle Conrad, former state senator and current executive director of the ACLU of Nebraska, speaking on the topic of Criminal Justice Reform.

For more info and to register (registration is required and the deadline to register is Feb. 8), go to lwv-ne.org.

8:30 to 9 — Nebraska State Education Association Meeting Room

Registration and Refreshments. Note that parking is NOT available.

9 to 10:15 — Nebraska State Education Association Meeting Room

The Legislative process; LWVNE Priorities presented by LWVNE Action Directors: Lynne Elwood, Government; Phyllis Salyards, Health Care; John Else, Social Policy.

10:15 to 11:50 — State Capitol

Visit with senators, observe Unicameral in session, tour Capitol.

11:50 to 1 — Governor’s Mansion

Luncheon (Salmon with a Quinoa & Asparagus Salad) + speaker.


Election Facts at a Glance: Get Ready for the 2018 Primary

Election Day for the 2018 primary is May 15 and the deadline to register or change your registration (if you’ve moved, changed your name, want to change your political party affiliation, etc.) is coming up fast. In Douglas and Sarpy counties, the deadline to register by mail, through an agent (like one of our voter-registration volunteers) or online is April 30. Douglas County residents can also register in-person at the election commission office any time before 6 p.m. on May 4.

As part of our mission to empower voters, LWVGO has put together a two-page printable factsheet about the election: ElectFacts: 2018 Primary. Below, we’ve collected some more extensive information about the primary and how to be a voter. We also have a Google Calendar available with the deadlines and will be collecting candidate forums and other resources on our website under the heading “2018 ELECTIONS.”

We encourage you to distribute this information with your friends, families and community members.

Get out there and go vote, Omaha!

About This Election

Nebraska primary basics

In this election, voters will narrow the field — candidates that “win” their primary elections will go on to compete in the 2018 general election in November.

Many of Nebraska’s state and local offices are nonpartisan (including the state legislature and public utility races), so, in these races, the top two candidates — regardless of their political party affiliation — will move on the general election.

For example, Nebraska legislative district 8 has three candidates on the ballot, all of whom are registered Democrats. The primary election next month will determine which two will appear on the general election ballot in November.

Other offices have partisan primary races. This means that the primary election determines which candidate represents a given party in the general election.

For example, the Nebraska governor’s race has two Republicans and three Democrats in the primary. There will be two winners — one for each party, and those two will go on to appear on the general election ballot.

Some races, both nonpartisan and partisan ones, won’t be on the primary ballot because the number of candidates is small enough that they all advance to the general election.

For example, there’s only one Democratic candidate for secretary of state (a statewide, partisan race) but there are two Republican candidates, so voters who vote the Democratic ballot won’t see secretary of state as an option but those who vote the Republican ballot will.

Omaha Public Schools’ bond issue

Residents in the Omaha Public School District will have an issue on their ballots, in addition to the primary candidates running for representation of their districts. OPS voters will decide to grant or not grant a bond to fund the school district. You can find out more about this issue from Go Vote, Omaha.

Who Can Vote

You are eligible to vote in Nebraska if you are:

  1. A Nebraska resident; and
  2. A US citizen; and
  3. At least 18 years old OR 17 years old but you’ll be 18 by Nov. 6, 2018; and
  4. Have never been convicted of a felony OR have been convicted of a felony but have completed your entire sentence (including probation/parole and incarceration), plus 2 years of wait-time. (Citizens with misdemeanor convictions or citizens who have spent time in jail, including while awaiting trial, do not lose their right to vote.)

What about political parties?

Voters must select a political party when they register. There are four recognized parties: Republican, Democratic, Libertarian and Nonpartisan.

Registered voters of all parties (including nonpartisans) can vote in the primary election. Republican, Democratic and Libertarian voters will receive ballots specific to their respective parties. Nonpartisan voters will receive Nonpartisan ballots and can also choose to vote an additional ballot. If they elect to, Nonpartisans can choose to also vote the Nonpartisan Republican ballot, Nonpartisan Democratic ballot or Nonpartisan Libertarian ballot. These additional ballots include only the respective party’s Congressional race. View this graphic from the Douglas County Election Commission for a visual explanation.

What if I don’t have an address or are registered at my parents’ address but go to school out-of-state?

If you are registered at your parent’s home, you will need to request an early ballot to vote by mail.

If you live in a shelter, you can register to vote using the address of the shelter. You can vote early or on Election Day.

If you do not have an address at all, you can register to vote using the address of your county election commission office as your address. You can then vote early, in-person at the election commission office between April 16 and May 14. You cannot vote on Election Day.

If you are in a county jail, you can register to vote using your home address. You will need to request an early ballot to vote by mail.

How to Register to Vote

The deadline to register to vote in this election is April 30.

Nebraska residents can register online via the Nebraska Secretary of State’s website.

You can also register to by paper: You can fill out and print the form and mail it to your election commission or bring it in. (Mailed registrations must be postmarked by April 30.)

Douglas County Election Commission
225 North 115th Street
Omaha, NE 68154

Sarpy County Election Commission
501 Olson Dr. Suite 4
Papillion, NE 68046

Verify your registration and that all your information is correct by going to the Nebraska Voter Check website and entering your information under “Registration Information.”

How, When & Where to Vote

Nebraska voters can: vote early by going to their county election office (early in-person voting), vote early by mailing their ballot to their county election office (vote by mail), vote early by dropping off a ballot in a dropbox, or vote in-person at their polling place.

Early Voting

You can go to your county election commission office and vote early in-person any time between 8 a.m. Monday, April 16 and 6 p.m. Monday, May 14. Here are the office addresses:

Douglas County Election Commission
225 North 115th Street
Omaha, NE 68154

Sarpy County Election Commission
501 Olson Dr. Suite 4
Papillion, NE 68046

Vote By Mail (VBM)

In Douglas and Sarpy counties, you have to request a ballot to get it mailed to you. If you request a ballot, you cannot vote on Election Day. In Douglas County, you can also drop your ballot off at a dropbox instead of putting it in the mail.

To get a ballot mailed to you, fill out the form for your county and then email it in, mail it in or deliver it to your county election commission office. The deadline is 6 p.m. on Friday, May 4.

Douglas County Application
Email: earlyvoting@votedouglascounty.com
Dropbox Locations

Office Location:
225 North 115th Street
Omaha, NE 68154

Sarpy County Application
Email: earlyvote@sarpy.com
Office Location:
501 Olson Dr. Suite 4
Papillion, NE 68046

Verifying Your Ballot Was Received

After voting, it’s a good idea to check that your early/vote-by-mail ballot was received and accepted. To do this, go to the Nebraska Voter Check website, click on “Absentee Ballot” and enter your information.

At-Poll (Election Day) Voting

If you did not request an early/absentee/VBM ballot, you’ll vote on Election Day, which is Tuesday, May 15. You’ll go to your polling place any time between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Your election commission office should have sent you a card with your polling place information and district information when you registered or changed your registration. But you can find your polling place online if you need to: Go to the Nebraska Voter Check website and enter your address.

How to Find Out Who & What Will Be On Your Ballot

Your election commission office should have sent you a card with your polling place information and district information when you registered or changed your registration.

If you live in Douglas or Sarpy County, you can also find out your districts online. You can then match up your districts with voting guides to find out more about the candidates running to be your representative in those districts.

You can find out who is running in each race/district on the Douglas County Election Commission website (this includes statewide races and U.S. House of Representatives District 2 but not races specific to only Sarpy County).

Because this is a primary and there’s a mix of partisan and nonpartisan races, there are different ballots for the different political parties. Every ballot has the nonpartisan races that you’re eligible to vote for plus the bond-issue question, if you live in the Omaha Public School District. Libertarian, Republican and Democratic ballots have all the nonpartisan races, the bond-issue question (if you live in the OPS District), plus the party candidates for the partisan races.

Find Your Districts: Douglas County

If you’re registered, you can use the Nebraska Voter Check website to find both your polling place information and your districts.

If you’re not registered (or just recently registered), go to the Douglas County Election Commission website and enter your address under “Finding Your Voting Information.” (Tip: Use the advanced search for better results.)

Find Your Districts: Sarpy County

Go to the Polling Place Locator website and enter your address. Under the Voting Info tab, you’ll see your polling place address and can even click on links to view sample ballots. Click on the Districts tab to see all of your representatives and the districts they represent.


Join Observer Corps

Want to get to know your local government and help make democracy work? Join Observer Corps!

Observer Corps are a structured way for individuals to exercise their right to know. They provide a valuable service to the community. They help ensure that citizens are aware of the decisions that impact their lives and they promote government transparency and accountability.

An observer is an individual who attends a governmental meeting, notes what happens at the meeting, and reports back to the League and through the League to the community. By attending public meetings of local governmental bodies/agencies, observers learn more about what their government is doing. They learn about the issues facing their community and are empowered to take action, if warranted. They also learn how issues are being addressed.

Observers generally do not “act” on issues in these meetings as a representative of the League (observers should not provide commentary or testimony on issues on behalf of the League). Instead, observers attend meetings to gather information. Through the process, their presence encourages better, more transparent government.

Anyone is welcome to become an observer. Non-members are welcome to join and all participants are encouraged to bring a friend!

How much time does it take?

Observers can choose when they are available and how much time they are able to spend observing. They can choose to observe bodies that meet during the day, in the evenings and that are held weekly, twice per month, monthly or every other month. Observers can also choose to “virtually attend” meetings at any time they like by watching/listening to recordings available online. If there is a large enough response, we may be able to “double up” observers and even have rotating schedules (one meeting on, one meeting off), if desired.

To become an observer:

  1. Fill out the interest survey here: http://bit.ly/ObsSignup.
  2. Attend a brief training session with one or both of the observer corps leaders. (This can be done in person or online.)
  3. Attend your first meeting! We can provide outlines for taking notes if you like.

Any questions?

Contact Alex Garrison at alexcgarrison@gmail.com or Linda Duckworth at lindabduckworth@gmail.com.

Celebrate the Centennial of Women’s Suffrage at the Nebraska History Museum

One hundred years ago, Nebraska was one of the first states to ratify the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote in the United States.  Beginning August 16th, the Nebraska History Museum invites you to celebrate women’s suffrage with their newest exhibit, Votes For Women: Nebraska’s Suffrage Story. The exhibition will be open on August 16, 2019, through January 2, 2021.

The exhibit will feature artifacts, photographs, and more from Nebraska’s suffrage movement as well as commentary from present-day women in politics and advocacy. Visitors will see unique objects including the Nebraska pen used by Governor Roy McKelvie to sign the bill ratifying the 19th Amendment and an autograph book signed by Nebraska and nationally known suffragists including Susan B. Anthony, Lucy Stone, and Clara Colby. The exhibit also features many original banners, flags, and pennants used in Nebraska suffrage parades.

Celebrate the opening of Votes for Women
Friday, August 16th, 5:00 pm – 7:30 pm

Join us at the Nebraska History Museum, 1500 R Street in Lincoln, to celebrate the opening of Vote for Women: Nebraska’s Suffrage Story. Be one of the first people to see the exhibit and experience Nebraska’s suffrage movement first hand.

Guests will see authentic banners, posters, clothing from this crucial civil rights struggle, learn about the women (and men) who worked for decades to win Nebraska’s battle for the ballot, experience the passion and power of historic re-enactors depicting suffragists Clara Bewick Colby, Susan B. Anthony and Rheta Childe Orr, and much more!

The free event will be Friday, August 16th, from 5:00 pm to 7:30 pm. We look forward to seeing you there!

Mark Your Calendars for the 100th Anniversary Kickoff

In a very special Dine & Discuss event, we will be hosting a kickoff to our celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the 19th Amendment and the League of Women Voters. The event will be at 5:30 p.m. on Monday August 26 at the AIM building, 1905 Harney St., on the 7th floor. (August 26 is also Women’s Equality Day!)

We hope you can join us for a presentation on the 19th Amendment by Judge Laurie Smith Camp, Senior District Judge of the United States District Court, District of Nebraska.

There is no cost to attend and heavy appetizers will be provided.

Please RSVP to candide@lwvgo.org so we will know how much food to order. We hope to see you there!

Grace Crandall Richardson: Nebraska’s Persistent Suffragist

Dr. Amy Forss, chair of the History Department and Social Science co-representative at Metropolitan Community College in Omaha, will unpack Grace Crandall Richardson’s personal scrapbooks to offer insights into the life of one of Nebraska’s fighting suffragists.

Dr. Forss is presenting from 12 to 1 pm. Thursday, Aug. 15 at the Nebraska History Museum in Lincoln.

Images and personal memories outline Richardson’s campaign and her role in the 1917-1919 Nebraska Supreme Court case Barkley vs. Pool. Included in the presentation are photographs and artifacts from the History Nebraska collection and excerpts from the unpublished autobiography.

Library of Congress Seeks Help to Transcribe Women’s Suffrage Papers

The Library of Congress is asking for volunteers to help transcribe more than 16,000 historic papers related to the women’s suffrage movement. It has launched a crowdsourcing platform, “By the People,” to ask the public to help type up written documents word for word, which will make it easier to find and read original sources.

The Library of Congress project coincides with the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which Congress passed in June 1919. Women officially gained the right to vote in August 1920, when the amendment was ratified.

The Library of Congress’s collection includes letters, speeches, newspaper articles, personal diaries and other materials from famed suffragists like Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton; accounts from Carrie Chapman Catt, who served twice as president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, including during the final successful ratification campaign; and the diaries of Mary Church Terrell, a founder of the National Association of Colored Women, which shed light on minorities’ laborious suffrage struggles and her own dealings with civil rights figures like W.E.B. Du Bois.

Elizabeth Novara, an American women’s history specialist and curator of the Library of Congress’s new “Shall Not Be Denied” suffrage exhibition, said she hopes the transcription endeavor will give people an opportunity to “engage with our collections and feel a connection with the suffragists.”

“This project may be of interest to members of the League of Women Voters as we begin to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution,” said Dianne Bystrom, LWVNE co-president. “This would also be a great project for college classes to help them learn more about the women’s suffrage movement.”

As of now, more than 4,200 documents have already been transcribed. However, thousands more need transcription. You can donate your time and typing skills to the project here.

Understanding Impeachment

In this episode of Go Vote Omaha, Geri Simon talks with R. Collin Mangrum about the impeachment process, its history and its place in the political process.

R. Collin Mangrum, JD, SJD, is Yossem Endowed Chair in Legal Ethics, with Creighton University School of Law.

Go Vote Omaha! is our locally produced informational television program. Watch Go Vote Omaha at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday nights on Cox channel 22 or CenturyLink channel 89 or anytime on YouTube. You can also listen to these episodes as podcasts on Podbean.

Preparing for the 2020 Census in Nebraska

In this episode of Go Vote, Omaha!, Terri Crawford, Host and Member of the League of Women Voters of Greater Omaha, speaks with Julia Tse, Policy Coordinator for Voices for Our Children and Brad Christian-Sallis, Voting Rights Field Director at Civic Nebraska, about the 2020 Census.

For more information, see the US Census Bureau website, Civic Nebraska’s website and Voices for Children in Nebraska.

Go Vote Omaha! is our locally produced informational television program. Watch Go Vote Omaha at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday nights on Cox channel 22 or CenturyLink channel 89 or anytime on YouTube. You can also listen to these episodes as podcasts on Podbean.

Books After Dark: ‘Visionary Women’ by Andrea Barnet Aug. 20

Join us to discuss the importance of the work these women did to make our world a better place. We’ll be discussing Visionary Women by Andrea Barnet from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Tue., Aug. 20 at the LWVGO office in the AIM Institute building, 1905 Harney St.

Book Summary: This is the story of four visionaries who profoundly shaped the world we live in today. Together, these women—linked not by friendship or field, but by their choice to break with convention—showed what one person speaking truth to power can do.

Optional RSVP on Facebook.

Next Doc Club Meeting: ‘Sustainable’ on Aug. 17

Join us from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sat., Aug. 17 at Big Mama’s Kitchen And Catering, 3223 N 45th St., for our next Documentary Club meeting.

Sustainable is a film about the land, the people who work it and what must be done to sustain it for future generations.

Watch on Netflix ahead of the event, then join us at the Doc Club meeting to discuss. Optional RSVP on Facebook.

Watching documentaries is a great way to learn new things and open your mind to ways to improve our world.


Dine & Discuss: Reduce, Recycle and More Happening July 22

Monday, July 22, 2019
5:30 PM
1905 Harney St. in the Exchange Room on floor 7.
Join us at 5 p.m. on Monday, July 22 for Reduce, Recycle and More. Our presenter, Michael J. O’Hara, J.D., Ph.D., has worked on environmental issues for many years. He has been active with the Missouri Valley chapter of the Sierra Club and will be able to answer our many questions about:
  • Ban the Bag Ordinance efforts
  • Omaha’s trash, yard waste and recycling contract
  • The Orange Hefty bag project
  • Success with Composting
  • and much more.

Bring your questions on July 22!

Dinner will be provided. 

The Dine & Discuss dates for the rest of 2019 (which will all be held at the LWVGO office building 7th floor, Exchange Room) on the fourth Monday of the month are:

  • August 26
  • September 23
  • October 28
  • November 25
There is no Dine & Discuss in December. There will be a holiday party at the LWVGO office on December 3, 2019.
Free parking is available in the rear of the building on the 1st and 2nd floors.

Books After Dark: Biased Discussion Happening July 9

Join us in discussion of Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do by Jennifer L. Eberhardt, PhD.

You don’t have to be racist to be biased. Unconscious bias can be at work without our realizing it, and even when we genuinely wish to treat all people equally, ingrained stereotypes can infect our visual perception, attention, memory, and behavior. This has an impact on education, employment, housing, and criminal justice. In Biased, with a perspective that is at once scientific, investigative, and informed by personal experience, Jennifer Eberhardt offers us insights into the dilemma and a path forward.

We’re meeting from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 9 on the 8th floor of the AIM Institute Building at 1905 Harney St.