Branch Committees

Programs Director: Glenda Struthers
This position implements branch programs. The Vice President serves as the chair of the program committee.

Finance Director: Ardel Nelson
This committee maintains all financial records, prepares the annual budget, and recommends financial strategies for approval by both the board and the membership.

Recording Secretary: TBD
This position is responsible for recording minutes at the branch and board meetings, submitting the minutes for review and releasing the final versions.

Membership Directors: Laura Candris and Vice Chair: Donna Walker
The Membership Committee is responsible for recruitment, retention and orientation of branch members and for hospitality at branch meetings, as well as for social events welcoming new and prospective members.  A  membership directory is maintained by the Vice Chair and Database Manager, Donna Walker, in the password-protected section of the website. Other Membership Committee members are:

New Members – Janet Ankiel and Elaine Wade

Membership Development – Judith MacGregor and Maryann Pennella

Cocktails and Convos – Judith MacGregor

Branch meeting registration and greeting assistance (with the team) – Jan Miller

Branch Meeting Hospitality Coordinator – Ellen Newell

Member Retention and Branch Meeting Registration and Welcome – Laura Scott

Sunshine Secretary and meeting registration and greeting assistance (with the team) –
Mary Uhl

Honorary Life Member Liason – Susan Becker

50-50 Raffle – Elaine Wade

Meeting Ambassadors – Susan Becker, Nancy Beights, Judith Blackburn, Rose DiBiase and Mary Schell.

Communications Director: Bonnie Butcheri
The committee is responsible for branch communications including following:

Gulf Breeze & News Bites Editor: Mary Uhl
The Gulf Breeze is a monthly publication sent via email from November through April informing members of the AAUW activities and positions. News Bites is a smaller one page communication bulletin sent via email, as needed.

Webmaster and Social: Stephanie Smith
This includes maintenance of the website ( The website provides critical resources to members and to the general public by providing current information about branch programs, events, interest groups, and public policy alerts. Social oversight includes Facebook and LinkedIn.

Press Releases and Publications (PR) Chair: Ann Hughes, and Assistant, Maryanna Crawford
This committee is responsible for promoting the Greater Naples Branch of the AAUW to various media outlets including distributing monthly releases announcing branch meetings and speakers as well as press releases regarding activities and events.

Special Events Write Ups: Sharon Perrino 

Local Scholarship Chairs: Jeannine Stetson
This committee is responsible for identifying potential recipients of  local scholarships that are offered by the Greater Naples AAUW Charitable Foundation, Inc.,  The program awards tuition scholarships to women over 21 years of age who reside in Collier or southern Lee County and are seeking an associate’s or bachelor’s degree at a regionally accredited college or university.

Contributions to this program may be made with checks payable to “Greater Naples AAUW Charitable Foundation, Inc.” and designated for the Local Scholarship Fund.

School & Community Relations Chair: Vi Steffan
The Director is responsible for the formulation and implementation of various school and community projects as they relate to the AAUW mission.

In addition, the director oversees several projects as a Vice President of the Greater Naples AAUW Charitable Foundation, Inc. and the following programs:

STEM Conference for 5th Grade Girls Chair: TBD
This conference is for fifth grade girls in Collier County Public Schools and their parents/guardians. STEM increases girls’ academic interests in science, technology, engineering and mathematics by broadening their knowledge and expanding their vision of career possibilities.

Reading is Fun (RIF) Chair: TBD
RIF is a program that works to build a child’s interest in reading.  Books are distributed by AAUW volunteers at five Collier County schools to children ages pre-K through 5th grade. Over 80% of the children in the schools we serve are on the subsidized lunch program. RIF is unique in that the children choose their own book from dozens, if not hundreds, of titles. Volunteers are needed for book distributions that will occur in the January-April time frame. They have obtained funding for the program from Macy’s for 2015 – 2016, as in years past.

Public Policy and Legal Advocacy Director: Karen Clegg and Ardel Nelson
The public policy co-chairs advocate for AAUW’s public policy program and represent AAUW’s public policy priorities to policy makers, elected and appointed officials, AAUW members, the public, and the media. They also lead AAUW voter education and turnout campaigns for their branch.

PP Responsibilities to the Branch
As branch public policy co-chairs, one will be a member of the branch board of directors and both may serve on other committees as assigned.

PP Responsibilities to the State
• Maintain regular contact with state public policy chair and report on efforts
• Share successful advocacy strategies with your state public policy chair and other branches

PP Members
AAUW’s policy work connects and rallies advocates at the local, state, national, and global levels to advance our work to empower women and girls. With the member endorsed Public Policy Priorities as our guide, AAUW uses lobbying and grassroots efforts to push forward policies that break through educational and economic barriers for women.

Legal Advocacy Fund (LAF)
The AAUW Legal Advocacy Fund (LAF) works to challenge sex discrimination in higher education and the workplace. LAF Express informs state and branch members about the latest news, deadlines, and programming resources related to our work in the courtroom. Our resources range from community outreach programs to backing of major cases.

Contributions to LAF may be made by check payable to “Greater Naples AAUW Charitable Foundation, Inc.”

Nominating Committee: Janet Ankiel 
The Past President chairs the Nominating Committee composed of at least two Branch members solicited at or before the November meeting.

Parliamentary Assistant/Bylaws Committee:
This committee interprets GNB bylaws and when necessary, recommends revisions to the board and the membership. The Parliamentarian or Adviser assures that meetings are conducted in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order.

Educational Opportunities Director: Maryann Penella
Branch efforts supporting the national AAUW Educational Opportunities (EO) funds are led by this committee.   The EO is one of the largest sources of funding in the world exclusively for graduate women.   A number of special grant programs within EO exist. Among them are: (1) the Community Action grants which support projects of education and equity for women and girls; (2) the Career Development grants which provide financial assistance to women upgrading professional skills, changing professions and reentering the work force; and, (3) the Eleanor Roosevelt Fund which provides funding for cutting-edge research on education in American public schools.

The Greater Naples Branch AAUW Education Opportunities program funds endowments that have far reaching effects outside our local Naples community. Under the WHAT WE DO heading on the AAUW website you will find general information about AAUW Community Action and Career Development grants. The website is a valuable resource for all things AAUW.

The Greater Naples Branch supports funding of projects through the Greater Naples AAUW Charitable Foundation, Inc. by membership donations and fund raising activities. WHAT WE DO makes a
difference in the futures of girls and women across the nation.

Contributions to this program may be made with checks payable to “Greater Naples AAUW Charitable Foundation, Inc.” and designated for the specific EO fund or paid directly to National AAUW for the EO Fund.

Development Committee: Chair:
This committee collaborates with the Board of Directors to maximize fundraising program development; helps ensure effective member and branch, fundraising communication; and, expands fundraising sources.

The historian maintains a current record of GNB activities.

Branch Fund Raisers

Tours & Talks, [Under Development Committee] are social events that provide an opportunity for members and their non-member friends to get together for a visit to interesting places in and around Naples, while helping to raise Branch operating funds. It may be a discussion group, museum tour, lecture, boat ride or a walk in a garden – all of Florida is our stage. Each event has a small suggested registration fee.