The League of Women Voters of Bellingham/Whatcom County and the Ralph Munro Institute for Civic Education, in partnership with the Whatcom Museum, offers a virtual panel discussion focusing on the continued struggle for suffrage, voice, and equal representation by those who were left out of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote 100 years ago.
This virtual presentation, “Imperfect Democracy: Exploring historical and contemporary threats to the franchise and political voice,” will be moderated by Kate Destler, Western Washington University Political Science professor and will look at the history and future of the struggle for political voice. Panelists include:
Marco Morales, President, Indigenous Studies Foundation
Dr. Christopher Parker, Professor of Political Science, University of Washington
Dr. Peter Pihos, Assistant Professor of History, Western Washington University
Breanna Weider, Policy Analyst, Washington State Office of Attorney General
Attendees will be invited to participate in a Q & A session following the panel. This event was made possible by generous contributions from members of our community.
Registration to this program is free but required. Participants will receive an email confirmation with the Zoom login info once they sign up. Support for this digital program provided by Art Bridges.
About the presenters:
Marco Morales is an expert on Latino Politics in Washington State. He earned a BA in American Cultural Studies, magna cum laude from Western Washington University and a MA specializing in Political Science, History and Law from Heidelberg University in Germany. During his time at Western Washington University he was a program lead on a study abroad program to the Republic of Cuba. Morales is a lifelong resident of Mount Vernon, WA and is involved with civic engagement in that community. He currently serves as a member of the City of Mount Vernon’s planning commission and is a Migrant Graduation Specialist with Mount Vernon Schools where he works with students from Migrant Farmworker backgrounds. Morales also currently serves as the President of the Indigenous Studies Foundation, a local non-profit in the Skagit Valley tasked with revitalizing the Azteca-Mexica culture of central Mexico.
Dr. Christopher Parker is Professor of Political Science at the University of Washington in Seattle. His first book, Fighting for Democracy: Black Veterans and the Struggle Against White Supremacy in the Postwar South, winner of the American Political Science Association’s Ralph J. Bunche Award, takes a fresh approach to the civil rights movement by gauging the extent to which black veterans contributed to social change. A second book, Change They Can’t Believe In: The Tea Party and Reactionary Politics in America, explores the beliefs, attitudes, and behavior of the Tea Party. This book won the American Political Science Association’s award for the best book in Race, Ethnicity, and Politics. A third book, currently in progress, Haven’t We Seen this [Stuff] Before?: The Reactionary Right and the Origins of Contemporary Racial Politics, examines the forebears of the Tea Party, and how their resistance to progress resulted in the present political climate in which America remains mired in racial conflict.
Peter C. Pihos is an Assistant Professor of History at Western Washington University, where he teaches courses on African American history and modern U.S. history. He has a Ph.D. in History from the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from New York University. In 2006-2007, Pihos worked as a law clerk for the Honorable Diane P. Wood on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago. He has taught at Duke University and Williams College, as well as educational experiments at Deep Spring College and the Arête Project. Pihos’ scholarly work focuses on the relationship between race, criminal justice, and urban politics. His book manuscript-in-progress tells the story of liberal criminal justice reform politics during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s through a history of Chicago’s Afro-American Patrolmen’s League.
Breanna Weider is a Seattle native who grew up volunteering on Election Day with her parents; her upbringing grounded her with a deep belief in social justice and progressive politics. Throughout college, Weider held numerous internships and worked for Organizing for America in 2012 as an organizer. Since her graduation, Weider has worked in both the Washington State Senate and House of Representatives, managed two campaigns, and worked as a Planned Parenthood organizer. Currently, she works as a Policy Analyst for Attorney General Bob Ferguson. She also spends time serving on two PAC boards and volunteers with the local democratic party. Weider’s strengths are in community-based collaboration, data analysis, community organizing, and communications.
Professor Kate Destler joined the faculty of the Political Science Department of Western Washington University in Fall 2016 and teaches courses on American politics, public policy and bureaucratic politics. She specializes in public policy and American politics, with a focus on education policy, civic participation and policy implementation. She comes to Western from George Mason University, where she served as a faculty member in the School of Policy, Government and International Affairs. A former K-12 English and social studies teacher, she graduated from the Evans School of Public Affairs with a PhD in Public Policy and Management. She also holds an AB in Comparative Literature from Brown University and a Masters in English Teaching from the University of Virginia. Destler is currently at work on a project that examines how race, class, and diversity affect citizen involvement in schools. A recipient of a postdoctoral research fellowship from the Spencer Foundation and National Academy of Education, she will spend the next two years examining how the expansion of school choice has affected the racial and economic segregation of students. She is also at work on a book project entitled Performance Management Hits the Streets: Organizational Culture and Education Reform.
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