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Women get involved in politics

Posted: September 13, 2008 10:36 p.m.
Updated: November 15, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Minerva Williams, correspondent secretary of the Santa Clarita Valley Democratic Club discusses a slideshow prepared for the Saturday afternoon "Women and Politics" event at Coco's restaurant in Stevenson Ranch.

If you ask Minerva Williams, more women should get involved in politics.

While the 2008 election has opened many doors for women, Williams still sees a lot of opportunities for women to assume the roles as local, state and national political leaders.

But she's not about to let women get involved in politics alone.

With help from the Democratic Club of the Santa Clarita Valley, Williams organized "Women and Politics" on Saturday at Coco's restaurant in Stevenson Ranch to introduce women to the political scene and to teach them the logistics of campaigning.

Williams, who serves as the corresponding secretary for the Democratic Club of the SCV, hopes Saturday's event serves as a kick off for encouraging more women into the world of politics. She plans to host events at local libraries and to work with schools to create scholarships for young female students.

The event featured a series of speakers who discussed the importance of women getting involved in politics.

Among the speakers was Marguerite Cooper of the National Women's Political Caucus, a bipartisan organization focused on increasing women's participation in politics.

"Where my passion and the National Women's Political Caucus is getting more women in the pipeline," she said about female politicians. "We're going backwards."

Cooper spoke about the need to encourage young women to get interested in politics.

"What are we going to do without a Dianne Feinstein?" she asked, referring to the state senator.

The thoughts of Cooper and Williams were shared by a handful of women who are currently running for political office.

Before the event, Hannah-Beth Jackson, Democratic candidate for State Senate, spoke about how women bring different leadership styles to the political arena. Among those traits are being "a lot more collaborative" and sharing new perspectives.

Carole Lutness, Democratic candidate for the 38th Assembly district, said women should be to step forward and "be the leaders of our community and of the future."

Pat Hobbs, vice chair for the National Federation of Democratic Women, said she doesn't believe there are any obstacles in the way of women interested in politics.

"It's what you want and how hard you work for it," she said.

For women who want to get involved in politics, Hobbs believes it's just a matter of getting out there.

"Gender shouldn't matter," she said. "It's just hard work."


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