Logo of the AAUW La Palma - Cerritos during COVID-19

La Palma-Cerritos AAUW elects new officers for 2020-2021

Due to the COVID 19 virus, the La Palma-Cerritos Branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) canceled the meetings and activities planned for the months of March, April, May and June in 2020. Hopefully, the speakers who were scheduled to come to the March and April meetings will be able to be re-scheduled to speak when large group meetings are allowed later in 2020 or in 2021.

The Academic Awards Brunch that was scheduled for April 4 at Cerritos College will be postponed to April of 2021. The La Palma-Cerritos AAUW plans to continue to award scholarships each year to outstanding women students at Cerritos College who plan to continue their education at a four-year college or university. Persons who wish to donate funds for these Academic Awards at Cerritos College can contact Awards Chairperson Carol Marsh at 714-995-6141.

The COVID 19 virus has caused more changes for the La Palma-Cerritos AAUW. Since large group meetings are not allowed because of risk of spreading the virus, President Harriet Moses conducted a vote by way of e-mails to all members to elect board members for 2020-2021. Harriet announced in May that members approved the slate of officers that was presented by the nominating committee on April 6, 2020, with 50% + approval from members.

Congratulations to the elected members of the 2020-2021 AAUW year starting on July 1, 2020! The newly elected 2020-2021 La Palma-Cerritos AAUW Board members are: President, Beverly Zwick, President -Elect, Open; Co VP’s Program, Karen Cox, Nancy Kawamura, and Mary Ann Quinn; Co-VP’s Membership, Joan Flax and Diane Merrick; Co VP’s AAUW Fund, Esther Aronson and Thea Siegel; Secretary, Christine Taxier; and Treasurer, Marilyn Forsstrom.

President Harriet also announced the names of members who agreed to serve on the Appointed Board Members. They are: Bulletin & Website, Marilyn Forsstrom; Legal Advocacy Fund (LAF), Tobi Balma; Tech Trek, Celia Spitzer and Edna Ethington; Public Policy, Sondra Cohen and Jackie Shahzadi; Academic Awards, Carol Marsh; International Interests, Jackie Shahzadi; College/University Liaison, Tobi Balma; Historian, Janet Karter; Hospitality, Maria Cecelia Borja-Van Zitter; Telephone Tree, Sue Carruthers, Pat McClelland, and Joyce Moore.

The newly elected board members and the board members for the past year will be meeting via Zoom meetings in June to start planning for the 20020-2021 AAUW year. Current president Harriet Moses has invited all interested members to attend the branch’s Zoom meeting on June 4 at 2:00 p.m. Contact Zoom Coordinator/Host Tobi Balma for more information about joining the meeting at 562-865-8675.

In March of 2020, the La Palma-Cerritos AAUW Tech Trek Committee selected four outstanding seventh grade students to attend the STEM Tech Trek Camp at Whittier College in March of 2020. The four girls selected were: Sophia Chicas and Sidney Lumsdaine from Walker Jr. High School in Anaheim Union High School District; Janelle Vargas from Fedde Middle School, and Julianna Castellon from Haskell Middle School in ABC Unified School District. The girls had to be nominated by a math or science teacher, have a B average or better, write a 500- word essay and be interviewed by the branch Tech Trek Committee. They all excelled in their classes, wrote thoughtful essays, and communicated well at their interviews.

Unfortunately, due to the COVID 19 virus, the universities and Whittier College canceled all summer camps and activities at their locations. The AAUW California Board then decided to cancel all Tech Trek camps in California for 2020. The AAUW California Board also decided that, if there are Tech Trek Camps in 2021, the camps will be designated only for seventh graders who will be incoming eighth graders in June of 2021.

The La Palma-Cerritos AAUW congratulated the four middle school girls they selected to attend the Whittier Tech Trek Camp. Since the four girls will not be able to attend a Tech Trek Camp, the branch plans to honor them at a branch meeting when large group meetings are allowed, hopefully later in 2020. Contact newly elected President Beverly Zwick for more information at 562-943-6149, after she takes office on July 1, 2020.

Persons who wish to join the La Palma-Cerritos AAUW and work for equity for women and girls can contact current Membership VP Sue Solomon for more information, until the end of June 2020, at 562-493-3787. As of July 1, 2020, contact Co-Membership VP’s, Joan Flax at 562-860-0642 or Diane Merrick at 562-594-4129 for membership information.