Memorial West Republican Women PAC held the first of its 2014 meetings on Monday, January 13, 2014 at Carmelo's on Memorial. New officers were installed and the guest speaker was Houston City Council member Brenda Stardig.
Full Disclosure: I am a member of Memorial West Republican Women PAC. I am a former president of the club as well as a current member of the Executive Board.
A little history:
Memorial West Republican Women PAC, a member of Texas Federation of Republican Women and National Federation of Republican Women, was organized on November 6, 1961, as Republican Women's Club of Precinct 265. In 2001, Memorial West decided to take a more active role promoting issues and legislation. Because of this, the club's logo was changed to reflect the new goals. A forward moving elephant and the logo "On the Move" were adopted. The club's name has gone through several changes over the years and in 2003, when the club became a PAC, the name changed to Memorial West Republican Women PAC.
Many guests and candidates seeking votes in the March Republican primary were in attendance. Houston City Council member Brenda Stardig, a member of the club, spoke about her ideas for the upcoming year. Stardig spoke about the importance of running the city as a business - using common sense and ethical practices. She spoke of the importance of being able to work with others on the Council though she does not agree with some in political philosophy - her first responsibility is to her district and working on solutions of its problems.
I was honored to then perform the installation of the new officers. The following women now serve:
Mary Sergesketter, President; Jane Bock, President-Elect/Chaplain; Blanche Aguilar, V.P Campaign Activities; Martha Wong, V.P. Legislative Affairs; Ann Tanner, Recording Secretary; Amy Teufel, Corresponding Secretary and Barbara Thomas, PAC Treasurer. I am serving as V.P. Programs.
I was given the opportunity to thank the club for its support in my recent election as District Director for SD7 in TFRW. I spoke of the importance of Republican Women rising above the usual cliques in politics formed to keep control of agendas, as I saw as a candidate, and focus on empowering women, not encouraging conflict.
Mary Sergesketter, the new President, spoke of upcoming events and educated members briefly on the pitfalls of the pay for play system of candidate endorsements currently in force at the local party level as well as encouraging voter education. It was noted that several candidates present stated decisions to not take part in the system which has so corrupted our county politics. Harris County is only one of three counties nationwide that has fallen prey to pay for play. It is the exception in Republican politics, not the norm.
The next meeting will be February 3, 2014 at Carmelo's. The public is always welcome to attend meetings. Some come and listen to the featured speaker but are unable to stay for lunch after the meeting adjourns. That is perfectly acceptable. If you want to have lunch with us, we ask that you RSVP so that Carmelo's has a head count. Email Barbara Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 713-465-6945. Speakers invited for our February meeting are the candidates for SD7 - James Wilson and Paul Bettencourt.