Making Democracy Work

Because Democracy is not a Spectator Sport

The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization encouraging the informed and active participation of citizens in government. It influences public policy through education and advocacy.
Redistricting Update:

The South Bend Common Council voted 8-0 to ADOPT the Redistricting Reform Resolution proposed by the League! (One member was not present at the meeting.) Please thank Council members for their support.

LWVSBA President Geri Pawelski traveled to Indianapolis on May 5 with LWV Indiana co-president Lisa Plencner to attend the 2nd meeting of the Special Interim Study committee on Redistricting.

Lisa delivered testimony in support of a citizens-led committee and did a wonderful job representing the League and advocating for reform. Minutes for the May 5 meeting and future meeting announcements will be posted here:

Lunch with the League - July 8 ,2016

Eli Williams, Executive Director of the LBGTQ Center will discuss the resources available for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning/queer (LGBTQ) people in our community and also explore some of the important issues we face today.

Elizabeth (Eli) Williams was born and raised in South Bend, Indiana. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Smith College, where she majored in the Study of Women and Gender.

Eli became the Executive Director of The LGBTQ Center in October, 2015. She is also writing a book about the lesbian history of South Bend from 1974-present.

Come as early as 11:30 to purchase lunch. Free and open to the public.

South Bend Chocolate Cafe 122 S. Michigan St. South Bend, IN 46601

New Member Discussion - July 13, 5:30pm

Lisa Plencner will lead an engaging, informative discussion about League structure and organization, League positions, and the concept of "consensus" as it applies to the League of Women Voters.

Please RSVP here:

St. Joseph County Public Library, 304 S. Main St., - Molloy Room

ALL- IN Block Party - July 16 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

The League will join Neighborhood Resources Connection (NRC) and several other community organizations in celebration of the Indiana Bicentennial.

Participants will complete challenges developed by participating organizations at stations located on the campuses of the History Museum, the Civil Rights Heritage Center, and the Notre Dame Center for Artus and Culture.

With approximately 24 challenges expected, the event will be diverse and fun.

Thanks to League member Diana Hess of NRC for inviting the League to participate and to Elizabeth Bennion for chairing the League's challenge.

Stay tuned for details and please let me know if you would like to volunteer.

SAVE THE DATE Annual Planning Meeting, August 6, 9:30 - 2:00

he Agenda will include important planning plus Voter Registration Training. All voter registration volunteers should plan to attend, and this is a great time to jump in as a volunteer in this important and rewarding program. and others in the community.

Lunch included!!

If have questions or would like additional information, please contact me at

Celebrating Michiana Women Leaders Exhibit - August 26, 5:30pm

Civil Rights Heritage Center - The Michiana Women Leaders Project and the League of Women Voters of the South Bend Area are partnering to create the 2016 Celebrating Michiana Women Leaders exhibit.

The event will highlight the contributions of women to our area and will be held on Women's Equality Day, August 26, 2016, hosted by the Civil Rights Heritage Center.

New member discussion session

July 13 5:30pm (Wednesday) -- New member discussion session (lots more fun than an "orientation!)

Watch here for details!

Celebrating Michiana Women Leaders - 2016

An exhibit honoring women who have made contributions to the Michiana Area
Women's Equality Day + August 26, 2016
Civil Rights Heritage Center
1040 W. Washington Street, South Bend

Redistricting Reform for Indiana

This brochure, created by LWV South Bend Area, explains redistricting, gerrymandering and the need for reform. Please read and share.

Redistricting Reform for Indiana

If printing in black and white, please print this version: Redistricting Reform for Indiana

About Redistricting Reform - Time to Take Back Elections

In 2014, 44 out of 100 candidates for the Indiana House and 10 of 25 candidates for the Indiana Senate had no opponents.

Why? Because the General Assembly draws the district maps every 10 years after the federal census and legislatures draw maps for political advantage -- creating unfair electoral advantage for the majority party. The result? No competition and dismal voter turnout.

It's time to fix this sick system and put elections back in the hand of the voters.

The Indiana General Assembly has created a Special Study Committee on Redistricting that will work until December 2016 to create a reform recommendation for the legislature. We have a real opportunity to effect redistricting reform in our State but we must act now to educate and advocate for an independent redistricting process.

Join the Indiana Coalition for Independent Redistricting email alerts by sending an email to

More resources on the Redistricting Reform Page

Below you will find a link to the Special Committee's webpage and other to LWV resources.

Redistricting resources from LWVUS

2016 Legislative Action

For great information on Indiana legislation of interest to the League of Women Voters, please visit the League of Women Voters of Indiana website

The handy reference below shows which South Bend Area legislators sit on which 2016 Indiana General Assembly committees. Use it to write local legislators about important issues.

Legislative Contacts with Committees

Volunteers Needed! - chose an opportunity that is right for you...

On-Call Rabble-Rousers! LWV Indiana is looking for interested local members willing to be "on deck" to attend important Indiana General Assembly committee hearings and votes either to simply be eyes and ears in the audience or to read prepared testimony on behalf of an issue advocate who cannot attend. This session there will be a special focus on redistricting reform and other voter-related legislation, but we also have advocates focused on the environment, reproductive rights, gun control, human services, and education who may need assistance. Please let me know if you would like me to submit your name to the LWV Indiana Advocacy committee.

Half-Price Student Membership

Join the League! LWV South Bend Area now offers a student membership rate of $25.00! A student is defined as an individual who is enrolled either full or part-time in an accredited institution.

Consider a gift student membership - you will be opening the door to lifetime of Making Democracy Work.

Did you know . . . The LWV South Bend Area

★ Visits area high schools to register voters - 1077 in 2012!
★ Registers new voters at schools and local events
★ Sponsors candidate debates and forums before every election
★ Organized and cosponsored B Green to Save Green, an environmental education program for low-income families
★ Hosts Lunch with the League, a monthly public event featuring a talk by local leaders, followed by discussion
★ Provides voter information at the community events such as the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration and Michiana Monologues
★ Sponsors public forums on topics of community interest such as the Property Tax Cap Constitutional Amendment, Redistricting, and Economic Development in our area

Want to learn more? Contact us at today.

Meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month at 5:30 pm at St Joseph County Public Library, Main Street, Downtown South Bend. Free Parking. Guests are welcome.