Women’s History Month Activities 2013

Growing out of a small-town school event in California, Women’s History Month (March) is a celebration of women’s contributions to history, culture and society. The United States has observed it annually throughout the month of March since 1987. www.history.com

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The Tribute Cake

 At the museum, we started March off by celebrating the accomplishments of women by attending the annual Tribute to Women in the Military at Kirtland Air Force Base, designing and creating aprons to hang at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in 2013 Apron Project installation, and partnering with local and national organizations to screen the film, Service: When Women Come Marching Home at the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History.

On Friday, March 1st, Writer-in-Residence Caroline LeBlanc and I took our Operation Footlocker over to the Mountain View Club on Kirtland Air Force Base. The 28th annual Tribute to Women in the Military proved to be an energetic and inspiring series of events and attracted veterans and active duty military from WWII to present.

Someone slipped this book into our Footlocker!

Someone slipped this book into our Footlocker!

UNM has a robust Veterans program

UNM has a robust Veterans program

Caroline adds finishing touches to our display

Caroline adds finishing touches to our display

Pat Gaston, Army Veteran and Tripp, our Footlocker mascot

Pat Gaston, Army Veteran and Tripp, our Footlocker mascot

We passed out information about our museum and did a podcast for “Together We Serve”. We met wonderful people and made many new friends!

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Later that day, Caroline and I met at the Hispanic Cultural Center where Caroline showed me where our MAMF apron is hanging outside for the entire month of March.

IMG_6065Besides our “official” MAMF apron, aprons by Caroline, Navy brat Karin Bradberry, who has been featured in our blog “The American Military Family” and  an apron made of BDUs by Cora Silverman hang in an incredible display outside the Hispanic Cultural Center. To learn more about the Apron Project, check out http://www.womynswork.com/ or their Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/WomynsWork.

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On

Sunday, in collaboration with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation at the Nursing and Health Collaborative at University of New Mexico and film makers Marcia Rock and Patricia Lee Stotter, we did a special program at the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History in Albuquerque. The main feature was a documentary, Service: When Women Come Marching Home.

Service Film 2013 flyer

Jim Walther, Nuclear Museum Director made opening remarks and then LTC DeeAnn Lees did a nice presentation about women in the military—from the Revolutionary War until Present.

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After the film, Documentarian Geri Lynn Weinstein-Matthews shared a special message to the audience from her friend Patricia Lee Stotter.

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Geri Lynn Weinstein-Matthews

 “ You have met 8 wonderful women who prove that in our more-than-imperfect world, people can move forward and heal. And, as they do, they set a precedent for all their sisters and mothers and daughters and brothers and husbands and sons…every person who struggles for their own rights is an active participant in the struggle for all human rights. I never fail to be amazed by our remarkable veterans who come home and CONTINUE TO SERVE us through all their tenacious pursuit of civil rights…”
 
Elinor Reinor speaks to about 60 guests

Elinor Reinor speaks to about 60 guests

 Elinor Reinor of the New Mexico Women Veterans organization closed the program, and then we mingled, sharing stories and laughs—and tears.

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Lots of thoughtful conversation…

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Ole, Jude, Ed and Larry

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Two Judys

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Caroline, LTC Lees and two nurses who served in the Vietnam Conflict discuss the program

Some people made quilt squares honoring their military families and others asked questions about our school footlocker we had on display. Through donations, we made enough money to cover sending the footlocker down to several elementary schools in El Paso, Texas.

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Volunteer Joan and Caroline

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It was an amazing day. We thank all of our partners and friends who made this program possible and who, like us, want to share incredible stories with the world…

With March off to such a good start, we are so proud to be your Museum–showcasing your stories–

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Jayne Pilley, MAMF Treasurer

by Circe Olson Woessner, Executive Director, MAMF

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