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Cleveland County GOP

Women Republicans

History of the The National Federation of Republican Women

Women’s involvement in politics began even before they had the right to vote.  Three women were at the founding meeting of the Republican Party on March 20, 1854.

The Republican Party was born by anti-slavery activists, and the first Republican Presidential candidate, John Freemont, ran with the slogan: “Free soil, free labor, free speech, free men.”

Inspired by the Republican Platform of 1872 which said: “The Republican Party is mindful of its obligation to the loyal women of America for their noble devotion to the cause of Freedom..,”

The first time women were seated at a Republican National Convention was in 1892.  This convention was also the first to be addressed by a female, Ellen Foster, chairwoman of the Women’s Republican Association of the United States.   A strong believer in organization, Foster said her association had prepared work plans for women’s involvement in national politics, and announced “We are here to help you, and we are here to stay”.

In 1878 it was a Republican who introduced the 19th Amendment – Senator Sargent from California, at the request of Susan B. Anthony.  Sargent’s amendment was defeated four times by a Democrat-controlled Senate.

In 1909 Mary Terrell, along with Ida Wells was one of two African-American Republican Women who co-founded the NAACP.  The daughter of former slaves, Terrell became a prominent writer and civil rights activist.  She campaigned tirelessly for Women’s Suffrage.   In the words of Mary Terrell “Every right that has been bestowed upon blacks was initiated by the Republican Party”.

When the Republican Party regained control of Congress in 1919, the Equal Suffrage Amendment finally passed the House and Senate.

In 1917 the first woman was elected to the US Congress – Republican Jeannette Rankin from Montana.

Hundreds of independent Republican women’s clubs grew up around the nation.
It was in 1938 that Marion Martin, assistant chairman of the Republican National Committee, called a meeting at the Palmer House in Chicago to organize these clubs into a national organization.

The Mission:

  • To Foster and encourage loyalty to the Republican Party and the ideals for which it stands;

  • To encourage closer cooperation between independent groups and the regular party organization, which are working for the same objectives, namely sound government ;

  • Promote education along political lines;

  • Increase the effectiveness of women in the cause of good government;

  • To promote an interchange of ideas and experiences of various clubs to the end that the policies which have proven particularly effective in one state may be adopted in another;

  • To encourage a national attitude and national approach to the problems facing the Republican Party.”

At the time of NFRW’s founding, three states – Maryland, Virginia and Alabama had not even ratified the 19th Amendment to the Constitution.

The organization originally was known as the National Federation of Women’s Republican Clubs of America, but the name was changed in January 1953 to the National Federation of Republican Women.

The seal of the National Federation features the American Bald Eagle, holding a quill pen and standing guard over our most treasured tool of democracy – the ballot box.   Adopted at the biennial convention in 1944, it portrays the Federation’s interest in the protection and integrity of our electoral process. The American eagle is adopted from the great seal of the United States.

The quill is symbolic of the power of words, especially as contained in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States.

Today, the NFRW consists of thousands of active members in local clubs across the nation and in several U.S. territories. The goals of those women who met in Chicago in 1938 continue to be the goals of the NFRW.

The North Carolina Federation of Republican Women

Ann Hickman of Forsyth County took a leadership role and our state became affiliated with the NFRW in 1953 following the victorious campaigns of President Eisenhower and NC Congressman Jonas in 1952.

NCFRW has a Vice President for each of its 5 regions.

The NCFRW holds three board meetings a year, and the Club Presidents are voting members of the board.  Not only do we conduct any necessary business, but there are training workshops, guest speakers, and these meetings provide an opportunity to interact with ladies from across the state.  Can anyone participate?  Absolutely, and it is strongly encouraged.  Any NCFRW member can attend our events and bring guests.

Our goals are clear:

  • Unite the Republican Women of North Carolina into an active, constructive organization to sustain and grow the Republican Party

  • Support the Republican National and State Republican Party initiatives and work for election of Republican nominees

  • Encourage, promote and educate Republican women to run for office, make a real and direct interaction in our communities, shaping local, state and national politics and share ideas on how to work for the ISSUES of Importance we all agree on.  We must increase our numbers – when we work we win!!  If each member would just invite 1 person to join their club, we could double our membership and have a powerful force to make a difference in our nation.

The focus of the NCFRW continues to be Communication, Education, and Legislation.

We have Legislative & Grassroots Activism Reports, regular Enews & Club presidents’ reminders.

It was the efforts of women across this state that made the Jessica Lunsford Act a reality.  We worked on the Voter ID Petitions to show our new legislature they had the support from the people, although Gov. Perdue vetoed it and we were unable to get the votes to override the veto. With our new Republican Governor and Lt. Governor along with our Republican Majority we have finally reached that goal.

The NFRW was founded to educate, inform and motivate women to become political activists.  Notice that I did not say empower women.  Women are already empowered and blessed with the freedom to pursue their dreams and objectives.  Rather, NFRW and NCFRW provide the tools and resources on how to achieve more in the political arena.  Each club stands on its own, but collectively we have a voice that is heard across the State and the Nation.

Now I want to discuss the most valuable resource that we have in the NCFRW – YOU our members.

You are a part of an organization that encourages the recruitment, development and support of qualified Republican candidates; both men and women.

You are a part of a talent bank of Republican women available to serve in elected and appointed positions, using the NFRW & NCFRW organizational framework, club programs, training and networking.

So in conclusion, you are part of a fantastically strong network of Republican Women who are dedicated to achieving the best for our country.

Visit our websites at www.ncfrw.com  and www.nfrw.org

For more information or to get involved with the Republican Women of Cleveland County, please contact the GOP Chairman at chairman@ccgop.com, or 704-484-2GOP

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