Presidio celebrates Women's Equality Day
August 25, 2010
- Women's Equality Day marks the enactment on Aug. 26, 1920, of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
- Former U.S. Congressional Representative Bella Abzug is credited as the founder of Women's Equality Day.
PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. Aca,!" "Celebrating Women's Right to Vote" was the theme of the 2010 Women's Equality Day observance by the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center and Presidio of Monterey held in the auditorium of the Presidio's Tin Barn Aug. 24.
The observance was sponsored by the DLIFLC Marine Corps Detachment based at the Presidio.
Women's Equality Day marks the enactment on Aug. 26, 1920, of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution giving women the right to vote.
In opening remarks at the Presidio observance the Marine Detachment's Executive Officer Capt. John Recore noted that women have a greater role in the U.S. military than ever before.
"As a whole, men and women bring different strengths to the table," he said. "This is no different now than it was 50 or 100 year ago. What is different is what these varieties of strengths mean today. "
Guest speaker Deanna Tovar, Dean of DLIFLC's European and Latin American Language School, engaged attendees in an informal quiz on personages and events that helped bring about civil and voting rights for women.
"Which woman was arrested in 1872 for voting'" Tovar queried.
Answer: Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906), one of the leaders in the campaign to pass the 19th Amendment.
"Which woman called for a women's rights convention in Seneca Falls, New York'"
Answer: Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902), who joined with Susan B. Anthony to campaign for voting rights for women.
"Who is credited as the founder of Women's Equality Day'"
Answer: Bella Abzug (1920-1998), elected to the U.S. Congress in 1970, who introduced the legislation that resulted in the national day of observance.
"When I was in high school -- so many years ago -- I don't remember reading about some of these women," Tovar said. "And I don't think it's because my memory fails me. I think it's because our textbooks were remiss."
Installation Voting Assistance Officer William Thomas, who is supervisor of Personnel Services within the Presidio's Directorate of Human Resources, briefed attendees on the Federal Voting Assistance Program. His presentation included instruction to service members on how to vote by absentee ballot.
At the start of the event Lance Cpl. Rachel Martell sang a solo rendition of the national anthem without instrumental accompaniment, and Navy Chaplain Lt. Cmdr. Tom Statler offered an invocation.
Last to speak was DLIFLC Commandant Col. Danial Pick, who expressed thanks to program participants.