League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland Education Fund

Empowering Voters. Defending Democracy.

CLEVELAND, OH   |  www.lwvgreatercleveland.org

Mission

The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.

Notes from the nonprofit

The League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland Education Fund is a Type II supporting organization under Section 509(a)(3).

Ruling year info

1972

Co-President

Audrey Morris

Co-President

Catherine LaCroix

Main address

PO Box 5310

CLEVELAND, OH 44101 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

23-7213162

NTEE code info

Voter Education/Registration (R40)

Community Coalitions (S21)

Research Institutes and/or Public Policy Analysis (P05)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland, has been empowering citizens and defending democracy for almost 100 years. The League is nonpartisan and dedicated to the principles of democratic government supported by a well informed citizenry. Part of that education involves producing a Voter’s Guide prior to elections, that contains all issues and contests on a particular ballot, including state, county, and local offices. Recently, we have switched to an online voter’s guide Vote411 which allows a voter to enter their address and bring up their ballot and voting information. The League will continue to use Vote 411.org, but those without an internet connection are excluded from what they could learn by using our online nonpartisan voter’s guide. Our goal is to print a 2020 Cuyahoga County Voters Guide and distribute 500,000 copies throughout Cuyahoga County, free of charge.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Voter Service and Education

Various activities include voter registration, verifying voters' registration status, voter education through candidate, issue, and public policy forums. Providing VOTE 411 Voter's Guide to area voters.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Cleveland’s rate of broadband connection makes it the fourth worst-connected U.S. city of 100,000 or more households. According to the U.S. Census 2017 American Community Survey, only 55% of Cleveland and 47% of East Cleveland households had an internet connection. Disconnected households are overwhelmingly lower-income, disenfranchising them from access to information that would assist them in voting. Additionally, a lack of internet access correlates with census tracts that have low voter turnout.

The digital divide in Cleveland and parts of Cuyahoga County is an issue that needs addressing, and won’t be given the attention and resources necessary to do so, if the people most affected by it don’t vote. Access to the internet has become critical for gathering information and participating in the political process. Without the ability to conduct Internet research — people can’t learn about a candidate or issue, outside of what the media presents.

The narrowing of vetted media that once provided a source of reliable information is a strong reason for the League to provide a printed voters’ guide. An analysis of the decline in newsroom staffing and coverage of local government found that it not only reduced political competition, but also has been associated with lower voter turnout as citizens become less informed about local policies and elections.

Our goal is to print a 2020 Cuyahoga County Voters Guide and distribute 500,000 copies throughout Cuyahoga County, free of charge.

Our All Communities Vote initiative is to help citizens in areas with low voter turnout to consider the power of their votes, and to provide information about social/political issues in which participants express an interest. Research sponsored by the League of Women Voters of the United States found that “voters and nonvoters differ in several key respects: nonvoters are less likely to grasp the impact of elections on issues that matter to them, nonvoters are more likely to believe they lack information on which to base their voting decisions; nonvoters are more likely to perceive the voting process as difficult and cumbersome; and nonvoters are less likely to be contacted by organizations
encouraging them to vote."

The League has a long history and experience in producing Voters Guides. We would draw upon our volunteers and work to put together a comprehensive county-wide Voters Guide for Cuyahoga County. We will start this project in January 2020, researching potential printers and formats and move to content towards the spring and summer.

For All Communities Vote, we aim to collaborate with community liaisons who can help us plan interactive educational forums, voter registration, and get-out-the vote events. We recognize the importance of building relationships within communities. During the first year of this project, we will work with Ward 14 in Cleveland. In the future we hope to engage with community members in additional wards.

All Communities Vote is unique because it focuses on returning to the same community throughout the year—not only in the months before the presidential election. Our goal is not just to register voters, but to develop forums on social issues residents say they would like to learn more about. We will provide opportunities for community members to speak with local experts on those subjects so that they will feel prepared to vote. And we will finish the year with activities to help people vote.

The LWV of Greater Cleveland is an all-volunteer organization with over 500 members and a long history of voter education, voter empowerment, and advocacy for voting rights. We use well-trained and experienced volunteers in all tasks and pride ourselves on maintaining high standards of quality. While we are accustomed to accomplishing a lot with very few resources, some of our activities do require funding.

The League would need $25,000 in order to design, layout and print a county-wide voters guide for Cuyahoga County.

For All Communities Vote we would need funding to expand the project into wards beyond Ward 14, which is where our pilot project is being initiated.

The League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland was recently awarded the LWV Ohio Community Impact Award, which honors a Local League that is making a difference in its community with innovative programs, advocacy or educational efforts.

LWV Greater Cleveland operates a vibrant program to educate our community, to motivate active citizens and promote informed voting. Over the past year, we have partnered with key local institutions to produce high quality and well-attended public forums on issues such as voting rights, women in politics, election issues, gun violence, education, and healthcare. Through collaboration with other organizations, we are able to extend our reach to do programming in all areas of Greater Cleveland. Every forum is taped and there now exists a library of public policy forums available to the public. We also held 17 Candidate forums throughout Greater Cleveland in the run up to the November 5, 2019 election. These forums are also taped and available for viewing online on our website as well as on Vote411, our online Voters Guide.

We also have an observer corps, who consistently observe local governmental units which are not consistently covered by news organizations, but which profoundly influence the life of our community. We post our reports online, providing a valuable source of public information, and informing our own selection of local issues for local advocacy.

We register voters regularly at Immigration Naturalization Ceremonies and engage in Youth and Community Voter Registration Projects. In 2018-2019, we increased our Get Out The Vote efforts. LWV Greater Cleveland partnered with a coalition of civic organizations to register voters in record numbers on National Voter Registration Day and leading up to the 2019 election. Next year we plan to expand our voter service network to parts of the county where we do not have a chapter presence.

In addition to the work of registering, protecting, mobilizing, and educating voters, the League is gearing up to fill the gap left by state inaction by playing a key role in educating and motivating residents to participate in the 2020 Census. With our coalition partners as a member of the Cuyahoga County Complete Count Committee and the City of Cleveland Complete Count Committee, we will work to ensure a complete and accurate census count for our region.

We will also continue to participate in the International Visitors Program, a U.S. State Department Program run through the Cleveland Council on World Affairs, where we speak with current and emerging foreign leaders on “Transparency and Accountability in Government.” Our reputation for being nonpartisan as well as the work we do as observers of government, is the reason that the League is looked to as a model of informed citizenry for emerging leadership from around the world.

Financials

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland Education Fund
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland Education Fund

Board of directors
as of 4/2/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Audrey Morris

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Term: 2019 - 2021


Board co-chair

Catherine LaCroix

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Term: 2019 - 2021

Catherine Ryan

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Janet Kershaw

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Nadia Zaiem

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Patricia Carter

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Meryl Simon

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Michael Baron

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Libby Brandt

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Lisa Cech

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Janet Kershaw

League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/19/2020,

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

No data

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

No data

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 09/22/2020

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.