Meet a Member: Janet Callif

 

1) Janet, what is your Matriots why?

I grew up in Bexley, Ohio and a  friend was involved with the Matriots and even though I live in northern Kentucky (across the river from Cincinnati) she thought I should join. She was correct! I believe in the Matriots mission.  I believe that women can change the world, both locally and globally, and make it better.

2) What are you doing to prepare for the General Election? How are you voting this year?

Kentucky usually has very strict voting regulations.  This year I want to applaud Governor Beshear, Secretary of State Adams, and the Kentucky board of elections for creating a nonpartisan plan for voting during Covid-19.  We are giving the opportunity to vote by absentee ballot (which is how I will be voting), early voting (3 weeks including Saturdays), or in-person voting.  I will be taking my absentee ballot to a dropbox.

3) Can you share why you think The Matriots’ vision for more women in elected office is the solution to today’s political rancor? I believe that women are more willing to work together to develop solutions to the issues that we face today and will face in the future.  I think women realize that compromise is a positive attribute that can make people’s lives better.  I believe women are underrepresented in the government and The Matriots are going to enable us to be heard.

4) Now for something fun: Tell us about your favorite thing to do in the great state of Ohio. It could be a hobby, a favorite place to eat, or something we might not know about our state!

My favorite thing to do is spend the 4th of July (my favorite holiday) in my hometown: Bexley, OH.  It’s a day of celebrating the traditions of our community and our country.  People who grew up there come back for the holiday to line the streets for the parade, to socialize and catch up, to wine and dine, and to watch fireworks.  It brings joy, happiness, and pride to me and the city I grew up in.

Meet A Member: Carolyn Jones

As a retired mental health professional, my commitment to the work of impacting the lives of children has continued in my role as a member of the Cincinnati Public Schools Board of Education, currently serving as President for the third year.  As a proud graduate of public education, a parent, grandparent, and great-grandparent of children in public education, I recognized the importance of being involved in the decisions impacting my children.  And, as a former coach and mentor, believing that “it takes a village to raise a child,” I have dedicated my efforts in public service to improving educational outcomes for children.

I am extremely honored and appreciative of the Matriots’ endorsement of my 2019 campaign for re-election to the Cincinnati Public School Board of Education. The mission of this organization to elect more women to office in Ohio, impacting political change by empowering women, like me, to run for office is absolutely a crucial step in achieving social justice, equity, and equality for all people. It has truly been an empowering experience to network with wonderfully bright and talented women who, because of a diversity of opinions, thoughts, ideas, political platforms, are collectively involved in a bigger mission to empower women to seek public office and leadership roles in Ohio.

Women serve a key role in the well-being of our society, not only as caregivers of families, but in economic, political, and advocacy domains. I became a member of the Matriots with the knowledge of and enthusiasm in recognizing that women are key influencers of the ideals and policies that impact political change. The Matriots bring together women of diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and political platforms, all for the purpose of operationalizing a movement to “grow” leadership by supporting the achievements of talented and dedicated women.  Women must continue to operate on legislative and political platforms as the change agents needed to give authority and guidance to political activity that ensures gender equity. In addition, it is important for women to be role models and mentors for other women who might seize similar opportunities for political representation. I recognize the importance of empowering women to serve in public arenas, aligning with a broader vision to ensure women are represented and validated as change agents in a prosperous society.

Ultimately, we are defined by what we do, not who we are.  I am proud to be a Matriot!

 

Meet A Member: Victoria Alesi

1. Victoria, you recently renewed and upgraded your membership with The Matriots. What motivated you to give at a greater level? I upgraded my membership because I believe in the mission and vision of the Matriots and know that with the greater commitment we will see a greater difference for women running for office!

2. You are a new member to The Matriots Membership Committee. How do you think we can grow The Hive across the state of Ohio amidst the quarantine? I think that with continued education and awareness across all parts of the states, we have the ability to educate all on the importance of supporting and encouraging women to run for office. It is our duty as members and specifically as a part of the Membership Committee to grow the hive!

3. Do you have a favorite candidate that The Matriots has endorsed? How do you plan to get involved in the 2020 election? My favorite Matriot endorsed candidate is Elizabeth Brown running for Columbus City Council. I have seen Liz Brown speak many times and am always inspired by her. She is a strong advocate for working mothers, higher minimum wage and women’s rights. Her work creating the Columbus Women’s Commission at City Council is very important and she is making it a point to include all voices at the table.

I am also volunteering my time to register voters and on Election Day will be out there in my VOTE T-shirt ready to help people exercise their civic duty!

4. Can you share why you think The Matriots’ vision for more women in elected office is the solution to today’s political rancor? There is no way to have an equitable system in place if women are not represented at the table where the policies are being made. There is no doubt that women are more than capable of leading our local, county, state and federal governments, we just haven’t had the support. The Matriots are fighting for women’s representation and I couldn’t be more proud.

5. Now for something fun: Tell us about your favorite thing to do in the great state of Ohio. It could be a hobby, a favorite place to eat or something we might not know about our state! As a dancer and artist, I am so proud of the arts across Ohio! I love visiting The Columbus Museum of Art, listening to local, live music in our beautiful theatres, and seeing contemporary dance shows at the Wexner Center for the Arts! #artmakescolumbus

Get To Know The Matriots!

We want you to be excited to learn more about The Matriots PAC – so we’ll just share a few introductory ideas here before we go on a deeper dive during the event.

Here’s a little bit about our start from our introductory video in 2018:

OK, that answers some questions, but…

Why the bee? Why a PAC? Learn more in our FAQ.

Here are the two documents that really help you “get us” in 4 short pages:

Research

About Us

Here are the women we have endorsed by class, including the 63 women from across the state we are supporting for November.

Here are all the ways you can take action – from volunteer to be our next Zoom host.

We want you to consider membership in The Matriots, so consider what Cleveland member Harriet Warm has to say about investing with us.

Please join – every single dollar counts and we need your voice as part of this movement. 

Do you want to understand how we invest your money? Here’s the results of our first 2.5 years of investing in women – our inaugural Impact Report.

Sign up for our newsletter.

Now Is The Time To Grow The Hive

I’ve spent some time on the phone this past month with several dozen members; saying hello, checking in, answering concerns. I know each of you are experiencing the pandemic in very personal ways.

For some people, the change has meant little more than not being able to meet friends at a favorite restaurant. For others, they’ve lost jobs or had their hours curtailed, are fighting for their company, or they’re caring for a loved one suffering with this deadly virus.

Even as we shared stories and updates on “life in pandemic,” not one had lost faith in The Matriots mission, which has never been more critical. Voting matters. Leadership matters. And for those not fighting for their livelihood, a deep sense of desire to be RELEVANT in the world right now has permeated our membership.

You may not know me personally yet, but you certainly know from your inbox that it is my job to steward you, cultivate your relationship with our candidates, and to attract new members. Now is not the time for me to sit on the sidelines with our fundraising and new-member goals. Our work is too important.

I spent the winter traveling across the state meeting people, and there was such thirst and desire to put more women in office.

I don’t want to lose that momentum. And I don’t want to waste YOUR personal passion for the movement.

I need your help.

  • If you can, please renew your membership at a higher level than your last contribution.
  • If you can’t do that, just renew. Don’t forget – you can pay in monthly installments, which may make support easier at this time.
  • Share your passion for the mission with a friend!  That might be a call to ask them to get to know us and to join, or you might like to get 10 friends on a Zoom and together we can ask them to join. I’m now creating “virtual house parties” and I’d love to have you host.

And I want to TALK! There’s no better way for me to spend my day than chatting – via text, zoom, phone call or email – with you. Never hesitate to contact me.

Women’s political participation, specifically more women in elected office, results in women’s increased economic independence and security. Let’s keep fighting together to put more women at the table.

Be well,

-Shiloh Todorov, Matriots finance/fundraising director
614-787-7129 | shiloh.todorov@matriotsohio.com

Meet a Matriot: Tiffany Nobles

Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Tiffany Nobles has lived in Columbus, Ohio for the past 12 years. She currently serves as the Advancement Officer for the Central Ohio region of OhioGuidestone, a multi-county behavioral health organization. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from Washington & Jefferson College and a Master of Arts in Public Administration from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public & International Affairs.

Member Benefits & Special Mailings

Matriots Membership Benefits

Annual members of The Matriots understand that participation equals representation. They raise their hands to engage in the political process, seeing engagement and membership as investments in their family’s future. Annual members contribute at the level that best represents their commitment and capacity.

Welcome Package: Letter plus + Items outlined below for identified benefit level + Monthly Hive Newsletter and Periodic Candidate Q&As

ANNUAL MEMBERSHIPS RECEIVE:

  • Tech tattoos mailed to your home
  • Matriots-endorsed candidate profiles
  • Invitation to Annual Bee-lievers Celebration
  • Online Member listings and thank you
  • Digital post-general announcement

ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP LEVELS INCLUDE:

STUDENT $25 Commitment | BASIC $25-$99 (non-Student) | SUPPORTER $100 Commitment | PARTNER $250 Commitment (or $21 per month) | ADVOCATE $500 Commitment (or $42 per month) | KITCHEN CABINET $1,000 Commitment

EQUITY BUILDERS $2,000 Minimum Commitment: $1,000 per year for 2-5 years

Our big, hairy audacious goal is to have 50% women serving in Ohio elected office by 2028 – that’s equity! And by giving at the Equity Builders level, you are making our bold goal closer to reality.

  • Annual membership benefits plus +
  • Equity Builder tote
  • Special correspondence

MATRIARCH $10,000 Commitment: over a maximum of four years

Member Carol Andreae presents a check to Columbus Councilmember Elizabeth Brown.

A Matriarch is not defined by her years, but rather by her leadership. The Matriarchs of The Matriots PAC commit at least $10,000 to encourage, endorse, and support the women of Ohio who, too, fearlessly take up the mantle of leadership, pursuing elected office. A Matriarch is a visionary. She knows that balancing gender representation requires deep, long-lasting dedication to female candidates – now and in the future. Emboldened and convicted, the Matriarch embraces The Matriots’ most deeply-held belief that when women’s voices are equally represented politically, families and society will prosper.

  • Annual and Equity Builder benefits plus +
  • Matriarch journal
  • Opportunities to present endorsement checks to candidates 

ALL IN $12,500/year/person

Elected women change the conversation, find the solution, and – in fact – bring home results to their districts. You recognize how equity for women in politics would change the game for Ohio. To be All In means you’ve gone to the max for equality. An All In gift is defined by law as $13,292.35 – the most an individual can give a PAC in Ohio in one year. You’ve maxed out on your belief in women when you’re All In for The Matriots.

  • All above benefits +
  • Correspondence from board chair
  • Advance access to Matriots Research before its release to the public

Meet a Matriot: Andie Ryley

1. Andie, you’ve been a Matriots member since very early on – who introduced you to The Matriots and why did you say yes?

According to a local paper, Toledo Blade, Ohio is one of the worst states to live in, if you are a woman, given the income gap between men and women, the percentage of people living in poverty who are women and the average life expectancy of women. I believe, and we are beginning to see that, when women lead, conversations change, families are supported and children prosper. So, when I attended a Get to Know the Matriots party at a Joan Uhl Browne’s house, the information and messaging immediately resonated with me.

I also belong to another group, Dining for Women, that supports women and children in third world countries.

2. How does your professional life as an educator color your desire to have more women in office?

As an educator, I have had the opportunity to work with many strong women. Women who make a difference in small and large ways every day. Women who are parents advocating for their children with disabilities; and,  colleagues who are women learning, researching, mentoring and practicing their professions in all types of settings. These women are problem solvers, collaborators and are passionate in their work. In my opinion, these are characteristics essential to effective leadership.

3. You shared at our Breakfast with an Elected featuring Senator Teresa Fedor that you are now “playing the long game.” What does that mean, and how do The Matriots fit in that equation?

I believe that enduring social and economic change must be evolutionary and will require embracing a “win – win” political process, transcending party, rather than the “zero sum” game being played now. Elevating the historical concerns and values of women, and promoting our inclusive way of doing things, seems the only means by which such a transformation can occur. The Matriots are nurturing a generation of candidates, as well as the activists supporting them, who will embody and continuously build the infrastructure necessary to this Revolution by Evolution and who are likely to mentor other women.

 4. Tell us about your CORN group.

The Women’s Democratic Caucus Of Rural Northwest Ohio was developed by Shelly Hayes, president of the Anthony Wayne Area Democratic Club, and we fondly refer to this as our “CORN” group. These are women from western Lucas, Wood, Defiance, Fulton, Henry and Williams Counties. We came together after working on a congressional campaign and, through Shelly’s foresight, we now are organized and work to support each other and democratic candidates. Often times women who live in more rural sections of our state believe they are the only woman in their area who believe in control over their bodies and equal pay and opportunities for women. Through canvassing, we promote candidates supporting these issues and we also do service projects in northwest Ohio. We are excited to see how many women are taking opportunities to run throughout the state.

5. When you’re not making the world safe for democracy, tell us how you like to spend your time!

I love to cook and garden.  I live close to the Toledo Metro parks and the Maumee River so walking, camping and kayaking are also high on my list of favorite activities. My two grown children and their families live close by so I try to spend as much time with them as possible.

A Word From The Matriots PAC Chair

Dear Matriots,

These are surreal times. But they do not have to be scary times. We will demonstrate the resiliency that is so often a characteristic of women’s work. We will carry on.

As Ohio deals with the spread of the Covid-19 virus, we need to acknowledge that the people who will be most quickly and negatively impacted by the school closings and the forced curtailing of the service sector, for example, are women. And, of that population, women of color and women living one flat tire away from financial catastrophe will suffer the most.

Women are on the front lines when it comes to child-rearing and keeping our communities healthy and safe; but we are not on the front lines when it comes to establishing family-friendly policies because we are underrepresented at the tables where those policies are being crafted and legislation is being enacted.

There are two issues at stake today: the short-term crisis and the long-term solution to this situation. At The Matriots PAC, we are stepping back from our vigorous fundraising efforts to allow the social-service agencies that provide a safety net for our state’s citizens to do the work that they do best while we all navigate the pandemic. We are putting our house parties and fundraising gatherings on hold until we feel comfortable once again stacking hands in this effort. (And, in a happy coincidence, we were just putting the finishing touches on a new plan around video outreach to Matriots throughout the state!)

But we will not take our eyes off the prize, which is the long-term goal of putting more Ohio women into elected office to implement the women- and family-friendly policies that this state needs. Rest assured that our work endorsing, supporting and encouraging our women candidates continues unabated. Fifteen of our candidates face primary challenges March 17 and we hope that, if you have not already voted, you will cast your ballots for these women. And then it’s on to the general election and dozens more Matriots-endorsed candidates who deserve our support.

So we will continue to “remember the ladies,” as Abigail Adams said. Because short-term crises require long-term solutions.

All the best. Stay safe and healthy,

Sally Crane Cox
Chair, The Matriots PAC Board of Directors

Meet a Matriot: Barbara Fillion

1. Barbara, you’re an early investor in The Matriots, a member of our endorsement committee, and you recently became a Queen Bee for Southwest Ohio. Can you share with our members why you think The Matriots’ vision for more women in elected office is the solution to today’s political rancor?

Like many of us, I was appalled by the results of the 2016 election, and the tone of the incoming administration. I went with a busload of 50 friends to the Women’s March in DC, in January 2017.  Like the six founders of The Matriots, our “bus group” wanted to be part of a movement, not just a march, so we have continued to work on a variety of issues after returning to Cincinnati.  When my long-time friend Myrita Craig invited me to her house party for The Matriots, the vision of the Matriots founders resonated with me.  We know there is data-based research confirming that companies with diverse boards and executive leadership have better business results.  Those of us who’ve worked on diverse teams have experienced their better results as well.  The adage that “When women prosper, we all prosper” is absolutely true … as women, we are unafraid to advocate for what our families, communities, and schools need most.  Having spent a 29-year career at Procter & Gamble, I know that “having a seat at the table” is absolutely crucial for women. While I’m excited by the 60% success rate of our first two years’ endorsed slates, I’m even more excited about the way these women are governing, and the number of women deciding to run every year!

2. The Matriots endorsed 15 women for the March 17 primary election. As a member of our endorsement committee, you played a significant role in these endorsements. Can you tell our members about a candidate who inspires you and why?

I can truly say that I’ve been inspired by all the women we have endorsed … all of them are running for office on top of incredibly busy lives, and yet they are willing to add the stress of fundraising and running for office, because this is how they’ve decided to make a difference.  But I’ll highlight Jessica Miranda, who is the first SW OH candidate Myrita Craig and I interviewed, in early 2018 … and is now my State Representative for OH HD28.  Jessica is the daughter of a single mom (who she now supports), the mom of 3 daughters, a business owner, and a former School Board President.  She is in her mid-30s, and has been a business owner for 9 years … she and her husband own a tax and insurance franchise in Forest Park, OH, where they serve a bi-lingual population. She first ran for OH HD28 in the 2016 election, when she learned she was expecting their third daughter almost immediately after filing her petition to run.  Although she lost that election, she came back in 2018, and won by 56 votes, being the only Democrat to unseat an incumbent Republican in the State House that year.  She began working across the aisle with her Republican counterparts, even before being sworn in, by reaching out to former OH Senate President Dick Finan (a Republican, currently mayor of Evendale, and my next-door neighbor ).  Dick hosted her ceremonial swearing-in, in Evendale Council Chambers, and has been an on-going mentor during her first term.

She is a passionate advocate for education, particularly “urban suburban” districts like Winton Woods. Earlier this month, I attended a fundraiser for Jessica, hosted by a group of very involved Democrats in Wyoming, a Cincinnati suburb that’s not even in her district.  Rep. Sedrick Denson (OH HD33, also in his first term) spoke during the Q&A session, and could not have been more complimentary about how quickly Jessica has learned the ropes, how hard she works … and how he looks to her as an expert on all issues about public education. To quote Jessica, “(She) will not be out-worked” in her run for re-election, or her advocacy for the residents for her District. Jessica will need to raise a LOT of money this year (at least twice as much as last term), because she is running against a former Hamilton County Commissioner, with much broader name recognition, so please let me know if you need information on where to send campaign contributions.

3. You are an avid traveler. What are your observations about the differences between the places you’ve traveled to and the political environment in Ohio?

I’ve really enjoyed traveling with companies like Go Ahead Tours and Road Scholar, who include educational components in their itineraries.  In Croatia, our tour director had been part of the resistance fighters who were active in the break-up of the former Yugoslavia, in the early 1990s.  Hearing his stories of the transition from Communist rule, and his dismay at the lack of good jobs (outside seasonal tourism) for young people, was eye-opening.  We’ve also traveled inside the US, and been in cities like Portland, OR, where environmental concerns are addressed more assertively and found that refreshing.  Last summer, we hosted guests from our church’s partner church (a UMC) in Samara, Russia (and we will travel to visit them later this year).  It was shocking to hear how their country limits the “reach” of churches other than Russian Orthodox churches, and how constrained their public comments must be.

4. As a Queen Bee working to grow the Hive in Southwest Ohio, how do you envision The Matriots growing and expanding in that region?

I hope we will establish a number of regular opportunities to get together, meet our SW OH candidates, learn how we can support their work, and expand the “reach” of our work, by continuing to invite new people to join us. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed meeting the women who have decided to run, their staff members and volunteers, and other Matriots. I hope our SW OH “Hive” will be able to offer this opportunity to an expanding network of women and men who want to help make a difference for Ohio, by electing many more women to state & local office!

5. Now for something fun: Tell us about your favorite thing to do in the great state of Ohio. It could be a hobby, a favorite place to eat or something we might not know about our state!

In 2013, my husband and I built a log home (our “cabin in the woods”) in eastern Adams County, in the foothills of Appalachia.  (It’s seriously my “happy place.”) Through our Amish builder, and in the process of shopping frequently at Miller’s Furniture, we met a number of Amish families, and learned more about their community in Adams County.  Twice a year, they hold a chicken dinner and auction, to fund their schools.  We absolutely love attending the chicken dinner, and staying at least through the quilt segment of the auction.  The food is fabulous, we’ve successfully bid on two beautiful hand-made quilts (which now adorn 2 of the 3 beds in our cabin), and we really enjoy this opportunity to catch up with the various Amish families we met in the process of building our home.  (If you’re interested in attending, these are held on the first Friday in May and the last Friday in September.  Dinner is served 4-7 p.m.; the auction begins at 5 p.m; the quilt auction begins around 8 p.m.)

My newest “hobby” seems to be making buttons for women’s campaigns … thanks to our Public Library’s Maker Spaces, where it’s incredibly affordable to make buttons. (I can make 100 buttons for less than $12.50 .. what a great in-kind gift for these amazing women The Matriots are supporting!)