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Celebrating their strength: King County proclaims March “Women’s History Month”


Metropolitan King County
Council News

Celebrating their strength: King County proclaims March “Women’s History Month”


Recognizing and honoring women for their countless contributions to community, government and nation


From fighting for the right to vote, to pay equity, to basic human rights, women of every race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic background have and continue to make historic contributions to the growth and strength of King County, Washington State, our nation, and the global community. The Metropolitan King County Council today recognized that history in proclaiming March Women's History Month in King County.

“This month, we recognize the achievements of women in every walk of life – science, business, professions, the arts – and this year’s celebration specifically honors women who have shaped our country through public service and government leadership,” said Councilmember Claudia Balducci. “Significant battles– for equal pay and supportive working conditions – remain to be won, but the efforts of past women leaders have made it possible for the women and girls of today to have the opportunity and the confidence to participate fully in all levels of public life.”

“Our state has been a leader for many years in the number of women serving in public office at all levels, including record numbers in our Legislature,” said Councilmember Kathy Lambert. “I’m pleased to honor all those who have been trailblazers in contributing to our society in numerous ways. Women have so many important roles.”

“There is no argument that women have played and continue to play a critical political, economic, cultural, and social role in every sphere of life,” said Councilmember Jeanne Kohl-Welles, co-sponsor of the proclamation. “It is important we take this moment to celebrate the accomplishments of all women and equally important that we recognize the work that is yet to be done to ensure women of all socio-economic statuses, ages, racial and ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientations, abilities and disabilities have the same opportunities as our male counterparts.”

The national theme for the 2016 celebration, “Working to Form a More Perfect Union: Honoring Women in Public Service and Government,” recognizes the pivotal role of women have played in shaping America’s history and will play in its future through public service and government leadership.

“The issues that are often referred to in our society as ‘women’s issues’ – such as child care, family leave, the gender wage gap, and domestic violence just to name a few – are anything but; they are issues that affect each of us deeply, regardless of our gender,” said Council Chair Joe McDermott. “We have a profound duty to ensure that the girls and boys who will grow to be tomorrow’s women and men understand the history that we are honoring today, so that the world that they inherit will be one of greater equity and fairness.”

“I grew up with the privilege of knowing firsthand what great things women in leadership positions can do for our country,” said Council Vice Chair Reagan Dunn. “I’m thankful for the legacy my mother Jennifer Dunn left for future women in politics and glad that King County is seeking to honor the enormous contributions women have added to our society.”

“Women’s History Month reminds us of the decades long struggle for women’s equality in the workplace, and provides the perfect opportunity to address the continued inequity women face,” said Council Vice Chair Rod Dembowski. “I am proud to provide leadership on these issues at the County, including fighting for a nation-leading paid parental leave program, sponsoring the King County Women’s Advisory Board’s recommendations for improving wage equity and promoting a family-friendly workplace, and sponsoring the 100% Talent gender equity initiative for King County.”

Congress recognized “Women’s History Week” in 1981 to celebrate the significant role of women in American history and contemporary society. In 1987, Congress expanded “Women’s History Week” to “Women History Month.”

“Women have contributed economically and socially to the building of Martin Luther King, Jr. County,” said Councilmember Larry Gossett. “We have made great strides as a country in moving towards gender equality but we must be diligent in our efforts to ensure that everyone has equal opportunities to succeed, especially women who continue to be disenfranchised.”

The Council’s proclamation encourages county residents to participate in events and learn more about the significant role women have played throughout our history.

 Councilmember Jeanne Kohl-Welles is flanked by Dr. Sutapa Basu,
Executive Director of the UW Women’s Center (l) and Annette Messitt,
co-chair of the King County Women’s Advisory Board (r) after the Council
proclaimed the month of March “Women’s History Month” in King County.

WHEREAS, in 1910, Washington became the fifth state to enact women’s suffrage, and this success helped inspire the campaign that culminated in the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1920, when women won the right to vote nationally; and

WHEREAS, since 1914, March 8th has been recognized as International Women’s Day Celebration; and

WHEREAS, since 1987, March has been designated Women's History Month, and the President of the United States has proclaimed March to be National Women’s History Month; and

WHEREAS, beginning in 1998, King County has observed March as Women’s History Month in recognition of the many contributions women have made to the workforce, government, and community; and

WHEREAS, with the inception of the King County Council and the election of Councilmember Bernice Stern in 1969, women from throughout our county have represented the people of King County on the Council for the past 46 years; and

WHEREAS, women constitute a substantial and integral portion of both King County’s population and the labor force, making countless contributions to our community across every facet of life; and

WHEREAS, many women are committed to their dual roles as professional women and mothers; and

WHEREAS, women’s contributions have been critical to the growth and development of our economy, our cultural and artistic achievements, our social advancement, and many other areas of accomplishment; and

WHEREAS, women of every race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic background continue to make historic contributions to the growth and strength of King County, Washington State, our nation, and the global community;

NOW, THEREFORE, we, the Metropolitan King County Council, proclaim March 2016 as


in King County, to recognize and celebrate the contribution women have made to our nation’s history and will make to its future;

DATED this seventh day of March, 2016.

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