Lake County Women's Coalition to host Equality Event

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th amendment granting women the right to vote.

In celebration of this event, the Lake County Women's Coalition has assembled a panel of women who will speak to current issues surrounding women's equality.

From Elizabeth Cady Stanton's call for women's rights in 1848 to the passionate outcries of women involved in the Women's Marches of today, this program endeavors to put the issue of women's equality into a culturally, historically, politically, and socially relevant context within the United States and beyond.

The panel includes multigenerational voices from the community telling their own stories as they relate to specific topics and includes the following speakers:

• Barbara Richardson, the first female Lake County deputy coroner. Richardson will share how she became deputy coroner in 1976 and the path she followed to be accepted and respected by her male counterparts, focusing on job discrimination and pay equity. She will illustrate the journey women are making from the sticky floor of poverty to breaking through the glass ceiling.

• Joanne Rae, who will emphasize the issues of reproductive justice and transgender discrimination while discussing the rights of LGBTQ individuals to live their lives with dignity and security. She will touch on discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the areas of employment, housing, public accommodations, health services, child custody and military policies.

• Cheryl Hudson-Jackson, YWCA Lake County. Hudson-Jackson will talk about systemic racism as told through her experiences as a woman of color. She will discuss how to identify stereotypes and learn the differences between bias, discrimination, and racism while increasing one's awareness of cultural differences. Her story will focus on the double burden of race and gender discrimination placed on women of color.

• Sandra Bankston, victim advocate for Lake County State's Attorney's Office. Bankston will speak to the stories of her clients who are dealing with various forms of violence, including domestic violence, sexual assault, sexual harassment, gender bias in the political system, and the violence of poverty emphasized by attacks on poor women and children.

• Lisa Cherry, Gender Equity Fund. Cherry will address how pay equality, job opportunities, political structure, social security and education will remain an elusive dream without a guarantee of equality in legislation and the U.S. Constitution.

The Round Lake High School Ghostlight Readers Theatre will also be performing "A Lot To Say," a new piece that weaves through history to the present with the words of visionaries, pioneers, those who refused to move aside, those who marched in the streets, those who continue the fight, and those who still need help.

The celebration will begin at 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 29, at Warren-Newport Public Library, 224 O'Plaine Road, Gurnee. The program is free, but registration is required.

Contact the Warren Newport Public Library at (847) 244-5150 or visit to register. Information can also be found on the Lake County Women's Coalition website,

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