League of Women Voters of Manatee County


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“Making Democracy Work”

Our Mission

The League of Women Voters, a non-partisan 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.


invite.jpgDon’t miss these important events


We invite you to learn more about current issues, talk with experts and decision makers, and enjoy meeting others at these interesting events.

Mark your calendar now




http://ts4.mm.bing.net/th?id=H.4787781642356571&pid=15.1Monday, Jan. 13: Sex Trafficking in Manatee County.  12 noon to 1:00 pm. Bradenton Woman’s Club, 1705 Manatee Ave West.

Human trafficking is the commercial exploitation of people into forced prostitution, involuntary labor and debt bondage through force, coercion and threats. This modern day slavery is a growing problem. Bringing in $35 billion nationally, it vies with drugs in profitability to the criminals who victimize thousands of young people every year.   Speakers: Kindsey Neeson of Selah Freedom, a local organization that works with victims of sex trafficking.  Detective Kevin Bunch of the Bradenton City police and Manatee County Sheriff detective Theron Robinson will explain what law enforcement agencies are doing about this problem.  Doors open at 11:30 am for refreshments and social time.  For more information, call 729-9248.  Did you miss it?  Watch it online on METV YouTube.



http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?id=H.4761517891258060&pid=15.1Monday, Feb. 10: The Future of Newspapers in the Digital Age.  12 noon to 1:00 pm, Bradenton Woman’s Club, 1705 Manatee Ave West.

Newspapers have been called a pillar of our nation’s democracy, in that only a well-informed electorate can participate effectively in democracy. Yet in recent years we see challenges to this important part of our society, with many papers being sold, merged or going out of business.  Is the news we get from digital sources as reliable? How are the news media coping and changing?  Speakers:  Dr. Karen Dunlap, retired president of the Poynter Institute for Journalism; Joan Krauter, Executive Editor, Bradenton Herald; Bill Church, Executive Editor, Sarasota Herald Tribune; and Dennis Maley, Editor in Chief of the online newspaper, the Bradenton Times.   Doors open at 11:30 am for refreshments and social time.  For more information, call 729-9248. Watch it online at METV YouTube



Beatriz Paniego-BéjarMonday, Mar. 10:  Immigration Reform: Issues and Needs. 12 noon to 1:00 pm.  Bradenton Woman’s Club, 1705 Manatee Ave West.

Our country is a nation of immigrants. However, our current immigration policies are no longer working to prevent illegal immigration, obtain the labor force we need, and provide an earned path to citizenship.  What changes would work best for our nation and for those who wish to come here?  Speakers:  Beatriz Paniego Bejar, Communications Director of Unidos Now, immigration attorney Maria Mata Ruhl, and Bob Spencer, president of West Coast Tomato, based in Palmetto.  Doors open at 11:30 am for refreshments and social time.  For more information, call 729-9248.  Watch it online at METV YouTube.




http://ts3.mm.bing.net/th?id=H.4652619047960918&pid=15.1Monday, Apr.  7:  Voting Rights: How can we ensure that everyone who is entitled to vote gets to vote? 12 noon to 1:00 pm.  Bradenton Woman’s Club, 1705 Manatee Ave West.

Voting is one of our most precious rights. To encourage turnout, our nation had trended towards making voting more convenient.  Early voting, absentee ballots and more voting locations have helped improve turnouts. However, in recent years state laws were passed that make it harder to vote.  Our program will look at these laws and their effects, and the options available to local Supervisors of Elections.  Speakers: Manatee County Supervisor of Elections Mike Bennett and Carolyn Gray, representing the Florida League of Women Voters.

Doors open at 11:30 am for refreshments and social time.  For more information, call 729-9248.


Susan MacManusSat. Apr. 12:  LWV of Manatee County Annual Meeting.  11:00 am – 1:00 pm, Bradenton Country Club, 4646 Ninth Ave. West, Bradenton.  Join the members of our League for lunch, followed by a speaker program. 


Get the scoop on the Florida Legislative Session and Election 2014!

We are very pleased and honored to have as our speaker Dr. Susan MacManus, Distinguished Professor, Department of Government and International Affairs at University of South Florida.  For the last seven election cycles she has served as a key nonpartisan political analyst for news media in print, television, radio, and the web.  She also served as Chair of the Florida Elections Commission from 1999 to 2003. Author of eight books on Florida history and politics, she is our state’s most quoted political scientist.  Dr. MacManus will discuss the current session of the Florida Legislature, and give us a preview of election issues, 2014.  Click here for Registration Form.



Download this handy Hot Topic schedule: Hot Topics 2014


All LWV Hot Topic programs are open to the general public and free of charge.  Missed one?  No problem.  Just go onto Manatee Educational TV’s website—http://metvweb.com/—for their schedule of showings, or click on their YouTube link to watch our Hot Topics online.  Have an idea for a Hot Topic you would like us to offer?  Email lwvmanatee@yahoo.com, or call 729-9248. 


LWV Speaker’s Bureau:  Do you belong to a club that hosts guest speakers?  We now have a League Speakers Bureau, and can supply your group with practiced speakers with powerpoint slide programs on a variety of topics.  We currently offer the informational program, the Affordable Care Act; for more information, call 782-4530.  Other speaker programs of interest are the Florida Water and Land Conservation Legacy, an effort to acquire, preserve and restore Florida’s environmentally sensitive lands, Importance of Voter Participation and Charter Governmentan option for Manatee County.  Call 729-9248 for more information.




Elections 2014



Election Date

Last day to register

Town of Longboat Key

March 25, 2014

February 24, 2014

Primary Election

August 26, 2014

July 28, 2014

General Election *

November 4, 2014

October 6, 2014


*For more information see www.votemanatee.com


Know before you vote!  Study the candidates and issues.  Attend debates and forums; read up on the candidates.  Watch the debates online on METV’s YouTube link:  METV Debates.  For more information on the candidates, and to search their lists of contributions, see the Supervisor of Elections website Candidate Information for candidates for local offices.  For state-level offices see the Florida Division of Elections website.


Be ready to vote!  The League of Women Voters of Manatee County wants to remind voters to contact the county Supervisor of Elections Office to verify their status, especially if they have relocated from another county, changed their name or signature, or want to vote by mail (absentee ballot).  Under Florida law, voters must be registered properly at least 29 days prior to an election. 

For more information, visit the League’s Be Ready to Vote website, www.BeReadyToVote.org.

Did you know that your Manatee Supervisor of Elections office is Smart Phone ready?  You can check your registration status, find your polling place, request an absentee ballot and much more. Click on Smartphone Friendly.   




Citizen action:  Get involved!  Your job as a citizen does not end after the election.  Keep in contact your elected officials.  Let them know what you think. 

Download our Citizen’s Guide to Elected Officials for contact information. 



Help Preserve Environmentally Sensitive Land! Support the Florida Water and Land Conservation Amendment

The League of Women Voters of Florida has endorsed a proposed amendment to the Florida Constitution that would protect hundreds of thousands of acres of habitat land and ensure the state’s clean water supply for future generations. For more information see:


Florida Water and Land Legacy Amendment





See our latest newsletter: The Manatee Voter




Volunteers Needed

Develop skills and enjoy personal satisfaction while making a difference in our community. The opportunities are limitless.


  • Distributing voter guides.
  • Voter Registration
  • Fundraising
  • Staffing booths at events.
  • Issue studies--study government issues and make recommendations to decision makers.
  • Creating attractive and interesting educational materials.
  • Website design
  • Newsletter mailout
  • Expanding our outreach efforts.
  • Publicity
  • Voter education
  • Coordinating our efforts with other community groups.

If you are interested, please call 729-9248.


Join the League of Women Voters Voter Registration Team!


008It’s easy as 1 – 2 – 3!


1.    Join the League.  If not yet a member of the League, join by filling out the membership application below and sending it in.

2.    Get the training.  Go to:  www.thefloridavoter.org/for-members/voter-registration; Click on Watch the League’s Online Voter

            Registration Training.

3.    Take the Quiz.  After completing the training, take the League’s 10-question quiz.


After successfully completing the quiz, you will receive an email confirming that you are certified to do voter registration for the LWV and the code no. to use on the forms.  Email us at lwvmanatee@yahoo.com, to let us know you are on the team!


(Photo:  Team member Gail Levin helping students register at an LWV VR drive at the State College of Florida)



The League of Women Voters celebrated its 93nd birthday this year. As the League honored the years of work its members accomplished, it is also looking to the future. League members will continue their commitment to improving communities across the country. As a nonpartisan political organization with over 850 local and state affiliates, the League is one of America's largest and most trusted organizations.

As we celebrate the difference we have made over the years, we remain focused on the future, working to keep Manatee County strong, healthy and vibrant. This year, the League remains committed to our mission to educate and engage members of the community in their government.

The LWV of Manatee County has an active agenda this year. Our members work toward our goals every day by reaching out to new citizens and first-time voters, protecting our natural resources, improving our election systems and holding public forums on important government issues.

We are:

·         Empowering millions of voters to protect their right to vote

·         Providing nonpartisan education and candidate debates.

·         Working to ensure that ALL votes are counted and all voices are heard

·         Preserving our constitutional rights by safeguarding civil liberties.

·         Acting as a force for positive change in our communities and in our democracy

·         We believe that sensible, responsible, civil discourse and action based on substance, rather than partisan battles is essential if we are to avoid polarization and get something done.

Join us and be part of the solution!  Become a member.

Please fill out and mail this application.  Membership is open to men and women of all ages. Members have an opportunity to study issues affecting their lives and to promote action. The League does not support or oppose individual candidates. 

If you would prefer to use a credit card, use this link to join using PayPal. 



Help us to help the voters.  Your contribution will provide important support for our work. Please contribute today!  Please send to:

LWV Manatee
P.O. Box 545
Bradenton, FL 34206


Telephone: (941) 744-9692

Email:  lwvmanatee@yahoo.com




Last modified March 25, 2014

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