2020-22 LWVUS Board of Directors Slate
The LWVUS Nominating Committee is pleased to present the slate of officers, directors, and nominating committee members for 2020-2022.
President: Deborah Turner
She/Her | Nebraska
Deborah served on the LWVUS National Board from 2016-present. She served as vice president of LWV Iowa from 2011–2015 and President of LWV Des Moines Metropolitan from 2010–2015. Deborah is the Chair of the LWVUS DEI Committee, and is a member of the LWVUS Governance Committee. She obtained her JD from Drake University and her MD from University of Iowa. She has been a Gynecologic Oncologist for 30 years. Deborah served on the Board Regents for the State of Iowa (1999-2006), and was entered into the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame in 2013.
"I believe no child should be restrained by the circumstances of their birth. The League, through our leadership in the democracy space, can make this dream a reality."
Vice President: Jessica Lowe-Minor
She/Her | Florida
Jessica Lowe-Minor joined the LWVUS board in 2016 and currently serves as Treasurer. She brings a decade of League experience to her role, having served as Executive Director of LWV of Florida from 2010-2014 and Secretary of LWV of Tallahassee from 2015-2016. Jessica is a Realtor and a nonprofit fundraiser, and has two young daughters.
"Leaguers are the strongest people I know. If there’s a way to empower voters and defend democracy, we will find it. Even during a pandemic."
Secretary: Jessica Rohloff
She/Her | Minnesota
Jessica Rohloff is a community organizer, speaker, and writer based in rural Minnesota. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota; a two term Volunteer in Service to America member; a recipient of the BPW MN Young Careerist Award; a graduate of the Blandin Rural Leadership program; and is currently serving her second term on the National League of Women Voters board of directors. Jessica devotes her time to developing best practices for equity, integration, and relationship building across faith, race, gender, age, and culture with an emphasis on power building through community organizing.
"I am steadfast in my dedication to lifting the voices of the unrepresented in pursuit of human rights, self-determination and dignity for all."
Treasurer: Leah Edwards
Leah Edwards currently serves as President of the League of Women Voters of San Francisco and works in the investment management industry. Leah is passionate about bringing about change at the local level, which led her to start volunteering with League of Women Voters of San Francisco in 2014. She is a CFA Charterholder and received her BS in Environmental and Water Resource Economics and BA in Political Science from the University of Arizona.
"As we celebrate the past 100 years, I am excited to continue building the League of the future: a vibrant, diverse, engaged organization that empowers voters and defends democracy."
She/Her | Texas
Onyinye Akujuo is a seasoned transportation professional, change agent, and a federal programs maven. Onyinye previously served as the Vice President of Voter Services for the LWV Atlanta-Fulton County and was instrumental for developing events for voter outreach and candidate forums. She is now an active member of the LWV of Tarrant County. Onyinye’s specialties are providing mentorship, and pro-bono assistance to nonprofits seeking to increase their programmatic budgets through grants and sponsorships. Onyinye is from Queens, NY, and held management roles in NYC, Atlanta, and now in Texas.
"I am proud and grateful for being selected as a candidate to serve on this dynamic LWVUS board. Words cannot describe my excitement in joining the board in this integral centennial year where my previous experience will be able to make an impact nationally."
She/Her | Washington
Liz joined the League in early 2017 and served on the LWV Seattle-King County board as technology chair from 2017-2018 and the LWVUS/EF board from 2018-present. She is a Senior Program Manager at Microsoft, and also volunteers with NCWIT, AnitaB.org, and IGNITE Worldwide for girls/women in tech.
"I believe in democracy as the foundation of a more equitable world and in the power of women to create a more perfect democracy."
She/Her | California
Melissa Breach served eight years as Executive Director for LWV California where she advanced equity initiatives and modernized operations—including launching Voter’sEdge and MyLO. She served on LWV’s Transformation Steering Committee, is a founding member of Future of California Elections, and fights to end the housing crisis as COO of CAYIMBY.
"Making Democracy Work has a new immediacy. Our success requires vigilance, courage, and a shared commitment to meaningful representation in all we do."
She/Her | Ohio
Melissa Currence is the senior director for communications and marketing for ArtWorks Cincinnati, a nonprofit that creates apprenticeships for youth, ages 14-21, through public art. She is the co-host and producer for What Would Alice Paul Do?, a podcast created for LWV members. Melissa has served as a Ruth S. Shur Fellow and co-chaired the LWVUS Young People’s Taskforce from 2012-2014. She has served as president, voter service chair, and fundraising chair of her local league. Melissa served as LWV Ohio board member from 2009-2010, launching the state’s social media presence.
"As a LWV member for more than two decades, I believe in empowering voters and defending democracy. We must continue to lead the path for a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive League and nation."
She/Her | Michigan
Joan Hunault was Advocacy VP of the Michigan LWV, and Secretary of the LWV of Leelanau County. She worked 34 years in Michigan’s Legislature, served 10 years on her City Council, and was the city’s first woman mayor. Joan holds BA and MPA degrees. Her home overlooks beautiful Lake Michigan.
"I am committed to the League of Women Voters—to keep our Democracy open; to allow freedom for responsibility; to ensure power to the powerless."
She/Her | Illinois
Dr. Sania Irwin is member of League of Women Voters of Glen Ellyn (Illinois), and spearheaded the Get Out the Vote effort for 2018 general election. She is Cofounder and President of One Community, a 501c3 charitable organization that raises awareness, acceptance, and involvement of all neighbors. An accomplished technology executive, Sania is Senior Vice President of Systems Engineering at EagleRail Container Logistics, and has served in leadership positions at Motorola/Nokia, General Motors, and Xerox.
"I am passionate about empowering diverse voices and ensuring everyone’s access to the ballot – for an equitable and inclusive democracy."
Allison Riggs leads the voting rights program at the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, an organization she joined in 2009. Her voting rights work at SCSJ has been focused on fighting for fair redistricting plans, fighting against voter suppression, and advocating for electoral reforms that would expand access to voting. In 2018, she argued the Texas redistricting case in the U.S. Supreme Court, and in 2019, she argued the North Carolina partisan gerrymandering case in the Supreme Court. Allison works closely with grassroots organizations as they seek to advance their political and civil rights.
"Partnering with the LWVNC in its efforts to protect and expand voting rights in my home state has been an enormous honor for me, and I’m delighted to be able to serve the organization in this role."
She/Her | Illinois
Lali Watt is an accountant turned activist who has been involved with her local, county, and state Leagues for almost twenty years. A naturalized American, originally from West Bengal, India, she has lived on four continents, settling in the Chicagoland area for much of the last 30 years.
"Seeing injustice, activists seek sustainable and equitable solutions, making real the truth of 'When you want peace, work for justice,' thus creating a flourishing society."
2020-22 LWVUS Nominating Committee Slate
Nominating Committee Chair
She/Her | Nevada
Sondra Cosgrove lives in Las Vegas and is the President of LWV of Nevada. She has a Ph.D. in history, specializing in the U.S. West, Native American History, and Latin America. Currently, Sondra is a history professor who actively promotes civic empowerment and advocacy for civil rights.
"I am honored to be nominated to serve as the Chair of the Nominating Committee, which employs the DEI lens to keep League’s leadership strong."
Nominating Committee Members
Judy has over 40 years of League experience that has included most aspects of the organization, including serving on the LWVUS nominating committee (2017-18); the state board, as the state president; her local board, as webmaster and as president while working full time at the local medical center (now retired). Judy has served as a Ruth Shur Fellow for the past eight years and is now a diversity, equity, and inclusion training/coach.
"The future of our organization depends on the leadership we choose. Diversity, equity, and inclusion will provide us with the strength needed to continue in our vision to make democracy work for all. One way I can continue to support the LWV is to assist in asking those leaders to serve."
She/Her | Louisiana
Hilda Walker Thomas joined the League of Women Voters of St Tammany Parish Louisiana in 2013. Her League participation includes working on the Charter School Study for the State of Louisiana and serving on the 2019 State Convention Committee. She became a member of the LWV of Louisiana Board in 2018 and in January 2019 was elected President of League of Women Voters of Louisiana. She is a retired educator.
"I am extremely excited about the opportunity to serve on LWVUS Nominating Committee. I will work to select candidates who will continue to move forward by promoting the mission and vision of LWVUS while applying diversity, equity and inclusion."