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New League of Women Voters forming in Kosciusko County

This story was originally published in News Now Warsaw on June 19, 2024.

A new group is working to revive efforts to establish a League of Women Voters chapter in Kosciusko County.

A small group tried about six years ago to start a group, but apparently never completed paperwork and the effort lost energy after they organized one forum.

The national organization began in 1920 at the same time women won the right to vote and was geared back then to assist women with learning about the election process.

These days, it’s more about voter registration and underscoring the importance of voting.

Kosciusko County has about 52,000 registered voters, but only about 60 percent bothered to cast votes in the last presidential election four years ago.

“To me, it’s pretty simple,” said John Warren, a local banker. “I don’t care what party you’re involved in, you just need to vote.”

Warren launched the effort with Shari Benyouski and Tony Garza.

“There’s an opportunity there, hopefully, to get more people involved,” Warren said.

The non-partisan group met Tuesday at the K21 Health Foundation offices in Winona Lake and attracted about 15 people, including representatives of Grace College, Ivy Tech and Fellowship Missions.

The group already has shirts and banners and wants to make its presence known ahead of the Nov. 5 national election. On Tuesday, they talked about particpating in the Kosciusko County 4-H Parade on July 7 and will have a tale on the Library on July 8 from 10 a.m. to noon.

Voter registratrion deadline is Oct. 7

At Tuesday’s meeting, there was a general consensus that part of their focus should be on young potential voters and the need to motivate people to vote once they are registered.

Reaching out to students at Grace College, Ivy Tech and even area high schools would make sense but figuring out how to motivate voters might be more elusive.

Having a social media campaign, geared in part toward tiktok could help, some said.

To learn more, contact Warren, Benyousky or Garza and look soon for a local league of womens voter page on Facebook.

The next meeting will be at 5:30 p.m., July 23, at the K21 Health Foundation’s office in Winona Lake.