36th Biennial Convention



REGISTRANTS FROM 47 STATESNearly 1,200 registrants from 47 states plus Puerto Rico attended the NFRW’s 36th Biennial Convention in Kansas City, Missouri, on Sept. 29-Oct. 2, 2011, making it one of the largest Republican gatherings of the year.  CONVENTION PROGRAM >>

STRAW POLL Each Republican woman registrant was invited to vote in the NFRW Presidential Straw Poll, which featured nine Republican presidential candidates. Herman Cain won a near-majority with 48.9 percent of 505 total votes cast. Rick Perry placed a distant second, and Mitt Romney came in third. The straw poll was conducted Oct. 1 by Palladian View of Spartanburg, S.C.  

ADDRESSES BY REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES – Including former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain (pictured), former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (pictured) and former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum (pictured).

Rick Santorum and Sue Lynch

ELECTED OFFICIALS, PARTY LEADERS, POLITICAL ANALYSTS, POLICY EXPERTS AND OTHER NOTABLE GUESTSIncluding U.S. Congresswomen Jo Ann Emerson, Vicky Hartzler [REMARKS], and Lynn Jenkins; Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (pictured), Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, and Puerto Rico Gov. Luis Fortuño; and, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus [REMARKS] and Co-Chairman Sharon Day.

RESOLUTIONS – Delegates approved resolutions pledging support for Israel, a balanced budget amendment, and statehood for Puerto Rico. In addition, delegates approved a resolution calling for the defeat of national standards for state schools. 

LEADERSHIP, POLITICAL AND POLICY TRAINING – Attendees trained for leadership roles in government, politics and community by attending the one-day Campaign Management School, as well as political and policy workshops on immigration reform, issue advocacy, the U.S. Constitution, and Israeli-American relations taught by nationally-recognized experts.

Herman Cain

REAGAN TRIBUTE – In honor of the 2011 Reagan Bicentennial, the NFRW Program Committee presented a special video tribute which captured the memory and legacy of President Reagan. In addition, New York artist Tarryl Gabel painted a portrait of our beloved 40th president for the live auction.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOUNG WOMEN – The NFRW gave more than 50 young women, ages 14-17, from across the nation the educational opportunity to represent their home states during the opening flag ceremony and to serve as a page during the convention. In addition, NFRW President Sue Lynch hosted the Young Professionals Reception as a networking and educational opportunity for the NFRW’s future leaders.

FUNDRAISINGUnder the leadership of Chairman Carol Salmon of Ohio, the NFRW Fundraising Committee raised $25,000-plus through the “Sparkle in the Heart of America” sideboard raffle, live auction, and other fundraising efforts. The funds will help off-set the cost of the convention.

Newt Gingrich

PRAYER BREAKFAST – At the Sunday morning Prayer Breakfast, the NFRW recognized Federation leaders who have died during the past two years with a special remembrance video and program. 

BOOKS FOR JOPLIN – The NFRW Literacy Committee collected hundreds of books featured on the 2010-2011 Mamie Eisenhower Library Project lists. The book donations will help rebuild Joplin-area libraries that suffered loss due to the tornado earlier this year.

TOURS – The Kansas Federation hosted a trip to Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Presidential Library and Museum in Abilene, Kansas, while the NFRW Americanism Committee sponsored a tour of the National World War I Museum in Kansas City.

RACING TO LOUISVILLEKentucky Federation President Willee Cooper introduced delegates to Louisville, which will host the 37th Biennial Convention in 2013.

Jan Brewer

ELECTION OF NFRW OFFICERS – Convention delegates made pivotal decisions as they selected the women who will lead the Federation in 2012 and 2013. Rae Lynne Chornenky of Arizona was elected president. 

Also elected were:

1st Vice President – Jessie Morton of Louisiana
2nd Vice President – Kathy Brugger of California
3rd Vice President – Betty Poe of South Carolina
4th Vice President – Lisa Roper of Texas
Secretary – Sara Jo Odom  of Oklahoma
Treasurer – Carrie Almond of Missouri

Following the convention, the Board of Directors elected the following as Members-at-Large to the Executive Committee:

Carol Salmon of Ohio
Martha Jenkins of North Carolina
Eileen Sobjack of Washington

NFRW Executive Committee-2012-2013

TAKING BACK AMERICA SONG/VIDEO – Led by Chairman Lisa Roper of Texas, the NFRW Public Relations Committee unveiled the “Taking Back America” song and video to thunderous applause from convention-goers. A tribute to the thousands of active members in local clubs nationwide, the song is delivered as part of a video showcasing women engaged in political, educational and community activities.  VIDEO >>

Taking Back America Video

AWARDS OF DISTINCTION – The NFRW presented awards recognizing accomplishments at the state and local levels in the areas of membership and program development, campaign activities, community service, and public relations, including about 500 Club Achievement Awards and dozens of other awards.

In addition, the NFRW recognized the outstanding leadership of Dena Barnes, president of the North Carolina Federation of Republican Women, with the fourth biennial Ronald Reagan Leadership Award. Pictured right, Barnes receives a limited-edition Waterford crystal "Centennial Celebration Vase" engraved with the official Reagan Centennial logo (Reagan Presidential Library). 

Dena Barnes and Reagan Award    

NETWORKING OPPORTUNITIESDelegates and other attendees enjoyed plenty of opportunities to network with women from across the nation at events such as the “Jazzin’ It Up in Kansas City” Opening Gala hosted by the Missouri Federation of Republican Women, and the evening hospitality receptions hosted by states and candidates. The Kansas Federation of Republican Women treated Regents to an elegant black-tie cocktail reception and dinner at the Muehlebach Hotel, a historic local landmark visited by every U.S. president from Theodore Roosevelt to Ronald Reagan. During the 1976 Republican National Convention, both Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan made pitches for delegates at the hotel. Pictured right, the NFRW Capitol Regents enjoy a special luncheon at the Webster House.

NFRW Capitol Regents

STATE QUILTSThrough a project sponsored by the NFRW Armed Services Committee, more than a dozen states created beautiful and creative quilts to honor women who have received the Purple Heart medal. The quilts were prominently displayed during the convention, and many will be displayed at key state locations such as governors’ offices or VA nursing homes. Pictured right, the Washington FRW displays its quilt for the Women's Purple Heart Quilt Trail Project.

Washington FRW Quilt

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