The Democratic Women’s Club of Florida has been growing throughout the state ever since its first club was chartered in the gulf coast city of St. Petersburg on May 24, 1956. “It was in 1940 that First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt, declared May 24th as National Democratic Women’s Day” says Monica Readus, President of a newly chartered Democratic Women’s Club in West Orlando. In honor of this momentous day, Readus and other dedicated Democratic Florida women, are busy working out the details of the first statewide Democratic Women’s Club Rally. Readus has taken on the task of chairing the committee to oversee the event.
“We’re calling ourselves ‘PerSisters’ which comes from a rebuke made by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to Senator Elizabeth Warren during the Senate confirmation hearings in Washington DC last month,” Readus explained. “When Warren attempted to read Coretta Scott King’s letter on the senate floor, McConnell interrupted her and demanded she take her seat! He said, ‘She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.'”
“It has become a rallying cry for women all around the country. We thought it was the perfect title for our first statewide rally,” Readus said.
Some of the confirmed speakers include: Grace Nelson (introduction by U.S. Senator Bill Nelson), FL State Senator Linda Stewart, FL State Senator Audrey Gibson, U.S. Representative Darren Soto, Attorney Pam Keith, Attorney Nuren Haider, Vice Chair of the Orange County Democratic Executive Committee, and Olivia Babis, Peer Mentor at Sun Coast Center for Independent Living.
“We are proud to join our sisters from around the Sunshine State to honor the very first organizational meeting of the Democratic Women’s Club of Florida,” Readus also pointed out. “Today, the DWCF has clubs in 39 Florida counties, including two clubs in the Greater Orlando area.”
Here in Florida on May 20th, “hundreds of our more than 3,000 members of the 50 Democratic Women’s Clubs throughout the state will converge on Lake Eola by bus loads to enjoy the rally music, entertainment, and inspirational guest speakers,” Readus said in a statement.
The “PerSisters” Rally begins at 10:00 a.m. Saturday, May 20th at the ADA Accessible Lake Eola Park Amphitheater, 412 E. Washington Street, and those with Club-sponsored tables will be offering Democratic sundries for sale.
There will be rallying music provided by DJ Sherry Kinder of Palm Harbor, and the sensational UCF women’s “a capella” choir, Key Harmony, will perform a few selections from their intriguing repertoire of tunes. The program will culminate around noon with a gathering of all the members of the individual clubs for the historic march around Lake Eola. Each club will carry their own unique banner representing the democratic women solidarity that resonates throughout the state of Florida.
Club members who arrive the night before are gathering at the nearby Embassy Suites Downtown, 191 E. Pine Street, where a Friday night “Meet & Greet Social” begins at 6:30 p.m.