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Women Elected to Lead Change in Connecticut: Darien LWV Panel Discussion with Four Legislators

November 14 @ 11:30 am

LVW LWV League of Women Voters

A panel discussion titled “Women Elected to Lead Change in Connecticut: How Women in Hartford are Navigating Politics, Advancing Policy and Leading the Way for Others,” will include state House Minority Leader Themis Klarides (R) and three other female state legislators.

You’ll need to get your ticket by Tuesday, Nov. 5, if you’re going to the lunchtime event on Nov. 14 at the Waters Edge at Giovanni’s , says the organizer of the event, the Darien League of Women Voters.

Other statehouse legislators on the panel will be Rep. Cristin McCarthy-Vahey (D), state Sen. Mae Flexer (D) and Sen. Heather Somers (D).

The event, including lunch, takes place at the restaurant located at 2748 Post Road, Darien. Welcome period is at 11:30 a.m.; lunch, at 12 noon; and program, 12:30. The price is $45.

The R.S.V.P. deadline for the program has been extended to Tuesday, Nov. 5. Please R.S.V.P. online at LVW.Darien.org (where there’s a link to this payments Web page) or by check, made payable to LWV Darien and mailed to Evonne Klein, 19 Salt Box Lane Darien, CT 06820. You can also pay online.

The League of Women Voters of Darien is proud to present the next program in its speaker series celebrating the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote. The Darien League has chosen the theme “women using power to bring about positive change.”

The Panelists

State Rep. Themis Klarides is a practicing attorney who is serving her eleventh term in the 114th House District. In 2018 she was unanimously selected for the third time as Caucus Leader by her fellow House Republicans. She is the first woman to hold this position. She is member of the legislature’s committee on Legislative Management and has been a strong voice on issues such as job creation, the State’s financial condition, education, public safety personnel, and women’s health, among others. She is a native of Seymour who began her public service career as a member of the Board of Finance in Seymour and the Planning and Zoning Commission in Derby. She is a graduate of Trinity College and received a J.D. degree from Quinnipiac University School of Law.

State Rep. Cristin McCarthy-Vahey, whose background is in social work, represents Fairfield’s 133rd Assembly district. As a parent, she is a strong advocate for high quality public education. She is House chair of the Planning and Development Committee and is a member of the permanent Commission on Economic Competitiveness, analyzing implications of tax policy on business and industry.

A Pennsylvania native, she began her involvement in politics in Fairfield as a member of the RTM and later the Board of Selectmen. She is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and the University of Washington.

State Sen. Mae Flexer, who represents the 29th district in northern Connecticut, is Deputy President Pro Tempore and Federal Relations Liaison. She chairs the Committee on Government Administration and Elections.

She previously served three terms in the Connecticut House of Representatives serving the 44th Assembly District towns of Killingly and Plainfield. Flexer, who grew up in a family with limited financial resources, has rallied against programs that cut aid to the poor and has been an advocate for women, children and healthy communities with interests in preventing domestic violence and promoting economic fairness and justice.

In 2019 she wrote and facilitated Senate Bill 3, the “Time’s Up Act,” increasing certain sexual harassment penalties and extending the time limits people have for filing sexual assault charges from five years to twenty years and requiring more employer sponsored harassment training.

Flexer became a member of the Killingly Democratic Committee at age 18 and was elected chair four years later. She worked as an aide to Senate President Pro Tem Donald Williams and won his seat in 2014 when he declined to run for reelection. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut and a degree from Quinebaug Valley Community College.

State Sen. Heather Somers represents the 18th Senate District in eastern Connecticut. She is the assistant Senate Republican leader and serves as a ranking member of the Public Health Committee, and on the Appropriations committee, the Planning and Development Committee and the Commerce Committee. She serves on the State Commission on Economic Development. She has been recognized for her leadership on behalf of Connecticut’s nursing facilities and assisted living communities.

Somers is a native of Groton and served as mayor from 2012 to 2014 after five terms on the Groton Town Council. She holds a B.A. from the University of Connecticut.


November 14
11:30 am
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Darien League of Women Voters


Waters Edge at Giovanni’s
2748 Post Road
Darien, CT 06820 United States
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