Arizona Historian to Address April AAUW Meeting

Barbara Stewart

Arizona historian and women’s history advocate Dr. Melanie Sturgeon will be the guest speaker at the Southeast Valley Branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) on April 20, 2020. The meeting, beginning at 4:30 p.m., will be held at Sun Lakes Methodist Church in Classroom 1 (park in back under covered parking and enter through the glass doors facing parking).

Dr. Sturgeon’s topic will be “Arizona Suffrage Movement and Frances Munds.” Her remarks will detail many players behind the struggle for voting rights for women in Arizona, which became law in 1912 in the state. She will give particular attention to Frances Willard Munds, a suffragist who later became Arizona’s first female state senator.

As President of the Arizona Women’s History Alliance, Dr. Sturgeon is leading efforts to recognize Munds with a statue in Wesley Bolin Plaza near the state capitol. It will be the first statue on state grounds honoring a woman.

Melanie Sturgeon retired as the State Archivist and Director of the Arizona State Archives in 2016. She has served as President of the Coordinating Committee for History in Arizona, the Southwest Oral History Association, and the Council of Inter-Mountain Archivists, and on national and state archivist boards. She was Executive Chair of the Arizona Women’s Hall of Fame for 12 years, stepping down in 2018.

Since 1881, The American Association of University Women (AAUW) advances equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy, and research. AAUW has a nationwide network of more than 100,000 members and donors, 1,000 branches, and 600 college/university institutional partners. AAUW is one of the world’s largest sources of funding for graduate women. The AAUW invites all who hold an associate or higher degree from an accredited college or university to join.

For further information on this program or membership, go to