On November 11, 2016, a fountain at Spartanburg Water in downtown Spartanburg, SC, was dedicated to long-time LWVS member Linda Powers Bilanchone to commemorate her 24 years of service as a Commissioner of Public Works. She shared the thoughts below on that occasion.
Women Hold Up Half the Sky
An old Chinese proverb asserts that women hold up half the sky and that truth has motivated women around the world to tackle the struggle to claim their place in decision-making and leadership. American women have struggled to be represented in the chambers and halls and small, undistinguished meeting rooms where governance decisions are made and our community’s future is decided. For Spartanburg women, that began with the Spartanburg Women’s Political Caucus in the 1980s. We met and plotted and planned and ASKED women to run for office. Sewer Commissioner Barbara Barnes and I met in the Caucus. Then in the 1990s, there were the Daughters of Susan B. Anthony who met and celebrated the success of elected and appointed women.
Some of us took the quest statewide by establishing and serving as leaders of the South Carolina Advocates for Women on Boards and Commissions. I have two strong memories of those years.