From left: Zillah F. Jackson-Wesley, Sylvia Bennett, Vanilla Jackson-Crawford and Anita Shelton of DC Women In Politics prepare a welcome card to former first lady Michelle Obama. (Roy Lewis/The Washington Informer)
From left: Zillah F. Jackson-Wesley, Sylvia Bennett, Vanilla Jackson-Crawford and Anita Shelton of DC Women In Politics prepare a welcome card to former first lady Michelle Obama. (Roy Lewis/The Washington Informer)

Amid a nation’s uncertainty regarding the future of women’s rights, DC Women In Politics — an organization devoted to sharpening the political, educational, and economic skills of all females — prepares to send Michelle Obama a motivational message.

In celebration of the Obamas’ return to D.C. after recently departing from the White House, the organization on March 14 will personally deliver an oversized thank-you card with a message of continued support and a call to action to the former first lady.

Anita Shelton, founding member of the organization and longtime District resident and political activist, expressed her enthusiasm for presenting the token of appreciation and detailed what the note should symbolize for the immediate future.

“Our organization brings together a diverse group of women representing all wards of the city and recognizes moving ahead women and children,” said Shelton, 72. “Knowing that these two causes are also very near and dear to Mrs. Obama, provides the organization an opportunity to tell the former first lady that we are here to offer an arm of support in advocacy for these two concerns and also help to shape her agenda.”

Two critical items that DC Women In Politics hopes that Obama will specifically address are the miseducation of girls in schools and mental and physical health of both women and children.

Though the organization was spearheaded by various prominent black female D.C. political activists, the organization — which has now grown to over 300 members and over 2,000 regular participants since its inception in 2014 — attributes its success to women all across the city, recognizing a void in female leadership roles and political offices despite routinely accounting for the majority of D.C. voters.

“This is not just a women’s group, this is a women’s rights group,” Shelton said. “We are political and we are supporting women and we are dedicated to women who are interested in running for elected offices and to promoting the election of women to public offices and holding them accountable, for the betterment of D.C.”

Lauren M. Poteat

Lauren Poteat is a versatile writer with a strong background in communications and media experience with an additional background in education and development.

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