East Cleveland Chapter


Dr. Bennanaye A. Brooks, Chapter President

Phone: 216-254-7917 * Email: babrooks@fastmail.com


History of the League of Women Voters of East Cleveland

The League of Women Voters of East Cleveland, Ohio, was organized in 1946.  It began as a provisional chapter and within a year gained enough members to qualify as a regular local unit of the League of Women Voters.

The League of Women Voters, a non-partisan organization, as established nationally in 1920 in response to the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution giving women the right to vote.  Its initial purpose was to educate women in civic affairs and teach them to be intelligent, informed voters and independent thinkers.  Soon the program was expanded to include voter service and education for the general public, intensive study of government, and thorough investigation of important national, state and local issues.  The League of East Cleveland members chose to address such local issues as city and regional planning, rodent control, the public school and library systems, public transportation, recreation facilities, the East Cleveland City Charter, and application of federal and state assistance programs to local problems.  The League of East Cleveland also conducted “Know Your Town” programs periodically.

By the late 1960s, membership had declined almost reaching the point at which the League of Women Voters of East Cleveland might have to become a provisional chapter once again.  An even more pressing problem was the recruitment of new officers; there were many members with leadership potential, but there was no one with enough time to devote to such positions.  In 1972 the nominating committee was unable to find women willing to assume the roles of president and vice-president.  That June, the members voted to dissolve the League of Women Voters of East Cleveland.

The East Cleveland Chapter was reactivated in 2016, Phyllis Banks-Cook became the Chairperson.  In 2018, the East Cleveland Chapter elected Dr. Bennanaye Brooks and Billie Levert-Hill as Co-Chairs.  The Chapter has conducted voter registration drives, voter education classes, candidate forums, and other related activities.  In May 2019, The Chapter elected Dr. Bennanaye Brooks, President, and Mrs. Taunya Bickerstaff Young, Vice President.


Recent Chapter Activities

Event :  East Cleveland Citizens Movement for Equity in Education Discussions on the Academic Distress Commission held on Saturday, June 8, 2019 at the East Cleveland Public Library, East Cleveland, Ohio (Chapter Members are in bold).


Pictured in the above photo are East Cleveland Councilman Nathanial Martin, Dr. Eugene T.W. Sanders, CEO and Superintendent of Sandusky City Schools, Dr. Mary Rice, East Cleveland Board of Education, Rev. Pamela M. Pickney Butts, Chaplain, East Cleveland LWV, Gerald L. Silvera, Voter Services Chair, East Cleveland LWV, and Dr. Bennanaye A. Brooks, Chapter President, East Cleveland LWV.


Pictured above are Dr. Bennanaye A. Brooks, Ms. Robin Koslen, LWV member, and Dr. Mary Rice.


Event: East Cleveland Memorial Parade held Monday, May 27, 2019.



Pictured above are Chapter President Dr. Bennanaye A. Brooks, Chapter Secretary Dr. Mary Rice, and Voter Service Chair Gerald L. Silvera.  The parade started at Windemere Rapid Station going East on Euclid Avenue ending at the Helen S. Brown Center at Nela Avenue.


Event:  Chapter Awards Ceremony honoring Community Sheros, held on May 18, 2019 at the East Cleveland Public Library, East Cleveland, Ohio.



Pictured above are Mrs. Taunya Young, Chapter Vice President and Shero, Former East Cleveland Ward 2 Council Person Barbara Thomas, Chapter President Dr. Bennanaye Brooks, Dr. Una H.R. Keenon (Chapter Member and 2018 Living Legion Honoree), and Mrs. Delores Davis Award Committee Chair (accepting the award for Jane B. Sheats).  Ms. Monae Harris, a community shero was unable to attend.


Event: League of Women Voters State-Wide Convention held May 10 – 12, 2019, Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center, Lewis Center, Ohio


Pictured above are Chapter Chaplain Rev Pamela M. Pickney Butts and Chapter President and Delegate Dr. Bennanaye Brooks.



Event:  Voter Registration at the Shaw Annual Alumni Picnic held on September 3, 2018, Forest Hill Park, East Cleveland, Ohio.



Event: National Voter Registration Day at Shaw High School in partnership with Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.Held on September 25, 2018, Shaw High School, East Cleveland, Ohio.