CNY Branch of the NLAPW

CNY Branch Pen Women in the Forefront at NLAPW's 50th Biennial

After four years of planning and negotiating, First Vice President and Biennial Chair Sheila M. Byrnes was finally able to see all of her hard work come to fruition as the NLAPW 50th Biennial opened in Washington, D.C. on April 28, 2022, at The Darcy hotel. The well-attended, highly successful weekend series of events saw Planet Word Director and Founder Ann B. Friedman speak








Photos (from top left): Outgoing President and new Executive Director of Pen Arts building Evelyn B. Wofford; Vinnie Ream Letters winners Janine DeBaise and Georgia Popoff with their names on the plaque in the Vinnie Ream Library: Archives Chair Sandra Michel int the Planet Word elevator with Sheila Byrnes; Georgia Popoff receiving her award; BLM at the Human Rights building. Large photo is of the Board of Directors with new Presiident Sheila M. Byrnes in center front in the courtyard of Planet Word; gallery photos from next top left: Mary Gardner; Janet Fagal; new Board of Directors member and composer Grace Reid; Art Chair Joan Applebaum presenting Jamie Tate with the first-place art award; Mary Gardner; Sheila M. Byrnes at Planet Word; Karen Pastorello presenting at the Letters Luncheon; Janine DeBaise, Sandra Michel, and Karen Hempson; Sue Murphy's real-time sketch as she draws; Kim Reynolds at the Music reception hosted by the CNY and Washington, D.C. branches; Karen Pastorello discussing women's suffrage at the Letters Luncheon.


before the assembly at the Vinnie Ream banquet on the evening of April 29th. Suffrage scholar Karen Pastorello discussed the women who led the movement for the right to vote in New York State before the convention on May 1. 2022.


Outgoing Letters Chair Nancy Dafoe introduced the winners of the Vinnie Ream award in Letters over that four-year period to our own CNY Branch members Janine DeBaise for 2019 and Georgia Popoff for 2021. Susan Murphy received the third-place award in Arts for the Vinnie Ream competition. At the Letters Luncheon, Dafoe introduced a host of Biennial awards in Letters to Janet Fagal, Janine DeBaise (who won multiple awards), Mary Gardner, Karen Hempson, Sheila M. Byrnes, and Judy McGinn (who was unable to attend in person). Taking a lion's share of awards, the CNY Branch made their presence known in multiple ways. Art Chair Joan Applebaum, who oversaw the exhibition in the Pen Arts gallery, and Susan Murphy both had artwork chosen for the new Pen Arts art exhibition by the judge.


New League Art Chair Joan Applebaum gave a well-attended workshop on creating with alcohol inks, Recharging Your Creativity with Alcohol Inks. Janet Fagal, Mary Gardner, and Janine DeBaise offered a workshop on ekphrastic writing: How it Works and Why it Matters on friday, April 29th. Letters Chair Dafoe gave workshops on the novel (Grab My Attention and Hold It) and preparing manuscripts for publication (Right Down to the Nitty Gritty) on Friday, as well. Susan Murphy offered a workshop on illustrating in the city titled "Documenting Experience though Urban Sketching" on Sunday, May 1st. Sheila M. Byrnes teamed with artist Jamie Tate and composer Grace Reid for a panel discussion titled "Turning Points" on Saturday, April 30th. During the Biennial, the League Board of Directors took a guided tour of the new museum Planet Word with founder Ann B. Friedman. Pen Women independently saw the sights of Washington, D.C. and had an event-filled weekend.


As the day came to a close on Sunday, new Pen Women Trish Chambers offered a presentation on the women in the Surpreme Court, titled, "Watching History Come to Life." At the conclusion of the Biennial weekend of events, Sheila M. Byrnes was sworn in as the new President, and Nancy Dafoe was sworn in as second Vice President. Outgoing President Evelyn Wofford was appointed Executive Director of the Pen Arts Building and gallery. As the momentous weekend came to an end, Sheila M. Byrnes conducted her first Board meeting as new NLAPW President, appointing new chairs.

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