Fort Wayne Branch

AAUW Fort Wayne

The American Association of University Women (AAUW) is an association of 165,000 University graduates and donors. It values and seeks a diverse membership. National Conventions are held biennially in the states that have ratified the Equal Rights Amendment.

  • AAUW began in Boston in 1881 with a dual purpose – to further the education and advancement of women and to utilize the privilege of higher education for community betterment. Today these goals are just as vital.
  • The four areas of interest remain constant – Cultural, Community, Education, and International Relations.
  • A committee on “Women” was added as an action arm for women’s issues. Out of members’ expressions of emerging interests and issues, a public policy document is formulated by the National Program Development Committee and Indiana Board of Directors.
  • The theme for this biennium is “Empowering Women Since 1881.”
  • Study-action groups help bring updated awareness about the four areas of interest. An AAUW Branch is limited only by the Branch interest and leadership.
  • AAUW advances EQUITY for all women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy, and research.




The following are some of the projects and collaborations with other community organizations:

  • A partner in the “Tapestry Day for Women” with Purdue University Fort Wayne
  • Gender Equity in the Classroom: Behind the Pay Gap
  • Educational Equity Including Science, Technology, Math, Arts, Engineering, or “STEAM” for Girls
  • Voter Education Information and Forums
  • AAUW is supportive of Diversity Awareness Programs, International Woman’s Day, and Women’s History Month.
  • Public Policy Education; Pay Equity Day; and Women’s Equality Day are also supported by our organization.
  • Fort Wayne AAUW has worked collaboratively on projects with organizations such as the YWCA, The League of Women Voters, Ivy Tech Fort Wayne, Hope House, LINKS, Fort Wayne Urban League, Young Leaders of NE Indiana (YLNI), to support mission-based programs for members and make community improvements.
  • Current projects have been ongoing with Purdue University Fort Wayne and Indiana Tech – Fort Wayne to promote the “Start Smart” training for women who are graduating from college and entering the workforce.
  • In May of 2019, two women attending Purdue University Fort Wayne were selected by the Fort Wayne AAUW Branch to attend the National Conference of College Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL) held in Maryland to receive leadership training.
  • In November, 2019, AAUW members collected and donated many interesting books for the children who attend the Boys & Girls Club of Fort Wayne.



The Woman of the Year Recognition was instituted by the local Fort Wayne Branch of AAUW in 1949 for the purpose of honoring members who have given outstanding service to AAUW and/or the community. Nominations may be submitted to the Recognition Committee by any member of the Fort Wayne Branch. The Award is conferred at the Annual Meeting. This year’s award was presented to:

2020 Woman of the Year Award

Judy Gillman (center)

Eleanor Roosevelt Fund

Inspired by Eleanor Roosevelt’s vision of a more equitable world, the Eleanor Roosevelt Fund has as its goal to implement systematic social changes that will provide a better environment for girls and women. This award goes to women who have helped to achieve this goal. The Eleanor Roosevelt Fund Honoree for the year 2020 was awarded to:

2020 Eleanor Roosevelt Award

Cheryl Mathews (left)

2020 Community Leader Awards:

Each year there are AAUW Fort Wayne Branch members who have shown outstanding leadership through their partnerships formed with our organization in collaboration with their work sites and other community organizations. This year’s AAUW Branch Awards were presented to:

2020 Community Leader Award: Sharon Tucker (right)

Fort Wayne’s newly elected City Councilwoman

2020 Community Leadership Award: Theresa Brady –

Working for many years as our AAUW Corresponding Secretary, Theresa also devotes many hours to help produce our newsletter and the Yearbook/Directory.  Through her collaborations and community work, Theresa has continued to work on many projects which improve the lives of young women being served by the Girl Scouts of Northern Indiana-Michiana Service Center.

2020 Community Leader Award: Nancy McCammon-Hansen –

A member of both the League of Women Voters and our AAUW Fort Wayne Branch, Nancy has been actively involved with “getting out the vote” in our community. Through the years, the AAUW Fort Wayne Branch has awarded grants to the League of Women Voters to help provide up to date research, publicity about voting rights, and collaborated on other projects to help keep the public informed about voting issues.

2020 Community Leader Award: Kayla Crecelius –

Serving on our AAUW Branch Board, as “Co-Director of Programs”, Kayla wrote and received a grant through the AAUW Trust Board to purchase the rights to lead “Start Smart” workshops which were designed by the National AAUW. The workshops are designed for training students graduating from college to help provide the skills needed for negotiating salaries for their jobs.

Also acting as an AAUW College/ University Representative through her role as a Professor at Indiana Tech University, Kayla has collaboratively worked to select an outstanding college student to attend leadership training at the National Conference Women Student Leaders (NCCSWL).


2020 Community Leader Award (Not Pictured): Dr. Melissa Gruys –

As the Dean of the Doermer School of Business at the Purdue University Fort Wayne branch, Dr. Gruys wrote a grant which was funded by the AAUW Fort Wayne Branch to allow the purchase of the AAUW Start Smart workshop materials. Dr. Gruys has delivered several workshops for college students and been instrumental in providing the workshops on-line to help utilize the information with students during the period of pandemic virus.


 Join our Ft. Wayne Branch of AAUW!

Membership in AAUW is open to all women and men graduates with an associate, baccalaureate or higher degree from any college or University. AAUW is neither a social or invitational organization.

By joining AAUW, we belong to a community that breaks through educational and economic barriers so that all women have a fair chance.

  • Students in either an associate or baccalaureate program are also eligible for membership as a “Student Affiliate.” They may participate in all Branch activities, but are ineligible to hold office or vote.
  • Monthly meetings and Interest Groups keep members informed on a variety of topics. Should a member move, membership in this AAUW Branch may be transferred to the new Branch upon request.
  • Privileges of AAUW National Membership include the following:
  1. Resource material on current issues of special concern to women.
  2. Worldwide travel opportunities tailored to the educated women.
  3. An official observer at the United Nations.
  4. Hospital and life insurance plans designed specifically for women.
  5. Professional critiques for personal art and written works.
  6. Up to twenty-five percent off publishers’ prices on adult and children’s books an larger magazine discounts.

*U.S. and International Women Scholars who are working on graduate level degrees may apply for Fellowships, Grants, and Awards through the AAUW Educational Opportunities Fund. One need not be a member of AAUW to apply. One of the world’s largest sources of funding for graduate women students, AAUW is providing $3.9 million in funding for fellowships and grants to 250 outstanding women and nonprofit organizations in the 2018-19 academic year.

We welcome new members!

DUES:  2021-2022


____ Regular …………………   $87.00 = National AAUW $59.00 + State $7.00 + Ft. Wayne Branch $18.00

____ PAID LIFE MEMBER…  $25.00 = State $7.00 + Ft. Wayne Branch $18.00

____ STUDENT………………… $21.00 = National $19.00 + Ft. Wayne Branch $2.00

____ HONORARY LIFE……… $        0  ** (Please consider a donation for Branch expenditures.)

(Note: $59.00 of national dues is tax deductible as a charitable contribution.)

National membership is a Member-at-Large or (MAL). A MAL is a member of the Association but not a member of a local Branch. Fee: $51.00

LIFE membership – members pay a one-time fee to National AAUW of $1,180 which is fully tax deductible. An annual fee may be paid to the state and local Ft. Wayne Branch for $20.00.

Student E-student affiliate dues are free if the Institution is an AAUW Partner.

Click here to open and print a dues renewal form .PDF

To join the AAUW Fort Wayne Branch, contact:

Membership Co-Directors:

Donna McKenzie, Ph: 260-450-9160, Email:

(as of July) Stephanie Bourne, Ph: 260-515-3290, Email:

Amy Lehman, Ph: 260-705-6155, Email: