“There were no female engineers when I first entered the work force in the early-70’s and I got crazy looks when applying for jobs. I had degrees from Duke, Carolina and NC State, yet I couldn’t get a credit card or a mortgage on my own. Think about how far women have come since those days of being dependents rather than independent women. We will not go back. This is why I march.”
– Jan Anderson, PE, BSME, MRP, MCE
When Jan Anderson and her friend, Jennie Buckner, decided to take part in the Women’s March on Washington, they extended an invitation to members of their book club. Those friends invited other friends and a carload of two turned into a busload of 45 – women galvanized by the surprising, presidential election outcome.
As they joined the thousands of men and women marching on the nation’s capitol and the millions of sympathizers across the globe, this local band of 45 was inspired to continue their efforts opposing the Trump agenda on a variety of social and economic issues.
By the time they returned to Charlotte, the group had planned a follow-up meeting on February 7th, only two and a half weeks after the march. More than 250 men and women attended that meeting which established an infrastructure of a larger volunteer organization and targeted nine areas of political activism: race relations, LGBTQ issues, immigration, women’s health, candidate support and voter registration, legislation, environmental concerns, education issues and communications. Thus, the Charlotte Women’s March was born.
The Charlotte Women’s March has its roots in the women’s movement of the sixties and seventies. Many of the aims of that earlier movement such as equal pay for equal work and reproductive rights continue to be under assault from forces on the right. The members of the Charlotte Women’s March refuse to return to a time when women’s voices were not heard and their contributions were limited or unwanted. Through its extensive mailing list, the Charlotte Women’s March functions as a clearinghouse to notify members of upcoming events and rally their support for political action and social change on local, statewide and national levels. It is open to women, and men, of all ages. To become a member click here.
Jan Anderson, prior to retiring, opened and led for 10 years the Charlotte office of RS&H, a Fortune 500 engineering firm.
Jennie Buckner was the first female Editor of the Charlotte Observer. She retired in 2016.