Author Archives: Sondra Cosgrove

About Sondra Cosgrove

President League of Women Voters of Nevada

Upcoming Events: Judicial Candidates Open House, Ballot Question Forum, Election Security, and HUGE Voter Registration Drive

Join us Friday evening, 9/18, via Zoom, 6-7:30 pm, for a Judicial Candidates Open House at 6 pm, RSVP:

Join us Saturday morning, 9/19, via Zoom, 9-11 am, for our Ballot Question Review:

Join us Saturday afternoon, 9/19, Noon to 5 pm, for our Drive Through Voter Registration drive. Please consider a donation if you cannot volunteer, you can donate through the PayPal Donation button here:

Join LWVNN 10 am to Noon, via Zoom, for a panel on election security.

NEW! 2020 Ballot Questions Analysis

There are 5 questions on this election’s ballot. You can read the pro and con arguments from the Secretary of State’s Office bellow. We are also offering a Ballot Question Forum on 9-19, via Zoom, 9 to 11 am, RSVP:

Ballot Questions

Question No. 1: Board of Regents

Question No. 2: Same-Sex Marriage

Question No. 3: Pardons Board

Question No. 4: Voter Rights

Question No. 6: Renewable Energy Promotion Initiative

*There is no Question No. 5 on the 2020 ballot

Event Announcement: Appearance by Joy Harjo


Poetry Promise, Las Vegas Jewish Film Festival and Clark County Poet Laureate Present: LET THERE BE NO REGRETS; an online series featuring our United States Poet Laureate, Joy Harjo

Free online series runs September 23, 29 and October 1

LAS VEGAS NEVADA – Joy Harjo is an internationally renowned performer and writer of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and was named the 23rd Poet Laureate of the United States in 2019. She is the first Native American to be so honored.

Joy will read poems from her new publication An American Sunrise via Zoom on Tuesday, September 29 at 5:00 p.m. (PST).  She will also participate in a webinar conversation with author Terry Tempest Williams about the August, 2020 publication of the first Norton Anthology of Native American Literature, When the Light of the World Was Subdued, Our Songs Came Through, on Thursday, October 1 at 5:00 p.m.  

The author of nine books of poetry, plays and children’s books, and a memoir, her honors include the Ruth Lily Prize for Lifetime Achievement from the Poetry Foundation, the Academy of American Poets Wallace Stevens Award, a PEN USA Literary Award, Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Fund Writers’ Award, a Rasmuson US Artist Fellowship, two NEA fellowships, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Harjo is a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and is a founding board member of the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation.

Terry Tempest Williams is an American writer, educator, conservationist, and activist. Williams’ writing is rooted in the American West.

In conjunction with the Joy Harjo program, the 20th annual Las Vegas Jewish Film Festival (LVJFF) will be presenting a free online screening of a PBS documentary film entitled Unspoken Americas: Native American Boarding Schools, as part of its ongoing virtual film series. Watch film:

A webinar discussion of the documentary will be on Wednesday, September 23 at 5:00 p.m. moderated by Joshua Abbey, Director of LVJFF featuring Justice Raquel Montoya-Lewis and Professor Andrew Woolford Ph.D. with the University of Manitoba.

Justice Montoya-Lewis is the first Native American Justice to serve on the Washington State Supreme Court, and the second Native American to serve on a state supreme court nationwide. Justice Montoya-Lewis has spent her career as a practicing attorney, tribal court judge, superior court judge, associate professor, and advocate for juvenile justice reform, equity, and tribal communities

Professor Andrew Woolford Ph.D. is the former president of the International Association of Genocide Scholars whose research is centered in the field of genocide studies, with specific emphasis on cultural techniques of group destruction deployed against Indigenous Peoples in North America. He is the author of This Benevolent Experiment: Indigenous Boarding Schools, Genocide and Redress in North America.

REGISTRATION for the FREE Joy Harjo program series: or


for Bears Ears National Monument 

We’re not losing the birch trees; the birch trees are losing us.

—Wayne “Minoghzhig” Valliere

The songs and stories that formed us are restless

and need a place to live in the world of our grandchildren.

They are weary with waiting.

Earth continues to dream her earth dreams

Though desperate thoughts fed by money hunger roam our minds

To the destroyers, Earth is not a person.

They will want more until there is no more to steal.

Earth who does not know time is patient.

The destroyers will destroy themselves.

So many earth spirits take care of this place.  They emerge from the cliff walls.

They emerge from the waves of waters.

Our ancestors are not only human ancestors.

What do you see when you fly to the top of the ancestor tree?

Let there be no regrets, no sadness, no anger, no acts of disturbance to these lands. 

—from An American Sunrise, by Joy Harjo

The Joy Harjo program series is presented by:

Poetry Prominse, Las Vegas Jewish Film Festival, and Clark County Poet Laureate

The Joy Harjo program series is supported by:

Nevada Humanities, National Endowment for the Humanities, Nevada Arts Council, National Endowment for the Arts, Clark County Nevada, City of Henderson, City of Las Vegas, League of Women Voters, Nevada National Organization for Women, and Unitarian Universalist Church of Las Vegas

In-kind support from:

The Beverly Rogers, Carol C. Harter Black Mountain Institute, Spill the Honey Foundation, Nevada State College, UNLV Native American Alumni Club, Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, National Congress of American Indians, National Indian Justice Center, Brave New Voices, Jewish Nevada/Jewish Community Center of Southern Nevada, Anti-Defamation League of Nevada, ZACHOR Holocaust Remembrance Foundation, Las Vegas Review Journal, Imagine Communications and numerous individual sponsors.


Upcoming Events: Week of August 17, 2020

Join the League of Women Voters of Nevada on Friday, August 21st, 6-7:30 pm, for our first in a series of Judicial Candidates Open Houses.  We’ll be chatting about the courts with the candidates.  RSVP here for the Zoom link:

Join the League of Women Voters of Southern Nevada on Saturday, August 22nd, 9-10:30 am, for a workshop on being a good ally. RSVP here for the Zoom link:

Fair Maps Nevada Announcement

Due to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic and meritless, lengthy litigation challenges, the Fair Maps Nevada team was unable to gather sufficient in-person signatures to qualify our redistricting reform amendment to end partisan gerrymandering in Nevada. But we are very happy to announce that State Senator Ben Kieckhefer has graciously offered to facilitate a transparent dialogue on redistricting reform by sponsoring our amendment in the 2021 legislative session.

We continue to interpret the increasing number of Nevada voters registering as non-partisan, which now stands at nearly one-third of voters in our state, as well as the many voters from both parties who signed and pledged to sign our redistricting reform petition as evidence that Nevadans reject the intransigent politics distorted election maps create.

Consequently, today we are not abandoning the battle to stop gerrymandering, which we still argue is a growing systemic threat to democracy.  Instead, we are embarking on a plan to continue engaging the public in robust discussions about redistricting reform and we are officially launching our advocacy efforts to pass our legislative resolution in 2021.

If that effort encounters insurmountable opposition from self-interested legislators, we will refile our ballot initiative in October of 2021.

Anyone interested in our efforts to create and maintain fair election maps, which allows voters to pick their elected officials instead of politicians picking their voters, can join with us through a sign-up form on the Fair Maps Nevada Facebook page. Nevertheless, we will persist.

Welcome Voter! Voter Registration Social Media Challenge

Thank you for your interest in our Welcome Voter! voter registration challenge.  Here are the instructions:

On one or more social media platforms, encourage one or more of these groups of eligible voters to register to vote and to cast a ballot in the 2020 election.

Please include this sentence in all posts: Register to vote at

1.  The first group is newly enfranchised Nevadans who have served a prison sentence and who are no longer incarcerated.  Nevada law AB431 now allows these eligible voters to register to vote.  Please either link to this AB431 Handout:

Or, include a reference to AB431.

2.  The second group is eligible voters who have turned 18 since the last election or who will be 18 by November 3, 2020.

Please provide reasons why young voters should make their voices heard through voting. Such as:

Did you know that elected officials decide the cost of college?  

Did you know elected officials make the rules for when a person can be arrested?

3.  The third group is adults who are eligible to vote, but who choose to not vote.

Please include reasons why someone who has never voted should vote.

Such as:

Did you know elected officials decide how the unemployment insurance program works? 

Did you know elected officials decide education policies? 

Did you know elected officials set the minimum wage?

After you create your content, please post it on one or more social media platforms and include the hashtag #WelcomeVoter! so we can find your post.