No League in your community? Start one!
You can use the "League at Large" (LAL) process to begin empowering voters and defending democracy in your community!
With the League at large process the League of Women Voters of Texas takes on administrative functions so your League can get started registering voters, getting out the vote, educating voters, having forums and debates, etc. for your community. That means skipping typical start-up steps of establishing by-laws, incorporating, seeking non-profit status, and establishing financial management policies.
When you are ready, you can find out what the next steps are by becoming a free-standing local League.
Here are 4 steps to follow to form a League using the League at large process:
Step 1. Learn about the League of Women Voters
- Do you know that the League of Women Voters was founded more than 100 years ago? Read about the League’s fascinating history.
- What values and guiding principles do all League of Women Voters organizations share?
- The League is and has always been nonpartisan. What does this mean?
- How do League members in Texas affect public policy? What are the League’s positions on issues that matter in my community?
- What is a Local League? Where are the Local Leagues in Texas? What do Local Leagues do?
- Follow LWVUS, LWVTX, and a local Texas League on social media.
Step 2. Take the first steps to form a League
- Contact the state office at lwvtexas [at] lwvtexas.org or call (512) 472-1100 to let us know you are interested in forming a new League. The state office will put you in touch with the Start a League guide who will help you with the process and answer questions that may arise along the way.
- Fill out the "Start a League Interest Form."
- Find at least four other people who share your interest in starting a new League in your community and ask them to join as a state member and write in the county, city, or community where your group is starting a League.
- From this group of people, form a Leadership Team consisting of a chairperson (who speaks for the League) and at least two other team members.
- At a meeting of your Leadership Team, share, discuss, and commit to the League's nonpartisanship policy. Vote to seek recognition as a new Texas League through the League at large Process.
Step 3. Formalize the relationship with the LWVTX
Complete a short stack of paperwork to formalize the relationship with the LWVTX
- Complete the Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU)
- Fill out the Leadership Team form and membership list.
- Have your Leadership Team members sign the Nonpartisan Policy Agreement and complete Conflict of Interest Forms
- Email these items to the LWVTX office at lwvtexas [at] lwvtexas.org with your request for recognition as a new League. The League of Women Voters of Texas Board will vote on your request and if approved will fill out the LWVUS application for your new League! Watch for a welcome packet with some helpful “getting started” tips and tools.
Work with your mentor or call the state League office at (512) 472-1100 with any questions or concerns that come up along the way.
Step 4: Get to work as a new League!
Activate your leadership team to:
- Get together regularly over the next 3 months to set priorities and put plans in place to get the ball rolling.
- Decide how you want to divide up the work – assigning roles and tasks to make democracy work© in your community.
- Work with your mentor to set up your new League’s website and banking arrangements.
- Develop social media channels (such as Facebook, Twitter, an online newsletter) to communicate with members and the public about your League. The League has social media guidelines to help you with this process.
- Take advantage of the great training and networking opportunities that LWVTX offers for current and emerging local League leaders - both in person and virtually through Zoom.
- Watch your email for the monthly Action News and League Presidents’ updates from LWVTX and sign up for LWVUS’ League Update!
- Get inspiration, great ideas, and timely content to share from LWVTX and LWVUS’ social media accounts. In addition to its general Facebook page, LWVTX has a terrific “for League Leaders only” Facebook group (LWVTX Leadership) you and your Leadership Team members can join for in-house help from your Texas peers.
- Grow your League by being visible, doing good work, and inviting others to join!
Thank you for making democracy work in Texas©!