Women in Politics – A Year in Review

Katie Elder

Headshot of Katie Elder, she stands in front of a wood panel wall and is wearing a white shirt

(Photo of Katie Elder, 2022) 

It has been a busy and successful year for Tulane Women in Politics! 2021-2022 marked the first year that we were able to meet in person again after the Covid-19 pandemic. We hosted general body meetings bi-weekly both semesters to discuss a wide range of political topics, from the historic nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the war in Ukraine. WiP Vice President Annika Bruno led a workshop on networking and building a successful LinkedIn account. Newcomb alumna Alex Kaiser, who now studies at Tulane Law School, joined us for a fascinating presentation on the politics of Mardi Gras in New Orleans. We also brought in representatives from the New Orleans Public Defender's Office to host a meeting centered on criminal justice reform. In March, we invited Caroline Lanford-Meek, a former member of the Women in Politics executive board, to speak with us about her time working as a Foreign Service Officer for the State Department. Caroline joined us on Zoom all the way from the U.S. Embassy in Vietnam to share her experiences and advice.

Outside of our general body meetings, the Women in Politics executive board has worked hard to plan the annual Women's Leadership Awards Luncheon. The luncheon was first created by the 2014 WiP executive board to honor key leaders on campus. After having to cancel the luncheon two years in a row due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we were pleased to see our efforts come to fruition this year on April 9th. Executive Director of the Newcomb Institute, Dr. Sally Kenney, kindly agreed to serve as the keynote speaker this year. It was a special honor to hear her motivational words as this is her last year as head of the Newcomb Institute.

While we continued the tradition of the Women's Leadership Awards Luncheon, we felt it was also important for us to create our own legacy as an executive board. One of our goals for the year was to create a channel for communication among politically involved women and increase WiP alum engagement. Thus, we created a LinkedIn page for members, allies, and alum of Women in Politics. This page will allow students and professionals to connect, share job opportunities, and celebrate one another's successes. The page is just getting started, but we hope that it will help facilitate connections for years to come. If you would like to join our LinkedIn group, search Tulane Women in Politics on LinkedIn and request to join the page. While many of our executive board members are graduating this year, we are excited to pass the baton to the next group of Newcomb Institute leaders.

Katie Elder is a graduating senior at Tulane University in the School of Liberal Arts, completing a BA in International Relations and Russian. She is a Newcomb Scholar and the President of Tulane’s Women in Politics. She is a Class of 2022 Tulane 34 award recipient and will be admitted to the Peery Society.