The Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics is pleased to recognize the accomplishments and activities of its faculty, staff, students and alumni:
Monic Behnken, 2017 Women Impacting ISU calendar honoree and associate professor in sociology, was appointed director of the Leadership Studies Program, effective March 1. She was also named a 2019 Exemplary Faculty Mentor by the Office of the Senior Vice President and Provost during an awards ceremony on May 2 in the Cardinal Room in the Memorial Union.
Crystal Brandenburgh, Archives of Women’s Political Communications intern for the Catt Center and junior in history, will start a summer internship on June 3 at the Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project. The ERPP offers interns a wide range of archival and editing experiences, including research, organization of documents, web development, transcription and proofreading work. They encourage students to use part of their time to complete independent research projects on topics related to the holdings of the ERPP or other collections in the D.C. area, and many summer interns undertake research related to senior theses or other long-term projects. Interns gain experience using the Library of Congress and the National Archives, as well as other local repositories. They also tour historic sites in the D.C. area related to the Roosevelts and their historical era. Additionally, all students learn about digital humanities and how it affects work at the ERPP. Brandenburgh is from Council Bluffs, Iowa.
Narren Brown, a Rice-Neville Legacy of Heroines intern and graduate assistant from 2009-10, has been promoted to vice president of research and institutional effectiveness and dean of the Faribault campus of South Central College in Minnesota. In this position, he will continue to lead the college-wide work of the Office of Research and Institutional Effectiveness. As Faribault campus dean, he will engage and connect with the broader community and assist in managing day-to-day campus operations. In cooperation with direct supervisors and deans, Brown also will serve as an on-campus resource to support the immediate needs of all faculty and staff in Faribault when their immediate supervisor is not available. Through these efforts, he will help build an environment supportive of a quality educational experience while fostering and maintaining a culture that ensures the Faribault campus achieves its goals. South Central College is a comprehensive community and technical college that is part of the Minnesota state system, with campuses in Faribault and North Mankato. Brown earned a Ph.D. in educational leadership and policy studies from Iowa State in 2013.
Dianne Bystrom, director emerita of the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics, gave several presentations in April and was also installed as co-president of the League of Women Voters of Nebraska. At the Central States Communication Association annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska, held April 4-6, Bystrom gave presentations on “’Year of the Woman’ Political Campaigns: A Comparison of TV Ads from 1992 and 2018” and “Riding the Pink Wave? Women’s Impact on the 2018 Election as Voters and Candidates”; gave remarks as part of panel presentations on “Looking Back, Looking Forward: Examining the Elections of 2018 and 2020,” “The Unconventional President: Examining the Presidency of Donald J. Trump” and “Celebrating the Inaugural Judith S. Trent Award for Early Career Excellence in Political Communication.” At CSCA, she also organized and moderated a panel discussion on “Strategies to Get out the Vote in 2018: An Assessment from Nebraska Organizations.” On April 19, Bystrom taught a two-hour class for the Senior College of Greater Des Moines on “Winning the Vote: The History and Influence of Women in U.S. Politics.” On April 24, she presented “But Is She Likable? Gendered Media Coverage of Women Presidential Candidates” at Iowa State University. On April 27, Bystrom was elected and installed as co-president of the League of Women Voters of Nebraska at its annual meeting in Omaha for a two-year term (2019-2021).
Daniela Dimitrova, 2018 Women Impacting ISU calendar honoree and professor in the Greenlee School of Journalism, will receive funding from the Page/Johnson Legacy Scholar Grant for Advocacy Communication for her project titled “The Role of Media Discourse and NGO Advocacy for Marginalized Populations: Fostering Social Change and Integration.” This research will focus on the media coverage of refugees in Bulgaria and Turkey as well as NGO advocacy in Europe.
Jessica Holtkamp, Archives of Women’s Political Communication intern, presented on organizing student voter engagement efforts on a large campus at the Iowa Voter Engagement Summit on April 13. This event was cosponsored by the Iowa Secretary of State, Iowa Campus Compact and the Campus Election Engagement Project. Holtkamp graduated in May with a bachelor’s in political science. She is from Mount Pleasant, Iowa.
Karen Kedrowski, director of the Catt Center, gave a public lecture titled, “Women’s Rights in the United States: An Unfinished Agenda” at the United States Department of Agriculture in Urbandale, Iowa, on Tuesday, March 19, for the USDA’s Women’s History Month celebration. She also gave an address titled “Women’s Political Engagement Today and the 19th Amendment Centennial, 1920-2020” before the Des Moines chapter of the National Society of Colonial Dames on April 3. Kedrowski was the keynote speaker for the League of Women Voters of Ames and Story County annual meeting on April 13 and for the Catt Center’s Year-End Dinner on April 24 at the Memorial Union, presenting “I Didn’t Know Where I Was Going Yet I Ended Up Here: Lessons Learned on My Leadership Journey.” She also presented on U.S. politics to a group of international women in partnership with the Iowa International Center on April 26 in Catt Hall.
Carolyn Klaus received the 2019 Carrie Chapman Catt Award on April 13 during the League of Women Voters of Ames and Story County annual meeting. Klaus was chosen for the award because of her dedication to voter registration efforts and her significant positive impact on the League’s outreach to recruit new members. Klaus has led the League’s voter registration activities since 2012 and partners with the Catt Center each year to celebrate Women’s Equality Day on Aug. 26 by registering Iowa State students to vote. Klaus currently serves as the treasurer for the League and lives in Ames.
Amber Manning-Ouellette, a leadership studies lecturer at Iowa State University from 2015-18, was awarded the Anderson, Farris & Halligan College Student Professorship at Oklahoma State University at the April 26 meeting of the OSU A&M Board of Regents. Her appointment in the professorship is from April 29, 2019, through June 30, 2023. Manning-Ouellette joined OSU as an assistant professor of higher education and student affairs in fall 2018.
Alissa Stoehr, lecturer in women’s and gender studies and sociology, has been accepted to the Iowa State University Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching’s Teaching and Learning Academy and the Engaged Faculty Institute on Service Learning. Stoehr earned bachelor degrees in women’s studies and liberal studies, a master’s degree in interdisciplinary graduate studies and a Ph.D. in higher education from Iowa State University. She worked for the Catt Center as a graduate assistant/communications specialist in 2009 and as a graduate assistant in 2014.
Kimberley Strope-Boggus accepted a new position as the Iowa state political director for John Hickenlooper for President. Strope-Boggus was a Phyllis Davis Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2016-17 and graduated with her communication degree and certificate in leadership and public service in May 2017. Previously, she worked for Life Serve Blood Center in Des Moines and currently resides in Des Moines.
Pat Thiel, 2016 Women Impacting ISU calendar honoree, was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Thiel is an Iowa State Distinguished Professor in Liberal Arts and Sciences with appointments in chemistry and materials engineering, and she is also a scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory. Thiel is one of more than 200 newly elected members and will join the academy’s chemistry section within its mathematical and physical sciences class. Formal induction ceremonies will be in October in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Lissandra Villa, an Elverna Christian Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2013 to 2016 and student research intern for the Archives of Women’s Political Communication from 2014-15, joined TIME magazine as a staff writer on May 6. She will cover the 2020 election for the magazine. Prior to joining TIME, Villa was a politics reporter for BuzzFeed News for two and one-half years. She graduated from Iowa State in 2016 with bachelor’s degrees in journalism and mass communication and political science.
Matthew Voss, Women in Iowa Politics database intern for the Catt Center, will start a data science internship with the U.S. Federal Government on June 3 in Washington, D.C. that will conclude on Dec. 6, 2019. He will be using statistical and data science methods to help clean, organize and analyze data. Voss hopes the experience helps him learn about what it is like to do research and work with data that informs politicians’ decision making and decision making around the globe. Voss is a junior in statistics with minors in political science, computer science, mathematics and economics. He is from Atkins, Iowa.
Kelly Winfrey, assistant professor of journalism and the research and outreach coordinator for the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics, presented a research paper, “Women Persuading Women: The Effectiveness of Gender Targeted Advertising in the 2018 Midterm Election,” at the annual conference of the Central States Communication Association in Omaha, Nebraska, on April 4-6. Winfrey also spoke at the same conference on a discussion panel titled “Looking Back-Looking Forward: Examining the Elections of 2018 & 2020.”