Dayton League of Women Voters to premiere documentary for Women’s History Month

The League of Women Voters of the Greater Dayton Area is celebrating Women’s History Month with a screening of a new documentary Thursday, March 16 at the Dayton Metro Library.

The special preview screening of the hour-long documentary “Trailblazing Women in Ohio Politics” is open to the public and will be followed by a panel discussion. The nonpartisan film produced by WBGU-PBS through Bowling Green State University details the Ohio women — from both the Republican and Democratic parties — who have been influential in breaking down barriers to voting since the 1960s, according to a release from the League of Women Voters of the Greater Dayton Area.

“The goal of the documentary is to tell the stories of notable women in Ohio electoral politics,” the release said. “Each blazed a trail for women (or) women of color in elective office.”

The documentary features several notable Ohio politicians including the first woman speaker of the Ohio House, Jo Ann Davidson; Ohio General Assembly’s first African American woman representative, Helen Rankin; and Ohio’s first woman attorney general, Betty D. Montgomery.

“Their unique, lived experiences are fascinating history. It’s our honor to illuminate their struggles and triumphs for a multi-generational audience,” said Bowling Green State University political science professor Melissa K. Miller. She will moderate the panel discussion of the documentary following the screening.

Credit: Barbara J. Perenic

Credit: Barbara J. Perenic

Rhine McLin, former mayor of Dayton and first African American woman elected to the Ohio State Senate, will answer questions alongside the current mayor of Kettering, Peggy Lehner. Lehner is a former Republican Ohio State Senator and Representative, and McLin was previously the vice chairwoman of the Ohio Democratic Party.

Credit: Contributed

Credit: Contributed

The documentary screening, which includes on-camera interviews and archive footage from the careers of these Ohio women politicians, is part of the League of Women Voters celebration for Women’s History Month and is being shown statewide by local league chapters.

The Dayton screening and panel discussion is free to attend and will begin at 7 p.m. on March 16.


What: Special screening of “Trailblazing Women in Ohio Politics” hosted by the League of Women Voters of the Greater Dayton Area

When: Thursday, March 16 at 7 p.m.

Where: Dayton Metro Library - Main Branch at 215 E. Third Street, Dayton

Cost: Free and open to the public

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