Making Democracy Work

LWV of Smithtown

LWV Smithtown Upcoming Events

"Reading deepens reflection; reflection deepens action"
Conversations about Civic Engagement in our Community

Thursday, March 27 7:00-8:30pm
Nesconset Branch of the Smithtown Library
148 Smithtown Boulevard, Nesconset, New York 11767
Facilitator: Lisa Scott

Short readings (available in advance to those pre-registered) invite facilitated reflection and discussion about how and why we choose to serve others. This program focuses on association: to be human is to live among and with others...our natural habitat is society. Whether you are active in a service or community organization, or ponder the reasons and values behind the choice to engage in civic activity; you can contribute to and engage in our thoughtful discussions. (Program initially developed by the NY Council for the Humanities and presented by the League of Women Voters.) Register in advance by calling the Smithtown Library at(631)360-2480, and pick up the reading material at any Smithtown branch library.

Recent Events

Candidates Meeting
Hosted by the LWV of Smithtown and the Smithtown Historical Society on October 30.
Newsday Coverage of Debate

Remembering Trudy Gaus
The League of Women Voters of Smithtown dedicated a plaque in memory of Trudy Gaus at the Main Branch of the Smithtown Library.

A Conversation about Immigration
Tuesday, October 29 Nesconset Branch, Smithtown Library
We read and discussed how immigration continues to shape the experience of being American today.


LWV Smithtown Programs

Smithtown League Gains Insights from Community Leader Conversations

Recognizing the value of discussing shared concerns with community leaders, the Smithtown League of Women Voters in April initiated a series of monthly "Community Conversations," small and informal luncheon meetings around a table at the Old Street Pub in Smithtown.

The first guest to meet with a delegation of League members was retiring (term-limited) Suffolk County legislator Lynne Nowick. Discussion centered on the role of legislative committees when studying environmental and quality-of-life issues important to all residents of Suffolk County.

Then in May, Smithtown's Director of Town Planning, Frank DeRubeis, talked with League members about a considered long-range plan for overall community development, as well as the need to stay focused on the vitality of Smithtown's downtown area.

In June, the spring series concluded with a visit from David Ambro, Managing Editor of The Smithtown News. In addition to learning about the challenges and responsibilities inherent in editing a multi-community newspaper group, League members discussed with Mr. Ambro the issue of voter apathy, an apathy that has resulted in seriously low voter turnout in a variety of recent elections at multiple levels. Based on actual statistics researched and brought to the table by Mr. Ambro, it was undeniably clear that only a very few people were actually putting individuals into important positions. League members, acknowledging the importance and urgency of this situation, resolved to continue their efforts toward three long-standing goals: an informed and participating citizenry, increased voter registration, and significant voter turnout at the polls.

After a summer hiatus, the Conversations will resume in the Fall, again with community leaders of consequence.

The Smithtown League of Women Voters is always ready to welcome new members. Accordingly, anyone wishing to learn more about the League and its activities, with the potential for membership, is invited to call 499-0107.

Who We Are and What We Do

The League of Women Voters of Smithtown is a local division of the League of Women Voters of the United States, a nationwide, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening democracy through citizen education and advocacy. The League grew out of the movement to give women the right to vote. Membership is open to all women and men.

Our work consists of voter service activities, education and advocacy.


  • Assist and advise new voters with registration
  • Conduct and moderate candidate meetings
  • Produce and distribute non-partisan information about candidates and ballot issues
  • Provide speakers to discuss the election process and ballot issues
  • Encourage voter turn-out
  • Observe government, library board, and school board meetings

  • A unified state court system
  • Affordable housing
  • Alternatives to incarceration
  • Campaign finance reform
  • Civil liberties
  • Ethics and lobbying reform
  • Global climate change
  • Health care reform
  • Local and county land use and preservation
  • Redistricting
  • Statewide guidelines for all levels of law enforcement
  • Statewide use of optical scan voting machines that have a paper backup

  • Information on a wide range of important regional and national issues
  • LWV publications - local, state and national
  • Smithtown LWV newsletter The VOTER
  • Facts for Voters and the annual Directory of Public Officials
  • Enhanced skills in discussion, lobbying, writing, speaking
  • Training for local community and governmental leadership
  • Increased awareness of how your government works
  • Chance to influence public policy
  • Meet a diverse and interesting group of friends in your community

Keep informed,
Educate the public,
Lobby our Legislators,
Encourage all those eligible to vote
Help us succeed in our mission to:
Let the people know
Make the people care
Help the people act

Information on the League of Women Voters of Smithtown

For more information contact LWV Smithtown President

History of the League of Women Voters

The League of Women Voters was founded by Carrie Chapman Catt in 1920 during the convention of the National American Woman Suffrage Association. The convention was held just six months before the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, giving women the right to vote after a 72-year struggle.

The League began as a "mighty political experiment" designed to help 20 million women carry out their new responsibilities as voters. It encouraged them to use their new power to participate in shaping public policy. From the beginning, the League has been an activist, grassroots organization whose leaders believed that citizens should play a critical role in advocacy. It was then, and is now, a nonpartisan organization. League founders believed that maintaining a nonpartisan stance would protect the fledgling organization from becoming mired in the party politics of the day. However, League members were encouraged to be political themselves, by educating citizens about, and lobbying for, government and social reform legislation.

This holds true today. The League is proud to be nonpartisan, neither supporting nor opposing candidates or political parties at any level of government, but always working on vital issues of concern to members and the public. The League has a long, rich history,that continues with each passing year.