Business And Professional Women's Clubs of New York State Inc. (BPWNYS) Records, 1921-ongoing
- Business and Professional Women's Clubs of New York State
- These records document the history of the Business and Professional Women's Clubs of New York State, Inc.
- 3.99 cubic ft.
- English and English
- Preferred citation:
- Preferred citation for this material is as follows: and Identification of specific item, series, box, folder, Business And Professional Women's Clubs of New York State Inc. (BPWNYS) Records, 1921-ongoing. M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University at Albany, State University of New York (hereafter referred to as [shortened name]).
Access and Use
- Conditions Governing Access:
Access to this record group is unrestricted.
The researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming with the laws of copyright. Whenever possible, the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives will provide information about copyright owners and other restrictions, but the legal determination ultimately rests with the researcher. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be discussed with the Head of Special Collections and Archives.
- Scope and Content:
These records document the history of the Business and Professional Women's Clubs of New York State, Inc. The collection of BPWNYS includes the records of the state board meeting, annual legislative conference, annual state and national conventions, and publications by the Clubs. There is also a small photograph series.
The bulk of the collection is part of the Conventions and Conferences series. The records and related materials concerning the annual legislative conferences and the annual state and national conventions are extensive as is the Publications series. This series includes a run of the BPWNYS's magazine The Nike from 1951 to 2000. There are significant gaps in the State Board Meetings, Conventions and Conferences, as well as the Publication series.
For related records consult the Business and Professional Women's Club of Albany, New York (APAP-064) records.
- Biographical / Historical:
The Business and Professional Women's Clubs of New York (BPWNYS) was founded in April 1919 by a group of 100 women at the Hotel Pennsylvania in New York City led by Abbie (Gail) Laughlin. Laughlin also served as the organization's first national president. The organization's first president was Adaline Zachert of Rochester, New York. The federation was to be "not just another woman's organization," but was to become, within a quarter of a century, one of the strongest sources of unified women power in the nation. Originally known as the New York State Federation of Business and Professional Women's Club, the purpose of the clubs was indicated in their constitution as:
to unite organizations of Business and Professional Women in order to come to a better knowledge and understanding of their conditions and needs in different sections of the state; to secure more equitable treatment and just recognition for women in business and the professions; [and] to gather and distribute information relative to vocational opportunities and to bring about a greater solidarity of feeling among women throughout the State.
The BPWNYS has been interested in achieving its goals through both state legislation and Federal enactment. The Clubs have not only made themselves felt in their respective communities but offered programs of study and action directly related to the woman in business. Since passing the Todd bill permitting women's jury service in 1937, BPWNYS has been a leader in passing much of the nation's landmark civil and women's rights legislation including: the Equal Pay Act of 1963; the Civil Rights Act of 1964; Title IX of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993; the Women's Business Ownership Act; and more recently, the Violence Against Women Act of 1994. Through these, the Clubs are working on building better workplaces by focusing on equal and fair pay issues, flexible hours and parental leave, and policies for improved child and elder care.
Education has always held an important place in the Club's work. "A high school education for every girl" was one of the first goals set up to train young women for business and to help them make places for themselves in the business world. Through regular meetings, BPWNYS has recognized the political, professional and personal achievements of young professional women and offered programs to provide education and guidance. Projects include the New York City Commission on the Status of Women that brings women's issues to the attention of important governmental figures, the Working Women's Clothes Closet that provides proper business attire for those who would otherwise not be able to afford business clothes, the Young Careerist Program that provides young business women and men with valuable chances to network, the Youth Leadership Program that offers workshops to high school aged girls that are designed to make them aware of available career opportunities, and Girl Scout and Business and Professional Women, a program that provides Girl Scouts with the necessary knowledge to succeed in their future careers.
- Acquisition information:
All items in this manuscript group were donated to the University Libraries, M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, by Catherine Raycraft in June 2001 and February 2002. Copies of Nike (2001-2004) were donated in July 2005.
- Processing information:
Processed in 2002 by Young In Oh.
Social Activists and Public Advocates
Business and Industry
Women--New York (State)--Societies and clubs.
Women's rights--Legislative histories
Businesswomen--New York (State)
Labor laws and legislation--Legislative history
- Business and Professional Women's Clubs of New York State
New York (N.Y.). Commission on the Status of Women
- New York (State)--20th century