FEB. 2013 The Babes of Wrath tour turned around when they hit the Pacific Ocean, stopping in Phoenix, Las Cruces, Austin, and ending up in Charleston, SC. Highlights of the trip include the opportunity to interview Sheriff Joe Arpaio, to visit with some of the women featured in on the edge: Family Homelessness in America, and to address audiences of concerned university and college students and community members. After dropping Pat off at the airport, Diane headed to western NC to wrap up administrative tasks and to prepare for the next leg of her travels. Highlights of the Babes of Wrath tour and media links.
JAN. 2013 Diane was invited to Savannah, GA to help call attention to the need for more shelters/services for homeless families. From the Atlantic coast, she headed to Little Rock, AR to pick up Pat LaMarche for their Babes of Wrath tour, a 6500-mile trek through the southwest, following the Joads' (John Steinbeck, Grapes of Wrath) path, and then across the country to inform and inspire audiences of university students and community members. (Map)
DEC 2012 From Hurricane Sandy-ravaged NYC, Diane headed south to Washington, DC to offer thanks to Congresswoman Judy Biggert (R-IL,13) for 14 years of leadership on behalf of homeless children and youth. Mrs. Biggert championed the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Act and several pieces of critical legislation. From DC, Diane hopped over to Harrisburg, PA for the PA Housing Alliance conference. She joined a plenary panel speaking about homeless children. From PA she headed down to Mobile, AL to explore and chronicle family homelessness.
NOV 2012 Diane landed back in IL for 2 weeks, in part to receive another award, the Education Center's Kids' Best Friend. She headed east, stopping in OH to speak to students in the Bonner Scholarship Program at Oberlin College, then to NYC. She spoke to students at Columbia University's School of Social Work, screened Littlest Nomads with staff at the Institute of Children Poverty and Homelessness, and met with producers from Nightline.
OCT 2012 From Houston, Diane made a brief stop in her ol' stomping grounds, Las Cruces, NM, and spoke to undergraduates and graduate students in the Education Dept. at New Mexico State University. Then she pointed Tillie's nose up to Albuquerque, NM. Since the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth scheduled their annual conference in ABQ at the end of Oct., Diane found a free place to park/plug-in and work, and took advantage of the 2012 ABQ Hot Air Balloon Fiesta, a top favorite activity of hers! She, and her board members, Pat Van Doren and Marilyn McGowan, made their presence known at the NAEHCY conference. Sarah Benjamin and Diane presented Littlest Nomads.
And...Diane was awarded NAEHCY's highest honor, the Sandra Neese Lifetime Achievement Award. And...Laura Vazquez, the HEAR US video partner, was awarded the Distinguished Service and Leadership Award.
SEPT 2012 Head south, to Houston, where the humidity and heat melted mere mortals. The Texas Homeless Network conference was the main draw, a worthwhile gathering of kindred spirits. While in Houston, Diane offered to Citgo--the generous donors of a $5000 gas card that HEAR US won at the end of 2011--to speak to their employees. That was a great opportunity!
Diane and students from Professor Marcus Redding's (right) graduate social work class.
Below, Diane addressed employees at Citgo Corporation in Houston.