By Linda Dougall, West Regional Leader and member of CA, Oakland-2 chapter
DFW’s CA, Oakland-2 chapter celebrated its fifth anniversary in September 2016. It is led by three sisters, Mary, Rachel and Becca McQueen, and their mom, Chris McQueen. They have created a robust, multi-generational, collaborative chapter with the ongoing support of extended family members and long-time friends from church, the neighborhood, and all over the Oakland and Berkeley areas. Meetings are great fun – and loud, too – and members are always welcome whether or not they attend every month. It is this open-door policy that has helped this chapter be a resounding and abiding success.
So how was the Oakland 2 chapter conceived? The route was circular – from Oakland to San Diego in California, through Washington, DC and New York City and back to Oakland. Mary and Rachel McQueen, the two oldest daughters, learned about DFW and started their own chapter. Rachel was the first to be inspired and, because of her positive experience with DFW in NYC, made sure the Oakland chapter was launched when she returned to the San Francisco Bay area to live in 2011.
Rachel, Mary and Becca credit their strong, British, maternal grandmother and growing up in a diverse and progressive environment in Oakland for their deep-seated support of women and women’s rights. They also credit their parents and teachers for instilling in them a need to positively contribute to the world. Chris always volunteered in the girls’ schools and was a Girl Scout leader. She majored in journalism in college, worked as a reporter, and is now an elementary school teacher. Rachel is a landscape architect, and Mary is the owner of Baby Boot Camp in Oakland/Alameda and mother of three. Becca recently graduated from UC Berkeley in Nutritional Sciences and is seeking employment in her field of expertise. The McQueens are inspired by DFW’s powerful model and find that the projects DFW supports motivate them to invest their time every month on behalf of women and girls all over the world.
Thank you, Ladies McQueen, for your time, your enthusiasm, and your passion. You are well-loved and greatly appreciated!