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September 4, 2003

For More Information Contact:
Diane Gonzolas, Citizen Information Center, 441-7831
Bonnie Coffey, Women’s Commission, 441-7716


Mayor Coleen J. Seng today helped kick off a statewide tour of the “Nebraska Women Success Quilt,” which tells the stories of women who overcame challenges in their lives. Mary Walters Schwartzkopf of Lincoln recently completed the five-year quilting project, which gathered fabric squares from more than 500 women, including Mayor Seng. Other participants attending the kick-off event were State Senator Marian Price and Bonnie Coffey, Director of the Lincoln-Lancaster Women’s Commission.

“The quilt’s stories, which include those of single mothers, domestic violence survivors and grieving parents, can offer encouragement to other women trying to overcome their own personal crises,” said Mayor Seng. “As this quilt tours Nebraska over the next year, it can help bring awareness to the issues that affect women.”

The “Nebraska Women Success Quilt” is scheduled for display in Lincoln March 5, 2004 at the Lincoln-Lancaster Women’s Commission’s International Women’s Day awards luncheon, “Weaving Women’s Voices.”

Schwartzkopf, who is employed at the Nebraska Heart Hospital, decided to create the quilt after she survived her own personal struggle. Her goal is to help other women face their struggles by sharing resources, talents and options that lead to success in the community. She sewed the swatches of fabric into a block design that features the State of Nebraska in the center.

“Not all the seams match from corner to corner because many times in a woman’s life, those seams of life don’t match either,” said Schwartzkopf. She now plans to re-contact each contributor to have them sign their names on the quilt and write their testimony in a journal that will be displayed with the quilt.

Those wanting more information on the “Nebraska Women Success Quilt” can contact the Lincoln-Lancaster Women’s Commission at 441-7716.

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