Chelsea Clinton On Campus Today

Speaking at Women’s Hall of Fame luncheon

Chelsea Clinton will visit the University of Missouri-Kansas City today to speak at the launch of a new effort to celebrate outstanding Kansas City women.

Civic organizations from across the Kansas City metro are uniting to form the Starr Women’s Hall of Fame, which will recognize women from the Metropolitan Kansas City area and preserve the legacy of their accomplishments.  

It took less than one week to completely sell out today’s luncheon event. Clinton, Vice Chair of the Clinton Foundation, will be the featured speaker at the event, which will also feature the unveiling of the organization’s mission statement and nomination procedure.

The Starr Women’s Hall of Fame bears the name of the late Martha Jane Phillips Starr, a Kansas City philanthropist and champion of women’s rights. Starr was one of the first women to become a member of the UMKC Board of Trustees. She also helped start the UMKC Women’s Council and their Graduate Assistance Fund, which provides financial assistance to female students. She died in 2011.

“Martha Jane’s tireless efforts continue to impact and uplift Kansas City women to this day. Her story – and the stories of so many other diverse, outstanding local women – must be preserved to share with future generations. The Starr Women’s Hall of Fame will not just preserve these stories, but encourage and inspire future generations of Kansas City women,” Laurie Roberts, Starr Women’s Hall of Fame planning committee co-chair, said.

The hall of fame is made possible through the Starr Education Committee at UMKC, Martha Jane Starr’s family and the Starr Field of Interest Fund, which was established upon her death through the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation. The idea for the Starr Women’s Hall of Fame stemmed from Starr Education Committee members.

 Those sponsors also decided to underwrite a substantial portion of the costs of the launch event, in order to keep ticket costs low and make the event accessible to a broad swath of the greater Kansas City community. The resulting $30 ticket price also helped drive the quick sell out, according to event co-chair Curt Crespino, UMKC vice chancellor for university advancement.

“Diversity and inclusion were extremely important to Martha Jane Starr and will be foundational values for this hall of fame,” Crespino said.

The 24 civic organizations that advocate on behalf of women and family issues and have signed on in support of the Starr Women’s Hall of Fame include: American Association of University Women; American Business Women’s Association; Central Exchange; Greater Kansas City Chamber’s Executive Women’s Leadership Council; Girl Scouts of NE Kansas and NW Missouri; Greater Kansas City Women’s Political Caucus; Jackson County Missouri Chapter of the Links, Inc.; Junior League of Kansas City, Mo.; Kansas City Athenaeum; Kansas City Young Matrons; Mana de Kansas City; National Association of Collegiate Women Athletic Administrators; Soroptimist International of Kansas City; Soroptimist Kansas City Foundation; UMKC Women’s Center; UMKC Women’s Council; UMKC Women of Color Leadership Conference; WIN for KC; win│win; Women’s Employment Network; The Women’s Foundation of Greater Kansas City; Women’s Public Service Network; Zonta International District 7 and Zonta Club of KC II.

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