Past events - Maine

Office display opening:


May 8, 2012

After a winter of hard work on planning and executing, our new interpretive display was ready for prime time on May 8th 2012. We hope you'll come visit it at our downtown Damariscotta office sometime soon! Here's an interview you can watch with a local cable channel just before the opening.

2011 Garden Party:


August 4
Third Annual Garden Party

2011 Awardees :

Ellen Bravo received the Center’s Intelligence and Courage Award
Peter Crockett received the Center’s Steadfast Award
Hilary Doe received the Center’s Open Door Award

Adam Cohen gave an inspirational keynote speech on New Deal history and Frances Perkins's role.

Here's a recap of our 2011 garden party...


2010 Garden Party:


August 14
Second Annual Garden Party

Held on the 75th anniversary of Social Security

 Here's a recap of our 2010 garden party...


2009 Garden Party:


June 26
First Annual Garden Party

  Honoring Women Leaders in Maine

  • MCLU Director, Shenna Bellows
  • Maine's Commissioner of Labor, Laura Fortman
  • Bates College President, Elaine Tuttle Hansen
  • USM President, Selma Botman
  • Congresswoman, Chellie Pingree

  Photos from the garden party...




The New New Deal: Building an Economy That Works for All of Us

Saturday, May 2, 2009
8:30am - 3:00pm
Hutchinson Center, Route 3, Belfast, Maine

On Saturday, May 2nd, we held our first conference. Billed as "The New New Deal: Building an Economy That Works for All of Us," the conference explored different aspects of the current financial crisis and its effect on working people, with comparisons to the original New Deal. About 45 people joined the workshop leaders and speakers at the Hutchinson Center in Belfast, and the discussions were substantive and constructive. We'll be releasing a report from the conference; it will be available on our web site. If you'd like to receive a notice when it's ready, send an email to info@francesperkinscenter.org

Please visit our May 2 conference details page to register and for more information.





To register:

Past events - National

New York Conference and Film Premiere


Celebrating Frances Perkins and the 75th Anniversary of Social Security through film, discussion, art, and conversation

January 14, 2010
4:00pm to 8:30pm
Harvard Club of New York City
35 West 44th Street
New York, NY 10036-6613
(212) 840-6600

See a PDF flyer for this past event

Friends of the Columbia Libraries
Harvard Club of New York City
Mount Holyoke Club of New York
Roosevelt Institute
Women's City Club of New York

This was be a wonderful afternoon and evening to enjoy the company of others who admire Frances Perkins and her role in pioneering a place for women in government and in conceiving of and implementing many New Deal programs, including one that FDR considered the "cornerstone" of his administration, Social Security.

The afternoon started off with two panel discussions:

  • The Birth of Social Security and the Transformation of America
  • Social Security in the 21st Century

Panelists included:

Nancy Altman, author of The Battle for Social Security

Dr. Christopher Breiseth, former president of the Franklin & Eleanor Roosevelt Institute, current member of the Frances Perkins Center's Advisory Council, and longtime friend of Frances Perkins

Adam Cohen, Editorial Staff, New York Times and author of Nothing to Fear

Larry DeWitt, Historian at the Social Security Administration, co-author of Social Security: A Documentary History

Kirstin Downey, former Washington Post reporter and author of The Woman Behind the New Deal

Eric Kingson, Syracuse University professor and co-author of Social Security in the 21st Century

Lynn Parramore, senior advisor at the Roosevelt Institute and editor of New Deal 2.0

Maya Rockeymoore, founder and CEO of Global Policy Solutions and co-editor of Strengthening Community: Social Insurance in a Diverse America

Then at 6:30 PM, we'll launch our theme for 2010, "Securing Social Security for the Next 75 Years" with a cocktail reception (cash bar) and the unveiling of a new portrait of Frances Perkins by artist Robert Shetterly. The portrait is part of his series, "Americans Who Tell the Truth."

The grand finale of the evening at 7:30 PM will be the premiere of the new short documentary, "Lighting the Way: Frances Perkins." Filmmakers Karenna Gore Schiff and Catherine Ann Corman will introduce the film and talk about the inspiration behind it.

We invite you to lend extra support for this event and the Frances Perkins Center by joining the host committee!

New members of the host committee are most welcome. We ask that you:
a) support the event at the $150 level.
b) help spread the word about the event by inviting your friends who might be interested.

If you would like to join the host committee or learn more,
please e-mail: Barbara Burt, Executive Director, Frances Perkins Center







Exhibition -- Frances Perkins: The Woman Behind the New Deal

Open November 5, 2009 through March 26, 2010. On display will be letters, documents, broadsides, books, pamphlets, and photographs, all selected from the Frances Perkins Papers in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Butler Library, 6th Floor, East. The Butler Library at Columbia University
535 West 114th St. New York City Invitation and more information here.

Included are Perkins's copy of her Columbia Masters Essay, "A Study of Malnutrition in 107 children from Public School 51," outlines and drafts for her two books, "The Roosevelt I Knew" and "The Al Smith I Knew," the notes that she took with her for her February 23, 1933 meeting with Roosevelt when he asked her to join his cabinet in Washington, and drafts of speeches that she made throughout her life on the subjects that mattered to her, including her May 23, 1963 "Washington Speech" on making exits for public buildings safer.

Admission to Butler Library is free, but requires photo ID for entry. Hours vary during the year. Please check the Rare Book and Manuscript Library web site.

This exhibit at Columbia University, where the Rare Book & Manuscript Library maintains an extensive archive of Frances Perkins's papers, is well worth a visit. FP biographer, Kirstin Downey, referenced these papers extensively in her recent biography of Frances Perkins:
The Woman Behind the New Deal

Doris Kearns Goodwin also frequently referenced Frances Perkins's papers in her work:
No Ordinary Time

In addition, Columbia University's Oral History Research Office hosts Frances Perkins as a Notable New Yorker in the Oral History Program where she was interviewed by Dean Albertson as an early participant in Columbia's oral history program. Some of the audio clips still exist but audio tape was very expensive at the time and considered a transcription medium so much of the tape from her interviews was re-used.




Celebrating Frances Perkins and Her Commitment to Social Justice

Tuesday, April 21, 2009
3:30pm - 5:00pm
Frances Perkins Building, 200 Constitution Avenue, Washington, DC

There will be remembrances of Frances Perkins by a man who knew her well, Dr. Christopher Breiseth, president-emeritus of the Franklin and
Eleanor Roosevelt Institute and personal friend of Secretary Perkins, a presentation from Frances Perkins's grandson, Tomlin Perkins Coggeshall, whose words will be accompanied by photos of the Perkins home, and a new perspective on Frances Perkins's life by Kirstin Downey, author of the recent Frances Perkins biography: The Woman Behind the New Deal.

We are very pleased that Secretary of Labor, Hilda Solis, will introduce the program.

This program is free and open to the public. For more information, email the Frances Perkins Center at info@FrancesPerkinsCenter.org.

Please be sure to RSVP in order to expedite security check-in and be sure your name is on the admittance list.)







Frances Perkins Center - Launch Celebration - Invitation

Tuesday, April 21, 2009
6:00pm - 7:30pm
Woman's National Democratic Club
1526 New Hampshire Avenue, NW
Washington, DC
Tel: 202-232-7363

The celebration which started at the Department of Labor moves to the Woman's National Democratic Club, where Frances Perkins was once a member. There will be hors d'oeuvres and drinks, a book signing by Kirstin Downey, the author of a new biography, The Woman Behind the New Deal: The Life of Frances Perkins, FDR's Secretary of Labor and His Moral Conscience, and the opportunity to talk with other people who also care passionately about the legacy of Frances Perkins, all while supporting the new Frances Perkins Center, based at her family homestead in Newcastle, Maine.

$50.00 suggested per person in support of the Frances Perkins Center







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