Group says Cooper not political speaker

By: Laurel Rogers

Dear Editor,

In the September 1 edition of the Monroe Free Press, an article appeared regarding the upcoming elections. In the article references were made regarding a candidate for Monroe City School Board District 5 candidate, Betty Cooper’s, address to the August 14, 2018 meeting of the Monroe-West Monroe Chapter of the Louisiana Federation of Business and Professional Women.

With Women’s Equality Day being in August, an invitation was extended earlier in the year to Mrs. Cooper to address the August meeting of BPW on the topic of Advocacy and Organizing for Women. A notice regarding this meeting and the topic was sent to and appeared in the Monroe Free Press. Mrs. Cooper was NOT invited to speak as a candidate for office.

Our meetings are open to the the public and as such, before Mrs. Cooper’s presentation, all individuals present were invited to introduce themselves to the group. At the this time, Anna Reed, who was attending as a guest, introduced herself so Mrs. Cooper was well aware of Mrs. Reed being in attendance.

During the presentation, Mrs. Cooper mentioned her candidacy for the office and acknowledged that Mrs. Reed was one of her opponents. At no time did Mrs. Cooper make any comments that would be deemed as “foot in the mouth” regarding Mrs. Reed.

The Monroe-West Monroe Chapter of Business and Professional Women, as well as our state organization, is a non-partisan organization. We do NOT endorse candidates. However, we have in the past, and will in the future, when we feel the need to do so, host public forums where any and all candidates are invited to debate the issues.