Founded in 1988 with it's first Director Stephanie Davis, the Women’s Policy Group, along with its sister organization the Women’s Policy Education Fund (later Georgia Women for a Change) tackled the problems that keep women and their families underemployed, impoverished, and underserved. Working with experts, they produced many important research papers and projects on issues that impact women, including child care and support, health and employment issues, violence against women and children, reproductive freedom, and tax policies.
In 2014, the Women’s Policy Group joined forces with the YWCA of Greater Atlanta to become the Georgia Women’s Policy Institute.
Women Make Policy, Not Coffee
When the WPG first met as a group, members decided that they did not want to be a formal organization, but rather preferred to meet regularly in order to learn about issues of importance. A steering committee was formed to be responsible for continued communication and programming.
"I remember having a couple of meetings, from the beginning, organizing meeting, where we tried to bring in other women's organizations to see if we wanted to be an alliance. Decided to be loosely affiliated and have individuals be members, but with no right--and then we knew we needed a lobbyist."
Stephanie Davis oral history interview, August 26, 2010
For 20 years the WPG raised enough money to hire a lobbyist to take issues to the Georgia General Assembly. Much of this money was raised through auctions organized by volunteers. Funds were also raised by individuals, corporations, and foundations to convene the Women's Assembly which drew at least 100 participants annually. Regular legislative breakfasts served as a vehicle for community members to explore problems and seek solutions for issues, and a very successful "Bookmark" series was developed to inform legislators about critical issues affecting women.