Loveland sculptor Jane DeDecker picked home-state allies in his bid to provide the first Washington, D.C., outdoor monument to commemorate the women’s suffrage movement.
Colorado's U.S senators, Republican Cory Gardner and Democrat Michael Bennet, introduced legislation to authorize the placement of sculpture that depicts suffragists Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Sojourner Truth, Alice Paul, and Ida B. Wells for the 100th anniversary of the Senate passing the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote nationwide.
The piece, titled "Every Word We Utter," would be placed near the U.S. Supreme Court.
U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse of Lafayette introduced a companion bill in the House.
“I believe that 'Every Word We Utter' will inspire young women to take action, make their voices heard and continue the movement," DeDecker said in a statement Tuesday. "This bill will allow for a monument to be placed in Washington, D.C., that celebrates the passage of the 19th Amendment and pays tribute to generations of women who fought to make it happen.
"'Every Word We Utter' will be the only outdoor monument in D.C. that celebrates this victory for women and will inspire future leaders that they can make a difference. We are grateful to Senator Michael Bennet and Senator Cory Gardner for their support of 'Every Word We Utter' with this bill.”
Gardner called it an honor to carry the legislation. “This sculpture will pay homage to the generations of women whose determination granted women the right to vote,” he said.
Bennet likened the suffragists to the framers of the Constitution.
"They challenged Americans to make our country what it ought to be," Bennet said in a statement. "Monuments across our nation’s capital commemorate the founders of our country – and it’s time we pay tribute to the suffragists accordingly.
“100 years after Congress passed the 19th amendment, I can’t think of a more fitting way to commemorate the powerful work of the brave pioneers who made women’s suffrage a reality than with the first outdoor monument in their honor.”
Jody Shadduck-McNally of Loveland is the president of the Every Word We Utter Monument Board.
“The Every Word We Utter Board and co-founders have been working diligently to advance the effort to place this statue in Washington, D.C., through fundraising and raising awareness,” she stated.
“We are proud to see our grassroots efforts have created progress. We are deeply grateful for the support of Sen. Bennet and Sen. Gardner with the introduction of their bipartisan bill in the Senate on this historic day. I cannot think of a better way to honor the 100th anniversary of the U.S. Senate passing the 19th Amendment.”