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Friday, June 5, 2009

Belizean Grove

Secret societies aren't just the realm of old boys anymore. An article on Politico today reveals that Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor is a member of Belizean Grove, an elite and little-known women’s group.

From the article:

Founded nearly 10 years ago as the female answer to the Bohemian Grove — a secretive all-male club whose members have included former U.S. presidents and top business leaders — the Belizean Grove has about 125 members, including Army generals, Wall Street executives and former ambassadors.

Sotomayor’s membership in the New York-based group became public Thursday afternoon in a questionnaire submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Since then, the group has been deluged with press calls, said its founder, Susan Stautberg, who explained that “we like to be under the radar screen.”

The group — which on its website describes itself as “a constellation of influential women who are key decision makers in the profit, nonprofit and social sectors; who build long-term, mutually beneficial relationships in order to both take charge of their own destinies and help others to do the same” — hosts periodic meetings around New York, as well as an annual off-the-record three-day retreat in Central or South America at which its members attend cocktail parties with U.S. diplomats and host-country officials and participate in panel discussions on public policy and business affairs.

One wonders how closely the Belizeans ape their male counterparts—burning of a symbolic effigy of the outside world and its cares, non-stop drinking, public urination, drag shows, planning world domination...

Time will tell if this group is little more than a post-graduate college prank, a Gen-Y version of the Red Hat Society, or a good excuse for a warm weather winter junket to the Caribbean. Or if it really does become a ladies' version of the Bohemian Grove.


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