WASHINGTON (WOMENSENEWS)–When the Washington Press Club Foundation held its annual fund-raising dinner this week, the organization that was founded eight decades ago by a group of women journalists who had been denied entrance to the all-male National Press Club granted just one woman a speaking role at the event.

That one woman was Kathleen Matthews, who shared the podium with her husband, Chris Matthews, the combative talk show host of MSNBC’s “Hardball” and emcee of Wednesday night’s dinner. To the ire of attendees, she was added at the last minute, after a number of club members complained that no women had been asked to join this year’s speakers, Matthews, Rep. Harold Ford of Tennessee and Sen. John McCain of Arizona.

“Nine-one-three.” That’s how one prominent woman journalist described club’s dismal record of representation at recent dinners. Of the nine speakers who have been invited to speak at the event in the past three years, only one has been a woman.

Adam Clymer, president of the club and a chief Washington correspondent for The New York Times, was not available for comment and the no one responded to messages left at the club seeking comment. The club opened its doors to qualified male journalists in the 1970s, but its mission remains focused on promoting women in journalism. The club’s major project is called “Women in Journalism,” an oral history project involving interviews with women journalists who have made significant contributions to society. In addition, the club gives scholarships to selected women college journalists and journalism awards.

— Allison Stevens.

For more information:

Washington Press Club Foundation:

National Press Club:

Correction: On Friday, in “County Searches for Clues to Breast Cancer Rates,” Women’s Enews reported that more than 400,000 women die of breast cancer in the United States each year. In fact, more than 40,000 women nationwide die of the disease annually.