The US Naturalization Ceremony

Welcoming New Voters:  A League Tradition

A United States naturalization ceremony, also commonly referred to as a citizenship ceremony, represents the final step in the process of becoming a naturalized, United States citizen. Citizenship ceremonies vary depending upon factors such as location and sponsorships. Guest speakers may include representatives from local immigrant organizations, city and state officials, or individuals who are about to be sworn in as new citizens. Depending upon spatial allowances, members of the general public are invited to attend the ceremony. Attendees are usually given “new citizen” packets, which include literature regarding citizenship responsibilities, a copy of the US Constitution, voter registration notification and a miniature American flag.

Overall, citizenship ceremonies serve to:

  • Welcome new citizens to the United States
  • Provide an introduction to the US justice system
  • Provide information regarding the naturalization process and the importance of citizenship
  • Offer a forum for celebration for new citizens


Click Here for Citizenship Information from the U.S. Federal District Court, Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Office.

LWV Loves New Voters

Uncle Sam Is a Hit at July,August, and November Naturalization Ceremonies

Uncle Sam made his debut at the July 10 US Naturalization Ceremony, thanks to LWV member Gerry Kuklewicz, dressed in full Uncle Sam regalia. More than 40 new citizens were registered to vote for the first time in a US election. New voters also received stickers to wear proclaiming "I VOTE."

The LWV Naturalization Team shined that day. And the event had great media coverage, thanks to Community Relations VP Mary Claire Rowe.
See the photos below. 

LWV Voters Service VP Eddie Baggett, Hon. Judith
Guthrie, and LWV Voter Registration Coordinator
Shirley Hightower
Gerry Kuklewicz, AKA Uncle Sam, and Representative of
Sons of the American Revolution


 New voter shows her certificate of citizenship, along with Judge Guthrie and Voter Registration Coordinator Shirley Hightower 



Next Ceremony

September 26, 10 am

US Federal District Court, 211 West Ferguson Street

What Is the League’s Role?

  • Provide literature from the League and the Secretary of State of Texas to assist them in becoming informed voting citizens.
  • Introduced by the presiding judge and offer a brief speech to motivate the new citizens to become new voters.
  • Available to help the new citizens register to vote or complete a change of address.
  • League certified volunteer deputy registrars for Smith County

These ceremonies never fail to be inspiring and they afford an invaluable opportunity for recognition and public awareness for the League.

To volunteer at the next ceremony, contact Mary Lu French.

LWV Naturalization Team: Ed and Shirley Hightower, 
Gerry Kuklewicz, Andie Rathbone, and Polly Kuklewicz

Mary Claire Rowe
Past President