By Lynette Norris
Greene Publishing, Inc.
The Madison Woman’s Club began its first meeting after the summer break on Sept. 8 with outgoing president Jackie Johnson presenting certificates of appreciation to nearly two dozen members for their hard work on various projects during the past year, and looking ahead to the new service opportunities that awaited with a new slate of officers to lead the way.
Ethel Barefoot presented Johnson with a bouquet of flowers and a gift on behalf of the Club, in appreciation for Johnson’s work as president for the last two years. Then the new officers were installed during a brief ceremony. Johnson passed the gavel to incoming president Mary Groover, and each of the new officers received a different color rose that symbolized her office: Johnson, stepping into her new role as parliamentarian, received a peach rose; Kaye Browning, the new recording secretary, a pink rose; Sandra Bass the new treasurer, a coral rose; Ethel Barefoot, second vice president, a yellow rose; Margaret Ann Bunch, first vice president, a white rose; and new president Mary Groover, three red roses symbolizing love, respect and congratulations.
Glenda Gordon, who was unable to attend, is the new chaplain.
The first meeting was focused on children in the community, particularly school children in need. Club members had brought in school supplies for them and Faye Browning would later divide all those donations into dozens of bags for distribution to the students.
Florida Smith read some hilarious excerpts from a book of children’s letters to God: “Dear God, thank you for the baby brother, but what I really wanted was a puppy.” “Dear God, are you really invisible, or is that just a trick?” “Dear God, is it true my father won’t get into heaven if he uses his ‘bowling words’ in the house?”
The guest speaker was Jo Willis, State Director and Coordinator of Take Stock in Children, who recognized and thanked all the members who had participated in the club’s mentoring efforts, giving special recognition to Margaret Ann Bunch, a former student who is now a mentor herself.
The Madison Woman’s Club now has more mentors than any other civic group in Madison, Willis said; it had even surpassed Kiwanis, which had long held the lead in the number of mentors.
Woman’s Club members now actively mentor about 60 children, and of those 60, 15 were graduating this year, 34 had a cumulative 2.8 GPA, 24 had cumulative 3.0 and five had achieved straight A’s – a cumulative 4.0.
Next month, Jackie Johnson and Ethel Barefoot are going to the State Convention with the Madison Club’s scrapbook for the year, and the Annual District Meeting Oct. 15 will be held at Honey Lake Plantation.
That same Saturday is also Rachel Reichmann’s 100th birthday. Daughters Nell Ring and Raye Wooley are holding an Open House for her that afternoon from 2 to 4 p.m. at their home on Livingston Street. Members will be busy that day, going from the District Meeting that morning at Honey Lake to Rachel’s 100th birthday celebration that afternoon.
Ahead of them lies another year of service, with plenty of opportunities for fun and friends.
The Madison Woman’s Club meets the second Thursday of every month, and their next regular meeting is Oct. 13.