Conventions and Conferences 

Please join us for the 2017

Official Call to the 122nd Annual Convention of GFWC of Missouri, Inc. Oasis Hotel & Convention Center, 2546 N. Glenstone, Springfield, MO 65803. The dates are May 10th to May 13.


The Official Call to the 2017 Convention

Agenda for the 2017 Convention


2016 GFWC Missouri Convention Photos

2016-2018 GFWCMO Officers

Pictured left to right are the 2016-2018 GFWC MO Officers who were installed at the Friday night installation banquet: Donna Calvin, Bonnie Tillman, Ann Spence, Janet Ryan, Amy Boone, Dr. Susan Gettys, and Judy Gustafson.  

Pierson Phillips Presentation Chicken Dance
Eleven-year-old Pierson Phillips received a standing ovation after his touching presentation about living with Tourette.  Amid the speakers and award presentations, we enjoyed doing the “Chicken Dance.” 
Jennie Awards LEADS 2016 
Honored during the convention were our two MVR Jennie Award Winners—2010 Beverly Shelton and 2016 Janice Carter. They are pictured with President Kathy and State Jennie Award Chairman Edana Huse.  GFWC MO LEADS Workshop participants are pictured after their very successful four-hour workshop. GFWC Recording Secretary, Deb Strahanoski, helped teach the workshop along with Sue Harris, Gail Jones, Tracie Snodgrass & Lori Snodgrass. 

Photos from the installation of 2016-2018 GFWC MO Officers. 

Installation of 2016 - 2028 Officers

Installation of 2016 - 2018 Officers

Installation of 2016 - 2018 Officers

Lori Snodgrass GFWC MO Speakers
Lori Snodgrass & other incoming district presidents decorated tables at the District Officer Installation Banquet with items from their part of Missouri.   GFWC Secretary Deb & GFWC Legislative Chairman Becky were popular speakers.
Reception Line Reception
Reception line at State Officer Installation Banquet Reception hosted by 3rd District after State Officer Installation 
Lydian Club members  
Three GFWC Lydian Club girlfriends.    

2015 GFWC Missouri Convention Photos

"Standing Tall for GFWC, Our Communities, Our World"

GFWC MO Officers

115 Attend 2015 GFWC MO Convention, April 29-May 2, at the Ramada and Oasis Convention Center, Springfield.  

2015 Convention Photos

 2014 Summer Conference

Pictured below are many of the 80 attendees at the July 20-22 GFWC MO Summer Conference at Tan-Tar-A in their new “Standing Tall for GFWC” t-shirts to commemorate the 125th Anniversary of GFWC on April 24, 2015. 

2014 Summer Conference Attendess


Summer Conference Photo Collage

GFWCMO Summer Convention

GFWCMO 2014 State Convention

2014 State Convention Recap by Lisa Cook:

State Convention Recap by 2012-2014 President Lisa Cook: 137 attendees at the GFWC Missouri state convention May 1-3, 2014 were treated to a variety of speakers and the installations of the district officers and state officers for the 2014-2016 administration. We held our first annual successful LEADS Workshop. GFWC Second Vice President Mary Ellen Brock spoke to us about the “ Power of One” and spoke to the LEADS attendees about the” Secret Ingredient.” She installed our new state officers in a moving ceremony at the Friday evening banquet.

Books were a theme for our convention. Carolyn Wyatt celebrated our ESO readers and we had authors and speakers Laura McHugh, Rory Rowland, Christine McDonald, and Nancy Hughes offering their books for sale. The ESO book sale table had LOTS of donations and raised over $200 in book sales. We love to read in GFWC Missouri!

Travis Sappington from the Central Missouri Food Bank spoke on hunger in Missouri. Members donated $178 to the Food Bank which will provide 2,225 meals for hungry families. The Central Missouri Food Bank serves 32 counties in central and northeast Missouri. Way to go GFWC Missouri!

Nancy Hughes spoke to us about Filling Up Our Heckers, and the Coalition Against Human Trafficking came and spoke on this critical issue. Christine McDonald told her story about being a victim of trafficking. She was sold by her mother to her heroin dealer at a very young age. It was a tragic but inspiring story. Jessie Shackleford, a member of the GFWC Lydian Club, told her story about abuse and stressed the importance of self- esteem. Safe Passage, a domestic violence shelter in Moberly, became a refuge for Jessie and she later volunteered there. GFWC Missouri as a result donated over $300 which was split between the Coalition Against Human Trafficking and Safe Passage. We also made over 100 hygiene kits to donate to Safe Passage during the mixer on Wednesday evening. The money was raised with a Blessing Jar, and many members gained a greater appreciation of their personal blessings in life.

This was only a small highlight of the many wonderful things that happened during convention. Kathy Becker kept us informed about Missouri Girls Town. We gave awards, were treated to some awesome photo contest entries, were inspired and moved by selections from the short story and poetry winners. We changed some bylaws, heard about our GFWC partner, The Heart Truth, and talked about Legislative Day. Our district presidents talked about their administrations and we learned about MVR and the word UP. Deb performed a moving Memorial Service for our lost members during this administration. The Membership Maids got us in the mood to recruit new members.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all GFWC Missouri members for all that you do for your club, your communities, and GFWC. Special thanks to the state officers and chairman for all your hard work and thanks to Renee Ridling and Linda Russell for all their enthusiasm putting on our first LEADS Workshop. Be proud and thankful to be part of this wonderful, caring organization. WAY TO GO GFWC MISSOURI. 

New Officer Installation

GFWC 2nd VP Mary Ellen Brock installed the 2014-2016 state officers assisted by President Lisa Cook. 

New 2014-2016 Officers

The new 2014-2016 District Officers were installed at the state convention by Kathy Palermo assisted by GFWC 2nd VP Mary Ellen Brock.  

Meeting Attendees

Attendees enjoyed speakers on topics ranging from human trafficking to laughter. 

Jessie Shackleford

Jessie Shackleford mesmerized the attendees with her presentation,“A Safe Passage.” 

LEADS 2014

Congratulations GFWC LEADS of MO Graduates! Top: Linda Russell, Bonnie Tillman, Robin Crick, Leslie Prothero, Abbygayle Saul, Joan Beard Middle: Mary Humlicek, Sue Koch, Pres. Lisa Cook, Katy Pat Dorsey, Renee Ridling Seated: Sherry Johnson, Mary Dockery, LaDonne Snavely  

GFWC MVR Conference in South Dakota September 2013. 

Ten Missourians attended the annual region conference in Rapid City, South Dakota, on September 27-28, 2013. The evening before the conference was highlighted with a singing cowboy cookout followed by the lighting ceremony at Mount Rushmore. Some delegates ventured out to Custer State Park early the next morning to see the park's buffalo herd rounded up for annual vaccinations.

The conference was a great opportunity for delegates to learn about successful community projects in the region's seven states and take ideas back to their clubs. GFWC International President Mary Ellen Laister and GFWC President-elect Babs Condon were keynote speakers. A leadership seminar offered information on topics presented at the annual Leadership Education and Development Seminar at GFWC International Conventions.

Christie Albrecht from the UN Foundation's Shot@Life Campaign spoke at the conference, emphasizing that eradicating diseases such as measles in developing countries will prevent world travelers from bringing an epidemic to the U. S. GFWC Missouri Past President Carolyn Lovelace presented a membership promotion workshop. GFWC Missouri Past President LaDonne Snavely spoke about the Heart Truth Campaign stressing the importance for women to understand the truth about heart disease. To learn more about the campaign, go to for information.

Delegates were entertained at the two banquets with exceptional talents. Singer Michael Shaw presented classic hits of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Tony Bennett, and Louis Armstrong. Delegates were entertained the next evening by the Rapid City New Horizon Band with renditions of old and new favorites. 

2013 GFWC MO Annual Convention

GFWC Missouri held its annual convention at the Courtyard by Marriott in Columbia May 2-4, 2013. The change of location seemed to be a great idea. We plan to stay in Columbia at least for the next three years or longer. 

We started the Convention with the mixer night and Shot At Life fundraiser. Gail Jones, GFWC Missouri Corresponding Secretary worked at the coin toss game for members to win snacks. Snacks were provided by the executive committee in plastic shot glasses to raise money for Shot At Life. The Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau provided apples for the registration table so every member could take a snack to enjoy during the convention.

The Convention got under way on Thursday morning with the board meeting. Trial and error happened showing the budget and treasurers report on the PowerPoint projector; our attempt at trying to reduce printing costs for the state. The convention opened with the usual fanfare including a welcome by the Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid. A very important and exciting announcement concluded the first session. Thanks to Joyce Raskin, Pat Brush, and Edana Huse among others from the GFWC Uandi Literary Club in St. Louis, a new GFWC Missouri Club will be chartered on September 8 Club. They will work primarily on domestic violence, will meet in person 3 times per year, will meet in small committees to organize programs and projects. We are thankful to the GFWC Uandi Literary Club for all their hard work making this new club a reality for GFWC Missouri.

We were blessed with several speakers throughout our convention. First up was Jennifer from the Southern Boone County Learning Garden. This garden is part of the Ashland School Districts curriculum. It was started by 2 volunteers, and now has hundreds of volunteers and has become a total community effort. It has brought their community together, given the school some exciting resources, and is teaching children to eat healthier. If children grow it, they will eat it!!

Canine Companions came with 3 of their dogs. Joyce and Donna told about raising puppies for Canine Companions, one of our GFWC partners. Some of the members got to brush the dog’s teeth. The dogs were adorable. Not sure how they give them up after the training!

Dr. Burgert, a pediatrician from Kansas City and a Shot at Life trained Champion came and spoke to us about Shot at Life, a GFWC partner. She also spoke about the importance of immunizations not only abroad, but here in the US as well. She fielded several questions from the members. GFWC Missouri was proud to present Dr. Burgert with a check from our fundraising efforts to Shot At Life.

Our ESO luncheon featured Michele Spry, a children’s book author from Columbia whose book is about paying it forward. Michele spoke about volunteering and leadership. ESO awards were given by chairman Carolyn and Michele signed her book, Tom T’s Hat Rack.

Our Jr. Special Project-Advocates for Children chairman Karla gave two wonderful programs on INMED and Project Peanut Butter. Linda, our conservation chairman handed out tree samplings, and spoke about the new GFWC Conservation partner, ACTrees. Missouri Day chairman Pat talked about a new Missouri Day celebration idea using the Missouri flag and our federation emphasis chairman Janice gave fun federation facts each day.  Louise, our Legislation chairman gave handouts and talked about Legislation Day. 

Our keynote speaker was Nancy from El Dorado Springs. Nancy did a program entitled, “Laughter, What’s In It for Me?”. It was a wonderful motivational, inspiring program about laughing at yourself and taking life a little less seriously. It was just what we needed to hear!

Domestic Violence chair Tracie gave a great program about our signature project and had a wonderful display table. Also with display tables were Conservation, Legislation, Home life partners, Pubic Issues, Missouri Day, ESO book sale, Missouri Girls Town fundraising, GFWC Missouri fundraising and basket raffle, and the ever popular dollar table. Kathy from Missouri Girls Town updated us on MGT and she and Carolyn handed out MGT awards. Awards were given throughout the convention for community service programs and projects. A complete list of winners can be found on the website and in our latest newsletter.

We held our Photo Contest, and our Writing Contest chairman read some of the award winners for poetry and short story. We introduced our 2013 LEADS candidate Lori and celebrated Beverly for being a 50 year member and the official GFWC Missouri Cookie Lady. We had skits for Phoebe Jane Ess, Membership, and a Packing 101 Skit. Our chaplain told inspirational stories.

We passed some changes to constitution and bylaws, and heard about the USO Barbeque for the Troops campaign for this summer. MVR President Donna Calvin talked about the upcoming MVR Convention in September in Rapid City, South Dakota. Edana reminded us that the Jennie June nominees were due in June. We surveyed our members for topics that they are interested in hearing at convention because convention just isn’t about what the state officers think you are interested in! We wanted your input.

Coldwater Creek came and did a fashion show for us and gave away some goodies; we honored our 9 district presidents at one of the banquets. At the District President Recognition banquet, Pat Mertens and I showed off the quilts we received from the GFWC Woman’s Community Club of Gideon. They made each of us a beautiful quilt to commemorate our presidency’s. 

A good time was had by all. We learned a little, laughed a lot, and rekindled old friendships while making new ones. GFWC is alive and well in Missouri. GFWC Missouri is definitely Living the Volunteer Spirit.

2012 Mississippi Valley Region Conference

Missouri delegation at MVR (Mississippi Valley Region Conference) in Wichita. Missouri won the attendance award for the state with the most members present at MVR. Donna Calvin from Missouri is our MVR president.

Missouri Delegation 2012 MVR

GFWC Mississippi Valley Region Conference Missouri took home the Attendance Award with 17 members and two Boosters attending this year's conference held in Wichita, Kansas, on September 28-29. There were a total of 102 members and 16 Boosters in attendance. Preceding the conference, 40 attended a hilarious Boo-lesque musical revue at the Cabaret Old Town Theatre, and 42 enjoyed a day tour of Wichita.

Region President Donna Calvin presided over an informative conference packed with a full Saturday of workshops and presentations that were beneficial to all who attended. Strengthening leadership, membership, and public relations are being emphasized this administration. GFWC International President Mary Ellen Laister was the keynote speaker for the opening night banquet, motivating clubs to strengthen GFWC ties in their communities to meet needs.

GFWC President-elect Babs Condon presented the new guidelines for reporting annual club statistics. Donna led the Region officers in presenting a humorous workshop on holding effective meetings which brought well intended laughs to finalize the afternoon's agenda. Donna opened the workshop with a hilarious telephone skit written by Joan Utt and edited by Charlene Ward (GFWC Tuesday Study Club of Braymer, Missouri). The humor was then extended through a game show presentation on parliamentary procedure. GFWC Kansas decorated the tables for the meal functions with items to be donated to charitable concerns. These included 111 children's books and 78 supply items to be donated to schools; 1,073 useful items for the Wichita Veterans Hospital; and 415 knit hats, gloves and scarves to be added to the bundles of items brought by conference attendees to donate to Charter House, a domestic violence support center in Wichita.

The Kansas State Night Banquet concluded the conference where attendees were entertained by two choral groups from Goddard High School and a presentation on historically notable people born in Kansas. Next year's conference will be held in Rapid City, South Dakota, on September 27-28.

GFWC of Missouri, Inc. State Convention Information

2012 Summer Conference

Summer Conference 2012 Tan-Tar-A proved to be a fabulous venue for our GFWC of MO Summer Conference. The staff was friendly and welcoming, and the meals were wonderful. The conference facilities were fabulous. Our event planner at Tan-Tar-A, Susan Miller, took very good care of us and helped us plan a most successful conference. We had a little bit of fun, and learned a lot from our members and our guest speakers. As usual, the $1 table was a huge success and we supported Missouri Girls Town with our Bucks for Beds campaign by auctioning off a night’s stay at the Courtyard by Marriott in Columbia and homemade books by Angie Weithman from the GFWC Tuesday Club of Columbia. We sold at Silent Auction handmade bowls from Kathy Palermo’s woodworking husband, Vince along with some GFWC notepads, membership folders, and brochures. We sold chances for a Miche purse. We welcomed over 20 first time attendees to a GFWC of MO Summer Conference. It was exciting to meet so many new members. We were pleased to have all nine districts and 40 clubs represented.

Some of our members got involved during Summer Conference. Ninth district president Pat Mertens gave an inspiring thought for the day, a poem by Mother Teresa called Do It Anyway. Pat also spoke to us about Missouri Day celebrations and flat Pat. She handed out a flat Pat for everyone! Donna Calvin, past GFWC of MO state president and current GFWC Mississippi Valley Region President spoke to us about MVR and the importance of attending. MVR is in Wichita, Kansas in September. Please try to join us. The registration deadline is September 10th. The form can be found on the website. Carolyn Dye, our Missouri Girls Town chairman spoke to us about the Bucks for Beds campaign. MGT is in need of all new mattresses for the girls. Janice Carter impressed us with her knowledge of Federation Facts each day, and Shelly Barger, our 2012 LEADS participant spoke to us about her experience in Charlotte. Our officers led the discussion on reporting for the 2012-2014 administration, and Renee Ridling, 6th district president spoke about Communication and Public Relations. Louise Wilson, our Legislation and Public Policy chairman spoke about Legislative Day and the new redistricting of the state. We learned about our GFWC contests from our contest chairman, about a new GFWC program called Shot At Life, the new membership campaign, the tagline contest, fundraising opportunities, and an informative program on Human Trafficking by Carolyn Lovelace.

Our guest speakers included Tricia Hager from Missouri Leadership Seminar. Tricia is the chairperson for this important project. Tricia brought two students with her who had attended MLS as sophomores, and have then gone as helpers the last several years. Also speaking was Phil Shearrer from the University of Missouri Hospital and Clinics. Phil spoke to us about leadership. Phil helped us identify and recognize our individual strengths and taught us that leadership starts with relationships.

The GFWC of MO officers modeled for a fashion show, with the help of Carol Shoener, Karla Kincaid, and Janice Carter. A bingo game provided prizes for Mary Dockery, Holly Sharp, and Jeanette Adams. The Miche purse was won by Kathy Price from 6th district and the free night’s stay at the Courtyard by Marriott in Columbia was won by Verna Wallace from 9 th district.

Thank you to everyone who had a part in the conference in making it a success. Whether you helped set up, clean up, speak, collect meal tickets, pass out handouts, take pictures, ask questions, etc. you are all valuable to the success of our conference.

GFWCMO 2011 ConventionGFWC of Missouri State Convention in Jefferson City, MO

2011 GFWCMO Convention Photo Album #1

Photo Album including 50's Night

Photos from the 2010 GFWC of Missouri Summer Conference are available in our on line album HERE.......

Summer Conference at Lake of the Ozarks