The Wellesley Hills Junior Women’s Club (WHJWC) was established in 1944 as a spin-off of the Wellesley Hills Women’s Club, aimed at attracting younger members with a schedule more conducive to working women and mothers of young children. The Club originally had a membership of 45 women and was focused on the social interests of its members. In the 1950s, the focus of the club expanded to include service projects.
WHJWC has served the community through such activities as aiding children during the polio epidemic of the 1950s, assisting veterans, working with the elderly, performing eye screenings for preschool children, organizing a story hour at the Newton-Wellesley Hospital’s Pediatric Wing, and creating a town-wide safety day. Community service has evolved to include assisting the Wellesley Food Pantry, supporting scholars in the A Better Chance program and students at the Walker School, volunteering at the Wellesley Council on Aging and the Elizabeth Seton Residence, helping families being serviced by Second Step and Family Promise Metrowest, and performing a puppet show focused on diversity and inclusion for kindergarteners in Wellesley’s elementary schools.
WHJWC is well known for dynamic fundraising events that celebrate our community and tap into the generosity of those around us. In 1968 the Wellesley Phone Book was first published, and became our most profitable fundraiser for many years. Marketplace, a popular craft fair, began in 1974 and has since gained national attention. In 1999, the Wellesley Kitchen Tour, now known as the Wellesley Kitchen and Home Tour, was launched as a spring event and is now the premiere home tour in New England. For years, Luminary Night gathered neighbors and friends together to celebrate the holiday season. The Wonder Run 5K and Kids Fun Run, held during Wellesley Wonderful Weekend, celebrates health and families.
WHJWC has a generous scholarship and grants programs that are possible because of the success of the club’s fundraiser events. We raise scholarship money for deserving high school students who need financial support to make college dreams possible. And WHJWC grants help fund programs that will have a positive impact on the community. Recently, the club has given away on average about $65,000 in scholarships and $72,000 in grants every year.
On WHJWC’s 75th anniversary, the club gave two of the largest grants in its history. A $25,000 grant was given to help build a new softball field in town to create an equitable playing space for female athletes. And a $15,000 grant was given to help buy the A Better Chance female scholarships a new residence.
The executive board of the Wellesley Hills Junior Women’s Club for 2021-2022. To reach any board member, please email [email protected].
- President: Lindsey Crowley
- VP of Charitable Givings: Erica Gelser
- VP of Community Outreach, Hadley Stephens
- VP of Membership, Angela Laliberte
- VP of Fundraising, Wendy Scarisbrick
- VP of Marketing, Kerryn Connelly
- VP of Technology, Annie Oh
- VP of Finance, Leah Cook
- AVP of Membership, Lauren Crowley
- AVP of Fundraising, Jodi Fox
- AVP of Technology, Melissa Crean
- Recording Secretary, Laura Smith
- Second Year Rep, Kristin Ellis
- First Year Rep, Kristin Shanks
- Board Advisor, Steph Flynn