President Barbara Snyder addressed over fifty Flora Stone Mather alumnae and Case Western Reserve University friends at Alumni House during a February 22 luncheon to celebrate the future of the Flora Stone Mather Center for Women.
She lauded the center as an essential university program that "came to be through the work of a small group of individuals passionately committed to a cause" and that highlights "the progress possible when people come together with a common aim."
Consistent with this theme, the event served as the public announcement of the volunteer leadership of the $1 million challenge campaign initiated by the Flora Stone Mather Alumnae Association last May. The challenge will allow the center to expand and deepen its mission to improve the educational, professional, and social climate and to increase opportunities for women within the university and the community through education, advocacy, and research.
A three-person Campaign Committee, which will oversee the entire fundraising effort, includes Campaign National Chairwoman Susie Gharib (FSM '72); Campaign Chairwoman MaryAnn Jorgenson (LAW '75); and Campaign General Chairwoman Patricia B. Kilpatrick (FSM'49, GRS'51).
Their work will be supported by the Executive Committee, chaired by Kilpatrick. Members are Barbara Collins, Lynne Alfred Hanson, Dorothy Miller, Deborah Nash, Gary Pillar, Susan Troia, and Sandra Vodanoff. A Steering Committee comprised of a select group of Flora Stone Mather alumnae and members of the center's Advisory Board has also been convened to support the fundraising effort.
Campaign General Chairwoman Patricia Kilpatrick commented on her excitement about the early success of the campaign, which has already raised nearly $200,000: "We are tremendously pleased to see so many supporters coming forward. In addition to Flora Stone Mather Alumnae, members of the center's advisory board have been extremely enthusiastic about the effort and are sharing the good news of the campaign with an ever-widening base of supporters."
Campaign National Chairwoman Susie Gharib was the scheduled speaker for the luncheon but was forced to cancel due to a weather-related delay. She is widely known as the award-winning New York-based anchor of PBS's Nightly Business Report. Gharib's sister, Simin Naraghipour FSM '69, attended the event with their mother, and made brief remarks in support of the campaign.
President Snyder read excerpts from Gharib's intended talk, which made a connection between the mission of Flora Stone Mather and the mission of the women's center that bears her name.
"The University needs a place where women of all ages and all colors can go to shed the impediments—cultural, social, or gender-based—that may prevent them from being who they truly are and accomplishing what they truly want to do," Snyder quoted Gharib. "The Flora Stone Mather Center for Women is a vital resource to help 21st Century students face the demands of today's lifestyles and workplaces."
The Flora Stone Mather Alumnae Association Challenge will support that vital resource for generations to come. The association will match every dollar raised before May 10, 2011, up to the $1 million total.
To learn about making a gift, contact Gary Pillar at 216-368-3992.
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