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GFWC Texas Conventioneers

San Gabriel Woman's Club was represented well at the Spring GFWC Texas Convention at the lovely MCM Elegante Hotel in Beaumont Texas April 26-29, 2012.

Members attending were Jean Holden, President; Aline Kidwell, Past Officer of TFWC; and Nancy Payne a Federated Women's Club member for thirty years.

Jean Holden Presented Shining Star Award for Club Membership

Jean Holden, President of the San Gabriel Woman's Club in Georgetown, was presented the Shining Star Award for Club Membership by Patti Poe, of the Texas Federated Women's Club at the Spring Convention in Beaumont, Texas, on April 26. The SGWC increased its membership in 2011-12 with ten new members. Dr. Holden initiated progressive management in a club that was losing its state ranking as a Category II club. She balanced the budget, organized a website, , and recruited the most new members in the history of the club.

The San Gabriel Woman's Club is a not for profit community service organization with emphasis on children and women's issues. The annual Fat Tuesday Luncheon and Card game fundraiser benefits the Georgetown community. In 2012, SGWC donated two $1000 college scholarships, a $1,000 to Georgetown Swims; and four $500 gifts to Meals on Wheels, Wilco Advocacy for Children; Hope Alliance for Battered Women; Georgetown Project (The Nest); and $565 to the Georgetown Library.

TFWC Fall Board Meeting

Jean Houck, Jean Holden, and Marjorie Williamson Attendees at the TFWC Fall Board Meeting in Austin on Sept. 17, 2011:
  • Jean Houck, President Elect, San Gabriel Woman's Club
  • Jean Holden, President, San Gabriel Woman's Club
  • Marjorie Williamson, past President of TFWC

TFWC Capitol District Fall Board Meeting

San Gabriel Woman's Club Members attend the TFWC Capitol District Fall Board Meeting October 12, 2011 at the Headquarters Mansion in Austin.

Speakers included representatives from "Fight Like a Girl" surgery recouping clothing; Remembering "Jared"; and 1st Lady of Texas, Mrs. Perry's, Chief of Staff.

Bonnie Haynes, Barbara Hentzen, Jean Houck, and Mary Martha Denham; Jean Holden, Nancy Snead, and Tomi Spence

Back row Bonnie Haynes, Barbara Hentzen, Jean Houck, and Mary Martha Denham.
Front row Jean Holden, Nancy Snead, and Tomi Spence

SGWC Receives Grant for Georgetown Swims

At the Fall Board meeting of the Texas Federated Women's Club on Saturday in Austin, the San Gabriel Woman's Club received a Texas Federated Women's Club State Grant to assist in their Special Project: Georgetown Swims.

The swim program, which is a part of the Georgetown Parks and Recreation Department, provides swimming lessons free to young children. In September the SGWC donated $1,000 to this special project for the protection of young children in Georgetown. The grant money, an added bonus of $350, will be used to provide swim gear of swim caps and goggles for young swimmers.

For more information about the Georgetown Swims project and opportunities to help this wonderful program that protects young children, please contact for more information.

Jean Holden, Bonnie Haynes and Jean Houck; TFWC Capitol District President Jeri Harkins, and TFWC State President Dorothy Roberts

Jean Holden, Bonnie Haynes and Jean Houck; TFWC Capitol District President Jeri Harkins, and TFWC State President Dorothy Roberts

San Gabriel Woman's Club of Georgetown, Texas - GFWC/TFWC Capitol District

A good time at the TFWC Capitol District Spring Conference in Franklin, Texas, March 2011. Jean Holden, President of the San Gabriel Woman's Club of Georgetown, is surrounded by her friends and colleagues in the San Gabriel Woman's Club.

Mary Martha Denham, Bonnie Haynes, Beverly Gerding, Jeannine Fairburn, and Nancy Snead

Mary Martha Denham, Bonnie Haynes, Beverly Gerding, Jeannine Fairburn and Nancy Snead.

The San Gabriel Woman's Club of Georgetown, Texas, did very well in the awards department at the conference. President Holden says, "All the members in our SGWC are workers. We truly believe that we are a volunteer organization, and that our primary goal is to assist the causes of women and children." It is with great pride in our SGWC that the following awards are listed:

  • Twelve - 1st Place Awards - Capitol District

    • TFWC Yearbook Cover
    • GFWC Leadership
    • Capitol District Outstanding Clubwoman/Volunteer 2011 (Jean Holden)
    • Outstanding Federation Day Program
    • International Outreach
    • Education
    • Conservation
    • Fundraising
    • Women's History and Resource Center
    • Advocates for Children
    • GFWC Signature Project - Domestic Violence
    • TFWC UT M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
  • Three - 2nd Place Awards - Capitol District

    • GFWC Education
    • GFWC Public Affairs
    • TFWC Historical Places and Things
  • Four - TFWC State Awards - TFWC Convention, Galveston, Texas, April 29, 2011

    • TFWC Outstanding Clubwoman/Volunteer (Jean Holden)
    • GFWC Conservation
    • TFWC UT M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
    • Website Design/Communication

We welcome other club members and those who are interested in contributing to our community to visit our San Gabriel Woman's Club. Please contact

Legacy of Leadership

The San Gabriel Woman's Club of Georgetown, TFWC Capitol District has a continuing legacy of producing many Outstanding Clubwoman Volunteers for the Capitol District and the TFWC.

Members Jean Holden (2011) and Tomi Spence (2003) have also received the TFWC State Award for Outstanding Clubwoman Volunteer of the Year. Through their dedicated work and club leadership these women have provided many high school seniors with college tuition and many local charities with additional funds to extend their care.

Jeannine Fairburn 1993, Nancy Snead 2005, Jean Holden 2011, and Mary Martha Denham 2010

Left to right: Jeannine Fairburn 1993, Nancy Snead 2005, Jean Holden 2011, and Mary Martha Denham 2010. Not shown Tomi Spence 2003.

Pictures from the 2011 Conventions

Dr. Jean Holden Named TFWC Outstanding Clubwoman Volunteer 2011

To reach its maximum potential every club needs a member who is a visionary; a member who can gently guide and, when necessary, kick start a club into using modern technology. From the time she was inducted into the San Gabriel Woman's Club in 1988, through her first presidency in 2001and, now again, as President in 2010- 2011; Jean Holden has been that person and so much more. The San Gabriel Woman's Club is honored to recommend Jean Holden as the Outstanding Club Woman/Volunteer of the Year.

Currently, Jean Holden is President of the San Gabriel Woman's Club. In 2001 Dr. Holden's theme, as president, was "Making a Difference in Our Community, Diversity in Volunteering". Today her theme is "Diversity in Volunteering". The common thread through a decade of leadership is volunteering. When asked, Jean will say that the most important things in her life are family and education. She points to the many mentors who guided her in life as her inspiration for giving back to others today. The protection of women's rights and the education of children have consistently been the focus of Jean's volunteerism and charitable donations.

A prime beneficiary of Dr. Holden's volunteerism is the San Gabriel Woman's Club. Dr. Holden is a leader, a writer, a chairman, and an organizer for our club. Specifically, as President she has guided our club through the building of a club budget. This budget now ensures the sound fiscal state of the club. She has organized and chaired a report writing committee. She is determined that each member understand the importance of report writing. Her report committee meets regularly to facilitate report writing throughout the year. No more burning the midnight oil at the end of January to get those reports done. By mid- January most reports are filed in Dr. Holden's blue report box. During her reports chairmanship the SGWC has garnered 13 first and second place awards.

As a visionary Dr. Holden addressed ideas on how to build club membership this year. She was instrumental in the design and publication of a brochure that outlines what a Federated Woman's Club is, as well as, the many contributions that the GFWC, TFWC, and our San Gabriel Woman's Club have made to improve women's issues and the protection of children. This brochure is an invaluable tool in recruiting new members.

Communication is another great assert Dr. Holden brings to our club. Members receive cheerful phone calls from our President to keep them up to date. Dr. Holden is also a master of email. Members receive important reminders of club activities. Recently, Dr. Holden has initiated "e-vite" as yet another communication tool for the club. Every member feels involved in every club activity. This inclusiveness is very important for a strong club. Dr. Holden also helped to develop the design of SGWC stationery. Every officer in her administration has a supply of this stationery which proudly includes both the TFWC and the GFWC seals.

Fundraising has always been one of Dr. Holden's favorite activities. Our San Gabriel Women's Club has a great group of dedicated members who all stand at the ready to help. As organizer- in -chief she oversees all committees for our annual Fat Tuesday Fundraiser. Four years ago Dr. Holden was a part of a committee that originated the Fat Tuesday Fundraiser. This fundraiser has been very successful. In addition, Dr. Holden has always supported Libraries 2000 and the TFWC scholarship program.

Dr. Holden is also a writer. This year through her skills we have had several articles written and published in the Texas ClubWoman and the Williamson County Sun. For the past two and 1/2 years, Dr. Holden has been responsible for publishing our club directory.

A special treat for members this year was the tour of the TFWC Clubhouse in Austin. Dr. Holden was a coordinator for this tour. Most members had never visited the mansion before and were impressed by all the history. The tour helped members understand the importance of TFWC and its achievements.

Domestic abuse awareness is a special concern of Dr. Holden. The special club projects she has coordinated for Hope Alliance are probably most dear to her heart. In 2009 she organized a purse project. Each member brought a purse filled with personal care items to be donated. This year at Christmas Dr. Holden again stepped up for Hope Alliance. She led members in making baskets for Hope Alliance. Baskets were filled with either family sized personal care items or items needed for those women and children displaced by violence. A conservative estimate of worth of the baskets is $400.

Dr. Holden has enthusiastically led all club meetings this year and participated fully in all activities. Dr. Holden has attended the Spring, Summer and Fall TFWC workshops and conventions. She did miss the September Austin meeting because her neighborhood was flooded and she stayed at home to provide food and refuge to neighbors. Dr. Holden is the current Capitol District Chairwoman for Dollars for Delegates.

In the community Dr. Holden has been very busy. She has mentored students for several years. She is a Certified Positive Alliance Coach. She has been involved in academic coaching with all "her" students winning medals. She has helped with fundraisers for The Georgetown Project, Advocacy House for Children, The Caring Place and Hope Alliance of Williamson County. She has been an integral part of golf tournaments that have raised thousands of dollars for cancer research through her local Berry Creek Country Club. She was also part of a tournament that raised money for the casting of a bronze statue of Nathan Chapman, the first American soldier who was killed in Afghanistan. Finally, Dr. Holden holds a PH.D in Education Administration from UT Austin and has a lengthy resume of educational leadership and experience.

Every club, every community needs a Dr. Holden. Our club has been enriched in so many ways by Dr. Holden. She is truly a leader, an organizer and a visionary. She is very deserving of the honor of Outstanding Club Woman/Volunteer of the Year.

Jean Holden receiving Outstanding Clubwoman Award.

From left to right: GFWC President Carlene Garner, TFWC President Dorothy Roberts, Outstanding Clubwoman Volunteer Dr. Jean Holden, and Chairman of Selection Committee Sharon Faltisek

Women At Work

Looking for new members, the San Gabriel Woman's Club has an aggressive plan to grow while still offering community support.

When the San Gabriel Woman's Club (SGWC) invited Jean Holden to join its ranks 23 years ago, she knew the organization was something special, but she still had a lot of questions. "When you volunteer your time, you want to know that you're really doing something - that you're not just having a social tea once a month and that you are really helping to improve the community and help people," Jean says.

Now SGWC president, and with years of experience as a member and former officer, Jean has seen the club's peaks and valleys. Right now, she says SGWC is in "full-court press." Over the next two years, Jean will push for growth in the club's outreach and membership, while keeping its fundraising operations going strong - particularly the elaborate annual Fat Tuesday event.

The club is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization chartered by the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs in 1974, and it supports the community through volunteer work and donations to local charities. Membership has traditionally been by invitation only; however, the local club welcomes anyone who would like to join. Women interested in being a member of the SGWC should contact the organization. They welcome community members who have a desire to help in their projects. "We don't want the title of 'elitist' or 'private club' because what we do is not private," Jean says. "What we do is for the whole community."

Self-sufficiency is the key to building the club's programs, Jean explains. And to that end, SGWC recently achieved two major goals: launching its first website,, and approving an operating budget.

The programs themselves will remain as important as ever, and SGWC wants its fundraisers to be even bigger. This year's Fourth Annual Fat Tuesday "games day" luncheon will take place March 8 at the San Gabriel Park Community Center. Guests can play duplicate bridge, party bridge, dominoes, Scrabble, and Mexican Train. Alternatively, they can bring their own players and a game of their own, and SGWC will provide a table. A $ 15 ticket includes continental breakfast, games, and a gourmet lunch. A $ 10 ticket buys admission to the games with lunch. Guests must buy their tickets in advance

San Gabriel Woman's Club members decide which charities and projects that the organization will help each year. This year, it will allocate most of the Fat Tuesday funds to its scholarship program, which awards one scholarship each year to a graduating, college-bound high school senior. Local charities such as Caring Place, Hope Alliance, Faith in Action, and Georgetown Project will receive any remaining funds.

But Fat Tuesday isn't the beginning and end of SGWC's philanthropy. The club encourages members and the community to donate materials that will come in handy soon for its summer sewing circle. In the past, the ladies have made breast pillows, lap robes, and wheelchair covers for the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, and purses filled with personal items for battered women at Hope Alliance.

Fat Tuesday 2011 Review

5th Annual Fat Tuesday Games Day Luncheon is Tuesday, February 21, 2012

A Historical Adventure of Federated Women's Clubs

Jean Holden
This is a personal adventure, and it covers my research into Federated Women's Clubs. As a newbie in 1988 to the San Gabriel Woman's Club in Georgetown, I was inducted into the club with great pomp and circumstance . I didn't have a clue what a Federated Women's Club was, but I was duly impressed with the importance attached to the association of our local club to the Texas Federation of Women's Club and the General Federation of Women's Clubs. It took me several years to discern exactly where we were in the connective process. We were not just a little social club in Georgetown, we were part of a state, national and international charity service organization that had been working since the late 1800's to promote the social, political and health issues of women and children all over the world. What a great feeling of pride to know that I was a part of a much larger organization that was working with businesses and governments to help promote women's rights and the education of children.

At this point, it is a must that I include my club mentors. San Gabriel Woman's Club members who have helped guide me on my journey. Tomi Spence, a gracious, kind and patient member, helped guide me through my first presidency and my first year of report writing. Bev Gerding who introduced me to the bigger circle of being a club member, and the responsibilities of our club as they related to the issues being pursued by the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs and the General Federation of Women's Clubs. At this point, I was staggered under the weight of the responsibility of being a productive club member. However, a bright, vivacious president, Mary Denham, took my hand and guided me though the maze of matching local club responsibilities with our TFWC and GFWC commitments.

The absolute highlight of my club adventure was our Club's trip to the newly refurbished State Headquarters of the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs in Austin. Even though, I had been a club member for 23 years, I had never visited the State Headquarters Building of TFWC. The San Gabriel Woman's Club of Georgetown made a very big deal of the visit to our historical site in Austin. We had planned to have a special docent, but in her absence, our own, Bev Gerding,gave us an informative tour, and she was the best knowledgeable docent ever. After the tour of the grand old building, we enjoyed a catered lunch in the garden area of the facility. It was a charmed day, beautiful weather and additional comments from the facility manager, Bob Brown.

As we moved from room to room of the TFWC historical building, we were in awe of those who made our home in Austin possible. Clara Driscoll, a great Texan, philanthropist, and patriot whose monetary gift to the TFWC allowed all of our Texas club members to have a Headquarters Building that we could call our own. Thank you Clara Driscoll. As we all know, there are contributors, and there are those who pave the way for contributions. From 1925-27, Mrs. J. U. Fields from West Texas was that individual.

Our State Headquarters of the TFWC was set in process on March 19, 1931 with the purchase of the lot on 2312 San Gabriel for $12,000. On November 7, 1932, the first shovel of dirt was lifted, and on January 11, 1933 the cornerstone was laid. Our beautiful TFWC home is the only State Club House ever built by a state federation. Needless to say my historical adventure was one of success and pride. It is my hope that the details of my exciting adventure will be of help and inspiration to members of all Federated Women's Clubs in America. We are doing good work which benefits women's rights and the needs of children.

On November 11, 2010, fourteen members of the San Gabriel Woman's Club of Georgetown traveled by car to Austin, Texas for a visit to the State Headquarters Building of the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs. It was most rewarding to visit our Texas heritage which is still a vital part of our everyday lives in the pursuit of excellence for women and children.

For more information about the San Gabriel Woman's Club of Georgetown, please Contact Jean Houck 869-1786.

San Gabriel Woman's Club Members on the steps of the Texas Federated Women's Club Mansion in Austin.

San Gabriel Woman's Club Members on the steps of the Texas Federated Women's Club Mansion in Austin.

Top row: Nancy Snead, Aline Kidwell, Jean Houck;

Bottom row: Laura Sue Smith, Ethel Barnes, Bonnie Haynes, Jean Holden and Mary Hoverson