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About Our Club...
Soroptimist International of Willimantic was chartered March 26, 1966. The territorial limits of our club are the following towns in Connecticut: Willimantic, Windham, Willington, Mansfield, Columbia, Lebanon, Canterbury, Scotland, Hampton, Chaplin, Ashford, Coventry, Andover, Hebron, Eastford, Woodstock, Pomfret and Brooklyn.

Our regular club meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month. Please check the calendar page for meeting locations as some locations have changed. Our monthly meetings usually start with a buffet dinner, a guest speaker and then the business meeting follows. In addition to our regular meetings, members work on various fundraising and service projects through out the year. Members also volunteer to help with other organizations such as the Relay for Life and the Special Olympics Swim Meet to name just a couple. We are a very active (and fun) club in our local community.

Take a look at our new and updated Club Brochure!

Go here to read our Club Guidelines which were adopted on 6/1/16.

Go here to read our Club Bylaws.

      Past Club Presidents:

2020 - 2021 Maryann Gorgone
2020 - 2020 Julie Sweeney
2018 - 2020 Joan Merritt
2017 - 2018 Irene Schein
2016-2017 Christine Warner
2015-2016 Jan Grigas
2013-2015 Mary Webb
2010-2013 Lisa Rose
2008-2010 Joyce Burdick
2007-2008 Sue Noel
2004-2007 Dr. Bernice Szafarek
2002-2004 Patricia Brown
2001-2002 Joan Merritt
1999-2001 Diane Potvin
1998-1999 Barbara Straub
1996-1998 Martha Frappier
1995-1996 Mary Webb
1993-1995 Malvina Mederios
1991-1993 Patricia Gaenzler
1989-1991 Patricia Tokarz
1988-1989 Elna Daniels
1987-1988 Laura Potvin
1986-1987 Gerry Petrus
1984-1986 Marion Schultheiss
1982-1984 Laura Potvin
1981-1982 Gladys Forryan
1979-1980 Betty Mackey
1978-1979 Rose Ferreri
1977-1978 Marge Green
1975-1977 Mary Jezierski
1974-1975 Joyce Sands
1972-1974 Gloria Geno
1971-1972 Lillian Ahern
1970-1971 Margaret Bernard
1969-1970 Alice Jordan
1968-1969 Lorraine Hansen
1966-1968 Terry Case

The following is a brief history of how our club got its start:
(as told by Terry Case, President 1966-1968)

In the fall of 1965, Alice Darling and a small group of women worked together to formulate plans for chartering a Soroptimist Club of Willimantic. We received eighty names, and sent invitations to these business and professional women to meet with us at the Nathan Hale Hotel, for the purpose of establishing an affiliated branch of Soroptimist International of the Americas in Willimantic. Two such meetings were held with Alice Darling explaining the aims and objectives of the Soroptimist Clubs.

By the January 28th organizational meeting, we had 22 eligible women. Eighteen were required to charter. The nominating committee appointed by Terry Case, temporary Chairs were: Marjorie Thompson, Laurie Hauschild and Gladys Perfetto.

At the February meeting, the following slate of officers were presented for the ensuing year: President, Terry Case; Vice-President, Joyce Sands; Corresponding Secretary, Janice Clarke; Recording Secretary, Helen Gurnack; Members at Large were Lillian Ahern and M. Phyllis Blair.

Our charter night on March 26th, 1966 was a memorable evening with about eighty people in attendance. All of the New England Regional Board was present with the exception of one. Many of the New England Regional Clubs were represented; and a representative from each of the local men's service organizations. The Mayor and First Selectman were guests and the Rev. L. Linden gave the invocation. Several Lions Clubs members attended and presented us with a floral centerpiece for the head table.

Our New England Regional Governor, Mary K. Connors, presented the President with the Charter. The Hartford Club, our sponsoring club presented us with our President's pin. Lower Connecticut River Valley gave us our Guest Book. The Boston Club presented our scrap Book and the Manchester Club our gavel. The Middletown Club, who worked so diligently with us during the organizing, furnished corsages and flowers for the sub-head tables. We received several monetary gifts, telegrams and congratulatory letters from Federation Officers and governors of other regions.

Our Federation President, Ethel Lord in her congratulatory letter added, "I don't know what your destiny will be, but the only ones among you who will find happiness are those who have sought and found a way to serve." (Dr. Sweitzer)

The Seoul, Korea Club was chartered on this same night and a letter was sent to them from our club expressing success and good wishes in all their future endeavors. A charming letter in return from President-Elect, Mrs. Chinge K. Cook thanking us for "the warmth of fellowship from your kind letter which was very encouraging. Thanks for your good wishes and we look forward to many years of association with your club." We had the pleasure of meeting Mrs. Cook at the Federation Convention in Boston in 1976.

Go here to read our complete club history.  This form is in PDF format. To view and print it, you will need to download the Adobe Acrobat Reader, if you do not already have it installed. Click the graphic below to go to Adobe’s web site for the download...

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