Russellville member named among finalists for GFWC Jennie Award

The General Federation of Women’s Club, International (GFWC) is one of the world’s largest and oldest nonpartisan, nondenominational, women’s volunteer service organizations. It is dedicated to community improvement via enhancing the lives of others through service.

The GFWC Jennie Award is the only national honor bestowed by GFWC that recognizes individual members for personal excellence. Members are nominated by their local clubs to compete at state, regional and national levels for the Federation’s highest honor – the Jennie Award, named in honor of GFWC’s founder, Jane Cunningham Croly, who wrote for national newspapers under the pseudonym “Jennie June.”

As stated in the GFWC manual, the award is “an occasion to highlight extraordinary clubwomen who epitomize a spirit of independence, courage and persistence through their roles as volunteers with their club, representatives of their community and as members of a family or extended family.” The GFWC Jennie Award is the only national honor that recognizes individual members for personal excellence.

The GFWC Book Lovers Study Club recommended Susie Hovater Malone as the club’s Jennie Award nominee for Alabama. At the 2023 annual AFWC Convention, Malone won the Alabama Jennie Award which qualified her for the GFWC Southern Region. In October, she along with other Southern region nominees competed. She represented Alabama, and Peggy Wilson represented Georgia. They were the two nominees selected from the Southern region to participate among the 16 finalists. The sixteen finalists were featured in the 2024 Spring GFWC Clubwoman magazine.

The judging of the top eight finalists was done by three independent judges who have no director connection with GFWC.  According to Theresa Rudder, GFWC Jennie Award chairman, all three judges were “very impressed” with the accomplishments of all of the nominees, and they indicated that it was “very difficult to select one winner from each region.”

Debra Strahanoski, GFWC international president, in Washington, DC, recently called Malone to inform her that she had been selected as one of the eight finalists for the GFWC Jennie Award.  All eight national GFWC Jennie Award honorees will be awarded roundtrip transportation to attend the GFWC Convention in Chicago, Illinois. Malone will be representing the Southern Region and honored at the “A Night of Hope and Dreams” gala.

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