THE HISTORY OF JACK AND JILL OF AMERICA

The late Marion Stubbs Thomas founded Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated, on January 24, 1938, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Twenty mothers came together to discuss creating an organization to provide social, cultural and educational opportunities for youth between the ages of 2 and 19. In 1946, 10 chapters were involved in the national restructuring process. The constitution and bylaws were drawn up, and the organization was incorporated under the laws of the state of Delaware.

 Today, Jack and Jill boasts more than 230 chapters nationwide, representing more than 40,000 family members. Each chapter plans annual programming activities guided under a national theme. Through service projects, Jack and Jill of America creates a medium of contact for children to stimulate their growth and development.

“To us as mothers, [Jack and Jill] has become a means of furthering an inherent and natural desire …to bestow upon our children all the opportunities possible for a normal and graceful approach to a beautiful adulthood.”  – Marion Stubbs Thomas

Windy City Chapter History

This group of mothers gathered at the home of the Mid-Western Regional Director, Sharon Eubanks-Pope, for the purpose of forming an interest group of Jack and Jill of America, Inc.

On June 8, 1997, the mothers selected the name Windy City Guild for the group.  At the next meeting officers were elected:

  • President: Pamela James Ford
  • Vice President: Sheila Wilkinson Sanders
  • Program Director: Denise Gresham-Knox
  • Recording Secretary: Ambra Bryant Beach
  • Corresponding Secretary: Pamela Talbott Creed
  • Treasurer: Michelle Holland Guilliard
  • Financial Secretary: Sheila Taylor Goins
  • Editor-Historian: Roberta Ramey

The Program year kicked off September 1997 with a carnival celebrating Windy City Day.  Some of the activity highlights were high tea at the Drake’s Palm Court, a cultural expedition to ETA Creative Arts Foundation, a ski trip to the Grand Geneva Resort, and a Black Family Day celebration at Navy Pier.

On July 24, 1998, Pamela James Ford, Sheila Wilkinson Sanders, Dracel Stewart-Amos and Paula Thomas presented Windy City Guild at the 33rd Biennial National Convention, where the guild became a Provisional Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc.  From those 26 charter mothers and families, Windy City Chapter boasts a current membership of 76 families.