Meet Our Members – Jennifer, JLP Membership Team Leader

Junior League of Phoenix members are a dedicated and hard-working community of women. We are attorneys, nurses, accountants, caregivers, stay-at-home moms, and more, from a wide variety of backgrounds. But, we all have a passion for community impact, which binds the members of our organization together.  This year on the blog, we will feature interviews to “meet our members”, as a glimpse of our diversity and commitment to the community!

1. Why did you join the League?

Giving back to the community was a value instilled in me growing up and has become an important part of my identity as an adult.  I saw the Junior League as a way to get involved in a broad range of volunteer opportunities and make a broad, positive impact on my community.

2. What makes you excited about the Junior League of Phoenix?
There are so many things that excite me about Junior League of Phoenix.  First and foremost, we offer a variety of ways that volunteers can contribute to the community- be it through teaching nutrition and wellness to children and families through Fresh Express and Kids in the Kitchen, or by teaching teachers about math and science in Rockets.  We have a broad reach in the community and I am very proud of that.
I also get excited about the amazing women I get to work with every day in the League.  Tphoto 2hese are intelligent, driven and committed women who defy the limits on what they have the capacity to do.  These women inspire me to always give my best and do my best in everything I do.
3. What was one of your personal highlights from the 2014-2015 League year (last year)?
I don’t have a single highlight, because overall I had a fantastic year last year.  If I had to pick one thing, I would say that I really enjoyed working with my Membership Team.  We were all new to our roles last year and therefore, “learning together”.  But, this did not curtail my team members’ creativity and determination to make certain they did their best for the broader membership.  I said earlier that League members inspire me- this is an example of where this inspiration occurs.  I am so excited to get to work with this great group of women again this year.
4. What is your favorite JLP event during the year?
I had a blast at The White Party last year-  it was so fun to see all our members laughing and dancing and socializing (I.e. standing in line at the bar together).  We all need to remember to have fun in life- this was an awesome opportunity to do that.  My hats off to Special Events- it was a blast!

5. Which items tempt you most every year at the Rummage Sale?
Purses, jewelry, purses, jewelry, purses, jewelry, books.  🙂

6. What advice do you have for members hoping to form new connections or strengthen emerging friendships within the League?

Get involved!  The League experience is what you make of it- there are so many opportunities to connect with people and build friendships, so go to your committee meetings, attend community events, talk to the ladies in front of and behind you in line at the bar at the General Membership Meeting (GMM).  Introduce yourself to all the ladies at your GMM table.  Being in the League is a commitment, which means right off the bat, you have something very special in common with everyone else in the League.  That makes a foundation for some awesome friendships.

7. What is one passion or hobby you enjoy outside of the League?

I love to cook!  I collect cookbooks (including all three JLP cookbooks).  My husband and I love to invite friends over- there is nothing better to do on a Saturday night than hang out at home with your favorite food, favorite wine and enjoy the company of your favorite people!  I also love to read- I read at least 20 books a year.  It’s a compulsion that I must increase the number of books I read each year, so I keep a detailed journal of everything I read.  I know- NERD ALERT!

8. What is your favorite recipe from the Junior League cookbook?

Asparagus quiche- this was served at my provisional brunch, which I attended with my best friend Pamela Salter.  This is also where we met a women who quickly became one of our other best friends, Gretchen Kinsella.  Such a special food memory!

9. Who is your hero, and why?

I don’t have a single hero, but I aspire to follow the example of people who have overcome tremendous heroes to shape their communities. Obvious examples would be people like Martin Luther King, Abraham Lincoln and Nelson Mandella.  But, I also try to learn from the examples of less notorious people in the community who dedicate every day of their lives to overcoming the obstacles they face.  This could be a child who is struggling to thrive in a low income community, or a women who is overcoming addiction, or a person who has found a path to recovery from a serious mental illness.  These are all unsung heroes to me.