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Soroptimist International of Los Angeles

Continuing the Journey

June 2012Vol 3, Issue 10

president ginger 

Dear SILA Family,


The 2011-12 year is now history.  What a year we have had!  When we gathered for our retreat in August 2011, we planned our year's agenda following the program outlined at our International Convention in Canada. The club's proposed activities were divided into Program, Membership, Public Awareness, and Mission Support. Each of our projects was categorized into one of the sections.I must admit that I feared we may have been a bit too ambitious with the number of tasks that we adopted, but I am proud to report that we completed everything we set out to do, including two added activities, the celebration of our

90th Anniversary and a Youth Forum, which fell under a 5th category, Special Projects.


To the officers, directors, and members I owe much gratitude!  You made this a year of accomplishments. You worked hard and now it is time to rest and rejuvenate in preparation for the "real" anniversary year.  Although we've begun our celebration, our actual anniversary date is July 19, 1922, so we get to continue during the next club year (August through December) with a bit more revelry. Hmmm, what can we do next to recognize the achievements of our club?




SPECIAL THANKS TO EACH OF YOU: To Carole, our 1st Vice President, for an outstanding Program year, for organizing and facilitating a most successful Teen Forum, and for serving as my right hand/arm; Pam, our 2nd Vice President, for her ideas that resulted in a very successful Awards Luncheon and for her commitment to our Mission Support; Joyce, our fabulous Secretary,  (click here to read the rest of Ginger's Message)






In This Issue
Installation of New Board
Reading is FUNdamental for SILA members
Identity Fraud Prevention
Appreciative Award Winners
Memorial to Betsy MacCracken
Summer Planning Retreat
Quick Links

2011-2012 Board


President: Ginger Cole
1st VP (Programs): Carole Oglesby
2nd VP (W&M): Pamela Smith
Secretary: Joyce Jacob
Treasurer: Janet Elliott
Directors 2010-11: Karen  Johnson and Dona Lawrie
Directors 2011-13: Barbara Jury and Joan Johnson
Contact Information


For more information about SILA or this Newsletter, please contact:


President Ginger Cole at or 323-276-0766
Editor Janet Elliott at or 310-809-2438; Co-Editor Ann Read at or 626-919-9202

Installation of New Board         


presidentsDon't forget to mark your calendar to attend the installation of SILA's 2012-2013 Board of Directors on Wednesday, June 20, at 6pm and to respond to the Evite sent out by Carole Oglesby on June 5.  The installation will be held at Monterey Hill Restaurant in Monterey Park. If you are interested in attending and did not receive the Evite, please contact Carole by clicking here.


Because President Ginger will be unable to attend on June 20, she passed on her President's Pin to new SILA President Bev Johnson at the Annual Business Meeting on June 6.


The new board will be: President Bev Johnson, 1st VP-Programs Joyce Jacob, 2nd VP-Ways & Means Jessica Washington, Secretary Daphyne Howell, Treasurer Janet Elliott (with Teresa Harvey in training), Director 2012-2014 Diane Vernon, and Director 2011-2013 Joan Johnson.

Reading is FUNdamental for SILA members    


Hollywood Primary 1st GradersThe 1st graders stood on stage each holding a copy of the hardbound book containing the stories they each had written (beginning with "The most important thing about me is....").  They took turns reading their stories and showing the picture each had drawn to illustrate their story. The audience was their classmates who attend Hollywood Primary, a unique charter school for pre-kindergardten through third graders located in Hollywood, and the "Special Friends" of their principal, SILA member, Dona Lawrie.





SILA members at schoolThe Special Friends were SILA members Barbara Jury, Joyce Jacob, Pam Smith, Sheila Tatum and Janet Elliott.


After the stage presentation, each student in the school was able to select a book of their choice from a large table containing new, age-appropriate books.  Thanks to a donation from SILA member Pam, the school was able to provide this event to help build a personal library for children who rarely get to own a book.


Each student was anxious to share his or her new book with their friends and the Soroptimist special guests.


It was hard to tell who had the most fun.






Boy & girl with new books






 Girl with book




Identity Fraud Prevention    

At SILA's program meetings in May, identify security expert Robin Johnson provided important advice about current identify fraud threats. She emphasized that 85% of identity theft are crimes of opportunity, many of which could have been avoided.


In her presentation about check fraud, she pointed out how easy it is for theives to misuse personal checks. One easy way to deter theft is to always use a gel ink pen when writing and signing personal checks. This ink cannot be easily washed from the check stock.


gas pumpAnother crimes of opportunity takes place at the gas pump. Identity thieves can easily implant a small "skimmer" device onto the pumps which can record a person's credit card number and key code. Robin recommends always paying for gas at the counter, not at the pump.



passwordIf a password is needed for the Internet when away from home or work, security experts advise to imbed your password in a line of random numbers and letters in your word processor. From that nonsense line, cut/paste the password into the password space. Internet crooks track the keystrokes typed on a line, not the letters themselves.



Lastly, always completely close down and reopen your internet browser after doing online banking or shopping before going online again. Further advice can be found at the U.S. Department of Justice.

Appreciative Award Winners                 

SILA has received the following notes of heartfelt appreciation from our 2012 award winners. 


andreaFrom Adrienne Meier Graduate Fellowship award winner: (in part)

I am extremely grateful for your financial assistance, as it has made it possible to continue toward my dreams and career goals.  I enjoyed my conversations with you all immensely and look forward to opportunities to see you again! You are a blessing and I will never forget your investment in my education.   


From Heidi DeLeon WOA award winner: (in part)  

heideI was honored and very humbled to be chosen. After spending the day with many of you and meeting so many wonderful people, I knew that I was going to have a group of women who would be in my life forever as encouragement and motivators, which is a priceless gift. This award is one that I know will be available to help other women who, like me, have walked through a struggle and are continuing to move forward. Thanks to SILA for making my day better and creating a space for women to learn and grow.



Loyola Marymount University (LMU) thanked SILA and it's Ruby Award Winner Karen Bass for supporting the Michael & Emilia Wright Memorial Scholarship Fund at LMU. Congressmember Bass directed SILA's monetary award that accompanies the Ruby Award to this Scholarship Fund in honor of her daughter and son-in-law who were tragically killed in a car accident in 2006.


Memorial to Betsy MacCracken                                    

SILA's oldest living member, Dr. Betsy MacCracken, has died at the age of 97 years. Although she had moved to Fresno in 1988, she continued her membership in SILA until her death.


B. MacCrackenDuring World War II, Betsy joined the WAVES and served as a commissioned U.S. Naval Officer. After the war, she practiced medicine, joining the faculty of the Department of Pediatrics at the College of Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons in Los Angeles (which later became the medical school at the University of California at Irvine) and the Pediatrics staff at the LA County Hospital. She earned a Masters in Public Health in 1961 from U.C. Berkeley, joined the LA Board of Public Health, and was named LA County's Epidemiologist in 1969.


After many years of medical service, Betsy returned to Fresno moving into The Terraces of San Joaquin Gardens, where she was an active member of the community serving on committees, arranging special events and engaging in her hobbies, which included photography, knitting and crocheting. Dr. MacCracken also designed and created several needlepoint renderings of Navajo rugs illustrating her love of the southwest and her many trips to Sedona, Arizona.


Betsy was an active member of Soroptimist International of Los Angeles, serving as President in 1955-56 and as chair of several committees. Barbara Jury remembers that Betsy was the 1987-88 Fellowship Honoree and was also a Director for the Foundation, which, at that time, was a separate committee whose mandate was to earn funds to support Soroptimist House through rummage sales and the fashion show as described in our February (2012) newsletter.


"SILA was very important to Aunt Betsy," noted her niece Susan Hancock. "The support for women, particularly those going to college, was one of her priorities, so the establishment of Soroptimist House and the awarding of scholarships were high on her list and one of the things she loved about SILA."

Summer Planning Retreat                                 


retreatAlthough there will be no regular SILA meetings until September, there will be a planning retreat in August when goals for the 2012-2013 year will be discussed. 


At this meeting, committee assignments will also be made. Watch your emails for notice of date and location of this meeting.

Happy Summer


                happy summer