President’s Corner
Michele Benjamin


DEAR MEMBERS:  I hope your year end was healthy and nourishing in all of the important ways.  Mine certainly was as we were in Palm Springs visiting with family and friends and enjoying long desert walks, starry nights and time away.

A new calendar year is always a time to leap forward, make resolutions and think about what lies ahead.   Our club has some challenges.  We have a solid base of reserves for rainy days, disasters, maintenance projects, etc.   We are also well insured.

What we do not have is adequate cash flow to cover our operating expenses.  Our fiscal advisory will be making recommendations to the executive board in February, and we will vote on their recommendations and share with you, our valued members.  We had 10 years of no dues raises up until last year, and had 3 of our 4 past years (except for last year) posting deficits.   The results are cumulative.  Everything has gone up except our revenues….. our rental income is modest due to restrictions from the city, our art festival numbers have gone down these past few years for a number of reasons which have nothing to do with effort.  Club fundraisers have taken a back seat to our nonprofits  (which feels right) but we do have a Crab Feed coming up that we hope everyone will attend.   We will review some of the results of the survey that Janet Chapman and Isabelle Gillis and our Board put together (with responses from 180 plus of our members) and the results should set the stage for our strategies going forward.   We have an aging population and need re-enforcements.  We have some ideas in place to recruit newer members through parents’ council presentation at Willow Creek and other initiatives that should bear fruit as we move forward.  We will put our arms around these challenges in our true SWC spirit and tackle them.

Nothing personified the spirit and camaraderie of the SWC more than the day of our Holiday Party.   Our beloved Arliss Willis, who had agreed to handle the food for the day had fallen ill.  At 8 AM that morning her other half, Mr. Steve Willis, showed up with list in hand and began doing the things Arliss told him to handle.  Jenny Tomerlin (chair of event) then showed up and began to call in her team to provide support and they rallied… Fay Rudio, Sande McGarry, Janet Chapman, Judith Lambton, Shannon Baker and others and finally after about 6 hours Steve left to check on his wife and a seamless and delicious and amazing holiday party was produced. Everything came together.   You can’t bottle the kind of community spirit that keeps us moving forward together, collaboratively, and with great spirit.

I so look forward to the next six months as your President and wish everyone a most healthy, happy new year.


PROGRAMMATICALLY SPEAKING…… Our December, despite bad weather and rainy days, was filled with community spirit, creativity, well attended events and the clubhouse was used to the max!   Love it!


First of all, our holiday open house brought in three large tubs FILLED TO THE BRIM with toys for needy children…..So proud to have these gifts for our firemen to pick up and share.  VINA DEL PARK was once again decorated for the holidays by the team of the Beers (Don and Gerry), the Gerguses, (Margot and Ray) and our community enhancement chairs, Wera Musaus and Charlotte Mastrangelo.  This team has been beautifying our Sausalito landmark park for decades and more and have such great fun bringing beauty and joy to the centerpiece of our town.   Thank you!

And lastly, in the spirit of giving, Sherrie Faber produced a magnificent event RISING INTERNATIONAL HOLIDAY MARKETPLACE to benefit women living in the most remote and dangerous places in the world.  These women produced handmade crafts for sale to our members at our clubhouse on December 12th.   They talked of their aspirations, and food and libations were enjoyed by all in attendance.   Thank you Sherrie Faber – you lead with your heart!!!

The PLAYERS HOLIDAY show was packed and the audience was delighted at Mike Denney’s creative literary take on various issues and fun.   It was the eve of the storm but no one wanted to miss this annual gift to our community. Thank you Players!!!

Our Broadway baby, Kate Powell, and 65 of our members joined her (some via fancy bus) to SF to see the Tony award winning KINKY BOOTS!!! Most loved it…. Thank you Kate for putting it all together.

A small but dedicated group attended the encore performance of the HARPS OF ORPHEUS.  The clubhouse never looked more lovely, the music of the 13th century put on by the Celtic Harp ensemble was a wonderful way to spend a rainy Sunday afternoon. Thank you Roberta Maloy!

And our kick-off event to the magical month, our Holiday Open House, was a huge success in every way – attendance, clubhouse beauty (Thank you Dana Whitson and Roxanne Sheridan and team), entertainment by the Blenders and the revitalized UKE GROUP (Shannon Baker and team), SANTA’S ARRIVAL (Thank you Jerry Taylor- ho ho ho) and so much more.   Thank you to Jenny and Janet of our executive board and a team of unrivaled volunteers who made our kick off to the holidays so very special.   The spirit of it all continued since Dana Whitson hosted a party at the club for all of the folks that helped her with decor – yum yum! AND, our own Nancy Curran rented the clubhouse for herself and 25 friends for Xmas.   What a setting, what a venue!   Did you know that you two could rent the club at a member’s rate?  If you’re interested contact Susan Cullen, our rental chair at 331-6155.
Onward to a new year!!!!

“Write it on your heart that every day is the best day of the year.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Michele Benjamin


Scholarship Recognition Fund
Kim Huff, Chair
We would like to extend our thanks to all those who have made year-end donations to the SRF in honor of friends and family members.

We are extremely grateful to the Sausalito Art Festival for the generous gift of $5,000 for the all the hard work by our SWC members and friends efforts over the Labor Day weekend at the front gate, led by our tireless leader Sande McGarry.
All of our received donations will be turned into scholarships for grateful students pursuing a higher education in the 2015-2016 academic year.

Our “Celebration Cup” is full of good cheer …
and we wish you a very Happy New Year!



Preservation Society
Cynthia Mason, Chair

Happy New Year!  I hope you all had memorable holidays and are ready for a wonderful new year that is full of health, happiness, and prosperity.   I would like to thank all of you who remembered us in your year-end donations.  The Preservation Society and our beautiful building are very grateful for all you do for us though the year.

With that in mind, Preservation is hosting our annual community event, on Monday, January 26th, which we so fondly call the SWCPS Sherry Hour.  This event, chaired by EV Gilbreath and Susan Gordon, has NO admission fee and is open to everyone… we encourage you to bring family, friends, and neighbors.

Sausalito Woman’s Club is very lucky to welcome renowned architectural historian Laura Ackley who will be very compelling to all of us who feel so strongly about the “preservation” of architectural treasures.

Doors open at 6:30 and we will provide a no-host bar.



Book Club
Susan Watson and Donna Christie Kolkey, Co-Chairs

Join NY Times best-selling author Ayelet Waldman in a lively discussion of her latest novel, LOVE AND TREASURE– in partnership with The Sausalito Library. Open to all!!!  No host bar, light refreshments, discussion and books for sale.

Ayelet Waldman is the author of Red Hook Road and The New York Times bestseller Bad Mother: A Chronicle of Maternal Crimes, Minor Calamities and Occasional Moments of Grace. Her novel Love and Other Impossible Pursuits was adapted into a film called The Other Woman starring Natalie Portman. Her personal essays and profiles of public figures like Hillary Clinton have been published in The New York TimesVogueThe Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal.

She lives in Berkeley with her husband, author Michael Chabon, and their four children.

Doors open at 6:30 pm and the program begins at 7:00 pm.
If you are planning to attend, please contact Susan Watson (331-6810, so that we can plan seating and refreshments.



Co-Chairs: Helen Bennett; Jeni Flynn
San Francisco Chinatown
Thursday, January 29 

Meet at 10:45 am at Sausalito Ferry Join us for lunch in Chinatown and a visit to a temple and a fortune cookie factory.  There will be time for tea tasting and Chinese New Year shopping.

Wear walking shoes and bring money for the ferry and lunch. Co-Chairs:  Helen Bennett; Jeni Flynn, 332-5648



I am continually humbled by the number of women of the club who year after year do important jobsbehind the scenes.  This year I have selected a few of them who I wanted to “shine a light” on in appreciation of their longstanding service in a particular area, to our club.    Diane Hansen was one such member who we honored in October.  Diane handled all of our club mailings for almost a decade and did it competently and quietly.

For the New Year, we’d like SHINING A LIGHT ON……..YVONNE SPENCER , another woman who possesses the “not a problem, my pleasure” spirit that is so appreciated by our membership. Yvonne jumped right into “involvement” as a new member in 1999 and has been a member of the Donations Committee for 10 years. She has served on our Audit committee, coordinated rides to daytime events , a regular “fact checker” for our yearbook, but her true calling has been as our RESERVATIONIST EXTRAORDINAIRE….year after year after year…. Saying yes to all of our big events… She began her continuous role of reservationist for Founders Day in 2006 and has continued in this valuable role today.  It is not easy.   As a former second vice chair, I can assure you that Yvonne is your MOST trusted advisor on set-up, flow, tradition, who sits where, who has special needs, what groups like to be together, and all of the vagaries of handling the requests of hundreds of members all of whom look forward to our March celebration.  Aside from her continuous shepherding us all through the Founders Day event, this year alone she is reservationist for To Broadway with Love, Crab Feed, Low Jinks, Welcome Back Party, Palo Alto Chamber Ensemble, Relive the Alta Mira at the SWC… name a few!  And she does all of her perfect reservationist work the old fashioned way….. pen and paper!




City Council held its last meeting of 2014 to elect officers.  A number of residents spoke in favor of each of the two nominees for mayor: Linda Pfeifer and Tom Theodores.  Theodores has served as vice mayor the past two years.
The vote was split 2/2, and Mayor Ray Withy cast the deciding vote in favor of Theodores who then conducted the election for vice-mayor.

Both Pfeifer & newcomer, Jill Hoffman, were nominated as vice-mayor with Mayor Theodores casting the deciding vote for Hoffman.

Prior to the election, Council distributed funds collected during the holiday season.  Though parking is free, $8000 was raised through the Holiday Parking Donation Fund.

Recipients were Homeward Bound of Marin, Project Warm Wishes, Ritter Center and St. Vincent de Paul Society.  All are Marin County nonprofits.


Linda Daniels, Chair

The following notes were sent in January

Arliss Willis – vertigo
Laurie Wright – hand surgery
Sharon Lambton – stomach issues
Claudia Kennedy – another hip replacement


Corresponding Secretary
Millie Amis, Chair

The following new members were welcomed into the SWC at the December meeting. Please add them to your yearbook:
Siobhan Taylor
210 Third St
Sponsors: Liz O’Keefe, Maureen McCoy, Deb Andelin

Diane Barker  (Morgan) 
195 Woodward Ave
Sponsors: Claudia Kennedy, Susan Cullen, Susan Peterson

Marjorie Thomas   (Craig)   
26 Willow Lane
Sponsors: Jean Patterson, Sande McGarry, Oonagh Kavanagh

Alison Deal   (Brent Kilpatrick)
1001 Bridgeway #404
Cell: 415-990-9090
Sponsors: Noel Norton, Nancy Osborn, Cynnie Anderson

Maria Paterno    (Helger Mishal) 
1 Spencer Court
Sponsors: Bonnie Penprase, Lynn Churchill, Gerry Beers


Donations Committee

This fall, the Donations Committee has largely distributed to homeless individuals, families and safe houses.
Our committee includes Anne Bomford, Margot Gergus, Yvonne Spencer, Nancy Terry and Judy Barber.  We are pleased that Nancy Terry has joined our committee. She has a great deal of experience in the non-profit world.


Notes from Global Marketplace

On Friday December 12th The Sausalito Woman’s Club was open to the public and transformed into a stunning global marketplace. Just in time for holiday gift giving – this event was truly about Sausalito women (and men) empowering women and girls around the world.  Holiday shoppers found unique and meaningful gifts handmade by women living in the most remote and dangerous countries in the world – Countries such as the D.R. Congo where violence against women is used as a war tactic; Afghanistan where learning to read or write could cost a woman her life; Nepal and India where the trafficking of women is at an all-time high, and Cambodia, where many women and girls have lost limbs to landmines.

All of the handmade products featured at this event were made possible by Rising and its women’s economic development programs. Rising International is a non-profit that searches the globe for the world’s most forgotten women, and empowers them to change their destinies through micro-enterprise. In addition, Rising International trains under-employed women in the Bay Area to be social entrepreneurs and run their own Rising International businesses.

Rising International’s Founder and Executive Director, Carmel Jud, was our featured speaker and she shared several stories of the artists who were represented at this marketplace. I asked Carmel to give me specific details of the outcome of our event to share with you, SWC.  This is what she wrote:
– $6,529.00 in global crafts were purchased!
– 3,538 families from some of the world’s most impoverished countries benefited from craft sales.  This translates to a GRAND TOTAL of 17,680 LIVES IMPACTED!!!
– Families from 16 countries including: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, D.R. Congo, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Kenya, Mali, Nepal, South Aftrica, Thailand, Rwanda, Uganda, Zimbabwe, and the United States.
-5 local (from Northern California) Rising Representatives worked the event and split 20% of sales, for each to earn $250 to make their holidays bright.

Thank you to all who came out to make this event so amazing! And a very special thank you to Nancy Osborn and Barbara Nelson who were precious little Christmas elves and wrapped presents!!!


A Note from the Sausalito Library
The Sausalito Library has received grants from the Friends of the Library and the Library Foundation to have the  “Sausalito News” digitized from 1885 through 1957.  It is interesting to see how our town has developed – and how it has remained the same.

My grandfather was born in November 1885 – when he could buy cigars from Dias & Silva on Caledonia Street.

My father was born in June 1905 when an iron stone sewer was being constructed from the corner of Pine and Santa Rosa leading to Richardson Bay.

I was born in November 1935 when the Lions Club held the biggest and best Whist (now bridge) party to benefit Christmas giving – at Central School (now our City Hall).

Find out what was happening in Sausalito at the important events in your life – and at the SWC  – by checking out the Sausalito digitized newspapers on

Myra Berkowitz
Library Trustee

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