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About Us – President’s Message

About Us – President’s Message

A Message From the 104th JLC President Melissa White

June 2020

League Members,

I am honored to step into the role of President of the Junior League of Chattanooga for 2020-2021.  I am humbled to stand on the shoulders of women-giants who have come before me, blazing the trail and leading the way.

Through Junior League of Chattanooga, I find myself surrounded by women who inspire me and spur me on during times of challenge and conflict.  The last few months, the 2019-2020 Executive Board leaned in together, rose to the occasion to quickly support the health and safety of our members and community, made difficult but necessary decisions, and pivoted the League to a new model of engagement.  Our membership may not have been able to meet in person or host all our usual spring events, but what we have accomplished in our times of inward reflection will shape us and propel us to be the leaders our Chattanooga community needs.

During a global pandemic, the League prioritized the wellness and safety of our members, grew our skills as we learned video conferencing tips and how to engage others meaningfully through alternate means, connected with each other through various virtual events to break us out of our “quarantine routine”, and supported our local business community and first responders through a new-member-led 5k-turned-virtual fundraiser.  When a natural disaster and destruction came to many homes and businesses in the area, we supported our members, helped in community clean-up efforts, donated blood, and sewed and donated face masks.  As civil unrest and human rights injustices come to the forefront of our attention, members and leaders are leaning in together to have uncomfortable conversations, reading, listening and learning together, evaluating and improving upon and growing our commitment to our diversity and inclusion values, and identifying ways we can support and advocate for members of our community.

Through these unprecedented times, I have seen amazing qualities emerge and shine within our leaders and our members:  determination and determinedness, will power, tenacity, optimism, creativity, idealism with realism, passion, eagerness, fortitude, vision, stability and strength, ownership and accountability, sustainability, perseverance, and courage.  Junior League of Chattanooga may be a small League, but she is mighty!  Junior League of Chattanooga remains steadfast in our commitments to our member’s leadership development and to our community’s needs and will continue to press forward with meaningful and relevant programs and initiatives to not only improve lives but change the way people think.

My challenge to each League Member, active and sustainer, is the same mantra I strive to live each day:  if you don’t do it, who will? And if not now, when?  Join me on this journey, Members.  #WeGotThis

Best,

Melissa Harrington White
President, Junior League of Chattanooga
2020-2021

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