The Women's Committee of PAFA
The Women's Committee is committed to supporting PAFA in accordance with its mission statement through volunteerism and fundraising.
The Women's Committee shall be consistent with the values of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and shall advance its programs, which are:
- to support the institution through fundraising
- to raise awareness and appreciation of American art
- to promote American artists
The Women's Committee also works to assist the Board of Trustees and the President of the Pennsylvania Academy in the implementation of the Museum and School programs.
Members & Officers
|Dorothy Mather Ix||President|
|Pia Halloran||Co-chair, ASE Preview Party 2024|
|Iris Shea||Co-chair, ASE Preview Party 2024|
|Johanna Chehi||Vice President, Membership|
|Lynn Lehocky||Chair, Travel and Tours and Chair, Nominating|
|Georgie Noll||Chair, Student Liaison|
|Janice Peck||Chair, Student Liaison|
|Katie Rhodes||Chair, Museum Events|
Julie Jensen Bryan
Johanna Sturm Chehi
Marianne N. Dean
Julia B. DeMoss
Bobette Leidner Fisk
Dorothy Mather Ix
Sandra G. Marshall
Ashley Stewardson McGuinness
Maggie Malone Murphy
Sandra L. Nesbitt
Georgiana W. Noll
Carmen Navarro Pelaez
Lauren Peck Rosenau
Donna Marie Salvo
June Marshall Smith
Kathryn Quinn Wright
Diana H. Bittel
Kathleen M. Cannon
Diana Sinkler Claggett
Geraldine Dietz Fox
Laura H. Gardiner
Gale S. Gillespie
Susan Eaton Guill
Penelope M. Hunt
Patricia P. Kermes
Mary MacGregor Mather
Anne E. McCollum
Karyn A. Mullen
Robin H. Windt
History of the Women's Committee
The Women’s Committee was formed April 12, 1950, at the request of then-PAFA President John Frederick Lewis Jr. and Director Joseph T. Fraser Jr.
In its first decade, the activities of the Committee were primarily social, with the goal of improving student life and promoting PAFA. The members held dinner parties and served tea at exhibition openings. Small fundraisers raised money for educational trips and student luncheons. The Committee established a Student Aid Fund in 1956.
In the 1960s, the Women’s Committee began to focus primarily on fundraising. In 1962, the Committee hosted its first Annual Student Exhibition Preview Party, an event that is now in its fifth decade. The purpose of the party was twofold: to raise funds for student scholarships and to encourage the sale of student works.
During the past three decades, the Women’s Committee has been instrumental in raising funds for a variety of needs. In the mid 1970’s, the group assisted PAFA in raising the money needed to restore the Historic Landmark Building. In 1984, the Committee held an auction and gala to celebrate the opening of the Peale House on Chestnut Street.
From 1992 to 2011, the Women’s Committee, then named the Women’s Board, produced USArtists: American Fine Art Show. An exhibition and sale of American art from fine art galleries across the nation, the annual event was a major fundraiser that also served to introduce PAFA to a wide audience of art enthusiasts and collectors. Changing patterns of art collecting and a recession ended USArtists, but not before it had raised over $1.5 million for PAFA.
In 2005, the group established the annual Women’s Board Travel Scholarship, which instantly became one of PAFA’s most coveted awards. The Women’s Committee launched its largest fundraising effort in 2001 with a pledge of $500,000 towards PAFA’s Campus Capital Campaign. The pledge was fulfilled in 2006. Two years later, in 2008, the Women’s Committee made its largest annual gift to PAFA, $350,000.
Currently, the Women’s Committee focuses on enlarging the fundraising and friend-raising capabilities of the Annual Student Exhibition Preview Party in the spring. The Women’s Committee also continues its longtime tradition of hosting the students’ annual holiday luncheon and the parents’ and students’ graduation luncheon.