Vignette Club celebrates 60th anniversary

Published 12:36 pm Friday, May 15, 2009

The Vignette Club of Columbiana celebrated its 60th anniversary at the home of Vignette Linda Major May 5.

The club was organized in 1949 by members of its mother club, the Columbiana Culture Club, which will begin its 100th anniversary celebration this Liberty Day. Charter members Sonja Lefkovits and Lucy Turner said the purpose of the new club was to have fun, make new friends and help their community.

Vignette was federated on Jan. 16, 1950 to become a member of the Alabama Federation of Women’s Clubs, which is part of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs –– one of the oldest women’s service organizations in the world –– founded in 1890.

Charter members are familiar names to Columbiana: Turner, Stella Roberts, Wylodine Hill, Myra Falkner, Ginny Fowler, Dottie Lefkovits, Murrel Mullins, Gayle White, Cecile Leonard, Sis Wallace, Hazel McCord, Nell Fulton, Lefkovits, Mary Nell Skelton and Margaret McGhee.

Ginny Fowler was the first president and her daughter–in–law, Rachel Fowler is currently a member. Charter member and past president Wylodine Hill can boast that three generations of her family are in the club. Daughter–in–law Carol Hill is also a member, as is her daughter, Hayden Hill Jefferies.

Each member who has been an active or honorary Vignette for more than 25 years received 25–year GFWC pins at the celebration dinner presented by Vignette President Phyllis French. Active Vignettes receiving pins were Fowler (36 years), Hill (36 years), Major (33 years), Donna Morris (30 years) and Lisa M. Davis (30 years). Honorary members Jan Smith (37 years) and Janice Falkner (30 years), also received the GFWC 25–year pins. Charter member, past president and honorary member, Sonya Lefkovits, was out of town but will eventually be presented her 50–year pin.

Also attending the 60th anniversary were past presidents: Judy Arnold, Fowler, Morris, Darlene Rasco, Janice Gordon, Falkner, Major, Hill, Joy Porter, Laura Tatum, Emily Gravitt, Pam Oliver, Kay Wilson, Ann Sauers, Phoebe Robinson and French.

In the early days, the Vignette Club sponsored the Maid of Cotton Pageant of Shelby County. For the last 25 years, the Vignette Club has produced the Miss Shelly County Scholarship Program and Pageant, affiliated with the Miss Alabama and Miss America Pageants. In 2008 the Vignette Club Scholarship Support Fund Inc. was organized, a non–profit 501 (c) 3 organization whose primary purpose is to provide scholarships to Shelby County citizens. Through the Miss Shelby County Pageant, the Vignettes have given thousands of dollars to Shelby County young women, as well as thousands of dollars back to the community. The mission of the club remains the same as throughout the last 60 years: “Building Friendships to Help Communities.”