Greater Grand Rapids Womens History Council
  P.O Box 68874, Grand Rapids, MI 49516-8874                     Phone: 616-574-7307



July 14, 2014

GGRWHC Board of Directors

Falinda Geerling,
Ruth VanStee,
Connie Ingham
Janet Brashler 
Jennifer Bryant 
Jo Ellyn Clarey
Susan Coombes 
Beverly Grant 
Sharon Hanks
Kyle Irwin
Mary Seeger
Ruth Stevens
Jill Straub
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Invitation to the Dedication of the
Helen J. Claytor Sculpture


The Grand Rapids Community Legends Project will unveil the sixth in a series of 12 sculptures 5:15 p.m. Wednesday, July 23. In addition to special guests, the public is invited to this event that honors Helen J. Claytor. Among the special guests will be the founder of the Legends Project, Peter F. Secchia, and the board chairman, Joseph Antenucci Becherer.

The location of the statue will be at the Grand Rapids Community College Bostwick Plaza, which is directly across from Fountain St. Church. Parking will be available on GRCC campus-the Fountain St. entrance of the ramp.

Helen J. Claytor (1907 - 2005) was an educator, civil rights activist, and the first African American president of both the Grand Rapids YWCA and the national YWCA. Ms. Claytor was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In 1943, she moved to Grand Rapids and married Dr. Robert Claytor, a prominent physician and community activist. After serving in various roles at the national YWCA, Ms. Claytor became the first African American president of the local chapter. In 1967, she became the first African American president of the national YWCA. In 1984, Ms. Claytor was inducted into the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame. Coretta Scott King said of her, "She was an eloquent testament to the great things an individual can accomplish."

Helen J. Claytor (1907 - 2005)
For more information about Ms. Claytor's life, click on Biographies at the top of the Homepage, then Seven Women, and then Helen Jackson Claytor. In the near future, look for her oral history that will also be available on our web site.

Support GGRWHC!


We are largely dependent upon member dues and contributions to continue finding and distributing local women's history. If you haven't paid your dues this year, please visit our website to register or renew your membership.

Upcoming Events

Your Story Matters! Celebrate It!

August 26, 2014--Equality Day

Watch for more details on our web site or in future newsletters about the celebration of this date that marks the day on which in 1920 the Nineteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution was certified and became law. Thus, universal franchise to vote was guaranteed in America. This year the Council welcomes you to share your stories about politics and women's rights or about other landmark legislation such as the 1972 passage of the educational amendments to Title IX or the 1972 "displaced homemakers" legislation.    
 Mark your calendars! 
 And be thinking about how your life was impacted by 20th Century groundbreaking laws--the legacy of countless women who struggled for decades to secure the rights that women enjoy today.
Share this information with your friends and family members! 












Join us or Update your Membership!  

Not a current member of GGRWHC?  Register or renew your membership and help offset the expenses associated with annual research and programs. Your membership helps to set the record straight on the women who've made history here in our community.

GGRWHC Board Meetings

Board meetings are held on the first Tuesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. at the Vanderveen Center for the Book at the Grand Rapids Public Library. If you have suggestions for programs, oral histories, or other items, please email us or plan to attend a meeting.



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Please take a moment to forward this message to others you know who may be interested in Women's History.  If you've received this message as a forward, consider joining our mailing list (click on the button in the left column above!) in order to receive future updates about programming.

Thank you for your interest in preserving and celebrating the history of the many phenomonal women who've helped to shape West Michigan!  If you aren't already a member of the Greater Grand Rapids Women's History Council, consider showing your support through annual membership.  Visit our web site for more information and the ability to register using Pay Pal online!

Hats off to the historical women who've shaped West Michigan!