Leading by example: Volunteer makes a difference
Posted: Friday, September 3, 2010 1:00 am |
Updated: 5:15 pm, Thu Sep 2, 2010.
By Lois Szymanski, Neighborhoods correspondent |
As first vice president of the General Federation of Women's Clubs, Westminster resident Barbara (Babs) Condon acts as liaison between the50 state federations and the international organization, assisting in coordinating efforts at the state, national and international levels.GFWC is one of the world's oldest and largest women's volunteer service organizations."I felt extremely blessed in my life and wanted to give something back to my community," Condon said of her involvement with GFWC."I decided to follow in the footsteps of my mom [Barbara C. Peck] by joining the GFWC Junior Woman's Club of Westminster," she said."Not only did I gain the ability to make a difference in many lives of fellow Carroll County citizens, but also found a whole new group of women friends."Condon is a third-generation member of the federation, although she didn't know that until after she had joined. "My sisters and I grew up witha mom who was an active volunteer until she decided to go back to college to obtain her master's degree and become the media specialist forWestminster High School," she said. "Unfortunately, I never knew of my grandmother's involvement until after I had joined the federation,only learning then that she had been president of her local club, the GFWC Amherst, Massachusetts, Woman's Club."During her time with affiliated women's clubs, Condon has worked locally on the Chili Cook-off, the annual Kids Consignment Sale and theSanta workshops at St. Paul's United Church of Christ. She has also helped with Dr. Seuss Day at local elementary schools, as well asmultiple other activities and fundraisers.Condon said she remembers her mom's involvement in the Neighborhood Watch program, "which the Woman's Club of Westminster wasvery instrumental in getting started," she said.Another of her memories is of a multitude of pink signs for a doll show they used to hold to raise funds for scholarships.Condon joined the GFWC Junior Woman's Club of Westminster in 1983 after a teaching career followed by time to raise two sons. She'sserved as the GFWC Maryland director of junior clubs, president of the GFWC Woman's Club of Westminster, GFWC Maryland statepresident, GFWC treasurer on the international level, GFWC recording secretary and GFWC second vice president. She has worked oncountless committees, too."My responsibilities [now] include guiding the 50 state presidents as they serve their memberships," she said of being GFWC first vicepresident for the 2010-2012 administration.GFWC International President Carlene Garner said, "Babs is an exemplary service leader. Her record of community service and internationalperspective provide unique and valuable experience to assist our efforts to lead this organization in its third century of work."Condon's work with the federation has taken her to faraway places. During the 1994-1996 administration, she was appointed to serve aschairwoman for the GFWC Outreach for Children program, where she shared information and ideas for club projects."GFWC has partnered with Operation Smile since the early 1980s," she said. "I applied for and was chosen to go on a mission to thePhilippines to see exactly what this organization does, so that I could share this information with our members."Her position on the team was to help keep the medical records of each child and young adult who applied for an operation to repair a cleftpalate or cleft lip, she said."As the daughter of a veterinarian [Dr. Arthur H. Peck], I had helped with a few surgeries in emergency situations. I found it fascinating towatch the surgeries by the many gifted physicians and plastic surgeons who volunteer their time and talents for Operation Smile."
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9/6/2010Leading by example: Volunteer makes …carrollcountytimes.com/…/article_9dc5…1/2