Sensible Living for a Lifetime . . .
The Sensible Women Concept was conceived in 1995 by Dr. Lovely A. Thornton. The example, love, encouragement, humility, kindness, tenacity, and wisdom of Dr. Thornton’s mother (the late Mrs. Margaret Felder McClary) inspired her to write the poem, “A Sensible Woman.” This poem epitomizes Mrs. McClary’s spirit and ability to transform and transcend affective capacity to others. The Sensible Women Initiative will encourage women to embrace their God-given responsibilities and to emulate the example set by the late Margaret Felder McClary. Despite setbacks, disappointments, and hardships, Mrs. McClary believed that God has provided women a level playing field with a sure path to victory.
During the 2012 year, the Sensible Women Initiative held a formal interest banquet in Cromwell, Connecticut. It was attended by over a hundred women and young ladies. During this time, SWI developed in several significant ways: Its membership expanded; it successfully become a non-profit, faith-based corporation; and it began the process of becoming a 501 (c) (3) federal tax-exempt organization.
The SWI held its 1st Annual Sensible Women Initiative Board of Directors/Advisors Meeting in Chicago, Illinois on June 14-16, 2013. The Chicago meeting was slated to further document the existence of the Sensible Women Initiative, Inc., formalize its organizational structure, cement its programmatic focus, and bring together a group of likeminded women from all over the United States who believe that “sensibleness is capable of squeezing the air out of non-sense!”
During the 2014 year, the SWI secured its trademark logo, completed and filed it application for gaining its 501 (c) (3) – federal tax-exempt status, and begun the formation of its first chapter (Alpha Chapter) in Rochester, New York. It also continued its work in developing the SWI Curriculum; reviewed its constitution; further defined the responsibilities and services of its officers, directors, and committees; completed the SWI Standards and Procedures Manual; and updated its website. In addition, the SWI brought on board several well-qualified directors who have expressed a willingness to join the organization in working with dedication, cooperation, professionalism, perseverance, and patience.
Over the years, SWI continued its development and held its 7th Annual Conference on July 12-14, 2019, in Savannah, Georgia. Mary McNeil, SWI Chaplain/2nd Vice President and her daughter, SWI Director Danyel Hall, gave SWI a hearty welcome to Savannah and served as the hostesses for conference. Zandra Young, former United States Army Combat Medic now SWI Director, was our keynote speaker. To say the least, she did an outstanding job! Director Young challenged us to stay the course and continue to assist young ladies in becoming a catalyst for social change. Also, during this conference, Dr. Wiletha Williams, a champion of natural scientific living, introduced SWI to Seven Health Destroyers, Seven Pillars of Health, Support for Common Challenges, along with other holistic approaches to wellness.
In addition to hosting our workshops and Wind Beneath My Wings Banquet, SWI presented over $25,000 in scholarships. SWI’s Butterfly Inductee, Maya Henry, received SWI’s $20,000 Presidential Scholarship. We were also honored to provide roundtrip airfare and hotel accommodations for attending Beta Chapter members – among which were three new inductees. Every year, SWI is becoming stronger and its vision clearer. We were elated to add seventeen new directors to our membership roster in 2019.