Membership Corner—The Power of Belief
Starting and keeping a Women’s Fund of Santa Barbara group together may be a challenge for some, but not for Parm Williams. She has done it four times. She says that it is easy when you believe in the Woman’s Fund mission of collective philanthropy and can explain it to possible recruits.
Parm is the mother of the Hope, Friends, Esperanza and D’Penguineer Friends groups. While she handed off the still-successful Hope, Friends and Esperanza groups to other captains, she has continued with D’Penguineers Friends.
How It Started
As a Woman’s Fund researcher, Parm came to appreciate the unique and lasting impact of Dos Pueblos Engineering Academy. She supported a $150,000 Women’s Fund grant—one of the first grants that DPEA received for construction of a new facility. The new building significantly enhanced the curricular opportunities available to students and tripled the number of students that could be enrolled in the Academy. Read how the Academy has inspired many students.
At the dedication in 2009, she noted several women in the crowd and suggested they form a Woman’s Fund group based on their mutual interest in the Academy. They named the group D’Penguineer Friends—the name comes from “D” for Dos Pueblos plus “Penguin” for the robot constructed by students as a project.
Penguineer Friends is an eclectic group, comprised of professionals in education, nonprofits, philanthropy, and business. It includes the mother of Academy founder Amir Abo-Shaeer, Anita Bradford; plus Lynne Abbey, Sue Birch, Karen Burgett, Kathy Burt, Shawn Carey, Lisa Daniels, Norris Goss, Jan Kelleway, Sharon Larson, Sandy Seale, and Rachil Vincent. Initially strangers from varied backgrounds, the women have found friendship and have remained committed to the mission of the Woman’s Fund with Parm at the helm.
The group has one remarkable tradition. Every year, the entire group re-ups their membership in the Women’s Fund in January. This year is no exception—the women have already made their donation for next year’s grants pool even before we’ve voted this year!
It says a lot about the Woman’s Fund and the generous women who make it possible. And it says a lot about the power of friendship.
Welcome New Members!
Please welcome our seven newest Women’s Fund members who also believe in the power of changing lives together: Holly Carmody, Marianne Carter, Kay Crippen, Christin Hunt, Laurie Leis, Holly Minear, and Ginger Woolf.