Who We Are
Jack and Jill of America, Inc. Suffolk County Chapter
Jack and Jill of America, Inc., is a membership organization of mothers with children ages 2 – 19, dedicated to nurturing future African American leaders by strengthening children through leadership development, volunteer service, philanthropic giving and civic duty.
The late Marion Stubbs Thomas founded Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated, on January 24, 1938, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Twenty mothers came together to discuss creating an organization to provide social, cultural and educational opportunities for youth between the ages of 2 and 19.
Today, Jack and Jill boasts more than 230 chapters nationwide, representing more than 40,000 family members. Each chapter plans annual programming activities guided under a national theme. Through service projects, Jack and Jill of America creates a medium of contact for children to stimulate their growth and development.
“To us as mothers, [Jack and Jill] has become a means of furthering an inherent and natural desire …to bestow upon our children all the opportunities possible for a normal and graceful approach to a beautiful adulthood.” – Marion Stubbs Thomas
The Suffolk County Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. was chartered in July, 1962. Our 16 Charter members are: Kathleen Taylor, Constance Allaway, Olive Baugh, Sarah Berhannan, Julia Higgs, Esther Hayes, Marie Hobbs, Vivian Powell, Delphine Primm, Blanche Robins, Gloria Smith, Helen Washington, Gladys Hayman, Alestine Owens, Marie Hendy and Gloria Bowser.
Chapter programs are primarily centered around leadership development, awareness of cultural heritage and community service. To these ends, Jack and Jill of America, Inc. has established multifaceted initiatives such as STE[A]M (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math), the Healthy Living Initiative (centered on lifestyle improvements and healthy development) and various projects with our national and local partners.
One of the hallmarks of Jack and Jill is its emphasis on youth development through leadership programs. Our Suffolk County Chapter youth participate in various community service projects, oratorical competitions, and literacy projects. Teen leadership development is achieved through the Jacqueline Moore Bowles Leadership Modules, which is comprised of 16 modules providing the necessary skills required to effectively lead in a constantly changing society. Furthermore, all of our youth, ages 2 through 19, participate in food, clothing and school supply drives to benefit the members of our community. Our civic responsibility is demonstrated through our annual awarding of scholarships to deserving high school seniors in Suffolk County. In addition, through our fundraising efforts, we have been fortunate to donate to noteworthy organizations such as the United Negro College Fund, Alex Lemonade, LIFT4KIDS, the Association of Children of Regnier, Haiti and the American Cancer Society.
The Suffolk County Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. is dedicated to developing all children into the leaders of tomorrow, as we work, play and live together.
2018-19 Executive Board
President: Kathryn Simmons
Vice President: Retha Fernandez
Program Director: Candace Cummings
Recording Secretary: Josie Hall
Corresponding Secretary: Stephanie Blackman
Treasurer: Lisa Hutchinson
Financial Secretary: Debbie Mercer-Miller
Editor: Wendy Lattibeaudiere
Parliamentarian: Pleshette Shelton
Chaplain: PIA ALEXANDER-HARRIS
Historian: Yaneris Rosa
Protocol: Jasmin Jones
Foundation Chairman- Marie Desvarieux
Teen Advisors- Sara Griffith
Teen Advisors- Pia Alexander-Harris
Teen Advisors- Mireille Lubin
Teen Advisors- Denise Graham
Age group coordinators: PreK-K Wendy and Melissa G.
Age group coordinators: 1-3 Grade Michelle R. and Selina
Age group coordinators: 4-5 Grade Mecca and Stephanie
Age group coordinators: 6-8 Grade Yaneris and Jacquelyn
Ad-Hoc Committee Chairman:
Audit- Michelle Sparrow
Black History- Yaneris Rosa
Children’s Cluster- Jacquelyn Crawford
Community Service – Tochi Malize and Chemene
Education – Tracy Hudson
Fundraising – Myrtho and Josie
Gavel Club – Mecca Baker
Health – Yvonette Familusi
Hospitality- Linda Frederique
Legislative- Shanequa Levin
Policies & Procedures- Melissa Guillaume
Scholarship- Kimberly Joyner
5 Star/Program Book-Candace Cummnings
Father’s Auxiliary- Sydney Joyner & Donovan Fraser
Jack and Jill Foundation
The mission of the Jack and Jill Foundation is to address issues affecting African American children and families, by investing in programs and services that create a strong foundation for children to thrive long-term.