Smart Shopper featuring the 80th Anniversary Rummage Sale


Check out this Smart Shopper ABC15 spot about the 80th Annual Junior League of Phoenix Rummage Sale happening THIS Saturday, Feb 25th! Sale opens at 8am – the line starts even earlier!

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View here!

80th Annual Junior League of Phoenix Rummage Sale

Saturday, February 25, 2017
8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
AZ State Fairgrounds 

Arizona Exposition & State Fair Exhibit Building
1826 West McDowell Road, Phoenix, AZ 85007



AZ Central Article: Two Phoenix mega sales celebrate long history


Check out this great AZ Central article by Donna Reiner featuring the history of the Junior League of Phoenix Rummage Sale!

Everyone loves a bargain, and those bargains are certainly worth the wait. One year, the eager ladies required a police escort in and out of the sale hall. That may seem strange, but one of these ladies became the proud owner of an Edith Small suit for $2, and it normally sold for $200.

Small’s designs were exquisite and ever-so-popular at the time; it’s no wonder that the Junior League wanted to make sure no fights broke out over this one treasured item.

While many of you may have attended this huge rummage sale over the years, for those who didn’t, try to picture what it must have been like the year a Shetland Pony was being sold as “rummage.” Another year, the sale included a car auction. The eclectic offerings never seem to amaze those regular attendees.


Join us this weekend for the 80th Anniversary Rummage Sale!

Saturday, February 25, 2017
8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
AZ State Fairgrounds 

Arizona Exposition & State Fair Exhibit Building
1826 West McDowell Road, Phoenix, AZ 85007



(Un)-happy Valentine’s Day?

ajli-1What does Valentine’s Day have to do with teen dating violence awareness?

In 2017, more than you might expect.

First, Valentine’s Day falls in February, of course, which is also Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month.

This year, Valentine’s Day has also been designated Wear Orange Day, in which supporters of all ages wear orange – whether clothing, nail polish, ribbons, jewelry or shoes – to demonstrate their support of healthy dating relationships. (This is an offshoot of the “orange” movement, which uses the color orange as a universal symbol of the fight against violence against women and girls.)

And, if that’s not enough, Respect Week takes place during Valentine’s Day week (February 12-18) and provides a framework for young people to continue the fight against dating violence with awareness events and social media.

The sponsor of Wear Orange Day and Respect Week is The nonprofit, which strives to empower youth to prevent and end dating abuse, provides these statistics to demonstrate the seriousness of the problem:

  • Nearly 1.5 million high school students nationwide experience physical abuse from a dating partner in a single year.
  • One in three adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner, a figure that far exceeds rates of other types of youth violence.
  • One in 10 high school students has been purposefully hit, slapped or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend.

(The love is respect initiative is a project of the National Domestic Violence Hotline, which Junior League members MariBen Ramsey and Christine Benero wrote about here in support of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month in 2016.)

Junior Leagues are approaching the problem in a wide range of ways.

The Junior League of Ann Arbor/Parke-Davis Pharmaceutical Research Domestic & Dating Violence Prevention Endowment Fund tackles it directly by providing a sustainable resource for the education and prevention of dating and domestic violence that supports innovative, early intervention and prevention programs.

Strong Girls, Bright Futures, a project of the Junior League of Gwinnett and North Fulton Counties, seeks to make a difference in the lives of girls in the 5th through 8th grades by coaching them on how to make positive choices and think critically.

Positively More, a project of the Junior League of Greenwich, is designed to give pre-teen girls the tools to avoid compromising situations, lessen the consequences of potential conflicts and identify lessons learned by those challenges.

The Junior League of Little Rock’s Families and Community Together (FACT) initiative pairs JLLR mentors with pregnant and parenting female teens to encourage the participants to stay in school, delay future pregnancies and learn positive parenting skills. The League’s Girls Realizing Opportunity Within (GROW) is designed to help adolescent girls establish and improve their self-esteem and self-image in order to develop an inner confidence and to promote positive life choices.

*This article was originally published in connected, an official publication of The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc., and has been reprinted with permission.

Joy Burkhard. Volunteer.

Joy Burkhard. Volunteer.

 It is not unusual in The Junior League for a member to really dig into an assignment and become an expert as well as a catalyst for change in that area of focus.

Consider Joy Burkhard.

Joy is co-founder and Executive Director of 2020 Mom, a national nonprofit dedicated to closing gaps in maternal mental health care through convening, collaborating, advocacy and education. She also is a founder and Chair of the National Coalition for Maternal Mental Health and sits on the California Maternal Quality Care Collaborative Executive Committee and the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology working group on maternal depression.

Because of her incredible commitment to maternal mental health care, she has received the Women’s Health Emerging Leader Award from the U.S. Health and Human Services Agency’s Office of Women’s Health as well as the Volunteer of the Year award from Cigna, her long-time employer, where she is a compliance project manager. Both awards were made in 2016.

Before founding 2020 Mom, Joy had a rich volunteer life with the Junior League of Los Angeles, serving most recently as its representative with the Junior Leagues of California State Public Affairs Committee (Cal-SPAC). She was recognized by JLLA in 2013 with its Founder’s Cup award.  During Joy’s tenure with Cal-SPAC, the group championed legislation which declared May as maternal mental health month in perpetuity.

Joy’s says she was moved to action as a mental health advocate during her little brothers struggle accessing care for his mental health disorder which culminated after his suicide. She also experienced her own  anxiety after the birth of her first child and new other women didn’t have the same support and resources to get through it as she did.  The many heart-wrenching stories of loss, including the story of Jenny Gibbs, the twin of an Olympic athlete who tragically took her baby’s life and then her own, whose story inspired a young junior league member to submit the idea for Cal-SPAC’s legislation.  This coupled with her understanding of the complex health care system, need to understand root causes, and passion for improvement put her on the path to doing more.

“If I hadn’t joined the Junior League I wouldn’t be doing this incredibly rewarding and important work.  I was able to gain skills, knowledge of the problem and the confidence to do more.

My advice for other Junior League members is to look for overlap in your personal, professional and volunteer lives and take advantage of doing something when there is overlap in multiple circles.  Causes need dedicated women like us.”

You can learn more about Joy’s views on what can be done to improve maternal mental health through this YouTube video and these AJLI links (here and here).

*This article was originally published in connected, an official publication of The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc., and has been reprinted with permission.

Can we end domestic violence?

ajli.jpgGiven the fact that October was National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, that’s a good question.

Here’s what we know – 35 years after the first awareness month, domestic violence remains a very serious problem. According to data presented by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, it is prevalent in every community and its effects can cross generations. Among the alarming statistics: in the U.S., an average of 20 people are physically abused by intimate partners each minute (more than 10 million abuse victims annually), and on a typical day, domestic violence hotlines nationwide receive approximately 20,800 calls. Looking at it from an economic perspective, victims of domestic violence lose a total of 8 million days of paid work each year, and the total annual cost of domestic violence exceeds $8.3 million.

Fortunately, this is an issue that many Junior Leagues have taken a firm stand on, including Leagues in Collin County, Miami and Birmingham. But the variety of what the Junior League of Northwest Arkansas has done – and its focus on domestic violence for the entire course of its 17-year existence – is striking. And, in doing so, JLNWA has provided real value to women and children in a state consistently ranked first in the U.S. as the state with the highest number of African American women murdered by a batterer, and with approximately 37,000 reported cases of child abuse and neglect last year alone.

JLNWA provides direct support to its many community partners to provide significant issue-based community impact through its Volunteer Action Committee. The League hosts field trips, graduations and other events at EOA Children’s House, and at Peace at Home Family Shelter, an Easter celebration. Each of these events provides a safe, monitored and fun environment for students, residents and families. JLNWA also provides support to Peace at Home through volunteer days spent on cleaning or other necessary tasks, so that the capacity of the agency can be increased. Additionally, in May of 2016, JLNWA announced a $40,000 donation to Peace at Home, which will fund the gathering and common area centered in the second floor of the newly-expanded shelter.

In addition to work with community partners, the League has a number of projects of its own that focus on awareness of and raising funds for the fight against domestic violence. It has just finished up its second successful Little Black Dress Campaign to raise awareness around the limits domestic violence can have on your resources, your options, and your opportunities for employment. Both League members and individuals outside the League (in increased numbers from last year), wore the same black dress for five consecutive working days. Funds were also raised, with much coming from male donors.

The League’s Purple for a Purpose 5K & Fun Run was held earlier this month. The second annual event was set to raise awareness around the issue of domestic violence in their community. Participants were asked to wear purple, the color of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and run the 3.1 miles to symbolize conquering the struggle. (As an aside, the League eschews the traditional gun start to the race in order to not further traumatize participants who may be survivors of gun violence.)

Several years ago, the League saw an opportunity to help ease the frightening transition hundreds of children in Northwest Arkansas face each year when they are removed from their homes and placed in foster care. League members created the That’s My Bag program to provide displaced children with a backpack filled with clothes, undergarments, socks, pajamas, personal hygiene items, books, toys and other items as needed. That’s My Bag gives these children not only the essentials, but also a piece of comfort in a place that is foreign to them. The bags are packed based on age and sex, i.e. infants, toddler, child (male or female), pre-teen (male or female) and teen (male or female). The number of bags created has increased annually, and it is expected 500-600 will be distributed this year.

That’s not a bad track record for a young Junior League with 300 members.

JLNWA’s other current community partners in domestic violence awareness initiatives include The Children’s Safety Center of Washington County; DHS of Benton, Carroll, Madison, and Washington counties; Northwest Arkansas Women’s Shelter; and Northwest Arkansas Domestic Violence Emergency Services.

*This article was originally published in connected, an official publication of The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc., and has been reprinted with permission.

Nominating Committee Announces President Elect

Wendy Brooks slated for President in 2018-20

The Nominating Committee of The Junior League of Phoenix is pleased to announce they have selected Wendy Brooks as President Elect (PE). She is slated to follow Cathy Comer’s presidency and will begin her tenure in 2018 through 2020.

Ms. Brooks initially joined the JLP in 2003 and completed one active year here. She then transferred to the Junior League of Denver followed by the Junior League of Kansas City before returning to the JLP in December, 2007.

Ms. Brooks’ area of focus was initially membership where she attended the Organizational Development Institute (ODI) track in member retention and was Vice President of Membership, along with various other leadership roles in Provisional, Placement and Nominating. Her recent focus has been on the fundraising side where she was Valley Impact Luncheon Chair and is currently serving as Development Manager.

combo_stacked_centered_webMs. Brooks has two sons, Ethan who is a senior at ASU and Noah who is in 6th grade at Scottsdale Preparatory Academy.  She works in the mortgage industry as a licensed Mortgage Loan Originator.


What is CSE/HT? (Hint: It involves children.)

cseIt’s a handy catchphrase for Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children/Human Trafficking, which the Junior League of Atlanta adopted as a focus area in 2013. JLA offers up these statistics to illustrate why CSE/HT is such an important issue for the League and its members:

Atlanta has the biggest illegal sex economy among eight major American cities, according to a landmark government study of the sex industry.

Nearly 100 girls are sold for sex every night in Atlanta.

Most of Georgia’s trafficking victims are domestic, meaning they are U.S. residents and, frequently, are exploited in or near their own community

The average age at which girls become victims is between 12 and 14. For boys, it’s between 11 and 13.

JLA’s campaign has three clear objectives: to raise awareness about CSE/HT within the metro Atlanta area, to directly assist survivors and those at risk, and to advocate for policy changes at local, state, and federal levels.

A key component of JLA’s strategy on CSE/HT has been working with community partners. A great example is the League’s support of Safe Harbor Yes, a non-partisan campaign focused on passing a constitutional amendment in Georgia. If approved in the November general elections, it will provide a dedicated source of funding for the intensive restorative services needed to help child victims of sex trafficking return to a normal life. In addition to JLA, the campaign’s partners include United Way of Greater Georgia, YWCA of Greater Atlanta, Voices for Georgia’s Children, the International Human Trafficking Institute, Georgia Family Connection Partnership and End Human Trafficking Now.

Another important initiative, announced in February 2016, was a major gift to JLA community partner youthSpark to help fund youthSpark’s new Youth Services Center at the Fulton County Juvenile Court, which will identify and assist exploited youth in the metro Atlanta area while also offering case-managing advocates who mentor youthSpark’s clients and service referrals to credentialed partners.

Earlier, JLA helped launch a billboard outreach campaign to provide CSE/HT victims with the Georgia Care Connection number, a resource line dedicated to helping them. The billboards also served as a way to let the pimps and johns know that the community will not be silent anymore.

But much of the League’s work on CSE/HT has been of the head-down, get-the-job-done variety.

This has involved hosting an education and empowerment workshop for adolescent girls focused on awareness and prevention and holding advocacy breakfasts for business and community leaders to show them the extent of this tragedy and its effects on business and the community. JLA has also assisted survivor organizations by providing volunteers, issuing grants, and hosting drives for items needed by these organizations

In addition, JLA is using its large membership base of dedicated and trained volunteers to build a coalition of community organizations for collaboration and shared resources across the metro Atlanta area while looking for direct service opportunities for JLA members within Atlanta organizations dedicated to ending sexual exploitation.

What JLA has done on CSE/HT shows what a single League can do to coalesce support for an important initiative. An example of what Leagues acting together, as state public action committees, came with NYSPAC’s advocacy focus in 2014 on human trafficking, which led to the passage in 2015 of the  (TVPJA). This legislation – passed in the state’s Assembly and Senate largely as a result of NYSPAC’s support – was designed to close gaps and loopholes in the state’s 2007 Human Trafficking Law and the 2008 Safe Harbor Law that is intended to protect and secure services for sexually exploited youth who are to be treated as child victims within the justice system.

*This article was originally published in connected, an official publication of The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc., and has been reprinted with permission.

Do you know about Erin’s Law?

Erins law.jpgSometimes a good thing can come out of a very bad thing. That is, in many ways, the story behind Erin’s Law.

The bad thing is sexual abuse of a child – first by a neighbor and then by a cousin. The good thing is the fact that the victim – Erin Merryn, now 31 and a mother – not only spoke up, but became the driving force behind a law that has now been passed in 28 states, including Delaware, where Junior League members had a lot to do with its passage there.

erin-merrynErin Merryn is the force behind Erin’s Law. Beginning in 2010, she launched a forceful campaign to pass a sexual abuse curriculum in all 50 states. (The first Erin’s Law was passed in her home state of Illinois.) The law brings changes that are both simple and profound. Simple because it requires that all public schools in each state implement a prevention-oriented, age- appropriate abuse prevention program from pre-K to 12th grade. Profound because no formal school-based, state-wide program existed before the first Erin’s Law passed.

Delaware came to be the 28th state to pass Erin’s Law because Junior League of Wilmington members got behind it…and took their commitment to the State House.

JLW, which has been focusing its community impact efforts on improving the health and well-being of children for more than five years, became involved in the campaign after member Susan Coulby saw Merryn on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and learned that Delaware had not yet adopted Erin’s Law.

On behalf of JLW, member Dionna Sargent coordinated the 10-member Erin’s Law Task Force, a legal process that preceded the introduction of the bill.

State Senator Margaret Rose Henry – a JLW sustaining member – introduced the legislation after the Task Force brought the measure to her attention. The Task Force then continued to advocate for the bill by providing research, raising awareness among community members and child welfare organizations and agencies, including the Beau Biden Foundation; delivering testimony to the Senate Education Committee, to the House Administration Committee and on the Senate floor; and reaching out to individual legislators to request that they vote “yes.” (JLW notes that the passage of Erin’s Law inspired a return to legislative advocacy for the League, which took the lead in the adoption of Delaware’s Foster Care Review Act more than 35 years ago.)

Finally, in August, Delaware Governor Jack Markell joined Senator Henry and other League members for a special signing ceremony at JLW headquarters.

As JLW President Stephanie Graev said, “Passage of Erin’s Law in Delaware shows what the hard work, persistence, determination and teamwork of a group of dedicated women can accomplish.”

We agree.

*This article was originally published in connected, an official publication of The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc., and has been reprinted with permission.

JLP Members are an accomplished group!

Please join us in recognizing and congratulating these Junior League of Phoenix members on their exciting recent accomplishments!

Lara Lennaman., 2016 Legacy Celebration Chair, is the 2016 recipient of the Alumni Merit Award for Saint Louis University’s Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology. The award is bestowed upon a distinguished graduate in recognition of their outstanding achievement, dedication to their profession and commitment to the mission of Saint Louis University, such as civic leadership.
Junior League of Phoenix Members (from left to right) Amanda Lasita, Sara Mayer, Annette Tanori and Dominique Ladomato were selected for this year’s Suns 88 Class. Suns Charities 88, was created in 2012 to offer a platform for energized business professionals across the Phoenix Metroplex to network amongst their peers. This powerful group comprised of 88 professionals, work collectively to give back to our community through the philanthropic power of the Phoenix Suns Charities. The combined efforts of Suns Charities 88’s members creates a forum for networking, personal & professional development, philanthropic and fundraising opportunities that simultaneously creates a community minded, connected workforce across the Valley.
Junior League of Phoenix member Dimple Patel was selected for the newest addition to Valley Leadership’s multigenerational program offerings. Valley Leadership Advance (VLA), is designed for high potential leaders, either new to Arizona or new to civic engagement. The highly-interactive curriculum is focused on three core elements: community orientation, tactical leadership skills development, and connecting and retaining Arizona’s top talent. The program consists of six powerful, compact sessions, a retreat, community service project, and connection to Arizona’s top talent.

Please share your member updates and news with us at, so we can recognize all of the amazing things things Junior League of Phoenix members do to impact the world!

Cinderella Affair In the News

cinderella affair

The Scottsdale Independent recently featured one of Junior League of Phoenix‘s very favorite Community Impact partnerships, The Cinderella Affair by the East Valley Women’s League.  The Cinderella Affair provides high school junior and seniors new and gently-used formal wear absolutely FREE, helping make prom an affordable and memorable event! For the full article, click here.

The JLP is proud to help support this worthwhile cause, now in its 15th year!