Kansas State Council Presidents 1959 - 1970
Mildred Foley 1959-1960
In answer to your request for some of my memories of ESA as Past President, I am happy to oblige. As I look over my scrapbook and remember what a wonderful year I had I almost feel sad, because the years I was active in ESA were probably the happiest. An my biggest regret was when our chapter Delta Sigma, disbanded. But I will have my memories.
I was installed as State President April 12, 1959, at the Broadview Hotel in Wichita, Kansas. It was a wonderful year. We traveled a lot and I met such wonderful sisters of ESA. Lois Mayall was such a good traveling companion and Irene Ramsey was always there for me when I needed advice. One of the highlights of the year was attending the IC Convention in Portland, Oregon. To you who attended – do you by chance remember the big fresh salmon cooked over the hot coals? Oh, it was so good. Of course, Beryle Elliott was our Kansas candidate for office.
The 17th annual Kansas State Convention was held in Salina, April 22, 23 and 24, 1960, at the Lamar Hotel. Nathalie Harvey, Pauline Cowger and Jo Roquet were convention chairmen. Oh, what a great convention they planned. The attendance was good for those days, 350 members and 64 chapters were represented. Martin Palmer of the Institute of Logopedics was the featured speaker for the Saturday luncheon.
I have given you a few highlights from my year, and I realize there were many more things I could have written, but I want to close with a poem I used at the end of my report back in 1960.
"It has been my joy this year to find
at every turning of the road
the strong arm of a comrade kind
to help me onward with my load.
And, since I have no gold to give
and love alone must make amends,
my only prayer is, while I live,
God, make me worthy of my Friends."
"The Praying Hands"
Lois Mayall 1960-1961
Betty Guthrie 1961-1962
"A Better World Begins With Me"
In thinking back to my term as State President in 1962-63, two of the most outstanding events happened before that year. In 1960, I was elected Treasurer and after all the dues were received and membership cards mailed, the 2nd Vice President resigned and I moved up to fill that office in the early winter of 1961. Since most of the contributions to the Institute come in at the end of the year, it was a busy year for sure and most of my time was spent at the bank or the typewriter.
One of my chapter members had a daughter who was cerebral palsied and in an effort to raise money to help her go to the Institute of Logopedics, the Sweet Adeline Chapter, of which I was a member, put on a benefit show and the men's Cavalier Quartet were our guest performers. I had invited Charles Wurth from the Institute to be our guest and he and the quartet were dinner guests in our home. The Cavaliers were from Wichita so, of course, knew of the Institute but Mr. Wurth was not familiar with Barbershop Music and learned to love it that evening. Some months later, the "Society for the Preservation of Barbershop Quartet Singing in America" chose the Institute of Logopedics to be their national project. Over the last 27 years or so, they have raised many thousands of dollars for the Institute. We hope in some small way, our dinner conversation helped to promote that idea with Mr. Wurth.
The theme for my year as State President was "A Better World Begins With Me" a statement I still believe as we each have opportunities to help make better the lives of those around us. Two new chapters were formed that year, and we had 1,816 members in 105 chapters. I represented Kansas at the International Convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Our state convention was held at the Jayhawk Hotel in Topeka. We were honored to have as special guests E. Robert Palmer, President of ESA Service Corporation: Myre Start, Ponca City, Oklahoma, Past IC President who was serving as an IC Director as was Beryle Elliott of Topeka, Beta Zeta Chapter, which has been my chapter since 1970. Lawrence was our home at the time of my presidency. Charles Wurth of the Institute was one of the speakers. The institute has always been very special to me and I'm so glad we are still supporting it so successfully.
Lifelong friends were made in those years and one of the special ones was Betty Guthrie who preceded me as President. As she turned the gavel over to me, she said "It is better to be a 'has been' than a never been at all". I've thought of that over the years as I've taken on new challenges. I'm happy to be a "has been" among the past Kansas State Presidents.
POSTNOTE: Louise passed away in June 2013 in Topeka, Kansas at the age of 91.
Bonnie Gunter 1963-1964
Velma Harness 1964-1965
Dee Quade 1965-1966
I have many great memories of my 40 + years in E.S.A. I have been a member of the Alpha Beta Chapter #140 for the entire time.
Being installed at State Convention in Liberal – was a little to the west – while I presided at the convention at the Baker Hotel in Hutchinson, with my Zone 7 Sisters as Hostesses in 1965-66.
My theme "Sea of Service" was used for many meetings and functions during the year. It was all fun. I attended a meeting in each zone and many special activities were enjoyed. The members used really clever ideas for themes such as fish, net, shells – you name it and the ships came in.
My Chapter supported me all through my years on the State Board by using the "Bee for Dee" theme. We used bees on everything from dresses – hats – tote bags and give away items. The chapter found it to be fun to be involved in such a way.
During my term and with the suggestion of the Institute of Logopedics, the E.S.A. Fund (Emergency Service Action Fund) was started. This was a good beginning for ESA and the children.
There were many other rewarding activities during my term but it takes all ESA Sisters working together to make it work – and it did.
POWER OF THE DREAM
“Our ESA lives in America”
History of ESA and ESA in Kansas
The great ladies that will lead the Kansas State Council in the 1960s are Lois Mayall, Betty Guthrie, Louise Woods, Bonnie Gunter, Velma Harness, Dee Quade, Katy Mills, Kathleen Lutz, and Gladys shook.
It was really cool in these days to let a cigarette dangle from your lip when a committee of experts appointed by the American Heart Association links smoking to cancer. You had to wait at the gas pumps for someone to gas up your car. And boxing was a real sport without ear biting.
The first IC Flag ceremony to open an IC convention was held and began a rich tradition into the 21st century. Other firsts in the 60s included the First Pearl and Pallas Athene awards program and the Diana Award was introduced in 1969 to recognize female humanitarians outside the ESA membership. Dr. Jonas Salk was also taken into ESA as an honorary member of ESA for his humanitarian activities in 1969
Disneyland will open in California and Charlton Heston will be our religious teacher showing us what Ben Hur and Moses were like. The “gourmet food revolution” gave us escargot, fondue, and soufflés. Fresh vegetables were limited to lettuce and potatoes with everything else coming from a 303 can.
Kansas kept its interest in International involvement when Irene Ramsey was elected IC President in 1966 - 67. Irene’s involvement with the promotion of the Pallas Athene program was significant.
But most important fashion of the age was the new pointy bras and our 18 inch waist lines were achieve through the miracle of laytext girdles. The most important theory of the day was: Sexual repression meant that J Edgar Hoover couldn’t wear a dress unless he was at home, but we didn’t know that for years.