Montgomery County Maryland Chapter
Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated
Jack and Jill of America, Inc. was founded January 24, 1938 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from a meeting of 20 mothers by the leadership of Marion Stubbs Thomas with the idea of bringing together children in a social and cultural environment. In 1964, as more groups became active, bylaws were drawn up and incorporated under the laws of Delaware. The organization was a nonprofit family organization by mothers of children between the ages of 2 and 19 holding membership. Jack & Jill celebrated its 75th Golden Anniversary in January 2013. The organization continues on, dedicating its resources to improving the quality of life, particularly African-American children.

Additional information about the National Organization can be obtained by visiting our National website at

In 1948 the idea of dividing the organization into a regional structure was initially put before the members at the Third Annual meeting of Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated held in Washington, D.C. It was suggested to shorten the travel time to annual meetings, allow more time for discussions on issues by all of the membership prior to attending national meetings and allow the inclusion of children at the meetings.

In 1957, at the Annual Convention held in San Francisco, the Regional Plan was fully adopted. Today there are seven regions which comprise Jack and Jill of America. The Montgomery County Maryland Chapter is part of the Eastern Region.

Jack and Jill of America Eastern Region
Jack and Jill Eastern Region website

Thank you for visiting the website of the Montgomery County Maryland Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc., the oldest and largest African American family organization in the United States. The Chapter was chartered in 1962 by the late Henrietta B. Franklin, a Montgomery County Maryland educator. Over the years, it has become an integral part of the Montgomery County community, exposing children to educational and cultural opportunities, extolling the importance of community service, and helping them develop leadership skills and life-long friendships.

We are a membership organization of mothers with children ages 2 to 19, dedicated to nurturing future Leaders by supporting children through leadership development, volunteer service, philanthropic giving and civic duty. Jack and Jill is divided into more than 230 local chapters within 7 geographical regions in the United States.

Nurturing our Children
We firmly believe that any child, with proper guidance and opportunity, can be a leader. Therefore, our efforts are geared towards developing the next generation of leaders to serve our community on the local, state and national level, professionally, politically, and socially. Our Chapter’s motto is, “It’s All About the Children,” and this pledge permeates our programming. Children, ages 2 to 19, are divided into six groups. Every month, each group meets for social, educational, recreational and community service activities.

Engaging our Mothers
Chapter Mothers meet six times during the program year to conduct chapter business and organize activities for Chapter families and friends, including a Family picnic, an annual Holiday Dinner, and a Black Family Day celebration. In our ongoing efforts to promote literacy in the county, each year we host our Annual Community Spelling Bee in February.

Serving Our Community
When it comes to encouraging our children to volunteer in the community, Chapter Mothers lead by example. We have donated boxes of housewarming gifts to Aunt Hattie’s Place a foster home for boys in Sandy Spring, MD. We have conducted a food drive for the Manna Food Center’s Smart Snacks Program, organized a workshop for middle and high school students on Human Trafficking, and participated in a Poverty Dinner with Habitat for Humanity. The proceeds from our "50th Anniversary Golden Gala State Dinner" fundraising event supported First Book - Montgomery County and the Smithsonian's' National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Legislative Advocacy
We promote legislation that fosters adequate health-care for all children; quality education for children of all socio-economic status; equitable and impartial juvenile justice adjudication; and redressing environmental burdens. Our chapter’s legislative activities have included: visiting elected representatives in Annapolis, MD and Washington, D.C., to advocate for legislation aimed at children’s issues; cosponsoring the Montgomery County Women’s Legislative Day; and organizing meetings with federal and state representatives to expose our children to the legislative process.

Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated is a proud partner with a variety of organizations who play a critical role in helping our organization realize our mission of community service and preparing children to be successful leaders.

One of our partner organizations that we support locally each year is March of Dimes. March of Dimes and Jack and Jill of America, Inc. have worked together since the 1960’s leading to a formal partnership in 2011 that focuses on the March of Dimes mission engagement, and programs that raise awareness and funds to prevent prematurity, especially around health disparities. Together we are ensuring that all babies get a chance for healthy lives. Through March of Dimes service projects, Jack and Jill of America creates a medium of contact for children to stimulate their growth and development.

We also support the Jack and Jill of America Foundation. The Foundation supports programs that not only create opportunities and challenges for children to learn and practice leadership skills, but also build leadership character in youth.

Jack and Jill of America Foundation
Jack and Jill of America Foundation website

Please check the site often to keep up with the activities of the Montgomery County Maryland Chapter, part of the Mighty Eastern Region!


Becoming a Member
By uniting individual members efforts, Jack and Jill of America, Inc. has built a strong, cohesive organization that positively impacts the lives of children, families and communities. Jack and Jill success is based on the depth of commitment, vision and confidence of its members.

We are a membership organization of mothers with children ages 2 to 19, dedicated to nurturing future Leaders by supporting children through leadership development, volunteer service, philanthropic giving and civic duty. Jack and Jill is consist if more than 230 local chapters within 7 geographical regions in the United States.

If you are interested in becoming a member of the Montgomery County, MD chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc., you must be sponsored by a member(s) of the chapter. You will be invited to attend a meeting where pertinent information, such as the qualifications, cost, selection process, and other information will be discussed.

An individual meeting all requirements and qualifications must then be approved by chapter vote to complete the selection process. Each chapter is autonomous and has specific criteria for sponsoring new members.

If you are a child or the spouse of a child whose mother graduated from a chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. in good standing and you meet the other criteria for membership, you are eligible for membership as a Legacy Member. Legacy forms can be obtained from our National Office.

For Membership Inquiries

Thank you again for your interest in Jack and Jill of America, Inc.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday/Jack and Jill Day of Service
January 17, 2022
Ski and Swim Weekend
February 2022
Contact for more information
11th Annual Community Spelling Bee and Benjamin E. Mays Oratorical Competition
February 2022
Contact for more information
7th Biennial Cotillion Beautillion
May 2022
Contact for more information
Check back soon for more event details
Montgomery County Maryland Chapter Executive Board

Kiki Alexander

Sherri Sampson
Vice President and Membership Chair

Tameka Montgomery
Program Director

Ayo Atterberry
Recording Secretary

Jeanine Grain
Corresponding Secretary

Mignon McLemore
Financial Secretary

Celia Washington

Holli Townsend

Donne Settles Allen

Lena Grimes

Tamika Bennett Watt

Angela Riemer
Foundation Chair

Lynn Moore-Hill
Associates’ Chair

Abena Lewis-Mhoon

Yaminah Leggett-Wells
Immediate Past President

Montgomery Maryland Chapter History
Separate drinking fountains for Whites and Blacks. “Colored” balconies in movie theaters. Seats in the back of the bus. Soldiers called out to protect little children trying to go to school. It’s hard to believe these were examples of conditions in America less than 40 years ago. In 1960 when Henrietta Franklin came up with the idea to form a chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. in Montgomery County the area looked a lot different. Back then, Blacks accounted for 5 percent of the county’s population of 341,000 (today African Americans make up 15 percent of the county’s population).

The county’s African American Mothers, including Mrs. Franklin, were caught up in events happening across the country. That year, four Black college students began sit-ins at lunch counter of a Greensboro, N.C., restaurant where Black patrons are not served. Congress approved a watered-down voting rights act after a filibuster by Southern senators. The Freedom Rides, from Washington to Southern states, began.

Foremost on their minds, however, was the well-being of their children. Times were changing, but in the early 1960s, African Americans in the county were still barred from social and cultural activities that integrated them with whites. It would be another three years before the Maryland legislature passed an open accommodations law. And even then, change was slow to come.

But Mrs. Franklin wanted her children to have cultural opportunities, develop leadership skills, and form social networks even in the midst of segregation. In the late winter of 1960, she called Carolyn French, President of the Washington, D. C. chapter, to ask how to make application to start a Montgomery County Chapter of Jack and Jill. In April 1960, Mrs. Franklin wrote to Ruth B. Howard of San Francisco, National President, who answered promptly, stating, “If you can readily get together 15 mothers who are congenial and who have the same aims for their children, you should write at once to Mrs. Osbeth Adams of Chicago, National Vice President in charge of forms and information.”

Mrs. Franklin then told the five other wives in a small couples club, which she had started previously, that she was interested in establishing a Montgomery County Chapter of Jack and Jill. She asked whether they would join; they said they probably would, and told her to go ahead with her plans. In May, Mrs. Franklin sent a letter to Osbeth Adams, the National Vice-President, asking for forms. By then, the Washington chapter had agreed to sponsor our chapter, following our organizer's request through Carolyn French, its president.

Thirteen mothers met at Mrs. Franklin’s home, with Carolyn French and Juanita Fletcher of D.C., for orientation of the group.

In June, with no reply from Mrs. Adams, and with the 1960 National Convention only two weeks away, Mrs. Franklin wrote again to Dr. Howard and again to Mrs. Adams, since no provisional charter from the 1960 convention would mean a wait of another two years! While waiting for answers, she sent out SOS's through other friends in D.C., and suddenly had, through Ruth B. Spencer, the cooperation of Burma Whitted, National Program Director, who agreed to take a petition from Montgomery County, in lieu of forms, to the National Executive Committee which would meet just before the convention.

Mrs. Franklin quickly prepared a petition, hand-delivered copies for signatures, gathered bits of necessary information on all families, and delivered the packet to Mrs. Whitted as she headed for the airport. Montgomery County was granted provisional status at that 1960 convention and permanent status in 1962.

For the two-year provisional period our group was called “The Children’s Hour.” Mrs. Franklin was a staunch advocate of literacy. Each time the children met, they would start by reading a story. Mrs. Franklin chaired the group during its first two years and was re-elected President for the first two years after chartering - a truly challenging four-year task.

Installation took place at Mrs. Franklin’s home in October 1962, with Eastern Regional Director, ViCurtis Hinton as installing officer and Burma Whitted, Carolyn French and Juanita Fletcher standing close by as proud, honored guests. Our thanks for encouragement and assistance went not only to them but also to the Washington chapter, our official sponsors, whose guidance and encouragement continued for many years as we worked with a small and fluctuating membership. Our thanks went also to friends of the organizer from the J&J chapter in Baltimore, her hometown, who also had assisted her.

In 1964, the Montgomery County Maryland Chapter initiated six additional families. Tremendous credit for building the flourishing chapter which exists in Montgomery County today must go to numerous charter and post-charter members who worked diligently, and to the many officers who have contributed to its development, especially the Presidents:

Henrietta Franklin
First Chapter President (1960-1962)

Louise Mathieu
Second Chapter President (1962-1964)

Dr. Loretta Webb
Third Chapter President (1964-1966)

Myra Wesley
Fourth Chapter President (1966-1968)

Odessa Shannon
Fifth Chapter President (1968-1970)
Eastern Region Regional Director (1973-1974)

Margaret Hayes
Sixth Chapter President (1970-1972)

Sherene Webb
Seventh Chapter President (1972-1974)

Norma Allen
Eighth Chapter President (1974-1976)

Gladys Magwood
Ninth Chapter President (1976-1978)

Casma Huie
Tenth Chapter President (1978-1980)

Evelyn Boyer
Eleventh Chapter President (1980-1982)

Barbara J. Ward
Twelfth Chapter President (1982-1986)

Dr. Maxine Jenkins
Fourteenth Chapter President (1986-1990)
Eastern Region Regional Director (1996-1997)

Brenda Arnwine
Sixteenth Chapter President (1990-1994)

JoAnn Mussenden
Eighteenth Chapter President (1994-1998)

Leslye M. Fraser, Esq.
Twentieth Chapter President (1998-2000)

Debra Liverpool
Twenty-First Chapter President (2000-2002)

Dr. Lorraine Bassette
Twenty-Second Chapter President (2002-2004)

Debra Liverpool
Twenty-Third Chapter President (2004-2006)

Patricia Hureston Lee, Esq.
Twenty-Fourth Chapter President (2006-2008)

Brenda Baldwin White, Esq.
Twenty-Fifth Chapter President (2008-2010)

Paulette Walker Campbell
Twenty-Sixth Chapter President (2010-2012)

Kimberly McLurkin-Harris
Twenty-Seventh Chapter President (2012-2014)

Doreen C. Hope, Esq.
Twenty-Eighth Chapter President (2014-2016)

Yaminah Leggett-Wells
Twenty-Ninth Chapter President (2016-2018)

Bamidele (Kiki) Alexander
Thirtieth Chapter President (2018-2022)

Contact Information
Contact Us

Postal Mail:
Jack and Jill of America, Inc.
Montgomery County Maryland Chapter (JJMCMC)
P.O. Box 4375
Silver Spring, MD 20914