Our Mission

Founded in 1916, the BHWC uses its historic facility and its membership to support the advancement of educational, cultural, philanthropic, and social endeavors enriching the community at large. 

Screen Shot 2021-02-14 at 1.14.51 PM.png
images-1.jpeg
Screen Shot 2021-02-16 at 7.37.15 AM.png
1927_flower_show_bhwc.jpg
Our History

Through the collaborative efforts of Beverly Hills society women, the BHWC was built with the vision to explore intellectual ideas, literature, the arts, and philanthropic efforts. It was conceived in the spirit of Americanism. From its inception, the BHWC has thrived as a vibrant entity offering programs that enrich both its members and society at large. 

It’s hard to believe that around the time the BHWC was founded, The City of Beverly Hills, recently incorporated, had about 400 residents. The BHWC was founded in an era where women had no right to vote but had the determination and spirit to organize as a women’s club to better themselves and their community. Within the first few years of the club’s origins, the BHWC served as a Red Cross Unit during the First World War and during the pandemic of 1918. 

Mrs. Force Parker, wife of the Venice pioneer and Los Angeles City Attorney served as the first President. By 1925, enterprising and savvy club President, Mrs. Jay B. Millard, organized a horse show hosted by William Penn Adair Rogers, or as we know him, Will Rogers, and his wife, Betty.  Will was the honorary Mayor of BH, the highest-paid actor of the times, and wrote more than 4,000 nationally-syndicated newspaper columns.  Included in the festivities, were Mary Pickford, her husband Douglas Fairbanks, famed director Cecile B. DeMille, Margaret Anderson (owner of the Bel-Air Hotel). The event was a huge success and raised the $4,000 used to purchase the land and construct the Spanish Colonial Revival clubhouse. By the 1930s, the BHWC had over 600 members and was the go-to place for community involvement and social activities. 

The Spanish Colonial Clubhouse was designed by noted architects Gable & Wyant and was erected in 1925. It's a significant example of early California architecture.  ​

The BHWC is a Landmark building listed on the National and California Registry of Historic Places. Here are just a few of many interesting historical facts about BHWC:

 

It is the Historic Site of the battle between Indians and early California settlers. A historical marker commemorates the Indian remains found on the property on the front lawn.

Mrs. Burton Greene, whose husband established Beverly Hills as a residential community, was a Founding Member. Mr. & Mrs. Will Rogers and Mary Pickford were among the early contributors.

The famous Beverly Hills Electric Fountain (Santa Monica Blvd. at Wilshire Blvd.) was a gift by the BHWC to the City of Beverly Hills in 1930.

The BHWC has been the site of exhibitions, including El Greco, Saint Francis of Assisi, 1580, exhibited in 1930.

Noted lecturers and guests of the BHWC include Amelia Earhart (lecture presented in 1935), Gloria Swanson (master of ceremonies of the 1st flower show in Beverly Hills in 1937), Norma Shearer (Mrs. Irving Thalberg, member and Oscar award winner), and Will Rogers’ Horse Shows.

Present Philanthropic Functions: The BHWC provides a venue and raises funds for charitable organizations, and offers educational and cultural events and lectures to the greater community.

 

The members of the BHWC are honored to have such glorious roots and the mission set forth by the organization to use this historic facility for cultural, social, educational, and philanthropic causes, thus creating a greater sense of community.  

Board Members

Sally Pai, Interim President

Claudia Deutsch, Treasurer

Cindy Leuty Jones, Secretary

Leslie Minniti, Parliamentarian

Hollis Leech

Madeleine Schulsinger

Jane Dorian

Tania Ferris 

Susan Meals

Maryann Weyman

Antonella Carlevaro Rossi

Past Presidents

 

2019-2021    Mrs. Pamela Cohen

2017-2019    Mrs. Elena Danielson

2013-2017    Mrs. Mumsey Nemiroff

2011-2013    Ms. Jill Collins

2001-2011    Mrs. Claudia Deutsch

2005-2007    Ms. Leslie Minniti

2001-2005    Mrs. Fabienne Guerin

1998-2001    Mrs. Bruce Bailey Rolf 

1995-1998    Mrs. Wallace Bache Crank 

1994-1995    Mrs. John E. Kevan, Jr. 

1993-1994    Mrs. Bruce Bailey Rolf  

1991-1993    Mrs. Arthur Snyder, Jr.  

1989-1991    Mrs. John E. Keven, Jr.  

1987-1989    Mrs. Walter James Monia 

1985-1987    Mrs. Fred Gibson 

1979-1985    Mrs. David S. Lockie 

1977-1979    Mrs. Herbert H. Olson 

1975-1977    Mrs. John Negri 

1973-1975    Mrs. William T. Copenhaver 

1971-1973    Mrs. Clarence A. Diebold 

1969-1971    Mrs. Lambert Wakefield 

1967-1969    Mrs. Charles F. Sill

1965-1967    Mrs. A. Sterling Pickens 

1963-1965    Mrs. Rae A. Rearwin  

1961-1963    Mrs. A. Emerson Newman  

1959-1961    Mrs. Tom W. Baily 

1957-1959    Mrs. Neil Hyrum Jensen 

1955-1957    Mrs. Louis Statham  

1953-1955    Mrs. William H. Hammer 

1952-1953    Mrs. J. Malcolm D’Ambrogio 

1951-1952    Mrs. Casimir A. Miketta  

1949-1951    Mrs. George R. Shean  

1947-1949    Mrs. A. Arthur Crawford 

1945-1947    Mrs. Edward J. Hummel 

1943-1945    Mrs. J. Lynn Ironmonger 

1941-1943    Mrs. Eugene Swarzwald 

1939-1941    Mrs. Harry H. Blodgett 

1937-1939    Mrs. Thomas R. Gibbon  

1935-1937    Mrs. Warren E. Libby 

1933-1935    Mrs. Charles F. Nelson 

1931-1933    Mrs. Noel M. Hooker  

1929-1931    Mrs. Karl F. Murdock  

1927-1929    Mrs. J. Jerome Canavan 

1925-1927    Mrs. Norman A. Pabst 

1921-1925    Mrs. Jay B. Millard 

1919-1921    Mrs. Edmund Lock 

1916-1919    Mrs. Force Parker