Our vision

  • Zonta International envisions a world in which women’s rights are recognized as human rights and every woman is able to achieve her full potential.
  • In such a world, women have access to all resources and are represented in decision making positions on an equal basis with men.
  • In such a world, no woman lives in fear of violence.

2016 Fall Conference – Post Survey Results
Survey closed

District 6 News

2016 Fall Conference Wrap-up

During the beautiful weekend of October 7-9th, 109 District 6 Zontians from 23 clubs attended the 2016 District Fall Conference in Oak Brook Illinois. We were privileged to have a guest from ZI Headquarters, Alicia Borsa, Membership Coordinator. With Alicia and the Awards recipients and young women of the Z/Golden Z clubs as Saturday guests, there were almost 115 attendees.

zontasaysno-conf16-2It was a weekend filled with high energy and enthusiasm. It was jump started Friday evening by a great keynote speaker, Denise Barreto, who urged Zontians to tell our story every chance we get. The unexpectedly passionate and mission supportive welcome from Oak Brook President, Dr. Lalmalani, was also well received.

An Open Forum session to discuss the state of our District Conference Friday afternoon, led to a smooth business session Saturday morning where we accepted the proposed 2016-18 District Goals and raised the Conference Assessment to $12.

The conference energy was boosted as our Awards recipients were presented. Kaitlin Raineri received her District JMK scholarship certificate. She is attending Loyola University in Chicago in Accounting. Heather Wiest, an Amelia Earhart Fellowship recipient received her ZI AE certificate and her AE wings. She is attending Purdue University. Both young women are amazing and very thankful for Zonta’s support.

Youthful energy continued with the Z/Golden Z presentation and panel discussion lead by Susan Harmon, Z/Golden Z Club Chair. While Kankakee’s Z Club representatives couldn’t attend, they sent their self produced anti-bullying video for our review. The Lebanon Z Club representatives, Kiersten McCoy and Teresa Perez were nervous but did a great job reviewing their projects and connection to the Lebanon club. The Lincoln sponsored Golden Z Club representative, Allison Hollatz of the University of Illinois spoke on their projects. They then participated in a panel discussion.

Past D6 Governors in attendance

Past D6 Governors in attendance

Over lunch we had two keynote speakers dealing with Human Trafficking. Dr Cassandra Ma, from Reclaim 13, & Cherish House, discussed their program for rescuing and recovering children trafficked in the sex trades. This was followed by a presentation by Special Agent Donald Suchy, from Immigration and Customs Enforcement, on the definition of trafficking and his role in enforcing the laws dealing with trafficking.

Saturday’s afternoon was devoted to “sharing our stories”. Three breakout sessions presented projects on trafficking by the Zonta Clubs of Kankakee (Truck Wrapping project), Madison (SlaveFree Madison), and Milwaukee (ARTREACH). All three breakouts were designed to share not only the project but also how the clubs went about developing and administering the projects with community partners.

hospitaliy-activity-conf16Hospitality included Saturday’s entertainment by Evening Edition, an a cappella group singing crowd favorites and a hands on competition to decorate Halloween pumpkins, all over coffee and dessert.

Sunday wrapped up with a joint presentation by Advocacy Chair Gail Zalewski, Service Chair Laura Baker, and PR Chair Konni Rodegheir. Using a fun, interactive game format, they presented Zonta Says No projects from around the world. With this energizing activity and our orange Zonta Says No tee shirts well displayed, the attendees swarmed the hotel escalators for our District Zonta Says No photo.

Thank you all for attending and Adding Your Voices to our Conference. I look forward to seeing everyone at the 2017 Fall Conference hosted by Area 2 Clubs in Madison Wisconsin on October 13-15th.

JMK Scholarship Winner

District 6 announces it’s 2016 JMK Scholarship winner Kaitlin Raineri.

JMK Scholarship winner Kaitlin Raineri

JMK Scholarship winner Kaitlin Raineri

Kaitlin, whose application was submitted by the Zonta Club of LaSalle Peru, and is a sophomore at Illinois Valley Community College (IVCC) and plans to transfer to Loyola University in Chicago to study International Business. She has consistently earned Presidential Honors and has been accepted into IVCC’s Honor’s Program. She has studied abroad in Netherlands via Rotary Youth Exchange Student program and taught English in Romania. She volunteers with the American Red Cross. She currently is an intern for a non-profit, Another Child Foundation and wants to work for an international non-profit after obtaining her Master’s degree

Zonta International Convention

District 6 was well represented by 32 members at the 63rd Zonta International Convention held 2 July – 7 July, 2016 in Nice France. At the pre-convention District meeting on Friday, Governor Donna Conant inducted incoming Governor Tammy Hagen, Treasurer Cheryl Trudeau, Area Directors Michelle Miller & Carol Braford, and Nominating Committee Members Linda Hiltabrand & Donna Conant.

District 6 Convention attendeesThe Convention opened with the impressive Flag Ceremony and closed with a lavish Closing banquet and installation of officers. It was filled with inspirational keynote addresses and presentations by our International award winners. We heard representatives from the United Nations give project reviews and proposals for new projects. Our delegates approved continuing the Delaying Early Marriage in Niger and Liberia Fistula projects for another biennium. They also approved two new projects: Addressing Human Trafficking in Nepal and Let Us Learn Madagascar. After much discussion, a resolution creating a new membership category for Young Professionals was approved for a two year trial.

Lastly, the Big News. The 2020 International Convention will be held in Chicago! That gives us four years to prepare to host our 100 Year Centennial Convention.

District 6 News Archive

Notes from the Governor

Adding Your Voice……

Thank you for allowing me to serve as your Governor for the next biennium. I am part of a leadership team, which has a good mix of individuals with prior District Board experience and fresh new faces with new ideas and energy. I’m sure I speak for them when I say we are looking forward to these next two years.

Tamara Hagen District 6 Governor 2016-2017

Tamara Hagen
District 6 Governor

However, before we look forward, I’d like us to look back to the last biennium. We can be proud of many achievements and should use the momentum gain from them to propel us into the future.

We developed a District Strategy, the Virtuous Zonta Circle, to emphasize the inter-connection and synergistic energy of coupling Service, Advocacy, community awareness, and membership. We saw increased cross-club and strategic partner collaborations such as the Area 4 Zonta Says No Advocacy march and St Charles, Geneva, Batavia’s LunaFest. We surveyed and trained members on Advocacy skills and found; 1) we do more advocacy then we realize and 2) Telling Your Story is powerful and easier than you think. We added to our ‘Next Generation of Zonta’ pool with new Z and Golden Z Clubs. While official biennial Membership statistics revealed no growth, we also had no loss in overall membership. Therefore, the initial 5% growth did buffer our end of the year losses.

Now let’s look forward. “What do we want to look like in the next 100 years?” To keep our Clubs and District vital, we need to build on these achievements to meet our challenges.

We have an aging membership with several Clubs not only small but feeling old and tired. The Evanston Club recently disbanded for just that reason. Insular clubs are at risk also since they miss out on re-vitalization through networking and Zonta education at workshop and conference. Leadership “burn-out” and hesitancy by Club members to step up to Leadership roles is prevalent in many of our Clubs. Club projects and fundraisers also have a tendency to get old, tired and no longer relevant to our members or the community. And, the age-old “What is Zonta?” still is a problem.

Again, let’s look back and not be discouraged. We have our past achievements to build on as we deal with these challenges. Network, share, collaborate, and step up to these challenges and our Clubs and District will be stronger and better ready for the next 100 years. Your new leadership team is eager to address these challenges, but remember it is the responsibility of every member to “Add Your Voice” to the effort. For “If not now, then when?” and “If not you, then who?”

Notes from the Governor

It was wonderful to see so many District 6 Zontians at our District 6 conference in Normal Illinois! It was full of energy, purpose and passion for Zonta and our mission. We learned from experts and each other to become more effective as leaders, clubs and areas, creating a stronger Zonta community.  I am inspired by such dedicated professionals in District 6 working together to empower women and girls through service and advocacy. Thank you to everyone who participated in the conference, and big thanks again to the conference committee for their outstanding work.

Notes from the Governor Archive