Welcome to the Junior League of Boca Raton. A third generation South Floridian and resident of Boca Raton since I was five years old, I am so grateful to serve this incredible community. The Junior League of Boca Raton is such a force in our community, and I am humbled and honored to serve as its President. I have watched the league’s volunteers for decades as my Mom is a Sustainer. I have fond memories of knowing that my Mom was volunteering and making a difference, and, for the last 17 years, I have gotten to experience it myself. I joined because I wanted to give back to my community, but I got so much more!
I stand in awe of our more than 600 members who are ALL volunteers making time to make a difference. We are doctors, nurses, lawyers, mothers, wives, volunteers, teachers, Realtors, business owners, dentists, orthodontists, designers, coaches, accountants and more who manage to find time to volunteer in big ways. As a Realtor, wife and mother of three, I am grateful for the opportunity to serve this great community, show my children how important volunteering is, and collaborate with incredible, talented and generous women.
For the last 50 years, our members have promoted volunteerism, developed the potential of women and improved the community. We have answered the call when Boca Raton Police officers told us that they did not have a South County location to take children who had been abused and needed to be removed from their homes. We found a partnership in Children’s Place South and advocated for the home to be in Boca Raton. We fought for tighter laws on booster seats for our children and succeeded. Anne Vegso and many others built our Vegso Community Resource Center to provide a community center and grant library to the community and its nonprofits. JLBR members had the insight to create the endowment fund to keep our JLBR home protected. We have together volunteered more than 1 million hours to our community. We have been trained and continue to improve the community through JLBR and other organizations throughout the community, the nation and even the world as we have members leading, running, donating, volunteering and starting nonprofits and businesses making a difference here and all over!
This year, we get to celebrate our 50 years of service to our community and kick off the next 50 years! The JLBR is focusing on Child Welfare and continuing to support our community through volunteering opportunities with local organizations, training volunteers and nonprofits, sharing our grant library, providing meeting space and more.
In 2021, we are developing two amazing new programs. The Junior League Leadership Program, with Christina Seamster at the helm, will enable us to help so many underserved children in our community. We strive to be the turning point for children where they become leaders, gain confidence, figure out how to stay financially stable, graduate from high school, go on to college or a trade school, manage a business, run for office – the sky is the limit.
With our new Learning Libraries Committee, with Valentina Mortti leading us, we get to put books in the hands of children who might not otherwise have regular access to them. We get to make a difference in their lives and open the door to creativity, imagination and fun with reading and learning.
This year, we get to have a big, successful send off of our remarkable diaper bank led by Margi Cross and Ashley Craig into the community. After not only filling a void in the community, but growing it so much that we have donated over 5 million diapers in 10 years, it is time to gift the incredible diaper bank to the community and lead it on a path to even greater success to see its true potential.
Woman Volunteer of the Year will be back in person on November 12th and will be even better than ever! Kari Oltjean and Clara Acero will not only raise money for our community, but also honor so many incredible women throughout our community who have done so much for so many in need.
Our 50th Anniversary led by returning co-chairs Debbie Abrams and Liz Grace is going to be incredible. On September 23, we will celebrate the many women who have done so very much for JLBR, its members and our community. It is because of our deep history and wonderful leaders and volunteers that we have such an amazing league. I am truly honored to be a part of this extraordinary organization.
We will have amazing Done In A Days where we help area nonprofits throughout the year by volunteering our time with them. We will have awesome trainings both for our members and for our area nonprofits – and a virtual option to help even more organizations! And we will promote volunteerism, develop the true potential of our members and improve the community.
We have so many incredible leaders on the Board of Directors and on the Management Team led by Samantha Eckhart. We also have amazing committee chairs and are honored to have incredible donors and supporters who continue to give to make a difference. Together, we will make huge strides in our community.
Thank you for your interest and support of the JLBR. We are so grateful for you and the opportunity to make a difference in our community.
Jamie W. Sauer
President, Junior League of Boca Raton