MICHIGAN CITY – Despite having been founded just three years ago, the Greater Michigan City Chapter of the National Drifters Inc. had the honor of hosting this year’s Founders Day Celebration.

The local chapter welcomed national board members and dozens of women from throughout the Midwest – Detroit, Chicago, Indianapolis, South Bend, Gary – for the Oct. 26 observation, the theme of which was Proverbs 31:25-26.

“Today’s Women: Are We Dressed to Impress?” was the keynote speech delivered by Denise Taylor-Hill, national president of the Drifters.

Taylor-Hill, an assistant principal from New Jersey, talked with her audience about the habits of successful leaders; and how dressing for success is more about one's mindset than her clothing. 

"It was an honor to have her come to our Founders Day Celebration," said Angie Nelson-Deuitch, who founded the Michigan City chapter in 2016.

"She talked to us about how, as women, we have to show up and be present and not sit in the background. Her message was about strength and confidence, and we're so honored she came to share her leadership experience with us."

The Pleasant Hill Missionary Baptist Church Youth Choir provided musical entertainment during brunch; and the congregation’s first lady, Lutrecia Lane, delivered the invocation by singing the “Lord’s Prayer.”

Students from the Culinary Arts Program at the A.K. Smith Area Career Center prepared dessert for the event, and were awarded $500 to help with uniforms and supplies.

Two local women also were inducted as honorary members of the Greater Michigan City Chapter: Barbara Eason-Watkins, superintendent of Michigan City Area Schools; and Jacqueline Jones, a “wonderful and humble” grandmother raising her grandchildren.

The local Drifters “adopted” Jones’ family two years ago, and have provided support as needed since then.

Eason-Watkins spoke about the commitment the Michigan City Drifters have to local students, and the impact the organization has made through its various initiatives – including having helped more than 100 students to receive more than $125,000 in college scholarships over the past three years.

"I'm honored to be recognized by the Drifters," Eason-Watkins said. "We appreciate the work they do in our community and in our schools – mentoring, providing guest speakers and field trip opportunities, and working with students on scholarships and navigating the college application process. Their dedication and active engagement are making a difference."

Founded in 1954, the National Drifters Inc. is a sisterhood of business professionals, homemakers, entrepreneurs, educators, political officials and more. More than 600 women nationwide belong to one of the organization’s 34 chapters.

For more information on the Greater Michigan City Drifters and their service to the local community, visit the organization’s Facebook page or email michigancitydrifters@gmail.com.

To contribute to the chapter’s scholarship fund, mail check or money order to P.O. Box 73, Michigan City, IN 46361.

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