Margaret (Peggy) McLane: A Volunteer for All Seasons

August 2, 2016

The Jennie Award is named after Jane Cunningham Croly, the founder of GFWC who worked as a journalist using the pen name “Jennie June.” The women honored with this award are a true reflection of the spirit of GFWC’s founder, whose independence and courage led her to form the General Federation of Women’s Clubs in 1890. As the only award at the Federation level that recognizes individuals for their service, it is truly the highest honor a clubwoman can receive. Much like Jennie June, these women are committed to improving the lives of those around them. They live and breathe volunteer service, and are completely devoted to their clubs, communities, and families.

Stay tuned for next week’s blog post featuring Great Lakes Region Jennie Award Winner Marge Nelson!

GFWC was pleased to recognize Margaret (Peggy) McLane as the Southern Region Recipient of the GFWC Jennie Award at the 2016 Annual Convention. Peggy is a member of the GFWC Woman’s Club of Panama City, Florida and is a dedicated volunteer who is always looking to serve her club, community, and family.

Peggy had only been retired for one month when she joined GFWC in 2005, soon serving in leadership positions as a Community Service Program coordinator for her club. While serving as president, the Woman’s Club of Panama City received recognition as one of the best large clubs in Florida.

Thoughtful and organized, Peggy’s strong leadership skills and ability to implement plans has led to many successful outcomes for her club. She developed a partnership with another club in the area to draft a resolution banning texting while driving, which was adopted by GFWC Florida and signed into law by Governor Rick Scott in 2013. Peggy was instrumental in renovating the entrance of the clubhouse and adding handicap parking and a ramp. She has also helped coordinate a welcome dinner for six Wounded Warrior Beach Retreats, bringing comfort to injured members of the military.

Peggy has played an active role in several of the club’s Community Improvement Projects. Her letters to county commissions and tourism officials that outlined ways to improve beach water safety awareness were taken seriously, as the officials adopted these suggestions and the number of drownings was reduced. Working with the local garden club, Peggy helped implement the improvement of the local Girl Scouts Butterfly Garden.

“Peggy has, in all seasons of her life, recognized the need to give her time to enhance the lives of others,” said Gerry Wilson, president of the GFWC Woman’s Club of Panama City.

Peggy is committed to improving the lives of children in her community. She serves as a Bay County Judicial System Teen Court Jury Monitor, where she ensures teenagers who have committed misdemeanors receive fair punishment. She has donated her time and money to a summer reading project at a low-income elementary school, making sure that students have at least three books to take home for the summer. As a result of this project and Peggy’s dedication, 1,600 books are collected annually.

“She has been volunteering since she was fourteen years old. Moving into a federated club such as the Woman’s Club of Panama City was just a natural progression for the continuation of her service to others,” said Louis Lawrence, past president of the Woman’s Club of Panama City.

Peggy has been a Girl Scout since 1950 and has been listed in the World’s Who’s Who of Women. While earning her Masters, Peggy received a Virginia Outstanding Teacher Award for her design of an adult education program in Hampton, Virginia. In 2005, she received the Air Force Outstanding Civilian Service Medal as an award-winning Services Squadron Marketing Director.


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