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About CWC

The Chautauqua Women’s Club is proud to announce that Elizabeth Sullivan has been selected to be our President this coming season.

Elizabeth brings a wealth of experience to the organization. She has spent over 35 years working at the intersection of political campaigns and policy issues. As an experienced non-profit leader, she has extensive experience in building philanthropic partnerships; strategic planning, institution building, and organizational management; writing, research, and editing; and program design and development. Elizabeth has helped over 180 candidates get elected to office, many of them women, ranging from City Council to U.S. Senate and she has founded, managed, or consulted with over 65 non-profit or advocacy organizations.

Elizabeth brings a lot of enthusiasm to the CWC. Over the years, the Chautauqua lifestyle has grown on her. Her family has been coming to Chautauqua since the early 1900s and, since the mid-1980s Elizabeth has spent part of every summer at the Institution.  Elizabeth is not new to the CWC, but has been attending our events for years and is very excited to become an active participant in all of our programs.  She is excited about the opportunity “to work with such a great group of people on such interesting and varied work, representing the women’s club, offering excellent programming to all of Chautauqua, and raising money for the student artists.”  

She expects a busy season, teaching 2 weeks in the Special Studies program (Ethical Perspectives on Economic Inequity) in addition to the CWC Presidency. Off-season she enjoys reading the CLSC yearly selections, always working on achieving the next level.

The Chautauqua Women’s Club has enjoyed a long, proud, vital history as an integral part of the Chautauqua experience.  At our beautiful house on the lake, we provide opportunities to enhance social connections, participate in lifelong learning and promote the arts.  We strive to offer members unique opportunities for personal enrichment, education and fellowship.

Over the past seven years, the Chautauqua Women’s Club has focused its support for student scholarships in the Fine and Performing Arts by donating close to $600,000 to over 500 students.  Annual scholarship support comes from private donors, designated funds from the CWC general fund, a percentage of sales from Artists at the Market, and volunteer donations at each of the summer recitals showcasing the incredible talent in voice, piano, brass, strings, woodwind, dance, theatre, and visual arts. 

In 1929, funds were raised to construct the present house on the lake.  Guests to this historic home have included Eleanor Roosevelt, Mina Edison, and Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.  The house underwent a major renovation from 2010-2013 with support raised over many years by the Property Committee and generous donations from private donors.  Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this house provides a venue for the fellowship of members and their guests as well as five lovely up to date bedrooms to provide a steady stream of income to the organization.

Each season, the CWC offers a variety of programming to meet the lifelong learning needs of members and the Chautauqua community. We have recently celebrated our 125th anniversary.


Social Connections

  • Connecting across Generations and activities
  • Season's Greetings
  • Sunday Soirees
  • The New Friends Group
  • Mah Jongg
  • Bridge
  • Language Hour
  • Life Member Celebrations

Life Long Learning

  • Sharing knowledge and exploring new concepts
  • Contemporary Issues Forum
  • Contemporary Issues Dialogues
  • Chautauqua Speaks
  • Professional Women’s Network

Promoting The Arts

  • Supporting and showcasing the Arts at Chautauqua
  • Recitals
  • Fundraising Events
  • Providing Scholarships for students in the Schools of Fine and Performing Arts at Chautauqua Institution