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In memory of Ruth Chalmers, WILPF member and activist

September 2, 2014

WILPF has been overwhelmed by messages to express gratitude and honor Ruth Chalmers’ memory.

Ruth (1922-2014) was a member of WILPF for many years and Executive Director of the Jane Addams Peace Association (JAPA) for over 40 years.

Here are some of the messages we received. Please feel free to add to the many comments with your own memory or experience with Ruth.

Ruth Chalmers

Ruth Chalmers (1922-2014)
Photo credit: Leah Fasten

​”I had the privilege of working with her for many years when she was Executive Director of JAPA. She was dedicated to JAPA and to the aims and principles of WILPF. Yes, I remember those bunches of handwritten notes, held together with paper clips of everything that needed to be recorded. ​​

I well remember our planning sessions to raise funds for the various peace promotion projects, our modest lunches and precious dinners when we shared our thoughts, our hopes for moving peace and justice a few steps forward. Ruth was such a positive woman, very clear in her mind, frank and honest, warm and had a most surprising and refreshing sense of humour. A wonderful person to have known and to have had a chance to work with. Love”

​          – Edith Ballentyne​, Former WILPF Secretary General

​”​Ruth, Presente! Your welcoming smile was so often welcoming and assuring to me!​” ​

ddddd– Regina Birchem, Former WILPF International President​

“​It was Ruth that convinced me to be the US WILPF treasurer, a position I would never have dared take on, but she looked so disgusted with me when I said I could not because I didn’t have the ​skills required, that I had to change my mind. I went on as US Treasurer for 3 years.

Ruth was a treasure in my life and if feel very fortunate to spend the time I did with her.​”​

ddddd – Ann Chalmers Pendell WILPF/JAPA

​ “I was so new, and had so much to learn. I sat in awe of the women on that Board, and especially of Ruth Chalmers. What a strong, yet gentle woman she was. She seemed to know everything that needed to be known about WILPF… and knew so many of the members, all over the country,and around the world, as personal friends. I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to learn from her the basic principles of our organization. She was a mentor to many of us… and also a good friend.

​I hope we can find a way to to pay tribute to her and her work that would make her smile.” ​

   dddd– Phyllis Yingling, WILPF US, Catonsville Group

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