History of the Tennessee Federation of Republican Women

The Tennessee Federation of Republican Women (TNFRW) was founded in 1955 under the leadership of Mrs. Alice Elder. She became the first president of the Tennessee Federation. She organized women’s groups in her own district and across the state before Tennessee became affiliated with the National Federation.

The TFRW is chartered under the National Federation of Republican Women (NFRW) which was founded at a conference held at the Palmer House in Chicago, September 23-24, 1938.

The organization originally was known as the National Federation of Women’s Republican Clubs of America. The name was changed in January 1953 to the National Federation of Republican Women.

The seal of the NFRW is the American Eagle, king of birds, holding a quill pen and standing guard over our most treasured tool of democracy – the ballot box. The seal was adopted at the biennial convention in 1944.

Women from Tennessee who served on the Republican National Committee preceding The Tennessee Federation of Republican Women were:

Mrs. Mary Giles Howard 1924-29
Mrs. Beulah Overall Hughes 1928-32
Mrs. Ruby Roach McLane 1942-53
Mrs. Lupton Patton 1955-60
Mrs. Irene B. Parker 1960

Mrs. Mary G. Howard served as an associate member of the RNC. National Committeewomen serving since the affiliation of the Federation are:

Mrs. Louise G. Reece First District
Mrs. Jeanne Geraghty Third District
Mrs. Peggy Spurrier Ninth District
Mrs. Maida Pearson Ninth District
Mrs. Alice Algood Seventh District
Mrs. Lilian Coker Third District

Tennessee Federation of Republican Women Past Presidents

1955-1962 Alice Eder (Mrs. Garrison) Chattanooga
1963-1966 Julia Bales Calloway Morristown
1967-1969 Ann Tuck (Mrs. James R.) Nashville
1970-1973 Ruth Tobias (Mrs. Melvin) Chattanooga or Signal Mt.
1974-1977 Dorothy Clawson (Mrs. John) Morristown
1978-1981 Eleanor Rooks (Mrs. Ned) Brownsville
1982-1983 Frances Turner (Mrs. Tom) Murfreesboro
1983- Louise Chamberlain (Mrs. Buford) Greeneville
1984-1987 Reba Brown (Mrs. Hebert) Chattanooga
1988-1991 Ellida Fri (Mrs. Jim) Memphis
1992-1993 Marcy Hale Brentwood
1994-1997 Barbara McAndrew (Mrs. Y.J.) Dandridge
1998-1999 Shirley Curry Waynesboro
1999-2001 Claire Bawcom (Mrs. Richard) Franklin
2001-2003 Betty Cannon (Mrs. Jim) Nashville
2004-2005 Annette Pannell (Mrs. Winston E.) Kingsport
2006-2009 Shirley Ward (Mrs. Doug) Covington
2010-2011 Susan Witcher (Mrs. Ken) Red Boiling Springs
2012-2013 B. Claire Crouch (Steve Eldridge) Cosby
2013- Linda D. Buckles (Mrs. John) Kingsport

Serving TN

Marsha Blackburn, U. S. House of Representatives, Representing Tennessee District 7
Diane Black, U. S. House of Representatives, Representing Tennessee District 6
First Lady Crissy Haslam
Senator Mae Beavers Representing District 17
Senator Janice Bowling Representing District 16
Senator Dolores Gresham Representing District 26
Senator Becky Duncan Massey, Represents District 6
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Beth Harwell
Rep. Shelia Butt Representing District 64
Rep. Mary Littleton Representing District 78
Rep. Susan Lynn Representing District 57
Rep. Debra Moody Representing District 81
Rep. Courtney Rogers Representing District 45
Rep. Terri Lynn Weaver Representing District 40
Rep. Dawn White Representing District 37

October 23 -24, 2015 TFRW held their Biennial Convention in Murfreesboro. Some RWWC members in attendance (left to right) were: Brenda Davis, Patsy Writesman, Mary Ellen Redford, Michelle DeBardelaben, Grace Kroeger and Claudia Henneberry.


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