Skidaway Abigails  l  October 2021

In This Issue

President's Message

Upcoming Events

October Program 

Program Recap

Member Spotlight



Board of Directors

Mission Statement

Elected Officials

n This Issue

President's Message

Upcoming Events

Member Spotlight

Communications Update


Announcements: The Glorias

A Message from your Board of Directors


Mission Statement

Contact Information

President's Message

Happy Fall to one and all,

It is officially fall and our programs and activities are in full swing. We are very happy to welcome some brand new Abigails and can’t wait to greet everyone in person as soon as Covid 19 and the Delta variant give us all a break and life can resume some semblance of the normal we once knew. 

As I said last month, we will continue to have our monthly meetings on Zoom until further notice. We are hoping that by November or December, at the latest, we can once again meet in person but we will always prioritize the safety of all of our members. We have two programs in October and I hope you will join us for one or both, and that you are taking advantage of some of the many activities. The video chats are going strong as are the discussion groups, and book clubs. Some of the in person activities are on hold, again, until it is safer for us to gather.

In this harvest season, I wish you all a bountiful harvest of health, success and happiness.

With gratitude,

Betsy Beekman

 Upcoming Events

The History and Current Mission of JUST (Justice Unites Savannah Together)

October 14

3:30 - 5:00PM  Zoom meeting

Coordinated by WAG

Asia Pitts, Moderator

Lead Organizer of JUST at the DART (Direct Action and Research Training Center) Savannah

Panel Members include:

Rev. Katie Callaway, Co-Pastor of First Baptist Church of Savannah

Rev. Stephen Williams, Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Savannah

Brother Willis Hakim Jones, Head of Justice Ministry of the Masjid Jihad Muslim Mosque of Savannah.

Panel Members include:

Rev. Katie Callaway, Co-Pastor of First Baptist Church of Savannah

Rev. Stephen Williams, Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Savannah

Brother Willis Hakim Jones, Head of Justice Ministry of the Masjid Jihad Muslim Mosque of Savannah.

JUST is a newly formed, diverse and growing coalition of 35 congregations working for justice in Savannah.

JUST is completing an inaugural cycle of listening to community concerns, identifying underlying problems, researching systemic solutions, and taking direct action to hold local decision makers accountable for change. JUST forms Justice Ministry Teams within member congregations, and holds regular meetings to address problems in our community. The central focus this cycle has been the lack of affordable housing in the city of Savannah and how to get city officials to commit to providing more housing for low-income families. 

Panel Members will discuss how and why JUST was created, and what differentiates it from other local non-profits. Panelists will give an overview of how they organize to identify crucial problems and to effect durable change in the community.

Register for Abigails Program

Program Recap

Living Past Christmas

September 9

Zoom meeting

Coordinated by

Shanti Stone and Susan Terrio

Kate Blair, Executive Director of CASA

Julie Wade, Executive Director of Park Place Outreach

Our September program - “Living Past Christmas” looked into the challenges faced by youth who experience homelessness or are in foster care.  They focused on the needs of challenged youth that exist “beyond the season of giving.”  Julie Wade (Park Place Outreach) and Kate Blair of CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) their personal experiences helping the at-risk youth of Savannah by providing emergency shelter, street outreach programs, and family preservation efforts.  They explained the need for expanded transitional services for 17 to 21-year-olds who strive for self-sufficiency but need additional training and shelter to achieve this goal. 

They noted the increased need for services for these youth as schools reopen after the pandemic. Kate Blair shared powerful data on poverty and debunked the myths associated with the figure of the “welfare queen” that only serve to delegitimize the poor. Both Julie Wade and Kate Blair had suggestions on how we can help beyond the Christmas season of giving.  Here are some examples:  Educate yourself on the stresses of poverty • Acknowledge that the system is broken and work to change it through advocacy • Fight any bias you have that looks at poverty as an issue of morality • Educate your family and friends on the cause of these issues • Change the way you speak about poverty • Donate unrestricted funds directly to organizations addressing the root causes of poverty.

Many Abigails found the presentation worthwhile and expressed their appreciation for the opportunity to better understand troubled youth and the work that CASA and Park Place Outreach do to support vulnerable youth.

Member Spotlight

Sheila Stallings

Sheila Stallings grew up in the Carolinas. She graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a BSN, and later a MSN as a Family and Women's Health Care Nurse Practitioner. For the last 16 years of her career, she was on the faculty of UNC-Chapel Hill School of Nursing. 

Sheila volunteered with the NC Public Health Reserve Corps, working in Red Cross Shelters after floods. She was a nurse with Project Homeless Connect, and administered H1N1 flu vaccines for the health department community clinics. Sheila was a Certified Special Olympics Equestrian Coach, her athlete winning blue ribbons two years in a row. She trained two of her dogs to be Therapy Dogs, working with children with reading difficulties and paraplegia, and served on the Board of Directors for an organization that trains and places service dogs.

After moving to Savannah in 2015, Sheila volunteered with New Neighbors, Wine for Wheels, Special Pops Tennis, Landlovers, the Diamondback Terrapin Rescue Project, and the Bluebird Trail. When Village Walk Pharmacy and Coastal Care Partners collaborated to start a COVID-19 vaccine clinic, Sheila volunteered to give injections, and organized medical professional volunteers to staff the clinic.  

Sheila has three daughters; a veterinarian, a Broadway actress, and a Pediatric ICU RN, three sons-in-love, and 7 grandarlings (all girls). She has recently become engaged to a wonderful man with 4 grandsons (finally some little boys!).

Sheila is a member of the Skidaway Abigails Board of Directors and is Co-Chair of the Communications Committee. “Cookie” (to her fellow board members) worked with the Communications team on developing the new Skidaway Abigails logo. Her design and coordination of the newsletter brings current Abigails news to us each month. Thank you “Cookie” for your commitment and creative spirit.

Sheila Stallings grew up in North and South Carolina.   She graduated from  UNC-Chapel Hill with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and later a Masters of Science in Nursing as a Family Nurse Practitioner and Women's Health Care Nurse Practitioner.  For the last 16 years of her career she was on the faculty of UNC-Chapel Hill School of Nursing in an administrative role. She has three daughters, three sons-in-love, and 7 grandarlings (all girls!).  She has recently become engaged to a wonderful man with 4 grandsons (finally some little boys!).

In NC Sheila enjoyed several volunteer activities.  She was a member of the North Carolina Public Health Reserve Corps and was a volunteer nurse working in the Red Cross Shelters after floods.  She was a nurse with Project Homeless Connect and worked as a volunteer nurse with the county health department to administer H1N1 flu vaccines in mass clinics and in the community.  She was a Certified Special Olympics Equestrian Coach and was so proud that her athlete and Sheila's horse won first place two years in a row.  She trained two of her dogs to be Therapy dogs and worked with children with reading difficulties and paraplegia with her dogs.  An animal and people lover, she served on the Board of Directors for a service dog organization that trains and places service dogs to assist individuals with mobility impairments and to alert to medical emergency conditions, such as diabetic hypoglycemia.

After moving to Savannah in 2015, Sheila enjoyed volunteering with New Neighbors activities, Wine for Wheels, Special Pops Tennis, and Landlovers. She enjoys bocce and has been the capo for an all women bocce team for 6 years.  For the past two years Sheila has been a part of the Diamondback Terrapin Rescue Project and the Bluebird Trail.  When Village Walk Pharmacy and Coastal Care Partners combined efforts to start a COVID-19 vaccine clinic, Sheila volunteered to help give injections and organized medical professional volunteers to staff the clinic.  Now that the clinic has opened up again she is doing the same again.


Our first event on September 9 featuring Kate Blair from CASA and Julie Wade from Park Place Outreach and focusing on youth poverty in Chatham County was well attended and informative. 

We are planning for our next event scheduled for October 14 to be via ZOOM, but we hope this will change in November. While it has been challenging, we will continue to remain flexible and adapt to the current situation.

If you are not already aware, another benefit of membership is being able to attend many of the Hamiltons’ events as well.

I am hoping that by now most, if not all of you, have visited our website at, and checked out all the information you can find there, including the different activities that we offer aside from our monthly events.

Notices are sent out periodically to remind members to renew and pay online with a credit card with only a few keystrokes.  However, if you encounter difficulties, please don't hesitate to contact me.

If you know of anyone interested in joining, please refer them to our website or have them contact me to learn more.  

Elizabeth Cowell

Membership Chair

Click to Join or Renew


Abigails Video Chat

August 31, Sept 14, 21, 28

3 PM  Zoom Meetings

Coordinated by Sheila Grossman

Those who have participated in the Video Chats over the last 15 months or so consider it a vital lifeline that keeps the Abigails progressive women sane in these tumultuous and crazy days. Our conversations tend to be free-wheeling and profound and we learn from each other about what is going on in our community, locally and nationally. Are you missing being able to connect with other like-minded women? Please consider joining us for our next Abigails Video Chat. It's great to be able to talk openly about what we are learning and how we are feeling. 

The America We Need Discussion Group

Friday, October 22

9:30 am Location TBD

Led by Annette Carnow

During the past year our Discussion Group has spent a lot of time reading non-fiction books and articles about systemic racism in all its many guises. While it has been highly informative, we have not dealt with the poignancy and insight that a good novel can provide. So for our next couple of sessions, we will read and discuss The Love Songs of W.E.B. DuBois. Set in Georgia, poet and novelist, Honoree Fanonne Jeffers, takes us on epic journey from the founding of our colony to the present day following the lives of a big mixed race family. 

The many stories and vignettes will keep you immersed and turning the pages. Please read the first half of the book for our next meeting on October 22, at 9:30. Whether we meet via Zoom or in person has yet to be determined.

Register for America We Need

Reel Time

October 27 at 4:00PM via Zoom

What is Life Worth?

Coordinated by Annette Carnow

This past month being the twentieth anniversary of 9/11, it is an appropriate time for the release of the film Worth. Starring Michael Keaton and Stanley Tucci, this is the story of the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund.  Loosely based on Kenneth Feinberg’s book, What is Life Worth, the film deals with the urgent need to stabilize the economy in the aftermath of the carnage, to arrive at a just settlement for the families and to persuade the majority of families, to sign on and not sue independently.

This film is full of moral dilemmas as well as questions of about artistic liberties taken with historic subjects. Watch this film on Netflix and then join our discussion via Zoom on October 27, at 4pm.

Register for Reel Time


Coordinated by Sue Kantor

We are happy that Abigails Canasta is thriving. Our group has become quite large and is now closed.  However, if there is enough interest, we can start a second, separate group. This new group is welcome to set themselves up to suit their players. Playing whatever day and time works for them, as long as it does not conflict with other ongoing Abigails activities.

Please remember, all members of Abigails Canasta groups must be members in good standing.

If you would like to play or help organize this group please email

Book Clubs

The AM Book Group currently has 8 members and is looking to add two more.  The group meets on the third Wednesday of each month at 10 am. Each month one member chooses a book they have read and would like to share with the group.  The recommending member then facilitates the discussion of the book.  The book choice rotates among all the members and is usually announced 2-3 months in advance to give everyone time to read the book. If you would like to join this group please contact Sheila Jannino at

 The PM Book Group has openings.  If you would like to join us please email us at

Message From Your Board of Directors

Your 2021-2022 Board of Directors, like you, are proud Abigails members.  We are committed to serving the mission, and the members, of Skidaway Abigails.  We look forward to a great year with our Abigail friends and sisters in action!


Betsy Beekman


Susan Terrio


Susan Kurtain


Betsey Andersen


Programming Co-Chairs

Shanti Stone

Susan Terrio

Social Co-Chairs

Nikki Berdy

Sue Kantor



Elizabeth Cowell

Activities Chair

Pat Wallace

Communications Co-Chairs

Anne Boynton

Sheila Stallings

IT Co-Chairs

Sheila Grossman

Susan Kurtain

Advocacy Chair

Sandi Parshall


Sheila Grossman

Mission Statement

The Skidaway Abigails is a nonpartisan organization of progressive, liberal women whose purpose is to provide engagement opportunities for social, educational and advocacy activities to its members. We welcome women who support our values to join us, regardless of residence, race, ethnicity, age, religion or gender identification.

What We Value

A strong commitment to women's health and safety including family planning; health education, screening and research; and protection from domestic abuse and the full range of offenses against women, from harassment in the workplace to sex trafficking.

A society that provides services for its poor and its children including basic shelter, food, physical and mental healthcare, quality fact-based education, childcare, pre-K development and college opportunity.

Fair and equitable treatment for the working class including a livable minimum wage; pay equity for women; reducing the gap between the average employee's compensation and corporate executives'; affordable health care; a future in our country for working immigrants; and equitable treatment under the criminal justice system.

Fair and equitable treatment for our Lesbian/Gay/Bi-sexual/ Transgender population in all aspects of our society. We support their right to marry and create a family,

Regulation that respects individual freedom while protecting the community including the licensing and control of firearms; and eliminating unwarranted surveillance, personal data collection and criminal profiling.

Protecting our planet from mankind's impact on earth's climate and precious natural resources ranging from fresh water to the honey bee. We want to better understand opportunities to enhance sustainability.

Being informed and represented on political issues related to our values including voter registration and the right of citizens to vote; the stated positions of local, state and federal candidates; and access to articles and subject-matter-experts on value-related issues.

Current Elected Officials Contact Information

Governor Brian Kemp
206 Washington St, 111 State Capitol. Atlanta, GA 30334

(404) 656-1776

US Rep. (Dist. 1) Earl "Buddy" Carter

6602 Abercorn St, Ste 105B, Savannah, GA 31405

(202) 225-5831

US Senator Jon Ossoff

Hart Senate Office Building, Suite 825 B&C

Washington, DC 20510

202-224-3521 (DC)

US Senator Raphael Warnock

Dirksen Senate Office Building, Suite B40D

Washington, DC 20510

(202) 224-3643 (DC)

State Senator Ben Watson

320-B Coverdell Legislative Office Bldg, Atlanta, GA 30334

(404) 656-7880

State Senator Lester Jackson

110-B State Capitol, Atlanta, GA 30334

(404) 463-5261

State Representative Jesse Petrea

408-B Coverdell Legislative Office Bldg, Atlanta, GA 30334

(404) 657-1803

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