Get to Know Our Members: Benefit Edition

HJWC’s biggest fundraiser is our annual benefit, which happens each winter. The event is the largest driver behind funding the grants that the Club gives to deserving area organizations. This year’s benefit, “A Gilded Affair,” took place downtown at the Millennium Knickerbocker hotel on February 8th. To pull this event off we have a very talented group of women behind it and today we are featuring two of this year’s co-chairs: Jeni Graham and Emily Bower!

We appreciate their hard work and dedication and thank them for creating such a memorable night for not only our Club but also our sponsors, friends and family.

Benefit Q&A

Where and how long have you lived in the area?

Jeni: I live in La Grange and have for 7.5 years.

Emily: I have lived in Hinsdale for 4 years.

How long have you been in the club?

Jeni: This is my third year in the club.

Emily: This is my third year in Juniors.

What was the best part of being on the benefit committee and what motivated you to co-chair?

Jeni: The best part of benefit is that everything raised at the event is what we are able to give to the people in our community that need it most. This was my third year on Benefit, after chairing the auction last year, it felt natural to become managing chair this year.

Emily: I have loved being a part of the main fundraising arm of the club as well as planning such an exciting event. It was an incredible experience that really got me out in the community. It allowed me to learn about and work with many local businesses and to get to know many of the club's wonderful members. The best part of all will be seeing all of the local charities we are able to support based on what all of us have come together and worked so hard to raise through Benefit.

What is your favorite thing about the western suburbs?

Jeni: My favorite thing about the western suburbs is how wonderful it is to raise a family here. There is a great sense of community and of course great schools. We love walking to great restaurants in La Grange and enjoying all that the town has to offer. Our favorite is the Pet Parade!

Emily: My favorite thing about the Western Suburbs is its tight-knit community in which everyone supports each other. I feel lucky to live in such an inviting town with so many active and fun people; many of whom are in a similar stage of life. There is always something entertaining to do with your family here - what a wonderful place to raise a family!

If you have kids, how many do you have and what are their ages?

Jeni: Eric and I have two boys, Thomas (6) and Elliott (4)

Emily: Brian and I have 4 kids: Charlotte (8), Teddy (5), and twins Izzy (2) and Maggie Cat (2)

If your or someone you know would be interested in joining us next week or have questions about members for 2020-2021 (applications go live in April!), please reach out to Katie Storino at

Jeni Graham (L) and Emily Bower (R)
Jeni Graham (L) and Emily Bower (R)

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