When Foothill student and Los Altos resident Jodie Brown first joined the Theta Rho Girls' Club 12 years ago, she was a timid, soft-spoken girl. Since then, Jodie has grown into a confident young woman and has ascended to the president of the Theta Rho Assembly.
"I think she's learned how to deal with people, how to run meetings, how to get organized. It has brought her from being shy to outgoing," said Jackie Brown, Jodie's mother.
Jodie was honored at the Independent Order of the Odd Fellows temple in San Jose on July 28. She was recognized for her service as California state president of the Theta Rho Assembly, the state level of the girls' club.
Representatives from all branches of the Odd Fellowship came, a total of 141 people attending the dinner. Special guests included Marie Sommers, the international president of the Ladies Encampment, the international faction of the Independent Order of the Odd Fellows.
To come to her position of California state president of the assembly, Jodie was first elected as an officer for the local Theta Rho club in San Jose. Through the state officer election process, she gained the support from her local club, getting recommendations from members of the Odd Fellows organization and the local community. Last year, she was voted in by the Theta Rho state representatives as vice president.
Being state president this past year has led Jodie all across the state and the nation. She has made official and social visits to every Theta Rho Girls' Club in California. This past May, Jodie went to Washington, D.C. as a representative of Theta Rho to put a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
This month, Jodie will be attending the Independent Order of the Odd Fellows international convention in North Carolina as the California representative of the Theta Rho Girls' Club. At the meetings, she will present California's progress in membership, fund-raisers, and donations back into the community.
In order to travel and fully participate in the position as president, Jodie took a year off from her education at Foothill College.
"I think it's a good thing. You can always go back and pick up your classes, and she wouldn't have had another chance to do this," Jackie said.
Jodie will finish her term as president in February 2002. She plans on resuming her studies at Foothill.
Jodie also belongs to the Rebeckah Lodge in Mountain View, as well as the local branch of the Ladies Encampment.
The Odd Fellows and its various branches are service and social groups. Each faction does fund-raisers throughout the year, the profits of which, go to help national charities such as the National Arthritis Foundation and the Juvenile Diabetes foundation and local needs such as the Santa Clara Animal Shelter.