A Legacy of Strength, A Spirit of Hope

‚Äč‚ÄčCalifornia Federation of Women's Clubs

Amenities and Protocol

Amenities: are courteous acts that contribute to an atmosphere of harmony and gracious hospitality.

Protocol: refers to the code of formal procedure and politeness important to the smooth running of an

organization. It is simply good manners in an atmosphere of friendliness and politeness.

Head Table Seating

  • Seat persons according to rank, at the President's discretion. If guest are of equal rank, the         person who has traveled the greatest distance, ranks highest.
  • If the presiding officer does not provide a seating chart, provide one for her.
  • Try to keep the number of the head table to no more that 12.

Meal Functions

  • Choose a simple menu that will appeal to the majority of the group.
  • Persons at the head table should be served first.
  • Members should wait until the President has picked up her fork before starting to eat.
  • If a guest is more than 15 minutes late in arriving, proceed with the meal.
  • The President or hostess should recognize the chairman who made arrangements and her committee. Keep remarks brief.

Flowers and Gifts

  • Corsages are much less common that they used to be. If the guest is not given a corsage, no one(including the president) should wear one.
  • Please avoid expensive gifts! They tend to become a custom the organization may not be able to continue.
  • If a gift is given, it should be simple and useful. Inquire about a person's interests or collections.
  • A donation to the Itinerary Fund makes an appropriate gift for Federation speakers.
  • The installing officer is usually given a gift from the group, but may also be given one from the person to be installed as president. The club or district should budget for installation expenses and reimburse the installing officer, up to the amount budgeted.


  • The presiding officer presents those seated at the head table. It is customary to begin at the extreme left of the presiding officer and present each person in order, ending with the one at the left of the presiding officer. Then, beginning at the extreme right, each person is presented, ending with the guest of honor seated at the immediate right of the president
  • When a state or international president is introduced for the first time, the audience stands for the applause in recognition of the office.
  • Past Presidents should be extended every courtesy. They are usually introduced at some designated time in the program. It is customary to start with the one who served most recently and the others in order near too far.
  • An introduction of a speaker should be brief. Its purpose is to establish herlhis background, qualifications and subject of the speech. A person known to the audience is PRESENTED, a stranger is INTRODUCED.
  • Be sure to mention the speaker's name at the end of the introduction.


  • Knowledgeable and willing CFWC officers and chairmen are available upon request to bring Federation programs to districts and clubs. Income from the State Itinerary Fund is used to provide these visits.
  • Call, email or write your guest or speaker when you have selected your program. If phoning, follow up with a written confirmation.
  • Request for CFWC speakers, except the president, go the CFWC Itinerary Chairman from either the district president or the itinerary chairman.
  • Let your speaker know the allotted time and the time they are scheduled to speak.
  • Give them some idea of what you would like discuss.
  • If the trip requires an overnight stay, suggest types of accommodations available, including home hospitably. Make reservations if they request you do so.
  • If the speaker is driving, provide her with directions, although with the internet and GPS she may look up herself.
  • If she is traveling a long distance, suggest she bring a traveling companion. If a meal function is involved, please comp the guest and her companion.
  • If the guest is flying, she should be informed of the nearest airport and should be met and escorted to where she will be staying.

State Board Meetings
State Board meetings are hosted by the districts in which the meeting is held, assisted by the clubs. Plans and arrangements are coordinated with the State President, Amenities Chairman and Meeting Planner.

  • Sometimes decorations are done by the district. They should be simple and inexpensive.
  • The district hosts a reception once during a State Board Meeting.
  • Publicity: It is always appreciated when local clippings are forwarded to the President and the CFWC Communications/ Public Relation Ch.

Area Meetings

  • The duties of a district or club when hosting an Area Meeting are
  • To provide a meeting place, luncheon arrangements and meal reservations. Each district is responsible for the reservations and registration of its own members.
  • To help program planning if requested. Cost to be reimbursed.
  • To supervise the physical setup of flag, microphone, lectern, etc.
  • To send local clippings to the Area Vice President. The official host is the Area Vice President.

Club Duties for District Meetings

  • Supervise the physical setup, including the flag, microphone, and lectern. The official hostess is the District President.
  • The duties of the district are to attend, to place cards and guest meals. The District and/or
  • Corresponding Secretary should send thank you notes promptly to the club and speakers.

Club Meetings
The same basic plans are followed for a club meeting as those of a district meeting.

  • Plan the meeting carefully.
  • Have someone at the door to greet members and guest.
  • Assign a hostess for special guests.

State Conventions

  • The State President is the official hostess.
  • The official representative is the Area Vice President in whose area the convention is being held.
  • Duties of hostess district and clubs:

           (a) Decorations for platform, luncheons, banquets.

           (b) Provide members as doorkeepers, pages, credentials and any other necessary committee as                required.

Courtesies to State President

  • There is only one State President and she should receive every courtesy and consideration of her office.
  • Her itineraries are closely scheduled. Arrange transportation from airports, hotel reservation if  requested, and such other courtesies the visit requires.
  • Do not arrange for another speaker or entertainment, except for a short musical program when she visits.
  • When the State President is a speaker, be sure to invite the District President and any state officers or chairmen in your district as a courtesy.
  • Her speaking time is a minimum of 30 minutes.
  •  Assign a hostess for the State President. She should not be left alone except at her request.
  •  In seating, the State President ranks above all other officers, chairmen or guest with exception of the GFWC President.

Itinerary and Invitations to State President
The State President handles her own itinerary. The funds for her travel come from state allowance. When inviting her for a special occasion, include necessary courtesy tickets. She does not attend at her own expense; she is your guest. When she is a District Convention guest, she arranges her own transportation to your area. Her expenses for housing and meals' are as a guest of your district. Reserve hotel accommodations or home hospitality according to her preference.

Invitations should be written by the president of either the club or district extending the invitation.
The State President should be invited to each district at least once during her administration.

Expected From Guest and Guest Speakers

  • Respond promptly to all invitations, itinerary request and correspondence.
  • Arrive 30 minutes prior to the meeting, sometime delay in traffic and schedules are should be anticipated. If detained, notify the hostess as soon as possible.
  • Speakers should stay within the allotted time and should not be offended if asked to bring comments to a close.
  • Federation guests should represent the organization proudly, leaving the best impression possible.
  • Thank you letters should be written to the hostess club or district immediately.

Expected From Members

  • Be on time for meetings
  • Adhere to deadlines
  • If giving a report, watch the agenda and be near the microphone, not in the back of the room.
  • At a meal, members should not start eating until the President has picked up her fork
  • Refrain from disturbing the meeting through whispering or restless behavior.
  • Avoid walking between the presiding officer and the audience.
  • Obtain the floor when addressing the assembly and address all remarks through the chair, not another member.
  • Name badges should be worn on the right side. Club pins can be placed on either side, but are usually worn on the left.
  •  Don't overlook those in your district who serve at other levels of Federation or are past presidents. Just because they are friends we tend to take them for granted they should be extended every courtesy.

Receiving Lines after an Installation

  • A receiving line is not required but if requested;
  • Order (arranged according to rank)
  • Club President at Club function
  • District President at District functions
  • State President at State function
  • GFWC President at GFWC functions
  • Honored guest
  • Other distinguished

It is advised that officers from the club, district, CFWC or GFWC be placed between visiting dignitaries to
eliminate the necessity of a dignitary presenting a guest to another dignitary.

A receiving line should never be so long that progress is impeded, and conservation "in Line" should be brief. A member should be appointed to introduce guests to the first person in line.