Washington Women's History Consortium
Women's Clubs and Organizations
Helen Swensson, President, 1939
Washington State Federation of Women's Clubs
The story of Mrs. A.B. Swensson must be regrettably short. She was elected the twenty-third President of WSFWC at the
Bellingham convention in 1939, but on account of ill health, was unable to preside at either Board Meeting or Convention
during the term for which she was elected.
Helen Cynthia Dougherty was born in Fairfield, Iowa, the daughter of John Dougherty and Mollie Probasco Dougherty.
She received her education in the public schools of Fairfield, and graduated from Mt. Pleasant Normal College, Cedar
Falls, Iowa. She taught in the public schools of Iowa for nine years, and in Washington State for two years. She married
A.B. Swensson of Seattle. They had one son, Paul.
Mrs. Swensson was active in the Woman's Century Club, Woman's City Club, Lutheran Woman's League, White Cross, YWCA,
Mother's Club and PTA of Seattle. In most of these organizations, she was either President or Vice-president at some
time, and was a Board Member of many.
She was Legislative Chairman of WSFWC for several terms and served as Second and First Vice-presidents.
She turned over the duties of president of WSFWC to Mrs. Frank Ludwigs, and tendered her resignation at the state
convention in 1940. She spent two years in a sanitarium and passed away January 3, 1944.