President: Barb Swartzel

Chartered 1927

About Us

Zonta Club of Pontiac-North Oakland, is one of over 1,200 clubs of Zonta International, a worldwide service organization. Founded in 1919 in Buffalo, New York, Zonta takes its name from the Lakota Sioux Indian word meaning “honest and trustworthy.” Zontians volunteer their time, talents and treasure to local and international service projects that are designed to advance the status of women through service and advocacy.

Locally, we are women and men living or working in the Pontiac North Oakland area who support the mission of Zonta. We hold a monthly business meeting to plan fund-raisers, service projects and advocacy efforts. A second program meeting is held most months offering topics of education or hands-on service opportunities.

We are committed to sending a delegate to International Conventions which are held every two years and District Conferences and Governor Summits that are held in alternating years.

Meetings are held the second and fourth Thursdays of each month.  During COVID-19, following social distancing rules, meetings are being held virtually, with a ‘social’ starting at 6:30, while the official meeting starts at 7pm. 

Ongoing Local Service Projects:

  • Haven’s S.T.A.R.T. Program(Safe Therapeutic Assault Response Team) – a program for victims of sexual assault
  • Grace Centers of Hope Women– various programs designed for rehabilitation and hope
  • Career Dress– non profit providing women appropriate clothing/accessories for interviews and work place
  • Making Strides Against Breast Cancer– yearly walk to raise funds for breast cancer research
  • The Ellen Dolsen Memorial Scholarship– annual Non-Traditional Scholarship granted to a local applicant working to further their education effort to return to the work force
  • Michigan Abolitionist Project – Working to prevent modern day slavery through education and awareness
  • Days for Girls – Increasing access to menstrual care and education.  Mission is to Reach Every Girl. Everywhere. Period. 

Recent Service Projects:

Zontians helping Zontians

After the news of the devastation that a dam failure caused we reached out to the Midland Club and asked how we could help.  With the help from Midland President, Cindy Vickery, 5 families were targeted. We provided gift cards to Lowes and local restaurants to help them out as they rebuilt.  The club rose to the challenge and over $850.00 dollars was collected.  We were glad to help our Zonta sisters in their immediate need.

“Your Drink’s On Us”

At its April, 2020 Business Meeting, Zonta Club of Pontiac North Oakland members were unanimous in wanting to support hospital workers. With some creative thinking, the ‘Your Drink is on Us’ project was created. The club provided nearly 800 soda and vitamin drinks to St. Joseph Mercy Oakland Hospital, ICU unit, to support our heroes in May and June 2020.

Additional Programs

KIVA – micro loans

As a club we are also committed to providing monies to micro loans through   We have been participating since 2009 and have lent funds to women in 24 countries.  We have micro loans outstanding for 6 women in El Salvador, Pakistan, Colombia, United States, Kenya and Puerto Rico.  All are being paid back and their loans are in good standing.  We are proud to support women worldwide !!!

March 8, International Women’s Day and Zonta Rose Day

Each year the Zonta Club of Pontiac North-Oakland celebrates March 8, International Women’s Day and Zonta Rose Day by surprising selected women at their place of work with a certificate and yellow rose.  Recipients are chosen because they have made a difference in the lives of local women through their career choices and dedication.  March 8 is also known as the United Nations (UN) Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace.  Zonta clubs around the world honor this day with deliveries of yellow roses to outstanding women.

2020 Recipients
Rosemary Bayer – Michigan Senator representing the 12th District
Brenda Carter – State Representative serving the 29th District

2019 Recipients
Cheryl Bush  – first female Oakland County Airport(s) Manager
Elizabeth Kelly – Executive Director and CEO of Hope Inc. in Pontiac
Ginny Meyer – Local Community Leader with All Saints Church in Pontiac
Jacquie Gudmundsen – Auburn Hills, Mi
2018 Recipients
Mary C. Geiger – owner and and founder of Geiger Ballet in Oakland County, MI
Amy Drehmer – Rochester, MI Police Officer
Karen Lockman – Career Dress in Pontiac, MI
2017 Recipients
Jessica Cooper – Oakland County Prosecutor
Diane Zalecki – START Coordinator at HAVEN

We raise money through fund raising events and donations. Two thirds of the money we raise stays in our local community and one third supports Zonta’s international projects. We partner with organizations in our community to expand service and support to women in our area. We continually update our community service and work to include hands on service in addition to our fund raising and donations to various organizations.

In 2013 we established a Zonta Pontiac-North Oakland 501(c)3 Foundation. The purpose of this foundation is to receive monies and disburse monies allocated for all service projects.  No administrative funds are disbursed through our Foundation. 


END Child Marriage in Michigan

As part of Zonta’s initiative to End Child Marriage, and in partnership with Unchained At Last, District 15 is supporting Mich House Bills 4003-4005, stuck in committee for over 1 1/2 years.  The bill protects our young girls by ending child marriage with no exceptions.  Tell yourself you are not responsible, watch this video and join with us to lend your support for this legislation.

We have the opportunity to end child marriage in Michigan this summer. But that can happen only if Rep. Graham Filler, the chair of the house judiciary committee, schedules a hearing immediately on a trio of pending bills that would eliminate all marriage before 18.

Child marriage can too easily be forced marriage, because children have limited legal rights. Further, marriage before 18 is a human rights abuse that produces devastating, lifelong repercussions.

Please take a minute right now to urge Filler to schedule the hearing and to pass the bills without any amendments. TAKE ACTION  — and urge your friends to do the same. #18NoExceptions

Let’s make Michigan the 5th state to pass legislation and end child marriage in Michigan.

Phone: (517) 373-1778


Important Dates (all meetings virtual unless otherwise noted)
August  2020
6 – Board Meeting hosted by Bonnie M
13 – Business Meeting
27 – Program Meeting Installation/Initiation – Riverside Park Auburn Hills
September 2020
10 – Business Meeting
24 – Program Meeting
October 2020
1 – Board Meeting hosted by Jacquie
8–Business Meeting
17- Governor’s Summit – Virtual District Meeting 

18  Making Strides for Breast Cancer – Virtual Walk mtg in Lake Orion – social distancing and masks
22 – Program Meeting
November 2020

12 – Business Meeting
14-15 – LUNAFEST Virtual Event/Fundraiser
25 – Dec. 10 – 16 Days of Activism Say No to Violence Against Women

December 2020
3 – Board Meeting – Chris

Possible Holiday Event

We support Zonta International’s scholarship programs to help empower women through education. To learn more follow the links provided below. 
For any additional questions contact us.


  • Amelia Earhart Fellowship
    • Zonta annually awards up to 35 Fellowships of US$10,000 each to women pursuing Ph.D./doctoral degrees in aerospace engineering and space sciences. 
  • Jane M Klausman Women in Business Scholarship
    • Zonta helps women pursuing undergraduate and master’s degrees in business management with 32 scholarships of US$2,000 each and an additional six scholarships of US$8,000 each annually. 
  • Young Women in Public Affairs Award
    • Zonta recognizes young women for demonstrating leadership skills and commitment to public service with 32 awards of US$1,500 each and 10 additional awards
  • Women in Technology Scholarship
    • Zonta encourages women to pursue education, career opportunities and leadership roles in technology in a new pilot program introduced in 2019.

As a member of Zonta International, we partner with UN Agencies to advocate for safe, violence-free societies throughout the world, Our current projects, voted on at our biennial International Convention, are as follows: