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State Representative Barbara McIlvaine Smith named first winner of The Hickman's Commitment to Caring award

October 1, 2010Barbara McIlvaine Smith

West Chester PA -- State Representative Barbara McIlvaine Smith has been named the first winner of The Hickman’s Commitment to Caring award.

"Barbara has been a great friend to The Hickman for many years. Recently, she has been a strong supporter of the construction of our new Mary Taylor House," said Pam Costanzi, Senior Development Director of The Hickman. "Barbara deserves to be honored for her commitment to the West Chester community, and especially The Hickman."

The award will be given during The Hickman’s 7th annual Art of Caring event on Friday, October 8, 2010, at The Hickman, 300 block of North Walnut Street, West Chester. For more information on tickets, contact Costanzi at (484) 760-6416.

Barbara McIlvaine Smith has represented the 156th House District since 2006. The Hickman’s award honors an individual or company with a substantial relationship with The Hickman, who provides a leadership role in Greater West Chester and who supports The Hickman mission. Representative McIlvaine Smith fits these criteria in all ways.

Born in West Chester, Barb grew up on a farm in Chester County that her family purchased from William Penn in 1683. Her grandmother lived in the Borough and, as a child, she was always excited to go “to town” for visits. She has a true sense of belonging in West Chester and has served the community in many ways, both in local and state government and as a volunteer.

Her relationship with The Hickman goes back many years, starting with her time on Borough Council. She has regularly advocated for senior causes, including affordable housing and quality care.

The Art of Caring event features works by area artists that are auctioned to benefit The Hickman. This year twelve regional artists will create one-of-a kind country-style benches or Shaker-style side chairs.

Before the auction, the pieces will be featured at the various West Chester businesses. The first display will be from July 16 until August 31 and then the pieces will be switched to different locations from September 2 until October 6.

The featured artists are Laura Barton, William Basciani, Evalyn Eckman, Bonnie Grilli, John Hannafin, Mitch Harper, Linda Lynch, Bradbury Mattes, Maria Morales, Amory Stedman, Super and Nancy Thompson.

"We are honored to have such talented artists take part in the Art of Caring," said Costanzi. "For the past seven years we have been privileged to have well-known area artists paint furniture to be auctioned. And having local businesses support our efforts by prominently displaying these works of art is another great act of generosity towards The Hickman."

The Art of Caring also features a silent auction with more than 50 unique items, including a variety of regional experiences, golf outings, and arts and crafts items that make great holiday gifts. Of course, the event is also renowned for its fine food, beverages and ambience.

In addition to enjoying a gala fundraiser with an artistic twist, guests will be escorted down a red carpet and met with a specialty cocktail of Pama Pomegranate and Prosecco, as well as butlered hors d’oeuvres. The red carpet experience is provided by Mary Bigham, of WC Dish ( Bob Rogers and Sue Casso Rogers of West Chester will co-chair the event.

"We are thrilled that Delightful Desserts and Culinary Creations – the winner of Main Line Today’s 2010 Best Caterer Award – will be the 2010 Art of Caring caterer," said Costanzi. "They have such a reputation for excellence."

Funds raised at the live and silent auction benefit The Hickman’s ongoing expansion. The Hickman is a non-profit Quaker-based organization providing independent and personal care to seniors in West Chester since 1891. Mary Taylor House – Phase 1 of the planned expansion – is a 60-unit independent apartment house, connected to The Hickman Memorial Building by a pedestrian bridge over Biddle Street, and will house seniors of low and moderate incomes. For more information on The Hickman, visit



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