Hollon ‘history champion’ of county, theatre


News Journal



Editor’s Note: This is the third of eight stories appearing daily in the News Journal on the members of the 2017 Class of the Outstanding Women of Clinton County.

When it comes to pictorial documentation of Clinton County’s history, one name comes to mind.

For many years, Wilmington News Journal readers have enjoyed the window into our town and county’s past that Jennifer (Bath) Hollon has opened through the many memorable photographs she has shared. For this, and for her efforts on behalf of the Murphy Theatre, as well as her many other contributions to the community, Hollon has been nominated to the 2017 Class of the Outstanding Women of Clinton County.

After graduating from Wilmington College with a degree in Art Education, she taught art classes in the Wilmington School System for many years, while lending her talent to the ornamentation of those schools. During her time at Holmes Elementary, for example, she painted murals in the lobby and other areas, and color-coded the ceilings with painted butterflies to help parents find their children’s classrooms.

The Clinton County Historical Society has been a significant part of Hollon’s life from an early age, as her father (Dr. Richard Bath) was on its founding committee. A long-time member of the Society, she currently presides over its Board of Trustees, a position she has held for several years. Judge John W. “Tim” Rudduck, a fellow Trustee, affirms that, “She is a champion for ensuring the history of Clinton County is not lost to future generations.”

During the Ohio History Connections Open Doors program to promote historic buildings around the state, Hollon displayed photographs from her late father’s collection on easels, making multiple presentations from the front of the Murphy Theatre.

Also, during Clinton County’s 2010 Bicentennial Celebration, she displayed historic pictures in the windows of the Wilmington City Building, and created a special rotating display for the Bicentennial Ball held in the spring of that year by the Health Alliance of Clinton County.

And of course, she is responsible for the remarkable photo display that presently graces the lobby of the Murphy Theatre.

Indeed, Hollon’s personal involvement with both preservation and everyday functioning of the historic theatre is well known. Currently on its Board of Directors, her past efforts on the Planning Committee have helped bring many celebrated performers to town, including the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra.

Also through her efforts, the theatre is licensed to operate its own food concession.

She has recently authored The Historic Murphy Theatre: The People, the Entertainment, the Monument, scheduled for publication at the end of 2017. Profits from sale of the book will benefit the theatre, which will celebrate its 100th year in 2018.

Hollon was active in the Auxiliary to the Clinton County Medical Association, and subsequently in the non-profit Health Alliance of Clinton County, which was formed after the sale of Clinton Memorial Hospital in 2010.

In 1982, she organized the first Health Awareness Week for the city and county schools. She has co-chaired the Decorations Committee for the Health Alliance Ball every year since 2011, and routinely assists in the Alliance’s many other charitable fundraisers—including design and sale of her own line of hand-painted jewelry.

In addition, she served on the Citizens’ Advisory Committee for establishment of the Wilmington Schools Foundation, of whose board she was then a member for 17 years. She has received the 2014 Community Service Award from the George Clinton Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution and was named the 2015 “First Lady of the Year” for community service by the Beta Sigma Phi sorority.

Editor’s Note: This is the second of eight stories appearing daily in the News Journal on the members of the 2017 Class of the Outstanding Women of Clinton County.

Tickets for the March 4 Outstanding Women of Clinton County luncheon at 11:30 a.m. at the Roberts Centre are $25 (cash or check accepted). Reservations can be made at the Wilmington News Journal, 761 S. Nelson Ave., Wilmington, OH 45177. The News Journal’s office hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday. If you have any questions, please call 937-382-2574. Reservations will be accepted through March 1.

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