From Jo Davis Malessa

Women’s Association of Methodist Hospital President

The Women’s Association of Methodist Hospital came before the Methodist Hospital Foundation by more than 100 years, but we have always shared one vision. Both of our efforts have changed and grown through the years, but we have both stayed the same in one very important way: helping people that live near or come to Methodist Hospital, Jefferson Health have better health mentally, physically and spiritually. jo-quote

From those first days of making bedsheets in 1887 as The Good Samaritan Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church to get the Hospital ready for its first patients (five years later!), the Women’s Association has always worked to make the days brighter for countless patients by giving them prayer shawls, lap robes and tray favors. It has, then and now, cooperated in all ways with the hospital administration to bring the most efficient patient care with the highest possible Christian standard to all people.



Learn more about Jo Davis Malessa

Jo Davis Malessa has a knack for making things grow and prosper, whether it is in the world of horticulture or as President of the Women’s Association of Methodist Hospital.

A Pennsylvania School of Horticulture for Women graduate and Temple University alumna, Jo was Director of the Horticultural Therapy Department at Friends Hospital in Philadelphia, a Horticultural and Landscape Consultant and the hospital accounts manager for a commercial florist.

She has been involved for years with the Women’s Association, which works with the Hospital administration to bring the most efficient patient care with the highest possible Christian standard to all people. The Women’s Association is over a hundred years old and is as vital as ever, from expanding to include various denominations to embracing technology to reach its members.

Jo is also President of the Educational Society of the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church and is active in Epworth United Methodist Church in Palmyra, N.J. There, she is a member of the Administrative Council, a lay member of The United Methodist Church of Greater New Jersey Annual Conference and Prayer Shawl Ministry Coordinator.


Hospital Chaplin and Women’s Association member Joanne Fong giving a hand-knitted lap robe to a patient

A History of Caring

The Women’s Association focuses on wellness inside and outside of Methodist Hospital

The Women Association of Methodist Hospital’s fundraisers have helped patients and families through donations to the chapel, the ICU quiet room and the gift shop’s renovations. These are just a few of the ways the Women’s Association has helped people find their way to complete wellness in their bodies, minds and souls, a goal the Foundation shares with it in every way.

The Women’s Association supports the Foundation in its efforts to build strong community wellness by giving to its Fashion Fundraisers through table sponsorship and raffle baskets. In 2016, the Women’s Association gave the Foundation $10,000 in support of the Community Paramedicine program, which helps patients coming home from the Hospital.


Women’s Association members inspect their handmade lap robes and tray favors for Hospital distribution

The Women’s Association began as The Good Samaritan Society with a focus on providing care to all in the highest Christian standard. Today, its members come from Methodist churches in eastern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey, as well as many other denominations, and these members are the ones that are building on the Association’s history of caring. The organization stays true to its original name and mission by doing good for the good of all. The Foundation shares its goal because it too believes when community wellness is strengthened, it benefits not just one person, but everyone around them in every way possible.

For more information or to become a member of the Women’s Association please contact Rosemarie Caporale at 215.952.9230 or email.


Meet the Women’s Association Board of Directors


(L to R) Patricia Aversa, Treasurer; Cathy Ettinger, Member at Large; Rosemarie Caporale, Executive Secretary; Jo Davis Malessa, President; Barbara Drake, Corresponding Secretary; and Natalie King, Member at Large; not pictured: Virginia and Stephen Haraszkiewicz, Members at Large, and Sally Grayson, Memorial Chair



Members of the Women's Association gather for their 2016 end of year luncheon at Methodist Hospital

Members of the Women’s Association gather for their 2016 end-of-year luncheon at Methodist Hospital