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NEW! Winter
Your Guide


Holiday Art & Craft Sale
Now thru Dec. 5

Stretching & Strengthening
Nov. 30, 10:30–11:30a

Supper & Film:
5 Flights Up

Nov. 30, 6:00–9:00p

Hatha Vinyasa/ Restorative Yoga
Dec. 3, 9:30–10:45a

Therapeutic Yoga
Dec. 4, 10:00–11:00a

Yoga Nidra
Dec. 5, 10:00–11:30a

Take a Dip Into Watercolor
Dec. 5, 10:00–1:00p

Mindfulness Group
Dec. 7, Noon–1:30p

Art Uncorked: Tote Bag
Dec. 8, 6:00–8:00p

Dec. 9, Noon–1:15p

Lunch & Film:
Love Actually

Dec. 16, Noon–2:00p

Candlelight Winter Solstice Celebration
Dec. 17, 5:30–7:00p


Calendar of Events



The Womanspace staff is a creative team composed of five energetic women with diverse and complementary skills. Each person on staff is a welcoming presence for our many members, class participants, and visitors. Working at Womanspace allows Elaine Hirschenberger, Pat Lai, Liz Kulevich Hiemstra, Julie Maffei and Cherie Heck to create a continually evolving, dynamic environment that is full of warmth, support, and a genuine respect for the life processes that unfold here.

In addition to our staff, Womanspace welcomes the many members and volunteers who assist with so many tasks that keep our activities, office procedures and programs running smoothly. Womanspace is fueled by the great energy of many people!


Elaine Hirschenberger – Executive Director

Elaine HirschenbergerAs Executive Director and Cofounder, Elaine brings abundant energy and dedication to Womanspace. Her conscientious and sensitive personality makes her a welcoming, hospitable presence. Along with administering the business side of Womanspace, Elaine also uses her considerable talents facilitating some programs special to her, among them the Seekers Group and advanced clay classes. Occasionally, Elaine teaches or facilitates other programs at Womanspace and often exhibits her artwork in New Dimensions Gallery. She works closely with the Building and Grounds Committee, as well as the Finance, Human Resources and Executive Committees of the Board of Directors.

Elaine received her degree in English from Alverno College. She pursued further studies in art and design at College of DuPage, Rockford College and Northern Illinois University. She is an active member of School Sisters of Saint Francis, an international community of religious women based in Milwaukee.


Pat Lai – Graphic Designer/Office Coordinator

Pat LaiAs Graphic Designer/Office Coordinator, Pat brings to Womanspace her humor and professional expertise. She has over 25 years of graphic design, page production and project management experience in industrial, service and consumer marketing communications. Pat holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design and Printmaking from the University of Northern Iowa. She tries to have a life outside of Womanspace … whenever they release the chains.


Liz Kulevich Hiemstra – Marketing Coordinator

Pat Bonavia Liz has a degree in marketing communication from Columbia College Chicago and several years of marketing and public relations experience in the Rockford area. She also spends her time tutoring first graders in the Harlem and Rockford school districts through the United Way I-READ program.


Julie Maffei – Program Coordinator

Pat BonaviaAs Program Coordinator Julie Maffei brings enthusiasm and a strong commitment to planning programs that build community, support individual well-being, provide opportunities for learning and foster creativity. She loves working in an environment where those things are central to every aspect of the organization.

Julie holds a master's degree in rehabilitation counseling from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. She has experience coordinating various education programs including Elderhostel (before it was Road Scholar) and professional continuing education. When she is not at Womanspace she enjoys volunteering at a therapeutic riding center, gardening, hiking and rowing.


Cherie Heck – Art Programs & Volunteer Coordinator

Cherie HeckCherie is a longtime Womanspace member, teaches several classes here, has had her art in a number of exhibits, is a Passport to the Arts committee member and Chairperson of the Gallery committee, and is our Art Programs & Volunteer Coordinator...whew!