Oct. 25, 2007
Contact: Gordon Ovenshine
724.738.4854; c 724.991.8302
Foundation honors SRU alumna for mentoring girl gymnasts
SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Elaine Jewart, a 1966 Slippery Rock University graduate who owns one of the oldest gymnastics schools in the country, has been honored as an outstanding woman in the region by the Women and Girls Foundation of Southwest Pennsylvania.
The foundation recognized Jewart at its annual awards celebration for her contribution to the development of girls through her involvement and support of athletics.
She founded Jewart's Gymnastics in Hampton in 1969 and also owns and manages the Pittsburgh Northstars, a team that competes in artistic and rhythmic gymnastics at the local and national level.
"I've come to realize that gymnastics training is not so much about teaching cartwheels and back handsprings but about developing the talent of our students and building their character to prepare them for a world of possibilities," Jewart said. "We build strong, confident young women who are high achievers, wonderful leaders and role models."
Jewart and her staff of assistants coach preschoolers and young girls. More than 50 of her girls have earned spots on collegiate gymnastics teams, many receiving full scholarships. Others transition into cheerleading, volleyball, basketball, crew and track.
Jewart's Gymnastics won the 1999 Family Business of the Year Award from the Katz Family Enterprise Center at the University of Pittsburgh. Jewart has been named one of Pennsylvania's Best 50 Women in Business.
Jewart graduated from SRU, where she was a gymnast who was later elected to the Hall of Fame, with a degree in physical education. Her husband, Tom Jewart, graduated from SRU in 1966 with a degree in English.
The Women and Girls Foundation of Southwest Pennsylvania serves 11 counties. Its mission it to achieve social, political and economic equality for women and girls in the region.
Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.