At the VIP Reception
An Extraordinary First Exhibit
Clipper Gala Honorees
Mary Higgings Clark
Mary Higgins Clark joined Pan American World Airways in 1949 as a Flight Attendant (then Stewardess) assigned to the Atlantic Division and traveled throughout Europe, Africa, and Asia. Due to the regulation requiring female inflight crewmembers to resign upon marriage, Ms. Higgins Clark shortly resigned when she betrothed Warren Clark.
Mary began writing short stories and published her first in 1956. Her husband died in 1964, leaving the young widow to care for their five children alone. She wrote four-minute radio scripts to help pay the bills until her agent encouraged her to try her hand at books. She sold her first short story, “Stowaway”, when she was 28 years old and it was inspired by her experiences at Pan Am. Her first suspense novel, “Where Are the Children?” was published in 1975 and was an instant bestseller. In addition to writing, she returned to school to earn her philosophy degree from Fordham University in 1979.
Over the decades, Ms. Higgins Clark wrote more than thirty-four suspense novels that sold over 100 million copies in the United States alone, three collections of short stories, a memoir and co-authored five books with her daughter, Carol Higgins Clark. She is the bestselling fiction author in France and has held numerous posts among mystery genre circles, including President of Mystery Writers of America and Chairman of the International Crime Congress. She is also the inspiration for the Mystery Writers of America’s Mary Higgins Clark Award.
Two of her novels — Where Are the Children? and A Stranger Is Watching (1978) — have been made into films. In addition, several of her popular works, both short stories and novels, have been made into television films. She continues the release of her mystery novels with the book Daddy’s Gone A Hunting (2013).
In 1996, Mary Higgins Clark married John Conheeney, the retired Chairman and CEO of Merrill-Lynch Futures. They live in Saddle River, New Jersey. Between them, they have seventeen grandchildren — Mary’s six and John’s eleven.
Dolores Hofman joined Pan American World Airways in 1966 as a clerk/typist and was soon promoted in the Cargo, Material, and Personnel Departments at JFK. She was notably the first female at JFK licensed to operate a forklift. Ms. Hofman is currently Program Manager of the Queens Air Services Development Office (ASDO), where she matches aviation purchasing needs of JFK and LaGuardia airports with local businesses.
Involved with numerous public and civic-minded organizations, Ms. Hofman has served on the Board of Directors for the Air Cargo Association, Island Park Chamber of Commerce, the School Sisters of Notre Dame, and the Animal Protection Institute of America. She was a member of the steering committee for the JFK Career Center and is Past President of Animal Lifeline. In 1997, Ms. Hofman received the Bishop Wright Air Industry Award naming her their “Woman of the Year,” and in 2003, she was named “Woman of the Year” by Our Lady of the Skies Catholic Chapel, making her the first recipient of both prestigious airport awards. In 2004, she was the recipient of the Queens Council of the Boy Scouts’ Leadership Award, and in 2009 she was named one of the “Top Women in Business” by the Queens Courier and Queens Business Today.
Ms. Hofman is currently an Advisor to the Board of the JFK Chamber of Commerce, Vice President of the JFK Rotary, and Ms. New York Senior America 2016. A New York City native, Ms. Hofman resides on Long Island, New York with her husband of 48 years.