On Friday March 9th, YWCA Princeton honored eight inspiring women at the annual Tribute to Women Awards. This year marked the 35th anniversary of this signature YWCA Princeton event. Women of excellence, who live or work in the greater Princeton area and who have made significant contributions in their professions and communities, are honored each year at this event.
The 2018 honorees were: Carolyn Biondi (Arm In Arm), Linda Mead (D&R Greenway), Catherine Milone (Junior Achievement of New Jersey), Carol M. Ober (AARP Foundation) , Carolyn P. Sanderson (Morgan Stanley), Fern Spruill (YMCA Committed and Faithful Princetonians), Paula Troy (RWK, LLC) and Patricia Clearwater (awarded posthumously, Breast Cancer Resource Center Mission Supporter).
The Tribute to Women Awards night began with a warm welcome to everyone present and a big thank you to all our sponsors, from Nancy Faherty, Director of Advocacy and Development at the YWCA Princeton. She invited Kelli Peterson, Vice President at Wells Fargo, the presenting sponsor of the night, on stage to say a few words. Kelli said, “A night like tonight is so special, particularly with the current social climate, because it is important to celebrate female leaders who are paving the way, opening doors, and making sure that other women have a seat at the right tables and a voice in the right rooms.”
Dr. Cheryl Rowe-Rendleman, President of the YWCA Princeton Board, who took the stage next, thanked everyone for coming to the event and asked the audience, “Some of you are mindful that the daily realities of all forms of bias, prejudice and bigotry exist in your own lives, even your families and among your circle of friends and maybe among your coworkers at work. And you ask yourself, how long? How long will this go on?”. Speaking to the audience about YWCA Princeton’s mission and its various programs such as the Breast Cancer Resource Center, Child Development Center, NEXT GEN Board, and others, she concluded, “With agencies like the YWCA Princeton, the answer is not too long.”
After dinner, Anna Lustenberg and Kathie Morolda, past honorees of the Tribute to Women Awards, called upon each honoree from our new class of 2018 to accept their awards and share a few words about their journey. As CEO Judy Hutton remarked, “Our 2018 Honorees and their sister honorees across the nation have been selected because they walk the talk of our YWCA mission. From Trenton to Princeton and beyond, we are empowered by our Tribute to Women honorees. This group is now more than 500 women strong, and growing day by day.” The evening drew to a close with group pictures, and many happy memories made with a room full of inspiring and empowering women.
This event would not have been possible without the generosity of our presenting sponsors Wells Fargo; collaborating sponsor NJM Insurance Group, Capital Health, Princeton Area Community Foundation; supporting sponsors PSE&G, Wawa, Sharbell Development Corp., Withum, RWJBarnabas Health; ad book sponsor NJM Insurance Group; and our in-kind sponsors Riverview Studios, La Jolie Salon and Spa, Global Planners Inc., Herbstone Design, LLC, photography by Lisa Sullivan Digital Artist LLC, Mary Harris Events, Cranbury Station Gallery, Hamilton Jewelers, Hyatt Regency Princeton, Monday Morning Flower and Balloon Co., and TapSnap.