Women of Distinction

Date: Thursday, May 4, 2017 

Location: River Run Centre

Time: 6:30 – 10:00pm

Evening Includes: Cocktail Reception, Awards Ceremony, Dessert Reception 

The Guelph Y invites the community to an evening of recognition and inspiration as we celebrate the honourees of the 2017 Women of Distinction Awards on Thursday May 4, 2017 at the 22nd Annual Women of DistinctionTM Fundraising Gala, which will take place at the River Run Centre from 6:30 – 10:00pm. Tickets for the gala are now available in person at Member Services at the Guelph Y (130 Woodland Glen Dr.) or online.

The Guelph Y received an overwhelming number of nominations this year for so many outstanding leaders and the selection committee chose these 30 inspirational stories to be shared with the community. Rather than recognizing a recipient for each category, the focus of the gala will be to share the stories of these 30 pioneers and role models. There will also be several awards including two Lifetime Achievement Awards and the Turning Point Award.

The YMCA-YWCA of Guelph is delighted to announce the 30 honourees for the 22nd Annual Women of DistinctionTM Fundraising Gala:

  1. KELLIE ANGERILLI – Principal and mentor at St. John Bosco school
  2. KAREN BELLAMY – volunteer dedicated to church and community
  3. KAYLA BILLINGS – Volunteer, fundraiser, champion of those in need
  4. ISOBEL BOYLE – Accomplished nurse, dedicated volunteer, and Community Champion
  5. DR ANDREA BUCHHOLZ – Associate Professor of Applied Human Nutrition, U of G
  6. ANN CAINE — Founder, former executive director and continued supporter of Sunrise Therapeutic Riding and Learning Centre
  7. DR GERARDA DARLINGTON – Professor of Math and Statistics and mentor to women in the STEM fields
  8. PATRICIA ETON-NEUFELD – Accountant and professional volunteer
  9. MISTY GAGNE – President, CUPE Local 241
  10. KELLY GEE – Fitness guru and champion of health, wellness and fitness programs for seniors
  11. GAIL HOEKSTRA – Director, Welcome In Drop In Centre
  12. SHIRLEY HUNT – Community development worker, co-founder of Focus on Nature and Up and Running
  13. DR NINA JONES – Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair, Dept. of Molecular and Cellular Biology, University of Guelph
  14. LAURA KELLER – Volunteer with Girl Guides of Canada and St. George’s Anglican Church
  15. ALINA KISLENKO – Champion for people with ADHD, Aspergers and neurodiversity
  16. JORDYNN KLEIN – Fourth-year U of G student and passionate volunteer on and off campus
  17. BRIANA LYNCH – Founder of the Guelph Academy of Dance
  18. TRACEY MCGRATH – Financial advisor and vice president of Bracelet of Hope
  19. DR LUCY MUTHARIA – Associate professor of biology at the University of Guelph
  20. DR ÉVA NAGY – Scientist, researcher, trailblazer, and inspiration to hundreds of young female scientists
  21. KARLY RICHARDSON – mother, student and resilient role model
  22. LEAH ROBINSON – Paralympic athlete
  23. LYNNE SKILTON-HAYES — Fitness Program Supervisor at the University of Guelph, local and international fitness advocate
  24. SOPHIE SKOUFIS – Six-time world karate champion and owner of Guelph Family Martial Arts
  25. MARGARET STINSON – Lifetime volunteer committed to tourism, beautification and environmental projects
  26. LANA TARRANT – Owner, Appetizingly Yours Events and Catering
  27. MARISSA TEETER – Director of Corporate Communications for The Skyline Group of Companies
  28. DR JOCELYN WESSELS – Scientist, community volunteer, and role model to young women scientists
  29. GINA WOODS – Teacher, mother, and volunteer who led the charge in sponsoring a Syrian refugee family
  30. JOANNE YOUNG-EVANS – Executive Director of Family Counselling and Support Services Guelph-Wellington

What is Women of DistinctionTM?

Women of DistinctionTM is a celebration of women who are role models, pioneers and outstanding achievers – they improve the quality of life in our community.

When does the event take place?

The 2017 Women of DistinctionTM Fundraising Gala will take place on Thursday, May 4, 2017 at the River Run Centre.

What does the event support?

Women of DistinctionTM supports Guelph Y programs for girls and women at all stages of life in Guelph and Wellington County, including:

  • Power of Being a GirlTM – a one day conference for girls that helps build self-esteem and raises awareness about healthy relationships
  • Teenage Parents Program (TAPPs) – a program that supports the personal growth and development of pregnant and parenting teens and their families and connects them with valuable resources
  • Encore – a holistic program for women with breast cancer to help them build their own physical strength, as well as feel the strength and support of a community
sue smith-for mailing We are delighted to announce that Sue Smith will be the 2017 Women of DistinctionTM Honorary Chair. Read more about Sue’s inspirational story here.

The Guelph Y would like to thank the Women of DistinctionTM sponsors for supporting and empowering the women in our community. A special thank you to Presenting Sponsors, McNeil Consumer Healthcare, the University of Guelph, and CIBC for your support and for celebrating the achievements of outstanding women in Guelph and Wellington County.

Women of Distinction Presenting Sponsors 


Women of Distinction Gold Sponsors 




Women of Distinction Silver Sponsors 


Women of Distinction Bronze Sponsors 


Women of Distinction Friends/Media 






Click here to view Women of Distinction Past Recipients

If you have any questions, please contact Erica Charlesworth, Supervisor of Development and Communications, at ericacharlesworth@guelphy.org or 519-824-5150 ext. 255.

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