JLR Past-President, Liz Powell, Named 2009 YWCA Woman OF DistinctionAugust 1, 2009
MOUNT PLEASANT – Eight women will be recognized as Women of Distinction at the 21st annual Women of Distinction dinner sponsored by the YWCA of Racine. The event will be held 6 p.m. Aug. 12 at Roma Lodge , 7130 Spring St.
Women of Distinction, a nationally established YWCA award, is designed to honor women who are committed to creating strong, sustainable social change through passion, insight and leadership. The YWCA of Racine is aligned with the national YWCA which is celebrating 150 years of empowering women and eliminating racism. More than 150 Racine County women have been honored in the 21 years the YWCA of Racine has celebrated this event.
This year’s recipients represent leadership in many facets of the Racine community. The 2009 Women of Distinction are:
Karen Bayer, profession/business category. As executive director of Leadership Racine, Bayer has encouraged and influenced people of all races and backgrounds to become community leaders. Bayer also serves on the Racine Parks Commission.
Mary Helena, woman of courage category. A freelance performing artist/storyteller, Helena uses her artistic gifts to give others courage and guidance in their lives and to increase understanding of diversity in our community.
Nancy Holmlund, human rights category. Through more than 30 years of teaching eighth-grade social studies at Starbuck Middle School and her involvement in the Racine Interfaith Organization/WISDOM, Homlund has influenced many people young and old to find their voices and express their wishes to decision makers.
Stephanie Nistler, Young Woman of Tomorrow category. Stephanie Nistler, a June graduate of St. Catherine’s High School, is often caregiver for a mother and brother with serious illnesses. At school, she maintained a 3.60 grade point average, played golf and ran track, and contributed at least 200 hours of community service work.
Elizabeth (Liz) Powell, youth education category. Powell has dedicated thousands of hours of volunteer time to efforts that would improve quality of life and education of Racine’s youth. Through more than 11 years of involvement in the Junior League of Racine, and with the Women’s Resource Center, Cops ‘N Kids, and other organizations, she has championed many successful youth-focused programs.
Bailee Sliker, Young Woman of Tomorrow category. Sliker, a June graduate of Case High School, is called an exceptional leader in academics, volunteerism and in sports by the high school instructors and counselors who nominated her for this honor.
Melissa Warner, environmental category. Warner serves as an advocate for the environment through her leadership in many organizations. She directs Weed Out! Racine, an organization to reduce invasive species of plants in Racine. She is a member of the Root-Pike Watershed Initiative and writes for their newsletter.
Nancy Wolf, arts & humanities category. Wolf has served as a docent with the Wustum Museum-Racine Art Museum for more than 25 years, where she has shared her vast knowledge and love of the arts with countless school children. She has taken an active role in numerous non-profit organizations’ efforts, including Wheaton-Franciscan Health Care, Racine Zoo and many others.