• Elgin YWCA recognizes 2022 Leader Luncheon recipients

    Elgin YWCA recognizes 2022 Leader Luncheon recipients 
    Over 350 community members attended the 38th annual YWCA Elgin Leader Luncheon Awards at The Seville in Streamwood on Thursday, May 12, 2022.  
    As the luncheon began, Leader Luncheon general chair Jennifer Rakow expressed appreciation to the event’s major sponsors for their support with congratulations to past recipients and all 2022 nominees. Following an invocation by Captain Linnea Forney of the Salvation Army in Elgin, keynote speaker Sharon Bush of the Grand Victoria Foundation expressed her support of the Elgin YWCA and its focus on racial diversity. Linda Knight, YWCA Elgin board chair, recognized the Leader Luncheon committee and this year’s judges.
    Individual Awards chair Nancy Schueneman named the recipients of the 2022 Leader Luncheon Awards in the following categories. Recipients named with their nominators include:
    • Margaret Hillis Award for the Arts: Ivette De Santiago (Side Street Studio Arts );
    • Beatrice Dorsey Award for Business and Professions: Sheri De Shazo (Advocate Sherman Hospital);
    • Marguerite Henry Award for Communication/Technology: Mary Dulabaum (Judson University);
    • Harriet Gifford Award for Education: Cathy Taylor (Elgin Community College);
    • Myrtle Spiegler Gerberding Award for Public Service: Heidi Holthusen (Elgin Police Department);
    • Marie Grolich Award for Social Service: Sister Leticia M. Lapid, OSF (Ascension Saint Joseph Hospital Elgin);
    • Marjorie Leonard Award for Volunteer & Community Service: Mary Jo Sheehy (Betsy Cappas, Taffy Hoffer, Pam Katalich Eggum and Kathy Hurt)
    Betty Brown of Elgin recognized the recipient of the Betty Brown Racial Justice Award, which is named in her honor: Brittney Nicole Walker (Dr. Mae Hicks Jones )
    A custom individual professional portrait of each recipient will be taken by Ruben Ramos Photography in Elgin.  The tradition has continued which Cathy Neuhalfen, owner of Interesting Developments in Algonquin and her mother, the late Molly Konitzer, who had taken portraits of every recipient since the YWCA Elgin Leader Luncheon was founded in 1984 through 2016.  This year over 270 portraits were on display depicting the community leader recipient in each category. They filled both sides of the large banquet room in the Seville.
    A special announcement was made by Schueneman, who told guests that a new Youth Services Award will be given starting in 2023 to a local high school student.  A part of the award will be a $2,000 scholarship for college.
    The YWCA Elgin is proud to honor women leaders in the community who strive towards its mission of empowering women and promoting racial justice in Elgin. Visit ywcaelgin.org.
    Recipients of the 38th Annual YWCA Elgin Leader Luncheon awards are pictured front, left to right: Mary Jo Sheehy, Sister Leticia M. Lapid, OSF, Ivette De Santiago, and Brittney Nicole Walker; pictured back, left to right: Heidi Holthusen, Cathy Taylor, Mary Dulabaum, and Sheri De Shazo.