YWCA Richmond Announces 2017 Outstanding Women Awards Honorees

Published: Jan. 19, 2017 at 10:52 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 20, 2017 at 1:43 PM EST
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Lynelle Ediger, Aurelia Lewis, Julie McConell, Cassandra Reynolds (Source: YWCA Richmond)
Lynelle Ediger, Aurelia Lewis, Julie McConell, Cassandra Reynolds (Source: YWCA Richmond)
Heather Mullins Crislip, Clovia Lawrence, Jane Helfrich, Talley Baratka (Source: YWCA Richmond)
Heather Mullins Crislip, Clovia Lawrence, Jane Helfrich, Talley Baratka (Source: YWCA Richmond)

YWCA Richmond announced this week the eight women who will be honored at the 2017 Outstanding Women Awards Luncheon on April 28, 2017 at 12:00 noon at the Greater Richmond Convention Center.

Individual luncheon tickets can be purchased for $75.00. To sponsor or purchase tickets for the Outstanding Women Awards, visit www.ywcarichmond.org/owa.

"YWCA Richmond is excited to honor these eight outstanding women leaders in 2017 whose work has helped to shape our region," said Linda Tissiere, chief executive officer of YWCA Richmond.

Here are the honorees:

  • ARTS - Lynnelle Ediger-Kordzaia, founder and director of the American Youth Harp Ensemble; recognized for engaging underserved youth, the elderly individuals with illness or disabilities with innovative music programming.
  • BUSINESS - Aurelia Lewis, founder and president of Lewis Media Partners; recognized for empowering women in the workplace as a senior leader in her field, and for her involvement in raising awareness of community initiatives.
  • EDUCATION - Julie McConnell, associate clinical professor of law, University of Richmond, director of the The Children’s Defense Clinic; recognized for educating law professionals about serving vulnerable, yet resilient populations, including immigrant children, incarcerated youth, and survivors of domestic and sexual violence.
  • HUMAN RELATIONS & FAITH IN ACTION - Cassandra Reynolds, senior legal administrative coordinator at Hunton Williams & manager of Hunton Williams Church Hill Pro Bono Legal Clinic; recognized for connecting thousands of low-income individuals in with legal assistance and empowering at-risk youth and young girls as a mentor and tutor.
  • LAW & GOVERNMENT - Heather Mullins Crislip, chief executive officer and president, HOME (Housing Opportunities Made Equal of Virginia, Inc.); recognized for her commitment to ending systemic discrimination and segregation statewide through fair housing enforcement, education and advocacy.
  • MARKETING & MEDIA - Clovia Lawrence, community outreach director, Radio One; recognized for using her broadcast talents and advocacy to promote civic engagement in the Richmond region and help thousands of ex-offenders with restoration of rights.
  • NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT - Jane Helfrich, chief executive director, Richmond Metropolitan Habitat for Humanity; recognized for more than 30 years of nonprofit leadership, and building a stronger community by creating affordable housing opportunities for families in Richmond.
  • VOLUNTEERISM - Talley Baratka, community relations consultant and founder of Impact 100, recognized for her grassroots community building as a volunteer, specifically in encouraging women to collaborate to transform the Richmond region.

Now in its 37th year, this annual awards luncheon will celebrate the following women leaders who are transforming the Richmond region.

"Each of these women has demonstrated significant personal and professional achievement that has had a positive impact on our community and exemplifies YWCA Richmond's mission to promote peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all," said Tissiere.