We’re thrilled to welcome five amazing community leaders to our collective of Women of Achievement Honorees!
The Women of Achievement Awards is a one-of-a-kind community event that showcases the accomplishments of women and gender expansive individuals who, through their careers and volunteerism, live out the YWCA’s mission of eliminating racism and empowering women in Lancaster County.
This is the 6th Women of Achievement Awards, which means that together we have created an incredible collective of community leaders from all backgrounds 26 strong, but about to be 31!
At YWCA Lancaster, we work every day to uplift and center the experiences and leadership of women and gender expansive community members. These are the folks who make up the majority of the workforce of our community, inside and outside the home; they provide on average more volunteer labor than anyone in our community, including in creating vital organizations like YWCA Lancaster back in 1889. We center women and gender expansive individuals because when we do that we all prosper.
This year’s pool of nominations was our biggest, and most competitive yet. Thank you to all who nominated, were nominated, and were a part of this year’s selection process.
2022 Women of Achievement Honorees
Program Coordinator at the Center for Creative Exploration at Pennsylvania College of Art & Design
Salina Almanzar (she/her) is a Puerto Rican and Dominican artist, educator, writer, social justice advocate. Her art and scholarship examine the intersections of Latinidad, feminism, decolonial practice, and Taino spirituality. She is specifically interested in what it means to be ni de aqui y ni de alla, meaning being part of a diaspora that is between spaces and between cultures.
Barbara Jean Ellis Wilson
Executive Director, Lancaster City Housing Authority
Barbara Jean Ellis Wilson (she/her) has dedicated her professional life to public service and strengthening community well-being. Currently leading the Lancaster City Housing Authority, Barbara ensures over 3,100 Lancaster City residents have safe, decent, and affordable housing. Barbara leads the organization of 35+ full-time employees in fulfilling the Authority’s mission to provide housing stability to our city’s most vulnerable populations. She is the first woman, and only African America, to lead the Lancaster City Housing Authority in its 70 years of existence.
Dr. Sharee Livingston, DO FACOG, Physician
Patients R Waiting, UPMC
Dr. Sharee Livingston (she/her) is Chair of the ObGyn Department at UPMC. She is the epitome of professionalism and excellence in medicine. She is known and respected by her peers and patients for her surgical expertise. Dr Livingston is a founding board member of Patients R Waiting and has taken her community work to a new level, mentoring students, founding the Doula initiative, and fighting COVID in our community.
Founder and Executive Guide at Unique Lancaster Experiences
Kendra Wolfe (she/her) is the founder of Unique Lancaster Experiences, a Black and female-owned business that creates meaningful Lancaster-based experiences for tourists and locals that builds community, as well as highlight local, minority, and women-owned businesses in Lancaster. Kendra works to provide opportunities and dignity for impoverished members of the community. She is a role model for others in turning their passion into profitable entrepreneurs who are excited about their careers while connecting with the community in an impactful way.
2022 Cheryl Gahring Award
We’re also proud to continue the presentation of the Cheryl Gahring award, created in memory of our colleague Cheryl Gahring who passed in 2021. This award is given to an extraordinary young person who represents the future of our community’s spirit of eliminating racism and empowering women.
2022 Cheryl Gahring Young Person of Achievement Award honoree:
Manheim Township ’22, Duke University
Sophie Yost (she/her) is a rising Freshman at Duke University. In her high school career, she became the National Field Director for MyVote Project, a national, nonpartisan voter education website with over 250 volunteers (myvoteproject.com). She is the founder of Manheim Township’s Coalition for Social Justice (@mt.coalition) and is a proud member and creator of Manheim Township’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Board to advance and support educational equity.
Join us on October 20!
We hope you’ll join us for 2022 Women of Achievement Awards on October 20, at the DoubleTree in Lancaster. Tickets are on sale starting this moment, so head over to YWCALAncaster.org to book your spot before tickets are gone! We’re so thrilled to be able to uplift and celebrate these honorees with you, as well as the community that helps make it all possible. We’ll see you on October 20!