August 8, 2018

YWCA Spokane Announces 2018 Women of Achievement Award Honorees

YWCA Spokane Announces this year’s Award Winners

YWCA Spokane is proud to announce its 2018 Women of Achievement Award Honorees. These 9 women will be honored at the Women of Achievement awards luncheon, held at The Davenport Grand, Thursday, October 4, 2018, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

“These women are truly astounding,” says Regina Malveaux, CEO of YWCA Spokane. “Our community wouldn’t be where it is today without their unique skills, talents, and leadership.”

For 36 years, YWCA Spokane has celebrated successful women at its annual luncheon, honoring over 245 women in our region. The event increases awareness and appreciation of the diverse contributions of women leaders in our community.


Photos provided courtesy of Hamilton Studio.

To be awarded a YWCA Women of Achievement Award, a woman must embody YWCA Spokane’s mission of eliminating racism and empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all by generously giving of herself to make Spokane a better place for everyone to live.

The winners of the 2018 Women of Achievement Awards are:
  • Sandra Olgard, Owner and Founder, Sandra Olgard’s Studio of Dance – Arts & Culture
  • Sharelynn Moore, Senior Vice President of Networked Solutions Group, Itron – Business & Industry
  • Sandy Williams, Publisher and Editor, Black Lens News – Carl Maxey Racial & Social Justice
  • Karen Winston, Director, Children’s Advocacy Center – Community Enhancement
  • Sally Pritchard, Vice President of Community Impact, Spokane County United Way – Community Enhancement
  • Lisa Taylor Laurier, Ed. D, Department Chair of the Teacher Education Program and Professor of Education, Whitworth University – Education
  • Lois James, Ph.D, Assistant Professor, WSU College of Nursing – Science, Technology & Environment
  • Rebecca Long, President and Founder, Future Ada – Young Woman
  • Sister Celine Steinberger, Sisters of Holy Names of Jesus and Mary – Lifetime Achievement

“The luncheon provides a special opportunity to pay homage to amazing women for their tireless contributions,” says Mireya Fitzloff, YWCA Spokane Women of Achievement Award Luncheon Co-Chair and YWCA Spokane Board Member. “It is an inspirational event that ignites and mobilize guests to participate in the solutions that advance our community and the quality of life for families, women, and children of all ages, races, and faiths.”

2018 Women of Achievement Honoree Bios


Reducing family trauma has been selected as Spokane’s top community concern. This year’s luncheon will focus on the connection between domestic violence and long-term outcomes for children as well as highlight the resilience which allows many to thrive despite significant childhood trauma. Between November 2016 and October 2017, 1,490 children and youth in Spokane were identified as victims in domestic violence-related incidents. Another 580 children were identified as witnesses. Over 13,500 victims are identified each year. However, less than 15% of incidents get reported.

“With over 1,200 guests at this luncheon,” says Marlene Feist, YWCA Spokane Women of Achievement Award Luncheon Co-Chair and YWCA Spokane Board Member, “YWCA sends a strong message to survivors that their community is here for them, that we do care, and that we are here to help.”

YWCA Spokane asks guests to not only celebrate the accomplishments of women leaders at this year’s luncheon, but to also consider joining them on a critical mission to address this community issue, which significantly affects our families and our economic health.


As the largest and most critical fundraising event for YWCA Spokane, with sponsorship from over 25 companies and organizations each year, Women of Achievement has evolved into one of the most prestigious award recognition events for women in our region.

Because of the incredible support of our major event sponsors, Providence Health Care, Numerica Credit Union, Avista, Kalispel Tribe of Indians and Northern Quest Resort & Casino, Northwest Farm Credit Services, and Inland Imaging, proceeds raised at the luncheon directly benefit YWCA Spokane’s services for those impacted by domestic violence.

To learn more about event sponsorship opportunities contact YWCA Spokane Development Director, Dana Morris Lee, at or call 509-742-0111.


The October 4th event will feature keynote speaker Gloria Norris, author of KooKooLand, a bracingly funny and chilling true crime memoir about a girl’s gutsy journey to escape her charismatic yet cruel father’s reign—an unforgettable story of violence, love, and, ultimately, triumph.

Corporate table, table captain, and individual ticket registration information is available here.

Women of Achievement Event Details


For 115 years, YWCA Spokane has been helping women and children overcome social, economic, and personal barriers in order to accomplish their goals and achieve healthier and more fulfilling lives. Today our areas of focus are supporting victims of intimate partner domestic violence (DV), building economic empowerment, promoting early childhood education, and confronting racial and social justice issues that negatively impact our clients and our community.

YWCA Spokane envisions a community in which DV is no longer tolerated, and embraces this vision through a continuum of wrap-around services: 24-hour Helpline and Safe Shelter, Counseling Center, Mental Health Services, Child Advocacy, Civil Legal Assistance, Legal Advocacy, Economic Empowerment Advocacy, and free drop-in childcare. In 2017, YWCA Spokane impacted the lives of over 16,000 women, children, and families.

By working at the intersections of inequality, poverty, and DV we are able to disrupt longstanding societal patterns of trauma.

Sincere Thank You To Our 2018 Major Event Sponsors
















Dodson’s Jewelers

Empire Health Foundation

Gonzaga University

HUB International

McAloon Law

Moss Adams

Northwestern Mutual

Potlatch Corporation

The Karen Winston Family

The Spokesman-Review

United Way

US Bank

Whitworth University

Witherspoon, Brajcich, & McPhee

YMCA of the Inland Northwest

By: Erica Schreiber

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