Recognizing women and their achievements. That is the role of the 17th Annual Women of Distinction Awards.

A gala evening on October 24th, hosted by Moose FM morning show host Kathy Jennings, will bring together women who have been recognized by family members, peers, colleagues and the public for the work they have done in the Muskoka community.

The awards committee is still accepting nominees in various categories and organizer Laura Sundy is urging people to recognize someone important in their day-to-day lives.

“If you have been thinking of nominating someone, now is the time to do it,” Sundy says.

Nominations are done online and cover eight categories:

  • Young Women of Distinction
  • Mentorship
  • Arts, Culture and Creative Energy
  • Health, Sports and Wellness
  • Community Development and Social Activism
  • Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship
  • Lifetime Achievement
  • Transformational– a brand new award category to recognize women who have overcome significant challenges in their lives; someone who has faced adversity and demonstrated resilience in improving the quality of her life and is an inspiration to others.

Sundy says the awards are special for those that receive them, but the gala is a chance to be seen by the community and to also interact with other important women in the area.

“We have all our nominees there with family and friends . . . and it is a night of celebration and recognition,” she says.

To nominate someone you can go to the YWCA website.

Or you can pick up a nomination form at the YWCA office, 440 Ecclestone Drive in Bracebridge.

The awards gala dinner is being held at the Grandview Resort on October 24th, with proceeds going towards creating positive change for women and girls in Muskoka, through leadership, education and advocacy.

Here is a list of the 2017 recipients:

  • Young Woman of Distinction: Candace Yule
  • Arts, Culture & Creativity: Michelle Emson
  • Business Innovation & Entrepreneurship: Nicole Manion
  • Community Development & Social Activism: Dawn Novak
  • Health, Sports & Wellness: Norma Connolly
  • Mentorship: Bonnie Dart
  • Lifetime Achievement: Debby Andrews
  • New* Transformational Award: Brenda Woods