Women of Distinction Nominees 2018

Women of Distinction Awards

The YWCA Women of Distinction Awards presented by Scotiabank is our premier fundraising event, honouring extraordinary women leaders and businesses. 

About The Awards

2021 Women of Distinction Awards

Event Information

Date: June 7, 2021

Time: 6:00 pm


Tickets will go on sale soon

Awards Categories

She enriches the community through her talents and her commitment to visual, literary, media, architectural and/or performing arts and has made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver. She excels at facilitating or promoting the artistic efforts of others and broadening community engagement in the arts. She may be a curator, arts administrator, artist or other member of the arts community.  

Her colleagues and competitors in the field acknowledge her professional leadership and consistent commitment to excellence. She has made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver while leveraging her achievements and business acumen to facilitate change and create opportunities. She demonstrates respect for, and engagement with her community, clients and colleagues. She may be a CEO, senior executive, professional or businesswoman. 

She has personally identified a local community need or issue and initiated meaningful change, dedicating her own time and resources to champion her cause. What started as a volunteer crusade could now be a full-time or paid role for this leader. She has made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver while being recognized as a source of strength and heart in her community and is able to harness the time, talent and capacity of others. She may be a founding member, administrator, board member or another community-minded leader. 

She inspires a passion for life-long learning in those around her and has made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver. She contributes through practice, research or administration in a learning environment including the education system, employee training and development, community education and/or alternative programs. She motivates others to gain knowledge, set goals or seek opportunities. She may be an academic, educator, administrator or other champion of learning. 

She has taken an innovative approach to solving a problem, filling a need or breaking into a new market. Her drive, ingenuity and solid vision for her business separates her from her competitors. She has made sacrifices and taken great risks to successfully launch, revive or manage a business, all while having made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver. She may be a founder, owner, leader or other innovator who has been operating for a minimum of three years.

She is dedicated to promoting and creating the practices that contribute to a sustainable community, while having made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver. She generates opportunities that minimize the physical, ecological, human and economic impact on our planet. She collaborates with and educates others to identify strategies and solutions for good environmental practices and partnerships. She may be an advocate, leader, administrator or other promoter of green initiatives and practices. 

She has an unwavering commitment to delivering, promoting and advocating for healthy lives and communities. She has made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver while empowering her community to change or better their lives through improved health and wellness practices. She may be a physician, practitioner, nurse or other woman committed to health and wellness. 

Hired or summoned to the role for her exemplary qualifications, she propels change through her leadership, professionalism and vision within the non-profit sector. She has made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver while strengthening and building momentum and capacity by advocating for important issues and/or causes. She mentors, inspires and mobilizes others through her personal commitment and passion. She has successfully identified new opportunities, resources and/or partnerships. She may be a director, CEO, and/or visionary. 

Honouring two unique women, an Indigenous leader and an ally, working independently and committed to finding a new way forward. They engage their communities in dialogue and actions to strengthen relationships. They have made a significant and sustained difference across Metro Vancouver by supporting healing and building more just and equitable communities for all people. They may be a champion or advocate committed to the reconciliation movement. 

She has made a significant and sustained difference in Metro Vancouver through her dedicated pursuit of scientific, technological and/or research-based discoveries. She is highly respected in her field and is a sought-after visionary and mentor of other women. Her dedicated approach to her industry and/or program signifies her leadership and critical thinking abilities. She may be a scientist, researcher, senior administrator or other leader. 

Young WOD

She is an exceptional young woman aged 18-25 who demonstrates leadership, maturity and compassion. She has made a significant difference in Metro Vancouver through her commitment to a cause or pursuit of a personal dream while showing perseverance, innovation and a keen understanding of community issues. 

This award category recognizes a business or organization that has implemented a unique workplace culture. It supports and responds to the diverse needs of its employees, encouraging them to balance the demands and rewards of career, family, community and personal growth. This business or organization acknowledges the additional challenges that its female employees may face and proactively supports the success and advancement of women in its workplace. 



Receive high-level visibility before, during and after the event while aligning your business with a great cause. 

Sponsorship opportunities offer a perfect platform to showcase your brand directly to an exclusive market of professionals. 

Recognition levels can be tailored to your marketing needs to ensure your message is delivered in line with your corporate social responsibility goals. 

Sponsorship levels range from $3,500 to $25,000. 

To learn more, please contact Jena Fair at distinction@ywcavan.org | 604 895 5768.

Thank you to our 2020 Sponsors!
Sponsors 2021
Past Nominees

Our alumnae include some of Metro Vancouver's most inspiring and influential women whose outstanding achievements have made a lasting impact on the well-being of our community. 

Women of Distinction Awards Nominees 1984 - 2020




Recognize trailblazers across Metro Vancouver by nominating a woman or workplace for a YWCA Women of Distinction Award. 

We strongly encourage nominations that recognize the contributions of Black, Indigenous and People of Colour, as well as LGBTQ2S+ individuals. 

View our FAQ page for answers to frequently asked questions. 

Nomination Information

Eligible nominees must: 

  1. Live and work (individuals) or operate (businesses and organizations) within the Metro Vancouver region bounded by and including Hope, Pemberton, Sunshine Coast and the United States border 

  1. Not currently be taking part in a campaign or serving a term in office as an elected government official 

  1. Satisfy each of the nomination criteria for their award category 

  1. Consent to the nomination and the publication of their name, photo and information 

  1. Attend the Women of Distinction Awards photoshoot 

  1. Be available to attend the event 

  1. For the Young Woman of Distinction category, be 18-25 years of age as of March 4, 2020 

  1. Satisfy the YWCA Metro Vancouver Women of Distinction Values Statement (see below) 

  1. Submit a quote and participate in the Connecting the Community Award (individuals only) 

A Woman of Distinction inspires others. She has achieved outstanding success in her field by: 

  1. Showing vision and initiative to break new ground or old barriers  

  1. Demonstrating accomplishments that help her stand out amongst her peers 

  1. Being a leader and role model 

  1. Participating actively as a volunteer 

  1. Being recognized by her community for her sustained commitment and contribution within her category 

An outstanding workplace supports the wellness and diverse needs of its employees by: 

  1. Being a role model in best workplace practices by implementing an innovative initiative exclusively for employees  

  1. Being progressive and responsive to employee needs, including work-life balance 

  1. Supporting the advancement and success of women 

  1. Fostering professional development and mentorship 

  1. Supporting employee volunteerism and community initiatives 

  1. Promoting healthy lifestyles 

All nominations must be completed online. We recommend that you complete your work in a word processing program, such as Microsoft Word, and then copy and paste it into the form when you are ready. Please refer to the FAQ page

The Nominations Committee reviews all submissions for completeness, eligibility and ensures that each nomination fulfills ALL of the nomination criteria. Please note that not every nomination submission is accepted. Accepted nominations are forwarded to an independent Judging Panel. The Nominations Committee and Judging Panel reserve the right to withhold an award in any category.  

The YWCA Metro Vancouver Women of Distinction Awards encourages nominations that showcase individuals who are driving positive change either directly or by example. Activities and achievements of all potential nominees must align with the YWCA’s values. The candidates’ participation in employment, recreation or special interests encapsulates the spirit of women’s equality as outlined in YWCA Metro Vancouver’s mission and vision. The YWCA reserves the right to revoke an award if subsequent circumstances respecting the recipient contradict the mission, ethics and/or values of YWCA Metro Vancouver or bring its reputation into disrepute. The nominee or nominator may withdraw the nomination, for any reason, up to two weeks before the award ceremony. The withdrawal must be made in writing, notifying the nominator/nominee and the YWCA of the withdrawal. The YWCA will accept the withdrawal, effective immediately. 

Awards Process

From September 22, 2020 to January 15, 2021

Support the people and organizations that are making a difference across Metro Vancouver by nominating a woman or workplace for a YWCA Women of Distinction Award. 

Nominations for the 2021 Awards are now closed.

January and February

The Nominations Committee reviews all submissions for completeness, eligibility and ensures that each nomination fulfills ALL of the nomination criteria.  

March 8, 2021

All nominees are invited to the Announcing the Nominees event on March 8, 2021, where they are invited to get to know each other and celebrate their nominations. 

March to May

Each YWCA Women of Distinction nominee is eligible to win the Connecting the Community Award. The recipient is selected by public vote (online), and the winner chooses a YWCA cause that is important to her, donating $10,000, courtesy of Scotiabank, to the YWCA program of her choice. 

An external, diverse panel of judges, including community leaders and members of the public, evaluate nominee applications to decide each category recipient. Judge's names are not disclosed.

June 7, 2021

Winners are announced at the Women of Distinction Awards, our premier fundraising event. By purchasing tickets, you are supporting vital services to women and children in Metro Vancouver. 


Meet our
2020 Recipients

More than 800 guests and volunteers joined our first-ever virtual event on September 23rd, 2020 to honour inspiring nominees and their achievements.