From left to right: Denise Mariani (WILA Co-Chair), Amy Brand (EWPBF President), Denise Valz (WILA Co-Chair) and Keely Gideon-Taylor (WILA Co-Chair).
Photos by Tracey Benson Photography
The 38th annual Women in Leadership Awards (WILA) Luncheon, hosted April 21 by the Executive Women of the Palm Beaches Foundation (EWPBF) at the Kravis Center-Cohen Pavilion, raised $50,000 to support scholarships for young women and provide grants to nonprofit organizations that benefit women and girls in Palm Beach County.
Amy “Emiko” Hever, the director of the Major League Baseball Players Trust, was the keynote speaker.
“Thank you to everyone who attended and supported the sold-out 38th annual WILA Luncheon,” said Amy Brand, the president of EWPBF. “It was a truly inspiring afternoon as we celebrated the 2022 WILA honorees, who are not only leaders in their field, but also leaders in our community.”
EWPBF was founded in 1982 by professional and executive women in Palm Beach County to support and advance women in business and in community leadership. The vision of the foundation is to “be the voice that inspires integrity, equality and leadership in the workplace and our community.”
Since 1983, WILA has raised over $880,000.
The Cynthia Allen Gracey WILA awards went to five women who demonstrated tremendous achievements and leadership in the community: nonprofit sector, Jessica Cecere, chief executive officer of Nonprofits First; private sector, Virginia M. Spencer, general manager of Illustrated Properties; public sector, Melissa McKinlay, Palm Beach County commissioner; volunteer sector, Julie H. Littky-Rubin, board-certified appellate attorney and partner at Clark Fountain; and emerging leader, Trina Holmsted, marketing director of Palm Beach Outlets.
During the luncheon, the President’s Award went to Bank of America, Palm Beach County. This award honors organizations that supports female talent and help promote the further achievement of women in the community. Stephanie Glavin, Bank of America's senior vice president market executive Palm Beach County, was at the event to accept the award.
The foundation promotes and hosts events for professional and executive women to network, collaborate, coach, mentor and support other female leaders in the community.
Additionally, membership in EWBPF allows nonprofit organizations to consult experts about development.
EWPBF has awarded over 200 scholarships to young women and 17 grants to local nonprofit programs.