SOWINS shines spotlight on women’s achievement

Outstanding women from Osoyoos, Naramata, Summerland and Penticton were honoured Saturday during the sixth annual Women Front and Centre Awards Dinner and Gala.

Outstanding women from Osoyoos, Naramata, Summerland and Penticton were honoured Saturday during the sixth annual Women Front and Centre Awards Dinner and Gala.

The event is a fundraiser for the South Okanagan Women in Need Society, a non-profit society that provides services for abused women and their children.

This year’s four recipients of the new Courage category — Syl Blanchard, Vareia Green, Darlene Gruetzbach and Amanda Harris — brought the mixed crowd of 300 men and women to their feet in a spontaneous standing ovation in recognition of each of their personal battles with extreme adversity.

“Every person is different when it comes to facing fears,” said co-emcee Bob Nicholson, a former Calgary CBC TV anchor, in announcing the submissions. “What is daunting to one, may not be daunting to another. But no one can argue with the challenges these gals have faced.”

The evening marked the 30th anniversary to the day of SOWINS’ incorporation in 1981, and celebrated community support by men as well as women over the years in promoting healthy relationships between the sexes.

Olympian Kristi Richards, who hails from Summerland, was named this year’s winner in the Sports category. Her award was accepted on her behalf by her mother.

Forty-nine women were nominated in 12 categories ranging from arts, sports and non-traditional trades to business, customer service,  health, education, community work, volunteerism, young leader, and lifetime achievement.

Winners in the various categories are: Trades — Rishia McDowell of Penticton; Arts — Tracy Fehr of Summerland; Young Leader — Camelia Vokey of Penticton; Finance, Entrepreneur, Business — Andrea Robertson of Penticton; Health and Wellness — Connie Kiefiuk of Naramata; Excellence in Instruction — Kathy Pierre of Penticton; Excellence in Service — Dale Belvedere of Summerland; Volunteerism — Lauraine Bailie of Penticton; Community Contribution — Frances Sologuk of Osoyoos; and Lifetime Achievement — Wendy Binggeli of Penticton.

 

Just Posted

Sandra Krauer, Penticton Mayor John Vassilaki and Barb Hoolaeff were in Skaha Park to announce the return of Ribfest for September, 2021. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Ribfest returns to Penticton

Festival runs from Sept. 17 - 19 at Skaha Lake Park with proceeds going to new splash park

Fiery crash on the Okanagan Connector between two semis. (Facebook)
One dead after fiery Okanagan Connector crash between two semis

DriveBC estimates road won’t be open until 5 p.m.

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Second dose vaccinations accelerating throughout region: Interior Health

To date, more than 675,000 doses have been administered throughout the region

Turn out is high in advance voting for the Penticton by election taking place Saturday, June 19, 2021. (Screen shot)
Over 2,500 already voted in Penticton by-election

General voting day is Saturday, June 19

The City of Penticton is beginning plans to revitalize its north entrance on Highway 97. (Jesse Day - Western News)
Penticton reviewing ideas on how to make the city’s north gateway more vibrant

The city has plans to redevelop the area into a welcoming and attractive entrance

Bear wanders Kelowna on June 15. (Michelle Wallace/Facebook)
Bear climbs fence, uses crosswalk in Kelowna

The bear was spotted on Baron Road Wednesday evening

A vial containing the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is shown at a vaccination site in Marcq en Baroeul, outside Lille, northern France, Saturday, March 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michel Spingler
mRNA vaccines ‘preferred’ for all Canadians, including as 2nd dose after AstraZeneca: NACI

New recommendations prioritizes Pfizer, Moderna in almost all cases

Lady Dia, pictured with her son Glory, is a Kelowna artist. She recently received $10,000 in funding for her podcast MoM:ents. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Lady Dia selected as City of Kelowna’s artist in residence

Dia will release a project designed to discuss and shape the future of a more inclusive Kelowna

Birch Parlee is one of approximately 132,000 transgender people living across the nation, according to Statistics Canada. Photo submitted
Transgender in a small town – Princeton B.C.

“I buried it. I pushed it down. I lived a lie.”

Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum speaks at a press conference in August 2019 about provincial government approval of the city’s change to a municipal force, joined by councillors (from left) Mandeep Nagra, Allison Patton and Doug Elford. Members of the National Police Federation claim there is still no transition plan in place although Surrey RCMP’s contract with the city is due to end March 31.(File photo)
Elections BC approves petition application for referendum on Surrey policing transition

Application was filed under Recall and Initiative Act by the widow of a Surrey murder victim

(Black Press Media stock photo)
RCMP name 2015 homicide victim near Creston, investigation ongoing

26-year-old Clint Wolfleg was found dead in a private residence on May 31, 2015

Queen’s counsel Paul Doroshenko, a Vancouver lawyer, has been suspended from practice for two months after admitting that his firm mismanaged $44,353.19 in client trust funds. (Acumen Law)
High-profile B.C. lawyer suspended over $44K in mismanaged client trust funds

Queen’s counsel Paul Doroshenko admits to failing to supervise his staff and find, report the shortage

A GoFundMe campaign has been launched to collect donations ahead of Kristy Handel’s 33-kilometre run for Chelaine McInroy (pictured) to cover costs for a new prosthetic leg after her June 12, 2021, surgery. (GoFundMe)
Friend running to raise funds for Armstrong woman’s new prosthetic leg

33-km Run for Chelaine to help athlete cover medical costs from latest surgery

The Okanagan Eatery owner Chelsea Enns brings with her years of front-of-house and management experience to Vernon’s newest restaurant. (Caitlin Clow - Morning Star)
Vernon’s newest restaurant serves up Okanagan eats

Trio brings passion for locally sourced dishes and smash burgers to the table

Most Read