In 2021 we will celebrate 32 years of YWCA Women of Distinction. Many Women of Distinction have been trailblazers in their professions, pathfinders for social justice, or women on the rise.
YWCA McLean County presents the Women of Distinction awards to women who represent outstanding achievement in their field of endeavor and whose achievements are supportive of the YWCA mission. Awards are presented to women who represent a diversity of race, age, occupation, and endeavor.
1. Nominations must be typed or submitted online by emailing completed applications to email@example.com
2. Please provide a recent resume or C.V. for nominee. (Can be uploaded with online nominations or sent via
3. Please provide one (1) letter of recommendation that is not from the nominator or a family member. (Can be uploaded with online nominations or sent via email/mail.)
4. With nominee approval, please submit the completed nomination form to YWCA McLean County no later than Friday, August 30, 2021, before 12 p.m.
5. ALL nominees must have their portrait taken. Upon YWCA’s recognition of nomination, appointment options will be sent to the nominee. Portraits are free and will remain the property of the photographer and YWCA McLean County.
Download the nomination form here:
Business/Education – The Business/Education award is given to a woman who excels in the business or education field and shows outstanding abilities, accomplishments, and leadership. She will be an innovator in her field, nurturing and inspiring to others, and continually contributing to the vitality of our community.
Community Leadership - The Harriett F. Rust Community Leadership Award will be given to a woman who has made significant contributions as a volunteer to better McLean County. This woman contributes greatly to the quality of life in the community through political involvement, public service, government, or social service. She may be elected, appointed, hired, or be a volunteer.
Human Services – The Human Services award is given to a woman who works or volunteers in the human services sector and shows great accomplishments and leadership through direct assistance or advocacy that enhances the quality of life for all, especially those who face disadvantages/challenges, for people in McLean County.
Mission Impact – The Mission Impact Award is given to a woman who excels at amplifying the YWCA Mission in their work and daily life. The award honors a woman for her academic/career achievements, community service, advocacy, and commitment to the YWCA Mission of eliminating racism and empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all.
STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) – The STEAM award is given to a professional in the field of science, technology, engineering, arts, or math. This woman has demonstrated exceptional leadership in the field of STEAM; helping to break down gender barriers and carve a path not just for herself, but for generations to follow.
Promise – The Promise Award is given to a woman who has been in their career for five years or less. A woman of Promise is making significant contributions to her community through her leadership, maturity, innovation, volunteer service, or other special achievements and inspires others to follow her example.
Community Key – The Community Key award is given to a woman who serves McLean County through a job that ensures the function of her community. This award honors a woman for her hard work and dedication to a position critical to the effective, efficient functioning of everyday life. Countless doors – both literally and figuratively – would not be able to open without her.
Wings Scholarship Award
What is WINGS?
The WINGS award was created and is funded by recipients of the YWCA Women of Distinction award. Winners of the Women of Distinction award have a shared commitment to give back to other women in McLean County so they created this award to encourage development in women, both professionally and personally, through mentoring and financial support. The award is given annually to a Woman to Improve her skills for a Notable purpose which allows her to Grow professionally and to achieve Success.
Who is eligible?
A woman is eligible for the WINGS award who demonstrates her commitment to professional and personal growth and to service in McLean County. Past WINGS winners are not eligible to apply. Please note women applying for a WINGS Award may not be a nominee for the YWCA Women of Distinction award in the same year.
How can the award be used:
WINGS awards, up to $1,500, will be granted to a recipient (or recipients) for a future endeavor that helps them grow professionally and personally. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Workshops and seminars (tuition and class fees)
- Professional conferences (registration fees)
- Software, books, and other materials related to the endeavor
- Certification preparation work, exams, registration or licensing
- Local opportunities for development, such as the Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership McLean County or Multicultural Leadership Program
- Other costs incurred as a result of the approved endeavor (such as child care, transportation, lodging and meals for out-of-town activities, etc.)