About 400 people are attending today's Lehigh Valley Business' fourth annual Women of Influence luncheon and awards ceremony at Cedar Crest College in Allentown.
The event recognizes 28 women for contributions to their employer, industry and community. A networking event was held before the ceremony, which began at noon.
“[They] not only excel in business but also exhibit leadership, vision and charity, and each shines as a stellar example to those generations of women that follow in their footsteps,” Mike O’Rourke, emcee and publisher of Lehigh Valley Business, said of the honorees.
An independent panel of judges reviewed the nominees and selected the winners based on experience, integrity, leadership and accomplishments.
Cedar Crest College, Highmark Blue Shield, Coordinated Health, Provident Bank, Crystal Signatures and FGV Media are the sponsors of this year’s event.
Martha Cichelli of Software Consulting Services LLC earned the Lifetime Achievement Award, to a woman who has committed her life to making the Greater Lehigh Valley a great place to work and live.
Sandra Enid Figueroa-Torres of Lincoln Leadership Academy Charter School earned the Community Achievement Award, to a woman who has dedicated a significant amount of time, energy and expertise to helping Greater Lehigh Valley organizations thrive.
Luvleen Sidhu of BankMobile, a division of Customers Bank, earned the Woman to Watch Award, to a woman, 30 or younger, who is stepping up to help shape the Greater Lehigh Valley of tomorrow.
Here are the other 25 Women of Influence honorees:
• Sherri Bassner, Intertek.
• Jeane Coyle, Penn Community Bank.
• Desha Dickson, Reading Health System.
• Nancianne Edwards, Quakertown Community School District.
• Linda Ellison, Andesa Services.
• Lin Erickson, Da Vinci Science Center.
• Sheila Evans, Allentown Symphony Association.
• Lisa Folajtar, Macmillan Oil Co. and Archery Addictions.
• Gwen Gage, Gage Personnel.
• Elissa Garofalo, Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor.
• Dorota Gasienica-Kozak, King, Spry, Herman, Freund & Faul.
• Jill Palazzo Hewes, MKSD Architects.
• Pat Howells, HTSS Inc.
• Kimberly Jacobsen, Jones Lang LaSalle.
• Liz Jones, The Sanctuary at Haafsville.
• Annette Kaiser, LifePath.
• Sandra Kuhns, K&H Custom Window Treatments.
• Jill Kelly McComsey, Seidel, Cohen, Hof & Reid.
• Ellen Millard-Kern, office of State Sen. Patrick Browne.
• Annie Osika, Lafayette Ambassador Bank.
• Dr. Debbie Salas-Lopez, Lehigh Valley Health Network.
• Betsy Schamberger, Moonstone Environmental.
• Bonnie Sussman-Versace, Focused.
• Donna Taggart, Taggart Associates.
• Susan Ellis Wild, Gross McGinley.