Passing the Torch to the Next Generation of Women Leaders

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                        
Tasha Bovain
Phone:(516) 343-8900


The Long Island Fund for Women & Girls Presents Its First-Ever Charlotte Shapiro/Lillian McCormick Young Leadership Award at Annual Breakfast

 Jericho, NY – September 24, 2009 – “You must lead by example” is the message Lillian McCormick, co-founder of Women on the Job, has for the next generation of female leaders.  As a tribute to the women who laid the foundation for gender equality in the workplace, The Long Island Fund for Women & Girls (LIFWG) will present its first-ever “Charlotte Shapiro/Lillian McCormick Young Leadership Award” at the Women Achievers Against the Odds Breakfast on October 15th at the Crest Hollow Country Club.

Lillian McCormick and Charlotte Shapiro have devoted a combined total of 76 years to the advocacy of women’s rights and social justice.  Their dedication and leadership through Women on the Job, a project of LIFWG, have changed the future for thousands of women in the workplace.  The Charlotte Shapiro/Lillian McCormick Young Leadership Award was established to build confidence among emerging leaders and showcase the accomplishments of young women in high school who might otherwise go unnoticed.

“We are honored to continue the legacy of two of New York’s own trailblazers in the women’s movement,” said Executive Director Laurel Parker West.  “This award is a testament to the importance of our work at LIFWG to fund programs for women and girls that provide educational and advancement opportunities to those who do not readily have access to these resources.  Our young honoree is a perfect example of what young women can achieve when afforded the opportunity.”

The 2009 recipient of the Young Leadership Award will be Lucely Sanchez of Oceanside High School.  As an advocate and role model for her peers in the Hispanic community, Sanchez has demonstrated that leadership is not limited by age, gender or ethnicity.  At the tender age of 17, she has dedicated her life to making a difference: educating students, serving food to the homeless, and teaching self-esteem to young girls.

“The kids in my community think there is no point in trying to change the world around them, but this award proves that even our smallest actions can make a difference,” said Sanchez.  “In receiving this honor, I want to show other girls they can accomplish whatever they set their minds to achieve.  I want them to experience what I felt when I looked up to the older women in my life pursuing their dreams: pure inspiration.”

The annual breakfast will also honor four Long Island professional women for their contributions to the community and one student achiever for her excellence in computer science and technology.  The 2009 honorees include Maria Grasso, Executive Vice President Flushing Savings Bank; Dr. Gerry House, President of the Institute for Student Achievement; Lorelei McGlynn, Vice President of Global Human Resources and Financial Operations for Henry Schein, Inc.; Suzy Sonenberg, Executive Director of the Long Island Community Foundation; and Lisa Rifkind, Senior at George W. Hewlett High School.

The Women Achievers Against the Odds Awards Breakfast serves as one of the largest annual fundraisers for LIFWG and is generously sponsored by over 30 Long Island corporations and organizations.  Tickets can be purchased for $85.  For more information about sponsorship opportunities, visit or call (516) 396-9857.


Founded in 1991 by a network of women from the corporate, not-for-profit and philanthropic communities, the Long Island Fund for Women & Girls encourages women to act as philanthropists and provides seed money to initiatives that benefit women and girls. Hundreds of programs across Long Island have been nurtured by this support, ranging from programs designed to promote equal opportunity in education to advocacy that addresses gender-related issues and advance women’s health and safety.

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