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Marin Women's Hall of Fame

MARIN WOMEN'S HALL OF FAME is focused on identifying and honoring LEADERS, encouraging MENTORING, offering LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT and is busy writing the next best chapter in its HERstory of success!
Can you imagine a world without heroines or heroes?

What if significant accomplishments and breakthroughs were ignored, overlooked, unimportant?

What if being mediocre and below average were celebrated and no one cared about positive role models?

Can you imagine what the world would be like?

We can't.

That is why we are known as THE CENTER FOR EXCELLENCE in Marin County!

"Leading Women...Looking Forward"


Writing Women Into History - Founded 1987
Throughout its rich history, Marin county has been the home of many

outstanding women as diverse as its vistas.

In 1987, a group of women founded the Marin Women's Hall of Fame with

the mission to discover and honor women in our community who serve as

role models and demonstrate excellence in a wide range of endeavors. The

Marin Women's Hall of Fame was the first organization in Marin County

to recognize the achievements and contributions made by its extraordinary

women citizens. These are the women leaders who have devoted their lives

to excellence. They have made such a significant contribution to the overall

well-being of our county and its residents; the life, culture, mores and even

the landscape.

In March, during Women's History Month, an annual dinner is held to

celebrate our Honorees.. Throughout the year the Board of Directors of the

Marin Women's Hall of Fame prepares videotaped histories, compiles

biographies and commissions photographic portraits of all the honorees.

Honorees include local luminaries as well as many lesser known women

whose accomplishments are no less remarkable. Throughout all the years
the Marin Women's Hall of Fame has proudly recorded the history of women's

accomplishments in Marin that has affected people locally, nationally and globally.

In addition to honoring these notable women of Marin, the Women's Hall of

Fame also seeks to "write women back into history" by creating and making

available the biographies which spotlight accomplishments usually ignored

by the media. The Hall of Fame works to integrate such important history and

history-in-the-making by proactively developing new initiatives and programs

that serve the needs and issues of tweens through elders. The goal is to make

HERstory...not just read about it.

Enjoy reading the life story of each of the honored women, nominate a woman

or contact the Marin Women's Hall of Fame through this website. Thank you

for your visit.

"History is interesting but HERstory is fascinating."

Vision & Mission


To be an ongoing source of inspiration
to all who value excellence.


To identify and honor Marin women and girls
whose extraordinary achievements exceed expectations,
creating breakthroughs for society.

To document and preserve their achievements
in order to provide a record and legacy for future generations.

To mentor and empower women and girls to reach
their full potential as resilient visionaries
focused on education, innovation, the environment,
and positive results.

History is interesting, but HERstory is fascinating!

The year was 1987. Six women had been collaborating on several women focused projects. As they worked together, the topic of creating a record of the substantial contributions women have made to the life, culture, mores, even the landscape of Marin County were discussed. They discovered that there were virtually no records of women's achievements. That strengthened their resolve to redress the situation and write Marin women into our county history. They began to establish and organize a comprehensive method of institutionalizing the amazing, creative, life-changing contributions that Marin County women have made to the quality of our lives.

And so, "Marin Women's Hall of Fame" was formed, echoing the same effort in place at the historic Suffragette site in Seneca Falls, New York. The founders detailed plans: how to discover these women, how to objectively guage their contributions; how to shine a bright light upon their accomplishments so the public could become aware of these outstanding women. One frightening thought was when they contemplated what if they gave this "party" and nobody cared - or came! 23 years of successful celebrations have confirmed that they had made the right decisions and were heading in the right direction.

As the project progressed, women from the Women's Commission and from American Association of University Women joined the cause. The Commission and YWCA provided "seed money" as sponsors for the first dinner and award ceremony. The steering committee made community contacts for nominations and judging. Dominican College hosted the "sell out" crowd. the "little idea that could" was launched.

The original Founders were Bonnie Rose Hough and Ann Kennedy who were affiliated with the YWCA; Commissioner Rita Levy and Patricia Warren affiliated with the Marin Women's Commission and Nancy Nakai and Anne Latta, community representatives.

And, so it began...HERstory!

"Hall & Angels"


The many people who step forward to support the success of our events
are the lifeblood of our organization!

Their dedication to the Hall of Fame, professional demeanor and
ability to take charge and manage critical areas of programs and
special events, makes a huge difference to Marin Women's Hall of Fame!

If you have a generous heart and an interest in supporting the success of
women and girls and believe in leaders and leadership development,
please call 415-455-4900 or email nmo214@gmail.com for more
information on how you can sign on to become a volunteer with MWHF.


If you have a passion for the Vision and Mission of our organization and
would like to be considered for membership in the "Hall & Angels" Auxiliary
please contact the Executive Director at 415-455-4900 or email:

This membership based auxiliary offers an opportunity to be more fully
engaged in supporting MWHF reach its objectives and goals. This dynamic
team of women will co-host monthly meetings with MWHF that will be
focused on leaders and leadership development. Programs will feature
speakers, a workshop segment, "golden nuggets" and an overall empower-
ment of attendees to succeed.

The launch of this highly innovative program is scheduled for Fall 2009.

The public will be invited to attend these dinners on the first Monday of the


One hundred and ten (110) women have been inducted into the Marin Women's Hall of Fame since 1987.
To learn more about each honoree please use the navigation below.

Women to Watch

This page is dedicated to the women who never hesitate to "Step UP and INTO Leadership" roles. You have met them...you may even be one of these incredible "Women To Watch".

They are weaving a tapestry that is strong, beautiful and meaningful to our community! These women understand the value and benefit that our mentoring and leadership development program (TLC...TEENS & LEADERS CONNECT) delivers to the community.

Here is a growing list of women to watch...they have said "YES" to mentoring a young girl for a day on:

October 2, 2010 at: "100 WOMEN + 100 GIRLS = ENDLESS POSSIBILITIES "

WOMEN TO WATCH: Mentors and Sponsors

Cheryl Jennings: MWHF Honoree, News Anchor-ABC TV Channel 7
Kim Kaelionis: CEO, President of Circle Bank
Deborah Santana: MWHF Honoree, Author and Founder of http://www.doalittle.org
Meshelle Mifsud: http://www.doalittle.org
Alyssa Aubrey: Medicine Horse Ranch -http://www.horsesenseforteens.com
Candra Canning: http://www.livebrightnow.com
Maureen McEachin: http:www.purelegance.com
Susan L. Miller: http://www.maringardenmatchmaker.org
Sylvia Pinel : https://www.valority.com/loi-pinel
Terrie Burns: creativerings@yahoo.com
Sarah L. Panyard: Realtor, LVP Marin
Elizabeth Bornstein: Senior Project Field Administrator, http://www.swinerton.com
Maria Felice Cunningham: http://www.bigskythinking.com
Gail Harris: http://www.marinplan.com
Maureen Sedonaen: President, Founder, CEO - http://www.yli.org
Linda McCarthy: Author, Founder - http://www.ownyourspace.net
Karen Anderson: Qualitative Market Research - Public Relations
Dr. Shirley Thornton: MWHF Honoree, President of the Marin Women's Hall of Fame Board
Connie Rodgers: San Anselmo Chamber of Commerce, President/CEO
Sister Marion Irvine, O.P.: MWHF Honoree, "The Running Nun"
Roey Berman, Realtor - Alain Pinel
Dr. Lois Epstein: MWHF Honoree - Physician, Scientist
Leslie Murphy, COO - William Bradley Electronic, Inc
Dr. Lois M. Moore: MWHF Honoree, Education - Author
Hon. Joyce Kennard: MWHF Honoree - California Supreme Court Justice
Joyce Brown, Owner, Elan Fitness, San Anselmo
Chris Milne, Owner, Upper Crust Pies

Programs Overview

We have many exciting programs. Click on any of the following links to learn more:

The M.I.S.S. Program

(Mentoring + Internship + Service = Scholarship) was launched as a beta program in January 2009 to empower teenage girls to 'claim their voice', build self-esteem, improve their status and become dedicated to excellence. Our goal includes offering programs that support young women to become next generation leaders through a series of workshops and enrichment experiences. The girls are also offered opportunities to meet and intern with our Honorees and other
community leaders.

The purpose of this program is to ensure our community is always filled with achievers, leaders and influencers.

If you know a student who might qualify and benefit from this program - please send in your recommendation letter and
a form/application will be mailed to you to complete.

THE M.I.S.S. PROGRAM…our future, and theirs.

Speakers Bureau

We are organizing a Speaker's Bureau and would like to know about your skills
and the topics that you focus on. Please send us your name, brief Bio and
subjects that you enjoy speaking about. Please make sure you include your
web site address, email and phone number and the kind of audience you are
interested in reaching.

Savvy Seniors

Just ask:

Mary Murtagh, EAH Housing, as she ensures a sense of safety and well-being for countless people needing affordable housing; Sister Marion Irvine, O.P. - if you can catch "The Running Nun" as she works to promote peace, justice and the end of capital punishment and war; Paula Kamena, Marin County's first woman District Attorney and advocate for women and children. Ask these highly accomplished women about all that life offers over 50...not that any of them are over 50...but, you could ask...and they might tell you that Marin Women's Hall of Fame is on the right track!

And, before you know it...MWHF will have programs and services that address the needs, wants and opportunities of our aging population in Marin. There is a tremendous amount of talent and expertise and energy in women over 55...and they will have "think tanks" and brainstorming sessions and ways to give back to make sure that the young women and girls that follow in their footsteps...are prepared to achieve, lead, influence and live a life of EXCELLENCE!

Worry-Free Care for Faraway Parents

 If you are responsible for the care of an aging parent or relative -- especially one who is sick and lives far away -- you may wish you knew a wise, willing sage with answers to tough questions and the time and energy to follow through on the details. Enter the geriatric care manager. Phyllis Mensh Brostoff, CISW, president of the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers, and learn more about these professionals who offer expertise in dealing with the special needs of the aging.

"Our specialty is based on an amalgam of nursing and social work, providing a variety of services for aging individuals." Finding the right care manager to help with eldercare challenges is important.


 Brostoff illustrated the difficulties facing families with two hypothetical scenarios: Nancy's father lives alone, hundreds of miles from his daughter. She calls one day and he sounds confused, unsure of her identity and unable to tell her the date or even what time it is. What should she do? Then there is Louis, who juggles a busy work schedule, his own family needs and he visits his elderly mother every few months. All's going well enough, till one day he arrives to find the usually neat home in chaos. Unpaid bills and unwashed laundry have piled up. His mother is unkempt and, of even greater concern... pill bottles are filled with medication that hasn't been taken. Where should he turn for help?

A geriatric care manager can step in to solve problems like these efficiently and sensitively -- helping, for instance, with...


To find a geriatric care manager in your area, log onto the Web site of the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers (NAPGCM) at www.caremanager.org. NAPGCM has developed Standards of Practice and a Pledge of Ethics for members that address a variety of topics including training, billing, etc. Look for a professional who has an advanced degree in nursing, social work, gerontology or psychology, and who is certified by one of these organizations -- the National Academy of Certified Care Managers, the Commission for Case Management Certification or the National Association of Social Workers. Care managers typically charge an hourly fee, which varies in different communities. Fees range from $50 to $200 per hour, depending on the region.


Brostoff advises asking these questions of all candidates before making a decision to hire:

Ask for references, especially if you know nothing at all about the person you are considering hiring. And as with any kind of counseling, you should like the person you'll be working with -- the goal is to find a professional who will make the situation better for everyone, not one who adds complexity at a time that is already emotionally difficult. For those who can't afford private GCMs, the Area Agency on Aging can provide information on other local resources -- call 800-677-1116.

Reference Source(s): Bottom Line Publications; Phyllis Mensh Brostoff, CISW, president, National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers, www.caremanager.org.