Oak Cliff Resident Veronica Torres to Receive Dallas Women’s Foundation Young Leader Award



On April 18, 2013, Veronica Torres will receive the Dallas Women’s Foundation inaugural Young Leader Award during the Foundation’s Leadership Forum & Awards Dinner, presented by AT&T. The event, held at the Omni Dallas Hotel, will also honor three exceptional women with the 2013 Maura Women Helping Women Awards and feature nationally recognized business leader Linda G. Alvarado as keynote speaker.

Dallas Women’s Foundation will present the Young Leader Award, which recognizes women under the age of 40 whose breakthrough leadership is creating a path of opportunity for other women to follow, to Veronica Torres, an organizer and advocate for Latina women’s health and professional advancement. Additionally, the Foundation will present the Maura Awards, which recognize women who lead the way in improving lives for women and girls in North Texas, to: Dr. Clare Buie Chaney, women’s history advocate and community volunteer; Melendy Lovett, champion of STEM education and mentorship for girls; and Beverly Tobian, activist for quality of life among the community’s most vulnerable women.

“The Maura Awards recipients are accomplished leaders, whose dedication and accomplishments have advanced women’s issues and changed women’s lives. Each has made significant and lasting contributions to women and girls that have created a ripple effect of positive change throughout North Texas,” said Roslyn Dawson Thompson, president and CEO of the Dallas Women’s Foundation. “We are also very pleased to recognize a remarkable young leader, who is investing her time and talent in improving the lives of women and girls, which in turn improves their families’ lives and the community at large.”

Another highlight of the event will be its keynote speaker, Linda G. Alvarado. In addition to leading an international construction company, Alvarado made history as the first female owner and first Hispanic owner of a Major League Baseball franchise. Her leadership in business, civic and charitable organizations has been acknowledged with numerous awards for achievement, including the Horatio Alger Award and the prestigious Sara Lee Corporation Front Runner Award.

The Dallas Women’s Foundation’s Leadership Forum & Awards Dinner is chaired by Cathy Coughlin, senior executive vice president and global marketing officer, AT&T, and Maribess Miller, director, Zix Corporation, and former North Texas market managing partner for PricewaterhouseCoopers. Honorary chairs are Vivian Castleberry and Maura McNiel. The Leadership Awards Selection Committee was chaired by Brenda Jackson, Senior Vice President, Oncor, and a former Maura Award recipient, and Diana Dutton, retired partner of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld and immediate past chair of the Dallas Women’s Foundation board of directors.

Veronica Torres, Young Leadership Award recipient, is experience director of the Dallas Convention Center and Visitors Bureau. An advocate for healthy lifestyles, Torres established a Healthy Latinas group to encourage Latina women in Dallas to adopt healthful eating and exercise habits. Through her work in community engagement, Torres has launched several young professionals groups, including the first-ever Hispanic Young Professionals group through the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Her volunteerism is focused on helping young women learn how to succeed through education, collaboration and community involvement.

Dr. Clare Buie Chaney, Maura Award recipient, is a licensed professional counselor and public speaker who advocates on behalf of women, girls, cancer survivors and the arts. As vice chair of the Dallas County Historical Commission, Chaney led the effort to create the first historical markers in Dallas County to commemorate women’s history. She has been an active volunteer with the Junior League of Dallas’ women’s safety and leadership training efforts, League of Women Voters’ sex trafficking issues, Preston Hollow Presbyterian Church’s Nicaraguan female empowerment mission work, the Dallas Historical Society Board and several arts and health organizations.

Melendy Lovett, Maura Award recipient, is senior vice president at Texas Instruments and the founder of the donor advised fund High Tech High Heels. She established the fund in coordination with the Dallas Women’s Foundation to help expand career options for young women in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). A proponent of mentorship, Lovett has mentored more than 100 girls and women and is a strong advocate for gender equity in schools and the workplace.

Beverly Tobian, Maura Award recipient, is the founder and chair of the Women’s Council Health and Human Services Coalition. She has helped raise awareness of quality of life issues among city council members and has positively impacted housing, transportation and health policy. She has been an advocate for women at all stages and socio-economic levels, especially the most vulnerable – survivors of domestic violence, prostitutes and the elderly – through her work with The Family Place, the New Life Prostitution Diversion Initiative, the National Council of Jewish Women and the Older Women’s League – Dallas, among many others.

The Women Helping Women Awards were first presented in 1978 by the Women’s Center of Dallas, and were later hosted by SMU and the Women’s Museum before moving to Dallas Women’s Foundation this year. The awards were re-named the Maura Women Helping Women Awards in 1995 to honor Maura McNiel, the founding president of the Women’s Center. Among the 189 past Maura honorees are former First Lady Laura Bush, Ebby Halliday Acers, Elaine Agather, Cecilia Guthrie Boone, Angie Chen Button, Gloria Campos, Laura Estrada, Lois Finkelman, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Delia Jasso, Margaret Jordan, Kathryn Walt Hall, Lyda Hill, Cynthia B. Nunn, Caren Prothro, Vicky Tehrani, Roslyn Dawson Thompson and Bernice J. Washington.

Dallas Women’s Foundation will host the Leadership Forum & Awards Dinner, presented by AT&T and supported by American Airlines, on Thursday, April 18, 2013, at the Omni Dallas Hotel. For table and ticket information, visit http://www.DallasWomensFoundation.org.

About Dallas Women’s Foundation
The largest regional women’s fund in the world, Dallas Women’s Foundation strengthens the entire community by increasing the investment in women and girls and empowering women’s philanthropy. Over its 28-year history, Dallas Women’s Foundation has invested $20 million in programs benefiting women and girls and the greater community.

Dallas Women’s Foundation seeks to advance and increase the number of women in leadership positions by presenting leadership forums, publishing the voices of women leaders, producing targeted research and engaging in advocacy around women’s leadership. The organization is committed to creating and funding new opportunities for women and girls to lead. For information, visit http://www.DallasWomensFoundation.org.


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