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LWVSF Centennial Gala - February, 2011

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Gala PicturesThroughout the years, the League of Women Voters of San Francisco has upheld a tradition of recognizing the accomplishments and extraordinary talents of our city’s most prestigious women. 2011 is no exception! During a festive celebration of 100 years of women’s suffrage, more than 100 League supporters cheered this year’s exceptional honorees.View their profiles below to get an overview of the many ways these women are making a difference in our community.

Check out the photos from the Gala here>

Baran   Nicole Baran, MA, MSW, is Executive Director and Founder of the Center for Relationship Abuse Awareness, a Bay Area organization that educates and trains communities and institutions to respond effectively to women who are experiencing relationship abuse. In addition, she teaches a course on violence against women in the Feminist Studies Program at Stanford University. Baran has conducted national trainings and contributed to publications to improve the institutional response to domestic violence since 2000. She serves on the Board of the Peggy and Jack Baskin Foundation. Baran received her BA and MA in English from Stanford University and an MSW from Washington University in St. Louis, with a specialization in management.  
Hala Hijazi   Hala K. Hijazi is a distinguished business and political strategist. She has had extensive management experience with the City and County of San Francisco, notably as a Special Assistant to former Mayor Willie L. Brown, Jr.; Project Manager of SF’s Old Mint Restoration Project; and Program Developer for major SF capital programs, including, the $4.6 billion Water System Improvement Program. As the Founder of Professionals VIP, one of SF’s leading business and non-partisan political professional networking organizations of 2500 members, she educates, mobilizes, and develops rising leaders under 45, in the realms of politics, business, philanthropy, and civil rights. Additionally, she provides elected officials and corporations with strategies to advance legislative and corporate social responsibility initiatives. She serves on EMERGE America and Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation boards, Netroots Nation’s Advisory Board, and is the Co-Founder of DNC’s GEN 44 and an Ambassador to the William J. Clinton Foundation’s Millennium Network; and serves on committees for SF Symphony and American Red Cross. She has raised over half-a-million dollars. She has received many honors, including nominations by SF’s 7X7 Magazine’s for the “Hot 20 under 40” and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Woman of the Year.
Siebel   Jennifer Siebel Newsom is the First Lady of San Francisco, actress, filmmaker, spokesperson, and mother. She completed her BA and MBA with honors at Stanford University. Siebel Newsom worked in Africa, Latin America, and Europe on assignments with Conservation International, where she focused on providing micro-enterprise opportunities to women. She later moved to Los Angeles where she performed in film and TV shows (including In the Valley of Elah and NBC’s Life) and formed Girls' Club Entertainment, LLC, an umbrella entertainment company that develops and produces independent films that empower women. She is currently writing, directing, and producing the documentary film Miss Representation.  
Breed   London Breed is Executive Director of the African American Art & Culture Complex. Under her leadership, the AAACC has become one of the most renowned and progressive institutions of African-centered cultural expression in the Bay Area. Breed is a San Francisco Fire Department Commissioner, and previously served on the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency Commission. She is an Emerge California 2008 graduate, served as an Obama Delegate in 2008 for the Democratic National Convention, and currently serves as a delegate and Women's Caucus Legislative and Policy Issues Chair for the California Democratic Party. Breed, a native San Franciscan, received her B.A. in Political Science from the University of California at Davis and is currently pursuing her Masters in Public Administration at the University of San Francisco.  
The goal of the Pioneer awards is to acknowledge and thank the honorees for their lifelong contributions and accomplishments to our community.
Wisley   Diane B. Wilsey (Dede) is the President of the Board of Trustees of the Fine Arts Museums, where she chaired the $200 million campaign to rebuild the de Young Museum. She also serves on the Boards of the San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Ballet, Grace Cathedral, and the San Francisco War Memorial Building and is currently chairing a $1.6 billion campaign for UCSF to build three new hospitals at Mission Bay. In addition to her civic commitments, Wilsey is the owner of Rutherford River Ranch Vineyards in Napa, President of the Wilsey Foundation and CEO of Wilsey Properties.   
Wright   Brenda Wright is Senior Vice President and Regional Manager of California Community Development. She is responsible for establishing and maintaining relationships with key community organizations as well as leading Wells Fargo’s support of economic development in the areas of housing, workforce development and small business. Wright is also an active leader and member of many community-based organizations and committees including the San Francisco Employee’s Retirement System, the Museum of the African Diaspora, The California Women’s Foundation and the Immediate Past President of the Oakland/Bay Area Chapter of 100 Black Women. In recognition of her commitment to community service, California State Senator Carole Migden selected her as “Woman of the Year” for 2007. Most recently, she was recognized as one of the “100 Most Influential Women in Business” in the Bay Area by the San Francisco Business Times for the seventh consecutive year.  
Hellman   Susan Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH, is chancellor of the University of California, San Francisco, a leading university. Desmond-Hellmann previously served as president of product development at Genentech. During her time at Genentech, the company became the nation’s No. 1 producer of anti-cancer drug treatments. In November 2009, Forbes magazine named Desmond-Hellmann as one of the world’s seven most “powerful innovators,” calling her “a hero to legions of cancer patients.” She completed her clinical training at UCSF and is board-certified in internal medicine and medical oncology. She holds a bachelor of science degree in pre-medicine, a medical degree from the University of Nevada, Reno, and a master’s degree in public health from the University of California, Berkeley. She is a member of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco’s Economic Advisory Council and she was appointed to the California Academy of Sciences board of trustees.  
Sullivan   Margaret Sullivan is Director of Political Risk Management at Farallon Capital Management, a large institutional investment firm based in San Francisco. Sullivan served 12 years in the federal government. During the Clinton administration, she was Special Assistant to the Secretary of Defense William Perry, Chief of Staff to the United States Trade Representative Charlene Barshefsky, and Chief of Staff to the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Andrew Cuomo. Sullivan graduated from Stanford University with a bachelor’s degree in political science. She completed a master’s degree in public finance from the University of Maryland and was the recipient of the MacArthur fellowship. Sullivan is on the board of OneCalifornia, a community development bank based in Oakland. She was also co-chair of a statewide initiative campaign to protect California’s environmental laws and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.  
Hernandez   Aileen Clarke Hernández, President of Aileen C. Hernandez Associates, began her career as an organizer for the Ladies Garment Workers Union. President Lyndon Baines Johnson appointed her as the only woman member of the first United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in 1964.  She was also the second national president of the National Organization for Women (NOW).  Hernandez currently serves as the State Chair of the California Women’s Agenda (CAWA), Coordinator for Black Women Stirring the Waters, and Chair of the Coalition for Economic Equity.  A magna cum laude graduate of Howard University in Political Science and Sociology, she holds a Master’s Degree in Government, with highest honors, from California State University at Los Angeles and an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Southern Vermont College.  


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