September ceremony will honor awardees’ contributions to the community
BOULDER, Colo. – The Boulder Chamber is pleased to announce the honorees for its 27th Annual Women Who Light the Community Awards. This event honors five extraordinary women and a young community leader who have made significant and innovative contributions to our community by addressing meaningful business, nonprofit, education, arts, and community needs. Each honoree was nominated by people within the community who admire their skills and have witnessed their dedication and hard work. In the Emerging Youth category, the honoree will receive a $1,500 grant from Alpine Bank.
The 2022 Women Who Light the Community honorees are:
Allison Billings, Executive Director, Impact on Education
• Allison has evolved the work of IOE, building their reputation as an agile and resourceful organization making significant and lasting contributions to equity in
Boulder Valley schools.
• She worked tirelessly during the pandemic with her team to ensure students and their families had internet access, healthy meals on the table, emergency childcare, and later, focused on funding supplemental instruction to help students catch up.
• She has helped meet the critical needs of more than 1,000 students displaced by the Marshall Fire and raised more than $1.6 million through the Critical Needs Fund.
Bhavna Chhabra, Senior Director of Software Engineering, Google
• Bhavna has become an executive sponsor for Women@Google Boulder, a network committed to empowering all women at Google by connecting, developing, and
retaining female talent, and through the YWCA Boulder County’s STEM E3 program, which creates opportunities for girls of color to explore science and technology.
• Bhava is also invested in community through the Google.org Fellowship helping underserved Boulder neighborhoods and residents gain easier access to city services and programs online, including recreation center discounts, scholarships, affordable housing, and other assistance.
• She also is dedicated to healthy and inclusive workspaces by enacting a Friday all-hands meeting every week at Google, expanding pedestrian and bike-friendly commuting, and initiating powerful conversations about the future of technology.
Diana Garcia, Emerging Youth award winner, Skyline High School
• Diana has been featured as the student of the month this past Spring and was the speaker for the FRCC Graduation as a high school student who received her Associates in CIS.
• Diana organized and led the Latino Family Night at the Innovation Center in February and was the Business Operations Lead for the IC Studio Team and Entrepreneurial Team.
• She was the lead for a Cafecito at the Innovation Center and Diana is and has been a mentor to younger girls within Skyline high school and the P-TECH program.
• She has helped and lead a team to evaluate the Latino Chamber website, worked the Latino Chamber booth at the Cinco De Mayo festival, has coordinated translations to help parents for her school, and works outside in the community creating solutions for others.
Deborah Malden, Co-Founder, Create Boulder
• Deborah has been involved in the Boulder community for more than 20 years and has helped uplift the culture of the area through activism, volunteering and founding Create Boulder to advocate for funding of local arts initiatives.
• Deborah served as Boulder’s representative on the funding committee for the Denver Foundation and Bonfils-Stanton Covid-19 Arts & Culture Relief Fund, resulting in over $288,000 in Covid-19 relief funding to Boulder-based non-profits. In total, her efforts with Create Boulder resulted in over $500,000 of funding to Boulder’s arts and cultural non-profits, in their time of greatest need.
• She is an advocate for accessible dance education through the 3rd Law dance studio where she has created programs for people living with chronic illnesses who want to enjoy movement and the benefits of the arts. This includes the creation of online programs, bilingual courses, and sustainable methodologies.
Adriana Paola Palacios, Founder, Luna Cultura
• Anna’s bilingual/bicultural company, Luna Cultura: Art, Science and Culture for Thriving Communities, LLC is dedicated to reducing the gaps in art, science and
maker education caused by gender, class, race, age or sexuality.
• She is a trusted facilitator and teacher for the City of Boulder where she reduces gaps and advances equity in many important ways as a Community-Connector-in-
Residence for local government and its staff.
• She was instrumental in creating BLDG 61, a free community workshop housed at the Boulder Public Library dedicated to hands-on learning and the cultivation of purposeful experiences through making that provides support and connection in English and Spanish.
Nancy Whiteman, CEO & Co-Founder, Wana Brands
• Nancy has been the guiding force in the development of Wana Brands’ Corporate Social Responsibility program, with the mission to “Enhance Your World.” The mission guides its corporate culture and practices for employees, customers, and partners.
• Nancy has spearheaded the development of Wana Brands’ CannabisForJustice.com, designed as a resource for cannabis businesses seeking ways to address bias and develop more inclusive practices.
• Nancy spearheaded the company’s annual #4ward20 campaign to give more than $140,000 to critical organizations around the United States that bring healthy, nourishing food to those in need.
This year’s awards ceremony, co-presented by Premier Members Credit Union and Corden Pharma will be presented on September 29 at Lionsgate Event Center in Lafayette. This event features a pre-networking reception, followed by the presentation of awards and a celebration of the accomplishments of our honorees during dinner. Tickets are available at https://bit.ly/WWLTC2022.
About the Boulder Chamber
The nonprofit Boulder Chamber is the region’s flagship business advocacy and support organization. With more than 110 years of dedicated service to our members and the Boulder community, the Boulder Chamber’s innovative programs help local businesses succeed while sustaining an economy that preserves Boulder’s high quality of life, including its environmental and cultural assets. Together with its member businesses, the Boulder Chamber is building a smarter, more vibrant economy – sustaining Boulder’s position as a global capital of innovation and a thriving center of economic vitality. For more information, visit www.boulderchamber.com.