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Sally Houston earns standing ovation at Ethel Tibbits Awards
On the eve of International Women's Day, nearly 340 people gathered to celebrate the accomplishments of 32 women during the 18th annual Ethel Tibbits Awards at the Radisson Hotel Vancouver Airport.
Six women walked away with an extra broad smile on their face, none larger than a stunned Sally Houston who garnered a standing ovation after being named the Pioneer winner.
Also winning were: Cherelle Jardine in arts; Linda Strelau in sports; Perri Tutelman in the youth category; Judi Merrell in community; and Carol Reichert in business.
“It’s a great day to be a woman in Richmond,” proclaimed Merrell upon receiving her award.
The fundraiser for Nova House, a shelter for women and their children escaping domestic violence, and other local women’s charities, was held at the Radisson Hotel Vancouver Airport.
Nearly three dozen women were nominated in five categories, and some 340 guests turned out to watch the winners.
Cherelle Jardine is a Richmond singer and performer who organizes the Musical Expressions series of concerts in Richmond.
In receiving her award, Jardine was beaming, and joked how she felt like Susan Lucci, noting how this had been her sixth nomination.
Linda Strelau is a longtime Richmond Girls Softball Association volunteer.
Perri Tutelman is the founder of the Cures for Kids Foundation and works in a University of B.C. immunology lab, searching for a cure for cancer.
Judi Merrell is a longtime volunteer with Richmond Scouts.
Carol Reichert is founder of the Richmond Animal Protection Society, which runs the Richmond Animal Shelter.
The Pioneer Award went to Sally Houston, founder of the Dream Auction. Unlike the other awards, there are no nominees for the Pioneer Award, so the award came as a surprise.
The Ethels are named after the pioneering publisher of The Richmond Review, who earned a reputation as a firebrand who spoke out about taboo social issues, including her condemnation of the internment of the Japanese during the Second World War.
Since 1994, the Ethels has raised more than $175,000 for a number of local charities, including the Richmond Women’s Resource Centre, and the Ethel Tibbits Scholarship Fund administered by the Richmond Community Foundation.
The nominees for the 2011 Ethels were: Marla Kott, June Kaiser, Dr. Louise Demorest, Sandra Hass, Sharon Bonner and Carol Reichert in Business; Wendy Riley, Cherelle Jardine, Elsa Rojas Marquez, Dawn Ewen and Adrienne Moore in Arts; Judi Merrell, Grace Tsang, Dustine Rodier, Sylvia Gwozd, Lyn Greenhill, Jacqueline Turner, Colleen Chambers, Barbara Ash and Clara Chow in Community; Taronne Atley, Beverley Oldham, Maryana Dudchenko, Linda Strelau and Maxine Schulmeister in Sports; Natalie Lo, Jessica Yeung, Sunny Shen, Shira Sneg, Perri Tutelman, Jean Hu and Kristy Simonson in Youth.