Women of Achievement

1410 900 Cribs for Kids
NOTE: Due to Covid-19 and concerns for people’s safety, we have come to the tough decision to postpone our 2021 Women of Achievement Awards.
We look forward to continuing to honor remarkable women in 2022. Please nominate a deserving woman using the button below.

Honoring Barbara Clemons

The last time the staff of Cribs for Kids was together was on March 12th, 2020. That night, we celebrated our 15th Annual Women of Achievement Awards at the historic Omni William Penn Hotel.  The news of the pandemic was breaking as we honored 25 of Pittsburgh’s most prominent female leaders. We said goodbye that evening assuming we might be in store for a two-week office shut down and here we are, nearly one year later.

If this year were like the “before times”, we would have spent the last few months excitedly planning the 16th annual event. In these “after times” we are choosing, instead, to reflect and remember some of the inspiring women we have honored over the years.

This year, we would like to also induct our dear friend, Barbara Clemons, into our prestigious Women of Achievement alumni. As the sole 2021 Woman of Achievement, we honor and remember all that Barb has meant to Cribs for Kids throughout the years.  We hope to be together again in the Grand Ball Room in 2022.

Barbara Clemons began her career with Cribs for Kids in 2006. She was instrumental in building the organization from a local non-profit to a network of over 1,700 partners nationwide. As Director of Product Development, Barb dedicated her last 14 years to the strong and steady growth of Cribs for Kids. With her impeccable eye for detail and practical nature, Barb implemented processes and procedures that kept our operations end running like a well-oiled machine. She has been described by her co-workers as dedicated, creative, and ever positive.

Click here to learn more about Barb’s legacy.

15th Annual

Women of Achievement Awards

Thursday, March 12, 2020

6:00 – 9:00 PM

The Omni William Penn Hotel

Grand Ballroom

Pittsburgh, PA


Cocktail Reception, Networking & Honoree Interviews 5:30 – 7:00 PM
Silent Auction Begins
Introduction 7:00 – 7:15 PM
Dinner 7:15 – 8:15 PM
Awards Presentation Begins 8:15 PM


to our 2020 Distinguished Women of Achievement Honorees

  • Rachel Berger, MD, MPH: UPMC
  • Jan Brimmeier, AIA, NCARB: Architectural Innovations, LLC
  • Belinda Callaghan, MSN, RN, NE-BC: Allegheny Health Network
  • Patrizia Costa, PhD: The Brother David S. Baginski FSC Scholars Program at Central Catholic High School
  • Rosamaria Cristello: Latino Community Center
  • Sloane Davidson: Hello Neighbor
  • Fafa Dedji:  PPG Architectural Coatings
  • Christine S. Ferguson, BSE, MBA: Ferguson Financial Consulting, Inc, Prima Eventi, Inc
  • Angela Garcia: Global Links
  • Amera Gilchrist:  City of Pittsburgh Bureau of EMS
  • Alicia B. Harvey-Smith, PhD: Pittsburgh Technical College
  • MariAnn Hathaway, Esquire: Law Offices of MariAnn Hathaway
  • Jennifer M. Joseph: HIAS PA
  • Leilani Mears, PMP: PNC Bank  
  • Rosemary Mendel Senior Nonprofit Executive
  • Michelle Muccio:  Elk County Coroner’s Office & Lynch-Green Funeral Home
  • Emily Nugent: Christ the Redeemer Diaper Pantry
  • Lisa J. Perry, MPM: Jeremiah’s Place
  • Mary Ellen Ramage: Borough of Etna
  • Lisa Kay Schweyer, MPM: Carnegie Mellon University Traffic21 Institute
  • Jada Shirriel, MS, CLC: Healthy Start, Inc.
  • Rebecca J. Watters, PhD: University of Pittsburgh
  • Senator Lindsey Williams PA Senate, 38th Senatorial District
  • Sister Linda Yankoski, CSFN, EdD: Holy Family Institute

Meet the 2020 Women of Achievement Honorees


Women of Achievement 2020

2020 Laura Ditka Award for Advocacy and Service

Stephanie Fox, PMP, CSSGB, EMC: Center for Victims

Stephanie Fox is an inspirational leader who tells stories that inspire action while at the same time is grounded in financial information that levers the business. She is respected as a credible voice in decision-making, finding strategic financing partners, and establishing governance boundaries.

In 2019, we introduced the Laura Ditka Award for Advocacy and Service in memory of Laura Ditka, who unexpectedly passed away in October 2018 at the age of 55. Laura Ditka was a Woman of Achievement in 2008 for child advocacy.  Her life revolved around serving others as she dedicated her life to public service, law enforcement, and supporting victims. 

Laura spent her legal career as a prosecutor serving for 25 years in the Allegheny County District Attorney’s office, before joining the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s office as supervisor of the western region criminal division. In her honor, the Laura Ditka Award for Advocacy and Service will be awarded each year at this event.  Laura will always be an example of an inspirational Woman of Achievement.

National Woman of Achievement: Making a Difference Award

Kathryn Martin: Kellie Rynn Academy

Kellie Rynn Martin was born to Kathryn and Ashley Martin. On February 21, 2014, at 3 ½ months old, Kellie Rynn passed away from suffocation as a result of negligence in an in-home childcare center. This Center had come highly recommended as a great place. However, it was discovered that many laws and regulations were not being followed. After months of investigation, Kellie Rynn’s caregiver pled guilty to Child Neglect, Obstruction of Justice and Unlawful Operation of a Daycare.

Kathryn and Ashley have spoken before the SC Senate and House of Representatives. Kathryn is currently working with SC legislators on Kellie Rynn’s Law to enhance the penalties that childcare providers face when a child is seriously injured or killed in their care. Friends, family, and supporters have come together to create the Kellie Rynn Academy in Greenville, SC. The Academy works to provide infant safety education and scholarships for child care in locations that meet their high standards.

The National Woman of Achievement: Making a Difference Award celebrates women who have turned tragedy into triumph. At Cribs for Kids, we are incredibly inspired by women who turn their struggles into a positive force for good. Each day these women demonstrate their strength, resilience, and unwavering commitment to their cause. They are exemplary models for what it means to persevere in the face of adversity.

Whether their influence can be seen in the non-profit sector, legislative action, volunteer work, or philanthropy, these women walk with a purpose and use each day to work towards the goal of creating not only a better community, but a better world.

Each year, Cribs for Kids recognizes one woman, nominated by her peers, who demonstrates strength, resiliency, compassion and commitment to being a force for change. This woman will be known as the National Woman of Achievement.

Thank you to our 2020 Sponsors!

Gold Level Sponsors:

Honorary Sponsors:

Thank you to Pittsburgh Digital DJs and DigiBooths for the fun photo booth!

About the Women of Achievement Awards
Each year, Cribs for Kids hosts a gathering to celebrate successful and prominent women from Pittsburgh. Honorees are nominated and selected based on excellence in their field, making a significant contribution to the betterment of their communities, or outstanding accomplishments for the advancement of women.
Women’s History Month is an important time of year to honor some of the best of the best in the Pittsburgh area. It is an annual declaration, highlighting the contributions of women to remarkable successes in our city’s history.
Each year, the Women of Achievement Awards launches the month’s activities in the city, with proceeds from the event benefiting Cribs for Kids, a National Infant Safe Sleep Initiative founded in Pittsburgh in 1998.
Due to Covid-19, the 2021 Women of Achievement Awards has been postponed until 2022. The deadline for submitting nominations for our 2022 event is Monday, December 6, 2021.


Andrea Wilson at awilson@cribsforkids.org or 412-322-5680 ex104