Governor and First Lady Wolf Recognize Pennsylvania’s 2022 Distinguished Daughters

October 14, 2022

Governor Tom Wolf and First Lady Frances Wolf recognized 11 women as this year’s Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania, highlighting their extraordinary achievements and contributions to the commonwealth at an event at the Governor’s Residence in Harrisburg on Wednesday.

“Pennsylvania Distinguished Daughters have a long history of going above and beyond to lead in tough times and find ways to meet the needs they see in their communities,” said Governor Wolf. “The commonwealth is proud to claim each of these women as our own, as each of their stories reflect Pennsylvania’s rich past and herald the promise of a bright future.”

The 2022 Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania are Anne C. Ewers (Philadelphia), Cynthia F. Figueroa (Philadelphia), Caren Glotfelty (Pittsburgh), Dr. Stacey E. Holland (Mt. Laurel, NJ), Admiral Rachel Levine (Washington, D.C.), Dr. Elizabeth Miller (Pittsburgh), Terry M. Miller (Milton, DE), Jeannine D. Peterson (Mechanicsburg), Margaret “Peg” Ruddy (Scranton), Dr. Neville Strumpf (Philadelphia), and Carol Tracy (Philadelphia).

“Pennsylvania Distinguished Daughters have a long history of going above and beyond to lead in tough times and find ways to meet the needs they see in their communities,” said Governor Wolf. “The commonwealth is proud to claim each of these women as our own, as each of their stories reflect Pennsylvania’s rich past and herald the promise of a bright future.”

“The last few years have been challenging ones for Pennsylvania, and for the world. It takes a special brand of courage and determination to step up and take on the mantle of leadership in times like this,” said First Lady Wolf. “These women have shown that leadership, determination, and steadfastness and have made our commonwealth a better place.”

Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania was first instituted under Governor James H. Duff in October of 1949 to honor women who have shown distinguished service through a professional career and/or voluntary service. The women are nominated to receive the honor by non-profit organizations within Pennsylvania. They do not need to be natives of Pennsylvania but must have lived in the commonwealth at some point.

Since the first group was named in 1949, over 500 women have been recognized as Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania.  There are approximately 200 Distinguished Daughters living today. The last class of Distinguished Daughters was inducted in 2019.

The 2022 Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania are:

Anne C. Ewers

In July 2007 Anne Ewers assumed the role of President & CEO of Kimmel Center, Inc. During her inaugural year, Ms. Ewers retired the Company’s $30 million construction debt, raised the endowment from $40 million to $72 million and garnered $10 million to establish a biennial city-wide festival, PIFA. Over the next 14 years, she led the growth of the Center to become the second largest performing arts center in the country, second only to Lincoln Center. With the onslaught of COVID, Ms. Ewers chose to make transformational change, instigating and championing the merger of the Kimmel with The Philadelphia Orchestra. Unanimously approved by both Boards at the end of 2021, the merger marks the largest and most prestigious of its kind in the industry. Ms. Ewers retired upon the completion of the merger deal and now serves as a member of the Board.

Cynthia F. Figueroa

Cynthia F. Figueroa is the President and CEO of JEVS Human Services, beginning her tenure in February 2022. She is a dynamic leader with 25 years of experience in the government and non-profit human service sectors. Prior to joining JEVS Human Services, Cynthia served as Deputy Mayor, Office of Children and Families under Mayor Jim Kenney. Additionally, Cynthia co-led the Mayor’s special initiative to address institutional racism focused on police reform, community engagement, and an inclusive economy. Before her term as Deputy Mayor, Cynthia served as President and CEO at Congreso de Latinos Unidos. From 2008-2011, she served as the Deputy Commissioner for DHS. Cynthia’s early career includes roles at several community-based organizations working on the front lines serving Philadelphia’s most vulnerable communities. She serves on the boards of several community-focused non-profits. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Spring Hill College. She was born in Arecibo, Puerto Rico and resides in Philadelphia with her husband and two children.

Caren Glotfelty

Caren Glotfelty has worked to conserve, protect and improve the environment for nature and people for more than 50 years. She is currently the Executive Director of the Allegheny County Parks Foundation, where she is a strong partner with Allegheny County government to maintain the county parks system as a world-class asset for southwestern Pennsylvania. Her past professional positions include Environment Program Director for The Heinz Endowments, Maurice K. Goddard Chair in Environmental Resource Conservation at The Pennsylvania State University and Deputy Secretary for Water Management in the Pennsylvania Department Environmental Resources under Governor Bob Casey. She co-chaired the 21st Century Environment Commission under Governor Tom Ridge. She has served on the boards of Conservation Voters of Pennsylvania, Chesapeake Bay Foundation and Clearwater Conservancy. She received a master’s degree in Regional Planning from the University of Pennsylvania.

Dr. Stacy E. Holland

Inspired by her former students and relentlessly optimistic about the future of education, Dr. Stacy E. Holland has nearly 30 years of experience developing and implementing educational solutions for children. She currently serves as the Executive Director of Elevate 215. As the leader of the organization, Stacy is fostering a positive approach to aligning the education community of Philadelphia on a common vision and working to ensure the city has a system of high-quality schools that prepare students for economic mobility. She has held leadership positions at The Lenfest Foundation, Philadelphia Youth Network, and the School District of Philadelphia. Stacy earned a doctoral degree in learning and development from the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education.

Rachel L. Levine, M.D.

Admiral Rachel L. Levine serves as the 17th Assistant Secretary for Health for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the head of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. She fights every day to improve the health and well-being of all Americans. She’s working to help our nation overcome the COVID-19 pandemic and build a stronger foundation for a healthier future – one in which every American can attain their full health potential. ADM Levine’s storied career, first, as a physician in academic medicine focused on the intersection between mental and physical health, treating children, adolescents, and young adults. Then as Pennsylvania’s Physician General and later as Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Health, she addressed COVID-19, the opioid crisis, behavioral health and other public health challenges.

Dr. Elizabeth Miller

Dr. Miller is Distinguished Professor of Pediatrics, Public Health, and Clinical and Translational Science and holds the Edmund R. McCluskey Chair in Pediatric Medical Education at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. She is Director of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine and Medical Director of Community and Population Health at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. Her research addresses interpersonal violence and adolescent health equity. She is co-director of a community partnered initiative in Allegheny County called The Pittsburgh Study that promotes racial equity and child thriving. She collaborates with community organizations in the Community Vitality Collaborative, focused on equitable distribution of COVID vaccines to underserved communities. She is a board member of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh and a member of the advisory council for the Center for Loving Kindness at the JCC. 

Terry M. Miller

Miller is director emerita of the University of Pittsburgh Institute of Politics where she spent twenty-five years working to deliver timely and balanced policy research and analysis to elected and public officials and cross-sector leaders. In a neutral forum knowledge and associated diverse viewpoints are debated and consensus built aimed toward improving the quality of life of all Pennsylvanians. Prior to her tenure at the Institute, Miller was founder and first executive director of POWER,  the Pennsylvania Organization for Women in Early Recovery,  a non-profit organization she established in Allegheny County to provide gender- and culturally-specific treatment & support services to women living with substance use disorder. POWER is in its thirtieth year of operation and has served over 22,000 Pennsylvanians. Miller is an accomplished community leader, activist, and inspirational speaker whose personal life is a testimony to the human spirit, her story inspires audiences to look at the big picture of their own lives, encouraging them to aspire to be the best version of themselves possible.

Jeannine D. Peterson

Jeannine Dorsey Peterson has dedicated her professional career to improving access to health care and health outcomes for our most vulnerable citizens.  Ms. Peterson served as the Commonwealth of PA Deputy Secretary of Health, overseeing the state’s drug and alcohol system, family health, and preventative and communicable diseases.  She also worked for a federal contractor assisting states around the country on Medicaid managed care issues.  Ms. Peterson recently retired as the President and CEO of Hamilton Health Center, a federally qualified health center located in Harrisburg whose mission is to provide quality health and human services to low-income south-central PA families. Ms. Peterson has served on local, statewide, and national boards of directors, including her current positions on the Board of Trustees of Harrisburg University, Penn State Harrisburg Board of Advisors, and the Board of Directors of the National Institute for Medical Assistant Advancement.  She has also received numerous awards for her public/community health service. Ms. Peterson earned her bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University, her Master of Public Administration degree from Penn State University, and Certification from UCLA’s Johnson & Johnson Executive Management Program. 

Margaret “Peg” Ruddy

Margaret A. Ruddy is a graduate of Marywood College’s School of Social Work where she earned a Masters Degree in 1990.  Ms. Ruddy is the Executive Director of the Women’s Resource Center (WRC). Ms. Ruddy began her career with the Women’s Resource Center in 1984 and was named Executive Director in 1992 and during her tenure raised substantial funds through grants and public speaking for the Center; initiated numerous programs related to emergency temporary shelter and transitional housing; created the Barbara J. Hart Justice Center, offering civil legal representation and economic justice for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Ms. Ruddy is dedicated to WRC’s mission to eliminate domestic and sexual violence through advocacy, education and social change.

Dr. Neville Strumpf

A passionate advocate for frail older adults, her leadership as researcher and educator at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing brought about significant changes in standards of clinical practice in geriatric care, most notably, reduction in the use of physical restraints in hospitals and nursing homes. Author of more than 100 articles, books, and book chapters, and the recipient of numerous federal and foundation grants, she has spoken and consulted widely both nationally and internationally. In retirement, she chairs or serves on several boards of non-profit organizations devoted to enhancing the quality of life of vulnerable and underserved older adults in Philadelphia.

Carol Tracy

Carol E. Tracy recently retired after serving for 32 years as Executive Director of the Women’s Law Project (WLP).  Under her leadership, the WLP worked at the vanguard of the battle against gender discrimination, violence, and injustice.  Recognizing that reproductive freedom is fundamental to all other women’s rights, WLP’s core mission has always been to secure and protect reproductive rights. A lifelong activist, Carol began as a secretary at the University of Pennsylvania where she became a powerful force for the advancement of affirmative action and the fight against gender-based violence. Throughout her 50 year career, her advocacy has led to major systems reforms in criminal justice and health care responses to sexual and domestic violence. Carol’s creativity and vision have brought together enduring coalitions that have amassed an impressive record of legal and legislative victories and substantial improvements in public policy affecting women’s lives. Carol continues to serve women through her work with numerous non-profits and remains active in the public interest legal community.

Gov. Wolf has served for two terms as a leader consistently at work for the people of Pennsylvania. Learn more about how his Priorities for Pennsylvania have fueled the commonwealth’s comeback, leaving Pennsylvania in a much better place than when he arrived.

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