Governor Tom Wolf and First Lady Frances Wolf Recognize 8 Notable Women as Pennsylvania’s 2019 Distinguished Daughters

September 25, 2019

Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf and First Lady Frances Wolf today honored eight outstanding women as this year’s Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania. The women were recognized for their achievements at an event at the Governor’s Residence in Harrisburg.

“These women are being recognized today because of a unique and important contribution each has made to the commonwealth,” Governor Wolf said. “They make us all PA Proud, and we are honored to name them as Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania.”

The 2019 Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania include Sister Rosemary Donley (Pittsburgh), Angela Duckworth (Philadelphia), Carmen Febo-San Miguel (Philadelphia), JoAnne Fischer (Philadelphia), Vanessa German (Pittsburgh), Marci Hamilton (Philadelphia), Shubhra M. Shetty (Scranton), and Leslie Stiles (Philadelphia).

“Tom and I are proud to honor these incredible women for their profound contributions to the people and communities of Pennsylvania,” said First Lady Frances Wolf. “Our commonwealth is a better place because of their selfless dedication and hard work, and we cannot thank them enough.”

Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania began in 1948 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.

The 2019 Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania include:

Sister Rosemary Donley
Sister Rosemary Donley, Ph.D., APRN, BC, FAAN, a Sister of Charity of Seton Hill, is a professor and the Jacques Laval Chair for Justice for Vulnerable Populations at Duquesne University School of Nursing. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, she has served as President of several national nursing organizations and currently chairs the Board of Directors of CGFNS. She is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and is a living legend in the American Academy of Nursing. Her selection as a Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellow shaped her knowledge of policy structures and the legislative process. At Duquesne University, she teaches seminars in health policy and finance and social justice. She also plans national symposia on social justice for vulnerable populations. The tenth annual symposium: Social Justice, for Vulnerable Populations: The Face of the Person who is Homeless, will be held on October 17-18, 2019.

Angela Duckworth
Angela Duckworth is the Founder and CEO of Character Lab, a nonprofit that provides actionable advice to parents and teachers, based on science. She is also the Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, faculty co-director of the Penn-Wharton Behavior Change For Good Initiative, and faculty co-director of Wharton People Analytics. Previously, Angela founded a summer school for low-income children that was profiled as a Harvard Kennedy School case study and, in 2018, celebrated its twenty-fifth anniversary. She has also been a McKinsey management consultant and a public school math and science teacher. Angela completed her undergraduate degree in Advanced Studies Neurobiology at Harvard, an MSc in Neuroscience from Oxford University, and a PhD in Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. Her first book, Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, is a #1 New York Times best seller.

Carmen Febo-San Miguel, M.D.
Carmen Febo-San Miguel received her M.D. from the University of Puerto Rico (1973). For four decades she worked as a Family Medicine Specialist providing comprehensive medical care, and as Medical Director in settings that included Germantown Family Medicine Associates and the Naranjito Health Center in Puerto Rico (1980 to 1984) until she retired from medicine in 2014. This town in the central mountains of Puerto Rico declared her “Hija Adoptiva” (Adoptive Daughter). Locally, Carmen is primarily recognized for her work with Taller Puertorriqueño, as Chair of the Board from 1984-1999 and as Executive Director since then. Under her leadership, the organization has developed completing and moving into a new $11.5 million, state of the art center in the heart of North Philadelphia’s Latino community in December 2016.

JoAnne Fischer
As Executive Director of Maternity Care Coalition (MCC) from 1989-2018, JoAnne oversaw the agency’s growth from a neighborhood project to a statewide organization, from a staff of three to over 150, a budget of $116,000 to over $12 million and with groundbreaking initiatives to address maternal mortality and incarcerated pregnant women. She has served in the leadership of the American Public Health Association (APHA), National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition, Girl Scouts of the USA and the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS). Among her many awards, she is proud to have been recognized by President Obama as a White House Champion of Change. She attended all three UN Conferences on Women in Mexico (1975), Nairobi, Kenya (1985), and Beijing, China (1995).

Vanessa German
Vanessa German is a visual and performance artist based in the Pittsburgh neighborhood of Homewood. Homewood is the community that is the driving force behind German ’s powerful performance work, and whose cast-off relics form the language of her copiously embellished sculptures. As a citizen artist, German explores the power of art and love as a transformative force in the dynamic cultural ecosystem of communities and neighborhoods. She is the founder of Love Front Porch and the ARThouse, a community arts initiative for the children of Homewood. Her work is in private and public collections including Everson Museum of Art, Figge Art Museum, Flint Institute of Arts, Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, David C. Driskell Center, Snite Museum of Art, Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art and Wellin Museum of Art at Hamilton College. German’s fine artwork has been exhibited widely, most recently at the Flint Institute of Arts, Mattress Factory, Everson Museum of Art, Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Studio Museum, Ringling Museum of Art and Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Her work has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, NPR’s All Things Considered and in The Huffington Post, O Magazine and Essence Magazine. She is the recipient of the 2015 Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Grant, the 2017 Jacob Lawrence Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the 2018 United States Artist Grant and most recently the 2018 Don Tyson Prize from Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

Marci Hamilton
Marci Hamilton is the Fox Professor of Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. Hamilton is the Founder, CEO, and Academic Director of CHILD USA,, a nonprofit academic think tank dedicated to evidence-based research to improve laws & public policy to end child abuse and neglect. Prof. Hamilton is a leading and influential critic of extreme religious liberty and the author of “God vs. the Gavel: The Perils of Extreme Religious Liberty”. Hamilton is also the leading expert on clergy sex abuse and child sex abuse statutes of limitation and authored “Justice Denied: What America Must Do to Protect Its Children”, which advocates for the elimination of child sex abuse statutes of limitations. Professor Hamilton is a graduate of Vanderbilt University, B.A., Pennsylvania State University, M.A, and the University of Pennsylvania School of Law, J.D.

Shubhra M. Shetty, M.D.
Shubhra Marwaha Shetty was born in India, attended medical school at the Armed Forces Medical College, then served in the Indian Armed Forces. She trained in Brooklyn, N.Y. in the early ’90s, during the peak of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, which led to a fellowship in Infectious Disease at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. In 1999, Dr. Shetty joined the faculty of The Wright Center in Scranton PA, where she established the first Ryan White Care clinic in northeastern PA, providing comprehensive care to people with HIV. She serves as a Regional Dean at the Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine. As a clinician-educator, Dr. Shetty is committed to delivering humanistic, high quality care, while maintaining provider morale and professional satisfaction, and mentoring medical students and residents.

Leslie Stiles
Leslie Stiles is currently Board President of the PA Conference for Women, an event she initiated in 2003, which draws thousands of participants annually. This day of personal and professional development has become the premiere event for women in the Commonwealth. Leslie also served as Executive Director for the Pennsylvania Commission for Women. Appointed by Governor Rendell, she acted as state government’s advocate for all issues as they impacted women and girls. Notable board affiliations include the Girl Scouts of Eastern PA and the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition. Leslie is also a member of the Forum of Executive Women. Among numerous awards she has received are the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition’s Pink Tie Award, Komen’s Woman of Power Award, and the Women’s Law Project’s Myrna Bradwell Award.

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