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Girl Scouts presents Awards of Distinction


Pittsburgh—Girl Scouts Western Pennsylvania (GSWPA) will honor outstanding service and leadership to the Pittsburgh community at the annual Awards of Distinction luncheon on Wednesday, May 31, 2017, at the Omni William Penn, 530 William Penn Place, Pittsburgh‎, at 11:30 a.m. 

The 2017 honorees in each category are:

  • Arts & Education: Dawn Keezer, Director, Pittsburgh Film Office
  • Athletics: Karen Hall, ESPN Sports Analyst and Commentator, ESPN Sports Broadcasting Company
  • Business: Tracy DeCock, Senior Vice President, Senior Relationship Manager, PNC Corporate Finance
  • Community & Nonprofit: Leah Lizarondo, CEO and Co-Founder, 412 Food Rescue
  • Entrepreneur & Small Business: Kiya Tomlin, Owner / Designer, Uptown Sweats
  • Government & Law: Christina Cassotis, Chief Executive Officer, Allegheny County Airport Authority
  • Health Care: Dr. Patricia Kroboth, Dean, School of Pharmacy, University of Pittsburgh
  • Technology & Communication: Lynn Banaszak, Executive Director, Disruptive Health Technology Institute at Carnegie Mellon University 

“These amazing women are from different backgrounds and professions, but their success stories share a common theme,” said Patricia A. Burkart, CEO of GSWPA. “Each one had the courage and confidence to take the lead, which is what we encourage girls to do in Girl Scouting. Girl Scouts need role models like the Awards of Distinction recipients to inspire them and guide them to become the leaders who make the world a better place.”

Two Girl Scouts will also receive awards at the event.

The Girl of Distinction Award is presented to Lauren Duderstadt, a Junior at Hampton High School. Ashley Plater, a senior at Penn Hills High School, is the recipient of the Girl Scout Humanitarian Award.

Leslie C. Davis, Senior Vice President, UPMC, Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, Health Services Division President, Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC, serves as the 2017 Honorary Chair of the event’s committee.

GEICO is the 2017 Corporation of Distinction in recognition of their significant support of GSWPA and Girl Scouts across the country.

Sally Wiggin, host of WTAE Chronicle, will serve as emcee. Tickets are available at