2014 Woman of Achievement Media Advisory

March 14, 2014



Recognizing Extraordinary Women from the 24th Senate District in Salute to Women’s History Month



What:  Senator Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina) will host the 2014 Women of Achievement Awards for the 24th Senate District to honor eight exceptional women who live and/or work within the district, in commemoration of Women’s History Month.  Honorees were selected based on nominations submitted by people from communities throughout the 24th Senate District.


Who:     Senator Dr. Ed Hernandez, O.D.

When:   Friday, March 14, 2014, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

 Where:  Baldwin Park Women’s Club

   3817 Baldwin Park Blvd

   Baldwin Park, California 91706



Mary McKenrick, Honoree for Business

Mary McKenrick is the Municipal Sales Manager at Athens Services and has been with the company for the last 20 years.  She has served on various committees and boards including Chairperson for the Azusa Chamber of Commerce and Co-Chair of the Taste of the Town Committee and the Bassett School Foundation Board. She currently sits on the board for The City of Azusa’s yearly golf tournament, Kids Come First, and has been instrumental in organizing fundraising events.


Carolyn Arndt, Honoree for Community Service

Carolyn Arndt is a member of the West Covina Improvement Association.  Carolyn is not a stranger to serving her community and her country.  Not only does she volunteer with the Community Food Bank, she also served as an American Trans Air flight attendant where she accompanied service men and women to and from their deployment in Iraq.  She also was instrumental in re-energizing The West Covina Improvement Association and helped lead their efforts to protect public green space in the city.


Julie Caston-Hicks, Honoree for Education

Julie Caston-Hicks is the supervisor at Tri-Community Adult Education, as well as the head of the district’s early childhood education program.  Julie has had a long tenure of service with the Covina Valley Unified School District as a teacher and principal at Workman School, as well as district director for curriculum and instruction.  She currently oversees the entire Career Technical Program for Tri-Community, and has gone above and beyond in ensuring the continued success of programs that help change lives and strengthen the community.


Dr. Susan Kane, Honoree for Health Care

Dr. Susan Kane is Professor of Cancer Biology at City of Hope and Program Director of City of Hope’s Science Education Partnership Award Collaborative (SEPAC) Program.  Dr. Kane recently completed a National Cancer Institute funded P20 grant to partner minority serving institutions (CSULA) with Cancer Centers to promote research on minority disparities in cancer and to train minority students in cancer related laboratory research.  She also serves on the external advisory committee for the Minority Opportunities in Research Program at Cal State LA., and has a long history of volunteerism and giving back to the community, including founding and co-organizing Girls Science Day.


Mary Wong, Honoree for Non-Profit

Mary Wong is the founder and CEO of Project NEO which provides free afterschool tutoring and mentoring to at risk youth in grades 2-8. She has worked diligently to offer its services in two school locations within the Alhambra Unified School District, providing tutoring services to Monterey Park and Alhambra communities.  Mary also serves as a Board Member for the Monterey Park Chamber of Commerce, the Alhambra Police Foundation, and is proprietor of Exact Tax Inc.


Elizabeth Jinzo, Honoree for Social Services

Elizabeth Jinzo is the founder and director of Designated Exceptional Services for Independence (D.E.S.I), an organization that provides services to people with disabilities.  She has worked as a service coordinator, is a former teacher for LAUSD, and a parent of a loved one with a developmental disability. Elizabeth knows firsthand the many challenges one faces when integrating a person with disabilities into the community, and has made her life’s work the inclusive integration of people with disabilities.


Maureen Bateman, Honoree for Volunteerism

Maureen Bateman is a retired educator, whose career spanned 50 years through teaching, school administration, and district level administration.  Volunteerism continues to be a primary focus of her activities in retirement as she has served on the Board of Directors for the West San Gabriel Valley YMCA and Soroptimist.  Maureen currently donates her time to Lincoln Training Center, an organization that helps adults with disabilities to be productive individuals by engaging them in meaningful work among various other organizations.


Angela Chen, 2014 Emerging Leader Award

Angela Chen is a freshman at Arcadia High School.  Angela actively volunteers at the Arcadia Recreation & Community Services Department and the Interact Club at school.  Before she turned one, Angela was diagnosed with multiple food allergies. After attending the Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) annual meeting in 2012, she applied and was accepted to participate in the teen advisory group TAG of FARE in the spring of 2013.  Her leadership skills convinced FARE to select Angela as a teen panel speaker to share her personal experience and provide advice on dealing with daily food allergies.  As a result Angela has proposed a food allergy awareness law for California that would require restaurant managers to receive certified training in common food allergies.