AWC-SB Honors its 2021 ‘Women of Achievement’ at Free Event
The community is invited to celebrate Barbara Ben-Horin and Luz Reyes-Martin on April 30 for their contributions to Vision, Voice, Advocacy for a New Generation
Click Here to view the PDF Event Program Guide
(Santa Barbara, Calif.) Luz Reyes-Martin, Executive Director of Public Affairs and Communications at Santa Barbara City College, and Barbara Ben-Horin, former CEO of Girls Inc. of Greater Santa Barbara, will be honored by the Santa Barbara Chapter of the Association for Women in Communications at the 13th Annual Women of Achievement Awards presented by Women Connect4Good.
The honorees will receive their awards at a free lunchtime event, beginning at noon, on Friday, April 30, 2021. In deference to public health protocols, the awards program will be held on Zoom. Starshine Roshell, award-winning journalist and previous Women of Achievement recipient, will emcee the event. To receive a link to attend and a PDF program, register in advance by clicking this link.
“So many people tell me they look forward to this annual luncheon. It’s a fun chance to catch up with friends and celebrate the accomplishments of our honorees,” says AWC-SB President Lisa Osborn. “While we look forward to a time when we can see each other in person, a virtual event has a silver lining because we can make it available at no cost to anyone who wants to join us. These are inspiring women, and we could all use a little inspiration right now!”
Luz Reyes-Martin identifies as a communications professional, advocate, mother, and feminist. She has expertise in the fields of communications, public affairs, marketing, and land use planning, which she uses in her role as executive director of communications for Santa Barbara City College. Reyes-Martin also serves as a member of the Goleta Unified School District Board, and president of the Santa Barbara Women’s Political Committee, a non-partisan organization that endorses candidates who support a feminist agenda that includes action opposing discrimination based on gender identity, race, ethnicity, religion, age or ability.
“In my roles as School Board member, Public Information Officer, and President of a Political Action Committee, I think constantly about how to communicate effectively with different audiences,” says Reyes-Martin. “The essential ingredients are always authenticity, honesty, integrity, and respect. At its best, communication bridges the gaps that divide us, helps us connect with audiences with empathy, and makes constructive collaboration possible. As a woman of color, mother, leader, and feminist, I use my voice to uplift marginalized communities, empower a new generation of communicators, and pursue a society that is fully equitable and just for all women.”
Barbara Ben-Horin’s professional commitment to communication intersects with her passion for advocacy and social justice. Ben-Horin has served in leadership positions for a number of organizations in Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and New York including the SB Jewish Federation, SB Museum of Art, SBCC Foundation, Domestic Violence Solutions, SB County Office of Education, the Anti-Defamation League, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Most recently she served as CEO at Girls Inc. of Greater Santa Barbara which holds a vision of empowered girls in an equitable society.
“In both my personal and professional life, I have been committed to the concept of fair and just relations which require mutual respect, civility, and supportive language,” said Ben-Horin. “The past year has made it even more clear that all of us hold the power to make a difference in the world both by taking action when something is not just, and by using words to convey kindness, support, courage, and empowerment.”
The Women of Achievement event is a signature event for the Santa Barbara Chapter of the Association for Women in Communications. “Like many other organizations in our community, we were disappointed when COVID forced us to postpone the event last spring,” says President AWC-SB, Lisa Osborn. “What we learned over the past year is that a good communicator is resilient. If anything, it’s even more important to honor women who have used their gifts to encourage others.”
Funds raised through the women of Achievement Luncheon are used to underwrite networking and professional development programs for members of AWC-SB. “We truly appreciate the sponsors who stuck with us even though we had to reschedule and restructure the event,“ says Osborn. “We are especially grateful to our presenting sponsor, Women Connect4Good, and media sponsor The Santa Barbara Independent which has helped us get the word out about our monthly virtual events.” Other sponsors include the Santa Barbara City College Foundation, Natalie Orfalea Foundation, Southern California Edison, Fielding Graduate University, Montecito Bank & Trust, and Sanger Swysen & Dunkle.
During the past year, the Santa Barbara chapter has continued to have monthly meetings with are open to the public and free to members. “We’ve had meetings on everything from crisis communications to self-care,” says Osborn. “I’m very proud of the way our members and our Board have stepped up to support each other during this challenging year.” A biannual membership drive is now in progress. For information, contact Membership Chair, Carolyn Jabs at firstname.lastname@example.org. Details about the benefits of membership as well as upcoming events are available at awcsb.org.
ABOUT AWC & AWC-SB
AWC is a national organization that has been encouraging women to develop their skills as communicators for over 100 years. The Santa Barbara chapter sponsors monthly meetings which help women at all stages of their careers stay current with important developments in the technology, practice, psychology, and ethics of communications. Members are also encouraged to assume leadership roles in the organization, their careers, and their communities. For more information, including upcoming events, go to awcsb.org.