YWCA of the City of New York Celebrates Visionaries for Commitment to Diversity and Female-Focused Initiatives at 43rd Annual Academy of Women Leaders SALUTE Luncheon

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Cisco’s Monique Jeanne Morrow, Receives Women of Influence Award, Twilio’s Rob Spectre, Man of the Year and Reva Wurtzburger, The Grace Hoadley Dodge Community Leadership Award

Today, the YWCA of the City of New York honored Cisco’s Monique Morrow, Twilio’s Rob Spectre, Reva Wurtzburger, for their civic involvement and commitment to diversity and supporting female-focused initiatives, during the 43rd Annual Academy of Women Leaders SALUTE Luncheon held at the New York Marriot Marquis Hotel.

For over 40 years, the SALUTE Luncheon and its YW Academy of Women Leaders, has been one of the nation’s largest, most visible and important tributes to professional women leaders and the premiere event for showcasing trailblazing women in business. It has also been a venue for celebrating a range of businesses that have made diversity a priority in their companies.

“Providing opportunities for women in leadership is critical to the mission of the YWCA of the City of New York (YW), whose programs have empowered New York City women since its inception 158 years ago,” said Chief Executive Officer at the YWCA of the City of New York Dr. Danielle Moss Lee. In their own ways, each of today’s honorees exemplify the values that we strive to impart at the YW: diversity, equality, leadership and empowerment, as do the new inductees into the Academy of Women Leaders,” she added.

Monique Jeanne Morrow Receives Woman of Influence Award
Monique Morrow is the CTO Evangelist for New Frontiers and Engineering at Cisco. She is a proven innovator, ground breaking technologist and author that has demonstrated the willingness and courage to take risks and explore new opportunities for Cisco and women in technology.

Recognized and honored worldwide for her unwavering commitment to inclusion and diversity in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math), Ms. Morrow believes it’s incumbent upon all of us to open the eyes of young women to these exciting career opportunities. She is currently spearheading the “Internet of Women” global collaborative movement with a goal to develop a new social science for women in technology to sustainably transform the industry.

“I am deeply honored to be recognized today, as the work of YW has echoed my belief that helping girls and young women realize that STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) is more than just coding – it’s the conduit to a wide range of fulfilling career options,” Morrow said.

Reva Wurtzburger Receives Grace Hoadley Dodge Community Leadership Award
Reva Wurtzburger has a lifetime of volunteer involvement. In 1996, Reva and a small group of women initiated the idea for Bottomless Closet, and she became its subsequent President when the organization opened its doors early 1999. Since its inception, the organization has offered an innovative approach to workplace preparation for disadvantaged New York City women transitioning from unemployment and public assistance to work.

Rob Spectre Named Man of the Year
The Man of the Year award recognizes a senior level man whose leadership, service, and platform demonstrate a strong commitment to advancing diversity in the workplace. This year’s recipient, Rob Spectre is the leader of the developer outreach organization and New York office for Twilio, the developer platform for cloud communications. He is an ardent supporter of open source software and creative commons art, and serves as an advisor to New York-based non-profits DoSomething.org, a 5 million strong youth action organization and hackNY, New York's organization federating the next generation of software developers for the city's innovation community.

“It's a rare privilege to participate in the YWCA's unique approach to technical literacy. Their work with young women applying their programming skill to the social justice issues these girls care about is completely novel in New York, or anywhere else. Every technical leader that cares about diversity needs to pay attention to the special work going on at the YWCA of the City of New York,” Spectre said.

Thanks to its supporters, including the numerous corporations that support SALUTE and other programs, the YWCA NYC continues to provide a variety of human service programs to more than 3,000 women and their families annually throughout New York City. For additional information about SALUTE, visit the YWCA NYC’s website at http://www.ywcanyc.org or call212.735.9702.

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About the YWCA of the City of New York
The YWCA of the City of New York was founded in 1858 to provide safe housing and educational resources for women. In its 158 years of operation, the organization has maintained its commitment to advancement and opportunity for girls and women through housing, job training and educational classes, while upholding its commitment to the elimination of racism and the empowerment of women. For more information, visit http://www.ywcanyc.org/.

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Brian Franklin
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