Nominations are now open for the 40th Women of Distinction Awards

For 40 years YWCA Toronto has celebrated the incredible lives and work of women who are changing the lives of women and girls. They are your teachers, your friends, your mentors, and your neighbours. They are trailblazers and role models; they are opening doors and challenging the status quo by making a difference in their communities across the city. Every year, YWCA Toronto honours remarkable women who are advancing and advocating for women and girls across a range of areas such as business, education, social justice, advocacy, arts, health and philanthropy.

Nominate a woman who wears her feminism on her sleeve, and is making the world a better place for women and girls. You can nominate a Woman of Distinction in your community who has improved the lives of women and girls in areas such as:

Arts & Culture
Community Action
Corporate Leadership

Food Justice
Global Action
Health & Welfare

Public Service

Science & Technology
Social Justice
Women’s Rights


Eligibility Requirements
• Must demonstrate a commitment to and advocacy for improving the lives of women and/or girls
• Must live and/or work within the GTA but may have made their contributions to women and girls either within or beyond these boundaries
• If nominating a Young Woman of Distinction*, nominee must be 16-30 years of age as of November 1, 2019
• Exclusions:
  – Current YWCA Toronto staff members are not eligible to be nominated for the award.
  – Women currently holding a position or who have announced candidacy in political office are not eligible to be nominated.

Selection Process
All nominations are reviewed by the Selection Committee, comprised of Women of Distinction alumnae, members of YWCA Toronto and community representatives. Nominations are rated based on the nomination criteria outlined in the Nominations Form. Selections are made in consideration of equity and balanced representation from various sectors. Award recipients must be able to attend the awards ceremony and participate in pre-event media and promotion of the Awards. The committee may contact nominees, nominators and supporters to confirm information.

YWCA Toronto’s Board of Directors approves a recommended slate of Award recipients and all nominators and recipients will be contacted by February 2020. Nominations not selected in a given year, are kept on file for consideration the following year.

*Young Women of Distinction are eligible for a $3,000 grant. This grant from the Julia M. Ruby Fund must be used towards educational pursuits or opportunities that will enhance the recipient’s capacity for future leadership.

Related Programs

Sponsor the Awards 

Learn how you can sponsor the Awards. 

2019 Award Recipients

Meet the 2019 WoD recipients.


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Contact Us

For more information, contact Courtney Hogan, Events and Stewardship Officer at or 416.961.8100 x357