CWHF New Chair, Vice Chair and Board Members

Say Hello to Our new Board Chair, Vice Chair and Newest Board Members

The Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame (CWHF) has named Deborah Radman Chair of the CWHF board of directors. Barbara Beckner will fill the role of Vice Chair. Deborah Radman is CEO of Radman Communications LLC and serves as an independent, senior public relations counselor affiliated with a number of different public relations firms throughout the country. She has been on the CWHF board for three years as Director of Brand Awareness. Barbara Beckner is an experienced business leader and a top sales, planning, goal-setting, customer satisfaction, and contract manager. She is adept at building teams and long-term relationships, and motivating team members to achieve successful results that promote business growth. Barbara joined the CWHF board in 2018.

Debbrah Courtney as Director of Speaker’s Bureau; Shannon Haltiwanger as Brand Awareness Director. Mandi Ericson (not shown) will become Board Secretary.

Inductees In the News – Summer 2019

Three Hall Inductees being inducted into the Colorado Author’s Hall of Fame
The newly established Colorado Authors Hall of Fame inducted three CWHF inductees into their first class: Madeleine Albright, Jill Tietjen, PE, and Marilyn Van Derbur Atler Congratulations to all on this impressive honor! 

Penny Rafferty Hamilton inducted into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame Class of 2014, was selected as Grand County Colorado 2019 Citizen of the Year by the Middle Park Fair & Rodeo Board. A true renaissance woman, Dr. Hamilton not only holds records for aviation speed, she also earned blue ribbons at the fair for her Butterscotch Apple Pie and her S’More cookie bites.

Penny Hamilton

Emily Warner Field Aviation Museum in Grand County nominated as one of the Best Museums in Grand County Hall Inductee Emily Howell Warner was inducted into the Hall in 2002. Warner made aviation history by becoming the first woman hired as a pilot by a major U.S. airline, Frontier. Three years later she earned her captain’s wings, the first woman to do so. Voting open until September 15, 2019
Vote for Best of Grand County

Emily Howell Warner

We are sad to announce that Joan Birkland, inducted into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame in 1996, recently passed away at the age of 90. Joan was a trailblazing athlete and champion of girls in sports. Our thoughts are with her friends and family.

Day of the Girl Essay Contest

The Center for Colorado Women’s History and the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame will host an essay contest to celebrate International Day of the Girl on October 11, 2019. Denver metro students in grades 3 through 8 are invited to learn about women who have made a difference in history, so that they can use them as inspiration to create a better tomorrow.

The 19th Amendment was adopted in 1920, 99 years ago, to ensure that gender would not be a barrier to voting in the United States.  Many women fought tirelessly for this amendment to the constitution and the fight for equal voting rights continued after 1920.

Participants should submit a 250 to 500 word essay responding to this prompt:

Before the 19th Amendment was adopted in 1920, states could deny women the right to vote. Why do you think it is important for women to have the right to vote and why would voting be important to you?

A winner from each category will be invited to attend an afternoon tea with Denver’s Margaret “Molly” Brown to celebrate International Day of the Girl on October 11, at 4:30 pm, at the Center for Colorado Women’s History at the Byers-Evans House.

Jaclyn Allen, Denver7 Anchor on Women & Journalism

It may not surprise you to hear in this “Me Too” era that the world of television news is not always kind to women.  Already a cutthroat industry of fierce competition, disproportionate emphasis on appearance and grueling schedules, longevity is rare, especially if you happen to be female.

However, journalism is an industry that, now more than ever, needs women to tell their stories, to show their faces and to fight for their seat at the table.  Which is why when I think of women I admire, Denver7 anchor Anne Trujillo is one of the first who comes to mind.

Jaclyn Allen, Denver7 Anchor

Yes, for more than 25 years, Anne has been the face of Denver’s ABC affiliate, winning more Emmys and awards than anyone can count for her exceptional journalism in Colorado. But it is what she does behind the scenes that also makes her a hero in my book. 

More than a decade ago, I walked into the Denver7 newsroom, a terrified young reporter, worried that I wasn’t ready, carrying all of the racking self-doubt with which young women too readily saddle themselves. I had just finished one of my first reports, when Anne approached me.  “You did a great job on that story,” she said with an encouraging smile. In that time when compliments from others had seemed few and far between, I felt an inexplicable flood of relief, gratitude and confidence. “The main anchor thinks I’m good enough. Maybe I am?”

Since then, Anne has been teaching me through her example every day: A truly strong woman uses her strength to support other women. I am fully aware that women such as Anne paved the way in this still typically male-dominated profession.

Over the years, Anne and I have sometimes been the only women in editorial meetings, and I have watched her fight for stories about women, champion diverse hires and raise awareness about equal treatment over and over again. She takes her responsibility as a “voice for the voiceless” seriously.

As so many women are expected to do, she juggles the personal and the professional in a way that makes me stop and stare, somehow managing to host Politics Unplugged and also host bridal showers (including mine) with the same level of grace and style. She was a working mother and is a working powerhouse, never resting on her laurels, but reaching on her way to bring others along with her.  

So many people have asked me what Anne is like behind the scenes, and I think the answer is simple. She is as amazing and as strong as she seems. And she knows that women need women to make it.

About Kristin Stork, Director of Strategic Partnerships, Denver7

Kristin Stork, Director of Strategic Partnerships at Denver 7
Kristin Stork, Director of Strategic Partnerships

I’ve worked in corporate philanthropy/community affairs for 14 years. Served as director of community relations for Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck law firm and manager of community relations and charities for The Denver Post. I’ve spent nearly all my career working with and/or for nonprofit organizations including marketing and public relations roles with the Children’s Museum of Denver and the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities. I realized early in my career that it is important to me to do work that makes a difference.I’m proud to serve on the boards of Hunger Free Colorado and The Denver Post Community Foundation. I also serve on the direct services grantmaking committee for the Women’s Foundation of ColoradoI am excited to return to the world of media and am proud to be part of the team at Denver7. The station and its people authentically care about this community, and I’m proud to help develop and lead our efforts in this arena.


Talk about Denver7’s community commitment

  • Denver7 helps Coloradans navigate challenges and celebrate life in this state we all love, so they can make the best decisions for themselves and their families.
  • Denver7 cares about this community – our community. We live here, work here and tell the stories that impact this community. It’s important to us that we have an authentic connection to it.
  • Literacy is a big area of focus for us, as we know that reading is a crucial contributing factor to success in school and in life. Through our Read to Lead program, we work to help people of all ages learn to read and read more often.
  • Visit www.TheDenverChannel.com/Community to learn more.


Why does a partnership with CWHF appeal to you and Denver7?

  • We love to tell stories about amazing people in our state, and this partnership provides us with the opportunity to recognize and tell the stories of some incredible Colorado women.


What are your thoughts about the importance of mentors and role models?  How do you perceive that CWHF fulfills some of that?

  • Hearing the stories of successful women from all walks of life can play a crucial role in the lives of young women. The women honored by CWHF serve as role models to girls across the state – showing them a wide variety of ways they can make a difference and succeed.
  • We don’t know what we don’t know. Role models and mentors help us to learn what we don’t know. Through their experiences, our minds and worlds can be opened to new possibilities and opportunities. For young women, when they see someone who looks like them or comes from their neighborhood doing something they never would have thought to do, the impossible becomes possible.


How do we, together, put “her” back into history?

  • For me, it’s all about storytelling, and CWHF gives us such a fantastic opportunity to do that. To share the stories of great women in our state. To remember the history and to inspire the future.

Who is Your Hero?

By Anne Trujillo, Anchor, Denver7

Anne Trujillo Denver7

It’s a simple question that gets complicated when you think how easily and quickly that word hero is thrown around. The answer for me wasn’t hard. My friend Sherri Vasquez is one of my heroes. My lovely friend just passed away April 25th, she was just 56 years old. Gone much too soon. We didn’t shop together, meet up for lunch or do girl things together. We were fellow journalists who had a mutual respect for one another. Sherri and I both earned our Journalism degrees from the University of Colorado. She went to the print side; I worked the broadcast side. She worked at the Rocky Mountain News; I worked at Denver7. Our paths crossed because we were both members of the Colorado Hispanic Media Association. There were very few Latinos working in the news media in the 80’s and 90’s, and CHMA provided some professional support in an era when it took work to get women hired into newsrooms; it took thick skin to stay there.

During her time at the Rocky, Sherri won the Positive Images Award two years in a row from the CHMA because she was fearless in delivering news about her community. 

She wrote a weekly column in the Rocky called “Que Pasa” because she was determined to tell the stories about a community no one else was writing about, featuring the characters, the people, the culture and events that weren’t being covered in mainstream media. That was a risky move for a local newspaper and not a popular path to take. Sherri was a trailblazer who wasn’t afraid of backlash because she knew what she was doing was meaningful and important. As readers, we needed those articles to remind ourselves that our history is important too. In a time when news organizations were more likely to interview officials and specialists about issues in our minority communities, Sherri was raising the bar and showcasing the very people most directly impacted. She wanted people, especially young people to know we don’t all think alike and don’t all fit under one heading. We may call ourselves Latino or Hispanic, but if you delve deeper we all identify in a more meaningful way as Chicanos, Spanish, Mexicans, New Mexicans, Hondurans, Puerto Ricans and so on.  We are not the same and Sherri wanted her readers to know it too. In our community, there are Latinos who are doctors, entrepreneurs, lawyers and professionals but for a long time no one wrote about them or interviewed them, except for Sherri. 

According to the Society of Professional Journalists, we believe that public enlightenment is the forerunner of justice and the foundation of democracy.

Journalism doesn’t always have to be about politics, or crime or business. It is a marker of our history, the archives of our lives. Sherri Vasquez made sure we knew our history so we could learn from the past and help build a better future. And that is the kind of public enlightenment we all deserve.

It’s a simple question that gets complicated when you think how easily and quickly that word hero is thrown around. The answer for me wasn’t hard. My friend Sherri Vasquez is one of my heroes. My lovely friend just passed away April 25th, she was just 56 years old. Gone much too soon. We didn’t shop together, meet up for lunch or do girl things together. We were fellow journalists who had a mutual respect for one another. Sherri and I both earned our Journalism degrees from the University of Colorado. She went to the print side; I worked the broadcast side. She worked at the Rocky Mountain News; I worked at Denver7. Our paths crossed because we were both members of the Colorado Hispanic Media Association. There were very few Latinos working in the news media in the 80’s and 90’s, and CHMA provided some professional support in an era when it took work to get women hired into newsrooms; it took thick skin to stay there.

During her time at the Rocky, Sherri won the Positive Images Award two years in a row from the CHMA because she was fearless in delivering news about her community. 

She wrote a weekly column in the Rocky called “Que Pasa” because she was determined to tell the stories about a community no one else was writing about, featuring the characters, the people, the culture and events that weren’t being covered in mainstream media. That was a risky move for a local newspaper and not a popular path to take. Sherri was a trailblazer who wasn’t afraid of backlash because she knew what she was doing was meaningful and important. As readers, we needed those articles to remind ourselves that our history is important too. In a time when news organizations were more likely to interview officials and specialists about issues in our minority communities, Sherri was raising the bar and showcasing the very people most directly impacted. She wanted people, especially young people to know we don’t all think alike and don’t all fit under one heading. We may call ourselves Latino or Hispanic, but if you delve deeper we all identify in a more meaningful way as Chicanos, Spanish, Mexicans, New Mexicans, Hondurans, Puerto Ricans and so on.  We are not the same and Sherri wanted her readers to know it too. In our community, there are Latinos who are doctors, entrepreneurs, lawyers and professionals but for a long time no one wrote about them or interviewed them, except for Sherri. 

According to the Society of Professional Journalists, we believe that public enlightenment is the forerunner of justice and the foundation of democracy.

Journalism doesn’t always have to be about politics, or crime or business. It is a marker of our history, the archives of our lives. Sherri Vasquez made sure we knew our history so we could learn from the past and help build a better future. And that is the kind of public enlightenment we all deserve.

Media Partner Spotlight: Pauline Rivera

MEET PAULINE RIVERA, Publisher, LaVoz

Pauline Rivera is a graduate of Metropolitan State University of Denver where she majored in Journalism with a minor in History

Pauline Rivera

In 2004 Pauline joined La Voz on a contract basis, then as a columnist (Mis Recuerdos), eventually becoming the Lifestyles editor. In 2007 she became the General Manager at La Voz. In 2008 Pauline and her husband purchased La Voz and have successfully operated the 45-year-old bilingual publication. Under her leadership, as Publisher, La Voz has advanced editorially, has expanded statewide, and is the winner of numerous National Association of Hispanic Publicans (NAHP) awards for the past seven years. Pauline has recently been awarded the Trailblazer Award from the Denver Latinas First Foundation for being the “first” Latina publisher of a Hispanic publication in Denver.  Under her leadership La Voz was granted a face-to-face EXCLUSIVE interview with President Barack Obama in 2012. Also, in addition to Denver and its surrounding communities, and northern Colorado, La Voz has expanded their reach to both Pueblo and Colorado Springs, major Colorado cities with large Latino populations.

Tell us something special about you that we don’t already know…

I was the first Latina to own a bilingual publication. Also named Latina Publisher of the year 2016 by the National Association of Hispanic Publications (NAHP)

Why does a partnership with CWHF appeal to you and La Voz?

It is important that CWHF highlight the very same women represented in today’s society and continue instilling diversity.

What are your thoughts about the importance of mentors and role models?

Role models and mentors are important because it is easier to success with someone’s help and experience than doing it alone. CWHF continues to seek ways to reach all groups.

How do you feel about the progress women have made in the business world, as community citizens, as voices for progress?

Women are dominating the workforce and Latinas in general account for more than 25 percent of new businesses.

How do we, together, put “her” back into history?

We work together by working to represent what society looks like today, diverse and inclusive.

What makes you hopeful and happy?

That more women are stepping up and taking control of their skills, know how and integrity is key.

What words of inspiration might you have for CWHF and the future generation of women? Integrity is the key to success; diversity is the key to fairness and equality.

Girl Scouts of Colorado Partnership

Girl Scouts of Colorado and Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame
Launch Colorado Women’s History Patch Program

Girl Scouts of Colorado (GSCO) and the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame (CWHF) have joined forces to create a patch for Girl Scouts of all ages. The history of women isn’t taught in Colorado schools. Since the Girl Scouts provide opportunities for girls to learn by exploring their interests, passions and dreams, the exposure to great Colorado women – both historic and contemporary — provides role models to begin to fill that gap. “As Girl Scouts, girls prepare for a lifetime of leadership, success, and adventure in a safe, no-limits place designed for and by girls,” says Stephanie Foote, President and CEO of GSCO, “The idea is to learn by doing and be inspired to discover her talents and passions in a safe and supportive allgirl setting. Along with other Girl Scouts and people in her community, our girls have the potential to change the world.”


CWHF highlights extraordinary women, their accomplishments and impact on Colorado, the United States and even the world. Hall inductees are women who, through grit and grace, have advanced the roles of today’s women to levels of heightened recognition and models of inspiration. “Who better than CWHF to provide an adventure in learning about contemporary and historic Colorado women,” asks Beth Barela, CWHF board chair. “The mission synergy between our two organizations is uncanny. The Colorado women in the Hall are leaders, trail blazers, pioneers and even unsung heroes who have endured challenges, discrimination, hardship, loss, but also great successes. They are shining examples of the potential of all women.” CWHF and GSCO believe that bringing these inspirational stories to Girl Scouts through a fun, engaging and challenging activity like earning this patch, will begin to help girls to know about those who have gone before them, and in doing so, inspire these young women and girls to play a bigger role in shaping the future. To earn the CWHF patch, Girl Scouts can complete at least three of the following seven activities within a 12-month period.

After earning the patch, the Girl Scout/Girl Scout troop is invited to share their experiences on the Girl Scouts of Colorado blog!
“Considering that 2019 is the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote, a critical milestone in the women’s equal rights movement, still today,” says Barela. “Throughout Colorado this year there will be ample discussion, publicity, exhibits and events celebrating 100 years of women’s suffrage. What a perfect year to launch this partnership with the Girl Scouts.” “We are the preeminent leadership development organization for girls,” says Foote. “Girl Scouts builds girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place.”

About Girl Scouts of Colorado
Girl Scouts of Colorado is 32,000 strong—more than 22,000 girls and 10,000 adults who believe in the power of every G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™ to change the world. Our extraordinary journey began more than 100 years ago with the original G.I.R.L., Juliette Gordon “Daisy” Low. On March 12, 1912, in Savannah, Ga., she organized the very first Girl Scout troop, and every year since, we’ve honored her vision and legacy, building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. We’re the preeminent leadership development organization for girls. Girl Scouts offers every girl a chance to practice a lifetime of leadership, adventure, and success. To volunteer, reconnect, donate, or join, visit www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org

About the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame:
The Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame was created to recognize, honor and preserve the contributions of trailblazing Colorado women. Both historical and contemporary women have shared foresight, vision and accomplishment, but lacked a forum for recognition. Since 1985, the Hall has inducted 152 extraordinary women who have been outstanding in their field, elevated the status of women, helped open new frontiers for women or inspired others by their example. Inductees include scientists, teachers, social activists, philanthropists, authors, business leaders, elected officials and more.

To learn more about inductees, visit: Women of the Hall

Stay in touch via Facebook or Twitter @ColoradoWHF.

Second Season of Great Colorado Women

Rocky Mountain PBS and the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame
Premieres Season 2 of Great Colorado Women
Historic, Multi-Episode Series Begins in Late-February

The Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame (CWHF) and Rocky Mountain PBS will debut Season Two of a broadcast series focusing on historic and contemporary Colorado women and their little-known, under-reported achievements. The five-episode series, Great Colorado Women, premiers on Thursday, February 28, 2019, and is produced by the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame (CWHF) Season Two is part of what is a multi-season series. These stories provide role models to remind women and girls; men and boys, so they can aspire higher to reach their dreams.

The Season Two premier airs statewide on Thursday, February 28 at 8:30pm MT on Rocky Mountain PBS.

The first episode features the story of Helen Bonfils: “Miss Helen: Bringing Culture to A Cow Town.” Bonfils was known affectionately as “Miss Helen” and also as “Poor Little Rich Girl.” She was one of Colorado’s most generous philanthropists and the leader of a cultural revolution.

The series resumes later in March as follows:
● Thursday 3/21 8:30-9:00pm Arlene Hirschfeld: “Denver’s Spirit of Volunteerism”
● Thursday 3/28 8:30-9:00pm Gudy Gaskill: “Blazing the Colorado Trail”
● Thursday 4/4 8:30-9:00pm Doreen Pollack: “Giving Silence a Voice”
● Thursday 4/11 8:30-9:00pm Mildred “Babe” Zaharias: “The Greatest Athlete”

“So many women in the Hall are unsung heroes, hidden figures who have endured with superlative strength, beauty and love. They deserve absolute respect and acknowledgment,” says Betty Heid, CWHF’s executive producer of the series. “They are shining examples of the potential of all women. Their accomplishments are worthy of being emulated and have shaped history and transformed lives.” Each episode of Great Colorado Women meets Colorado Academic Standards for K-12 and can easily be integrated into classroom studies through PBS LearningMedia that schools can consider using in their curricula to teach students about women’s history.

Julie Speer Jackson, Vice President of Culture Content at Rocky Mountain PBS says, “This series, in its second year airing on Rocky Mountain PBS, is really an eye-opener to the impact women have had on our state, our country, and our world. We think it will have broad audience appeal for Colorado citizens including the general public, historians, elementary through high school students, and college students. We want to help others to know about those who have gone before us, and in doing so, we believe the
stories about the women in the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame will inspire women to play a bigger role in shaping Colorado’s history,” she added.
History has shown that when women get involved, great things can happen. “A better world happens when women’s contributions are encouraged and recognized,” Heid emphasizes. “Women have been overlooked in history and in the media. The amazing stories of women’s success, leadership, vision, and accomplishments have not been told.”
Great Colorado Women draws on the historic, scientific, cultural, public policy, education, agriculture, healthcare, and social justice accomplishments of the current 162 women in the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame.

Enchanted Road Productions, along with Heid, produces these programs that will sustain the series for multiple seasons. Rocky Mountain PBS is actively seeking underwriting to support this programming. CWHF is working on community and corporate sponsorships to support production. Both the CWHF and RMPBS believe that individuals, businesses, and organizations can garner great benefit from sponsoring and sending a strong message that women and their contributions matter. A special invitation-only preview screening event will be held in late February, hosted and sponsored by Balfour Senior Living at its Riverfront Park location in lower downtown Denver. Balfour communities are
highly regarded for their comfortable elegance and for the individualized quality of life. But it’s their dedication to service, innovation, and respect that truly define The Balfour Way.

Nominations for 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame is Accepting Nominations of Amazing Women

Deadline for entries is August 1, 2019

Do you know an amazing woman?  The Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame (CWHF) begins its “Call for Nominations” for its next group of extraordinary women to be inducted into the Hall.  Representing the “Class of 2020,” up to ten women will be inducted in March 2020 during a special celebration in their honor.

Every two years, the CWHF inducts contemporary and historical women with significant ties to Colorado who have made enduring and exemplary contributions to their fields, elevated the status of women and helped open new frontiers for women and society.

“Women, and especially young girls, need role models who share a similar drive and vision in life, education, business, and personal development,” says Beth Barela, chair of CWHF.  “Too many of today’s girls and young women still struggle with low self esteem, the deeply rooted belief that they “can’t,” or that certain obstacles are insurmountable.  Having role models to study, emulate, and help them find ways to succeed is critical in women being able to create a healthy, happy, productive future for themselves.”

Nominations are generated by the citizens of Colorado who put forward a wide variety of extraordinary women for consideration.  These nominations are evaluated by an independent selection committee comprised of diverse citizens from around the state who are experts in their fields.  “We really hope for greater participation from Colorado citizens in submitting nominations this year for 2020,” says Barela.

The six contemporary and four historical women inducted into the Hall must meet the following criteria:

The Hall believes that individuals, businesses, and organizations that submit nominations for the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame send a strong message that women and their contributions matter.

Nominations are due by August 1, 2019. Tips and more information about the selection criteria as well as both English and Spanish version nomination forms are available to download at: http://www.cogreatwomen.org/inductees/nominate/

About the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame

Since 1985 the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame has inducted 162 women of various races, backgrounds, economic levels, career choices, political philosophies, and religious beliefs united by their outstanding contributions to society. The lives of these extraordinary women are shining examples of what can be achieved with passion, commitment, spirit, and the willingness to stand tall in the face of obstacles. They are trailblazers, visionaries, women of courage, glass-ceiling breakers, innovators, and rule changers in all walks of life. Their contributions span Colorado’s colorful and storied history, reach to its four corners, and have spread to touch our nation and our world.

They are teachers, doctors, scientists, politicians, social activists, bankers, newspaper publishers, philanthropists, humanitarians, authors, a symphony conductor, a former prime minister, a Nobel Peace Prize nominee, a jurist, a Pulitzer Prize winning playwright, an historical preservationist, a true Western pioneer, an aviation pioneer, a former Miss America, and a Cheyenne princess, to name a few. While some are well known throughout Colorado and the nation, others were pioneers in their small communities.

To learn more about our Inductees:http://www.cogreatwomen.org/inductees/women-in-the-hall/

Stay in touch via Facebook: www.facebook.com/cogreatwomen,

The LinkedIn group: Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame

Follow CWHF on Twitter @ColoradoWHF.

Contact: Deborah Radman
Deborah.radman@rad-comm.net |
917-841-9228