Women of the Year

The Brookline Commission for Women’s longest-standing tradition, Brookline Woman of the Year honors women from the community who have made a significant impact on the town and on the people who live here.



The Brookline Commission for Women is pleased to open nominations for Brookline Woman of the Year.
 For the third year in a row, because women continue to be at the heart of our community’s response to these unprecedented times, the BCW will not try to choose just one person to recognize for their significant impact in the community. In March, we will honor up to 3 awesome nominees as our Brookline Women of the Year.
Nominations will be accepted until close of business Friday, February 24, 2023
Access the Nomination Form here: http://bit.ly/3R23SQm
Or by using this QR code:QR for Nominations

Nomination Criteria:

  • Nominations may be submitted for an individual OR for a pair/trio/group of women who work together in the highlighted work (for example, co-founders of an organization). Pairs/teams will be counted as a single nomination.
  • The nominee(s) must be age 16 or older, and currently live or work in Brookline, MA 
  • The nominee(s) must have made either a significant contribution to Brookline’s civic, commercial, community, or cultural life OR distinguished themselves by having a significant impact at the state or national level in the past year 
  • A nominee may not be a candidate for town-wide elective office in 2023 (Town Meeting Member candidates may be nominated) 
  • A nominee may not be related to you/nominator
  • A nominee may not be a current member of the Brookline Commission for Women or a past Woman of the Year (see the BCW website for past honorees: https://www.brooklinema.gov/2245/Women-of-the-Year)
  • The BCW will prioritize nominees who have not already been publicly recognized for their efforts/contributions

2022 Brookline Women Who Inspire Us

We were delighted last year to honor four incredible individuals whose many contributions have done so much for Brookline (and beyond). Watch our Women of the Year virtual event held Wednesday, March 23rd, 2022 (https://youtu.be/RvreE0fodlc) when we honored:

Dr. Laurent (Lolly) Delli-Bovi, founder and medical director of Women’s Health Services in Brookline. A tireless and courageous champion for reproductive health and equity for over thirty years, Dr. Delli-Bovi has helped thousands of people with their decision to end a pregnancy, providing safe and compassionate care to all.

Chobee Hoy, for decades a cheerleader for local businesses, Chobee has also been a dauntless supporter, mentor, volunteer, and advisor to countless non-profit and civic organizations that form the warp and weft of Brookline life. 

Kimberley Richardson, a thoughtful and passionate civic leader, Kimberley's work to advance racial justice and equity raises the voices of those who are struggling in the Brookline community and ensures they are reflected in the decisions and direction of the Town.

Kate Silbaugh, a law professor who for years has contributed energy and expertise to improve Brookline’s schools and inform civic conversations, Kate last year was co-author and chief advocate for Brookline's first-in-the-nation bylaw to create a tobacco-free generation.


Watch our Virtual Celebration of the 2021 Women of the Year honoring the following women:

  • Bonnie Bastien, founder of Mutual Aid Brookline. MAB volunteers have spent more than 10,000 hours since March 2020 delivering food and medications, financial assistance, and a helping hand in countless ways to the most vulnerable in the Brookline community.
  • Ann Brackett and Andrea Johnson, co-founders and leaders of Women Thriving, empowering and co-creating opportunities for women with low income to thrive through learning, leadership development, and community.

  • Deborah Brown, a leading advocate for racial justice, whose energetic work during Covid-19 moved Brookline to focus town attention and resources on vulnerable residents, especially those facing food and housing insecurity.

  • Kathleen Scanlon, leader of Brookline of Mothers Out Front, mobilizing Brookline’s efforts to reduce fossil fuel use, expand Brookline Green Electricity and composting, and drive legislative action to address climate change.

  • Chi Chi Wu, leader of the Brookline Asian American Family Network (BAAFN), supporting the needs of Brookline’s vibrant AAPI community and, during the pandemic, mobilizing Brookline to combat rising anti-Asian rhetoric and hate crimes.

  • (2020) Kim Kushner, Founder of Brookline Thrives
  • (2019) Lihua Shorter, World Languages Department teacher and adviser for the Asian Pacific American Club
  • (2018) Chloe Lara-Russack, Executive Co-Director of Artbarn Community Theater
  • (2017) Misti Jaynes, Community Activist and Collaborator
  • (2016) Rene Feuerman, Food Pantry Executive Director
  • (2015) Doreen Gallagher, Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault Advocate and Violence Prevention Coordinator at BPD
  • (2014) Mary Dunne, BEEP educator
  • (2013) Rita McNally, Engaged Community Leader
  • (2012) Sonya Elder, Former Director of Food Services for Brookline Public Schools 
  • (2011) Janet Selcer, Former Director of Steps to Success
  • (2010) Molly Paul, Former Brookline Community Foundation Executive Director 
  • (2009) Hsiu-Lan Chang, Community Advocate
  • (2008) Vicki Milstein, BEEP Principal
  • (2007) Pat Norling, Domestic Violence Advocate
  • (2006) Sue Howard, Attorney