Girl Scouts announce 2007 Women of Distinction Honorees
Girl Scouts of Shawnee Council, Inc. announces the 2007 Women of Distinction who will be honored at the 2007 Women of Distinction luncheon on Wednesday, September 26 at the Holiday Inn in Martinsburg.
Three women from the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia have been chosen to receive this year's honor: Maria Lorensen, editor-in-chief of The Martinsburg Journal in Martinsburg; Barbara Pichot, retired certified public accountant from Kearneysville; and Laura Smith, president of the Morgan County Board of Education.
Laura Smith is the current president of the Morgan County Board of Education. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the George Washington Heritage Trail and, for the last seven years, has been the executive assistant of Travel Berkeley Springs. She has been described as a woman "of many professions and a leader in all. Her dedication to her community, her work and loyalty make her an invaluable and sought-after person."
Smith is very involved in St. Mark's Episcopal Church, teaching Sunday school and serving on the vestry and the Altar Guild. She is a previous recipient of the Morgan County Volunteer of the Year: West Virginia Soil Conservation award for her supporting role during her husband's 15-year tenure as county supervisor.
She became a member of RESA VIII in 1998, an organization that provides oversight and direction for many children's programs, including Head Start.
Maria Lorensen was nominated to receive the 2007 Women of Distinction honor because she "shows us that there are no sacrifices in life - faith, community and work can coexist." As editor-in-chief of The Martinsburg Journal, mother, wife and community leader, Lorensen manages to balance it all. Under her leadership, The Journal has received six general excellence awards from the West Virginia Press Association. She has also been the personal recipient of numerous awards, including Best Editorial Page, Best Written News Story, Best Lifestyle Section and Best Written Feature.
Barbara Pichot is a certified public accountant who worked as a partner in the accounting firm of CoxNicholsHollida until her retirement in 2006. Pichot currently serves as a member of the Allocations Distribution Committee of the United Way of the Eastern Panhandle, and is an active member of the Rotary Club of Martinsburg, having served as their first female president in 2001.
Pichot has been an active member of the Hospice of the Panhandle Board of Directors since 1988, serving as Secretary, Vice President and President.
During her time as a member of Shepherd University's Board of Governors, Pichot was instrumental in obtaining funding for the Blue Ridge Community Technical College.
The Women of Distinction event is an opportunity to celebrate and honor outstanding women leaders throughout the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia who have distinguished themselves as outstanding role models for girls and women through their achievements. Each honoree will receive a distinctive award custom designed by the staff of Christian Caine Jewelers in Shepherdstown.
Honorees for the Women of Distinction have been nominated from businesses, service organizations and the general public. A selection committee, comprised of individuals who are not currently affiliated with Girl Scouts of Shawnee Council, make the final recommendations regarding honorees.