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November 2019

A message from our Executive Director...

Dear Friend,

At YWCA, we know that uplifting one person uplifts us all.

We see it when a woman walks through our doors looking for help and leaves our programs ready to help others. We see it when people and organizations donate their time, treasure and talents to strengthening our community. And we see it every day our dedicated staff works to achieve our mission.

Together we are creating real change!

At our 3rd Annual EmpowHer event earlier this month, Erin Loos Cutraro, CEO & Founder of She Should Run, led an inspiring conversation on why women’s representation in civic and political leadership matters. I was revitalized by the diversity in age, race and ethnicity the women (and men) who filled the room. This diverse representation did not happen by chance. We at YW were intentional in our outreach efforts. Our goal was to be as inclusive as possible, as uniform groups tend to produce uniform answers. We must reflect the perspectives and challenges of marginalized groups to find creative solutions that go beyond the obvious. In addition, not everyone has the courage or ability to find a place for themselves at the table. It requires those of us in leadership to provide opportunities for young leaders, women of color, and other underrepresented individuals to find their voice.

We still have much more work to do to ensure we are creating inclusive and welcoming environments in our services and programs, but this momentum will propel us forward as we all work to find solutions to the challenges of poverty, homelessness, health, and safety. We will continue to examine how race and gender impact these areas, and work to eliminate disparities.

Thank you for supporting YWCA’s mission to eliminate racism, empower women, and create a thriving community for all people. We deeply appreciate all the dedicated partners like you who take action to make change and move toward a brighter future.



Tara Peterson
Executive Director
YWCA Glendale

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Since 1998, YWCA Glendale has recognized influential women who are visionaries and thought leaders making a difference in the local community.

This year’s Legacy Luncheon and Heart & Excellence Awards will pay homage to the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote by recognizing women from Glendale, Burbank and Pasadena who have made significant gains to advance the rights of women and girls in the areas of Arts & Culture, Racial Justice, Community Impact, Business Industry, Education and Science and Technology. Incorporating 1920s design, the event will feature fine dining, a silent auction, and memorable entertainment to support the YWCA Glendale in raising both awareness and the transformative funds needed to provide quality programming to empower women, girls and families to build healthy relationships, achieve self-sufficiency, and live free from violence.

Know a great woman you'd like to nominateCLICK HERE!

If you are interested in becoming a Legacy Luncheon Sponsor CLICK HERE!


On November 7th YWCA Glendale teamed up with She Should Run to support and encourage female leadership at our 3rd Annual EmpowHER. The engaging and inspirational "brunch and learn" was kicked off by rousing welcome remarks from Glendale City manager Yasmin Beers and led by She Should Run's fantastic CEO and founder Erin Loos Cutraro. Together a diverse crowd authentically discussed the barriers to women's representation in leadership and politics and what steps we can take to create change. The program was so well received that people are already asking how we are going to top this next year...stay tuned! Read the Glendale News-Press recap of the event HERE

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Last Month the YWCA Glendale held our inaugural Purple Tie Awards highlighting men in the community who work toward the elimination of violence against women and families. We also honored victims of domestic violence and celebrated the voices of survivors at our annual Candlelight Vigil. Rev. Sherri James of the UP Church, Fr. Vazken Movsesian of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Church and Ted Bunch, Chief Development Officer of A Call to Men spoke with a powerful sense of urgency about the crisis of intimate partner violence and how essential each and every one of us is to making a difference.


YWCA Glendale marked 2019's Week Without Violence by continuing our advocacy and educational programming. 

On October 17th Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America joined YWCA Glendale to give their outstanding presentations on safe gun storage and the Gun Violence Restraining Order, a historic new tool for removing guns from those who are at risk of harming themselves or others. A GVRO is a civil court order that creates safer circumstances and is critcal in the fight to end domestic violence. Special thanks to Bonnie James for her continued partnership!

Sylvia Chinn represented YWCA Glendale at the Week Without Violence Capitol Hill Briefing and Reception in Washington, D.C. Oct. 15-17. Sylvia joined a colleague from YWCA Silicon Valley to meet with six members of Congress on Capitol Hill to advocate for increasing funds for and the reauthorization of VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) and FVPSA (Family Violence Prevention and Services Act). YWCA USA hosted 12 association leaders from YWCA Central Alabama, YWCA Silicon Valley, YWCA Annapolis & Anne Arundel County, YWCA Northeastern Massachusetts, and YWCA New Hampshire to join a panel to discuss the issue of intergenerational trauma at our Week Without Violence Capitol Hill Briefing. YWCA USA also hosted a reception on the Hill for the 25th Anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act and the 35th Anniversary of the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act. Watch a recording of the Hill Briefing here

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What first drew you to give to YWCA Glendale?

I had always been a fan of YW's Shelter. I had donated money and career-minded clothes for years before meeting Tara. I met Tara for a tour of the YWCA as the facility holds a special place in my childhood memories. I learned to swim at the Y and that pool it was my happy place for quite a while. Afterward, Tara and I got to talking and I was captivated by Tara's vision, can-do spirit and mission to help and support disadvantaged women as well as inspiring our girls to become leaders and entrepreneurs.

What are you passionate about?

Whatever I do I am utterly passionate about it. Currently, I am passionate about improving the real estate experience for the customer. Real estate is broken and I am passionate about making it easier and less stressful for my customers. I am passionate about technology. I love figuring out how to use technology to actually help customers, not just razzle-dazzle them. I am passionate about women's empowerment and leadership - less about #metoo and more about leveling the playing field for everyone.

Who are some of your favorite influential women in history?

Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  Michelle Obama. Oprah Winfrey. Some women feel their success depends on the capitulation of men. These women crafted their success by being amazing human beings, executing on their beliefs and not recognizing "excuses".

What was the last book you read?

I read a LOT of books. The last series was the Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. I adore fantasy and Young Adult  dystopian  novels. This one is both. It's like Katniss is in a world where magic and faeries are real. But that isn't a very impressive leader-ly book, so we can add a re-read of Stephen Covey's 7 Habits For Highly Effective People and Brené Brown's Dare To Lead.

Do you have any pets?

In my fantasy life, I have dogs, chickens, and goats. In real life, I am more of a Pet Auntie.

What is your favorite place in Southern California?

My bed. It is so comfy and warm and wonderful. Outside of that? Anywhere on a mountain. Or the beach. Oh, and the desert is amazing. Didja know you can do all three in one day if you like? I love that about our home.

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No. I don't really see the point of regrets. I am more of a, "do all the best shit you can every day and don't worryabout it"kind of gal.Not every day is awesome, but what you get at the end of the day is your life. Might as well make the most of it.

What is your guilty pleasure?

Ah- now we get to the good stuff. I consume copious amounts of young adult dystopian, fantasy and sci-fi fiction. I'll read that stuff over business books any day.

Where did you grow up and what were you like as a child?

I was born at Kaiser Hospital Sunset. I grew up in a large family (5 brothers!) in Mt Washington. There were a lot of people and I would hole up in my room and read - Dragons of Pern, Lord of the Rings, Earthsea, Chronicles of Narnia, The Phantom Tollbooth - inhaling the worlds in those pages was a way to survive chaotic family life. 

What would you like to pass on to future generations?

Respect Mother Earth. You don't need stuff. Instead, value relationships, community, learning and experiences. Change happens. Either work to influence the change or shut up. Complaining is a waste of breath.

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Our Volunteer of the Month is Erica Medina who has helped us table at multiple events, here’s what she had to say about her experience:

“During my hours of volunteering for YWCA Glendale it was extremely motivating, primarily because I had the opportunity to speak to many women and men about the organization and how we can help. Not only did I speak upon the benefits of YWCA to others, but they expressed to me how they encouraged the YW’s progression and consistent efforts. It was a very different volunteer experience overall because I was able to build closer connections with many different people about their personal experiences.”

Find out how you can volunteer with YWCA Glendale!


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Click here to make a gift to support YWCA Glendale!


At the Agape Circle’s 6th Annual Luncheon chairperson Alice Chakrian announced a $10,000 contribution toYWCA Glendale, noting that Agape Circle is “honored to be part of the mission of YWCA because we want every woman who goes there to feel love and dignity.”

In response to the donation, YWCA's Executive Director Tara Peterson said she was “deeply grateful and emotional” and felt “inspired” by Dr. Thomas Lee’s mission work, spurring her thoughts about making a connection between the Women’s Support Center in Armenia and how the YWCA Glendale “can be a resource to women and children in Armenia.”

“I know this contribution will go a long way,” said Peterson, stating that the funds will be earmarked for the renovation of the shelter’s backyard to provide a peaceful outdoor space for women and children. “We are going to name it the Agape Circle Garden of Hope because it will provide women and children with a sense of pride.”

“Each and every one of us here are so thankful for what you do because it’s unacceptable to see one woman being abused, as God forbid that,” said Archbishop Derderian. “You’ve responded to God’s call and we thank you for inviting us to be a partner in your most God- pleasing mission.”

See more about the event


YWCA Glendale would like to give a heartfelt thank you to Elizabeth Manasserian of Boardwalk Properties & Investments, Ninet Jacobs of Jacob & Jacob Realty & Finance, Kathy Rust & Camille Levee of Rotary Club of Glendale (Noon), City Council Member Paula Devine, YMCA and all of the good citizens of Glendale who donated cash and goods to the YWCA Glendale Emergency Shelter for Women and Children. Together they raised over $3000 in cash and donated over $600 of goods! Thank you Jacob & Jacob Realty and Finance and all the donors listed below for celebrating your 4th year anniversary by giving back to the YWCA Glendale.

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And thank you to friend and Camp Rosie Sponsor La Crescenta Woman's Club for inviting us to speak at their recent meeting. Members donated a generous amount of baby diapers and supplies to help families in our Emergency Shelter and Domestic Violence Service Center!

If you’d like to help, go to:


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735 East Lexington Drive Glendale, CA 91206

Phone (818) 242-4155 | info@glendaleywca.org

YWCA Glendale © 2019 All rights reserved.

YWCA Glendale is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all.


735 East Lexington Drive Glendale, CA 91206
Phone (818) 242-4155 | info@glendaleywca.org
YWCA Glendale © 2018 All rights reserved.
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