Burbank: YWCA honors women of heart

Burbank Leader
May 19 2004

YWCA honors women of heart

Mary Lou Howard, Burbank’s first woman mayor, will be feted at
luncheon for life of public service.

By Lauren Masters, The Leader

Burbank’s first woman mayor will be honored for her work helping
women expand their role in local government at this year’s YWCA Legacy
Award luncheon.

Mary Lou Howard, who served as mayor from 1982 to ’83 and again in
1985 and ’86 and now serves on the Burbank Civil Service Board, will
join four Glendale women to be honored for their work as community
leaders at the organization’s seventh annual luncheon Thursday.

“It is a way for us to recognize women in the community who are
making a difference and creating a legacy for other women through
the work they are doing today,” said Mary Boger, chairwoman of the
YWCA Awards Luncheon.

The YWCA committee chose this year’s honorees from 12 women nominated
by local civic organizations for their work, leadership and ability
to be a role model for other women.

Howard, nominated by Chris S. Carson, president of the League of Women
Voters of Glendale/Burbank, was the first female on Burbank’s City
Council and paved the way for other women to enter local government.

“She has a very forward- thinking approach to governance,” Boger
said. “She encouraged her council to have an open stance, initiated
town council meetings and imple- mented long-range planning.”

During her two terms, Howard encouraged the city manager to include
more women on the city’s management teams.

“The time was right and I felt I should go for it,” Howard said of
her first City Council bid. “In those days, women were on the library
board but never elected to office. I’m so honored by this award and
to be among these other women.”

The other award recipients include Wanda Bistagne, a longtime volunteer
in the Glendale community; Frieda Jordan, founder of the Armenian
Bone Marrow Donor registry in Glendale and Armenia; Louise Lewis,
a volunteer at Glendale Memorial Hospital who has logged in more than
30,000 hours; and Jean Maluccio, executive director of the Crescenta
Valley Chamber of Commerce. Erika Solomon is this year’s Jane O’Connor
award recipient for her work teaching mentally challenged students
to ride horses.

“It’s the role of the YWCA to empower women,” said Susan Hunt,
president of the YWCA board of directors. “These women have left
a legacy on the lives of others. They have compassion and high

Event proceeds will benefit the YWCA’s Domestic Violence programs
and ENCOREplus, a program that provides breast- and cervical-cancer
screenings to low-income women.

The cost to attend is $75, and reservations can be made by calling
Debbie Hinckley at 244-9183.