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Distinguished Women Gala raises scholarship for future students

October 31, 2023

In an elegant and inspiring fashion, Northwood University’s Distinguished Women’s Gala on Saturday evening raised more than $60,000 to benefit future Timberwolves.

“Why is this event so important? Since 1970, Northwood has honored individuals of accomplishment,” stated President Kent MacDonald. “They inspire all people, and this event raises important scholarship support for a new generation of leadership.”

“The vision for The Distinguished Women Award continues today as an honor bestowed upon individuals who value a free society, hard work, determination, creativity, and possess a passion for making the world a better place,” added the evening’s emcee, Dr. Kristin Stehouwer, provost and academics vice president for Northwood University.

From public health and journalism to outdoor recreation and law, the 2023 Class of Distinguished Women exemplifies a wide array of success in many fields. Honorees include:

• Alice Croll Sieloff, founder of Detroit and Lansing Metropolitan Woman

• Mary Ellen Hess, executive vice president of business development for Corporate Travel Management

• Gail Perry-Mason, founder of Money Matters for Youth

• Lydia Watson, MD, CPE, president and CEO of MyMichigan Health

• Amy Wilson, general counsel and corporate secretary for Dow

New this year, a Distinguished Young Women award was awarded to Brooke VanderKelen Alba, sales and marketing vice president for Snow Machines Inc.

All the honorees were recognized during the 54th Distinguished Women Awards Gala, held Saturday, Oct. 28, at the H Hotel in Midland.

“To date, 525 individuals have been bestowed the honor of Distinguished Women in the 54-year history of this award,” Stehouwer stated. “And over 60 deserving students have received the opportunity to attend Northwood University through the Women in Enterprise Scholarship fund, all thanks to supporters dedicated to helping more students attend Northwood to become free-enterprise leaders who drive global economic and social progress.”

To learn more about the Distinguished Women Awards and awardees, visit

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