May 9, 2012 1:17 PM
WASHINGTON, DC - Gabrielle Giffords is being honored for her leadership and integrity by the YWCA.
The former Arizona congresswoman is one of four women in the country being recognized by the YWCA USA for their first Women of Distinction Award.
The award recognizes and honors professional women from the private and public sectors from across the United States who have demonstrated excellence, leadership and integrity in their fields and in the community, serving as role models for other successful women.
The YWCA USA Women of Distinction Awards include honorees for contributions in four key areas of public life: Civic Engagement, Business, Philanthropy and Military/Veterans Affairs.
Gabrielle Giffords is being recognized for her contributions in the field of civic engagement and for her commitment to public service. She has become known across the country for her resilience in the face of violence, and for her consensus-building leadership in Congress. Giffords served the people of Arizona's Eighth Congressional District in Congress from 2007 until she stepped down in 2012 following the attempt on her life during a "Congress on Your Corner" event in Tucson on January 8, 2011.
Giffords has dedicated herself to public service as an elected official. She represented her hometown of Tucson in the Arizona Legislature from 2000-2005, where she was the youngest woman ever elected to the Arizona State Senate. Her success is built upon her reliance on the old-fashioned values of kindness, candor and hard, grueling work. Upon entering Congress in 2007, Giffords quickly became a leading champion of border security, energy independence, and the needs of military families and veterans. She has also been an outspoken supporter of universal health care, and economic fairness for the middle class and the poor.
The winners of the 2012 YWCA USA Women of Distinction Award are:
· Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (Civic Engagement Recipient)
· Lt. Col. Tammy Duckworth (Military/Veterans Affairs Recipient)
· Francie Garber Pepper (Philanthropy Recipient)
· Elouise P. Cobell (Business Recipient)
The WOD recipients were honored at a gala during the YWCA USA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. on the evening of May 4, 2012. Gloria Giffords attended and accepted the award on her daughter's behalf.