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The 8th Annual
DeLand Woman of the Year

Please scroll below to access the Nominee Form.
Nominations close on Monday, March 4, 2024.

Nominee's leadership skills, past or present, may span from Business, Education, Philanthropic Endeavors, and/or Religious Organizations. 

Event Details:
Date: Thursday, March 14, 2024

Time: 6:30-9:00 PM
Location: Venue 142,
 142 N. Woodland Blvd, DeLand, FL 32720 

Ticket sales close on Thursday, March 7, 2024 at noon.

Nominee Cost: $35 (Includes nomination fee, dinner, and one complimentary cocktail)

Guest Cost: $45 (Includes dinner and one complimentary cocktail)

Table Cost: $350 - A limited number of tables are available to reserve. Seating accommodates 8 guests and includes a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine.

Eligibility: Nominees must be an adult woman living in, working in or representing the DeLand Community. Her contributions to the DeLand Community may be past or present.

Please attach a one page or less Recommendation Letter including the following:


  • How the nominee currently supports or has supported the DeLand Community

  • Leadership positions the Nominee currently holds or has held in the DeLand Community

  • Personal attributes of the Nominee that exemplify her leadership

Please contact Cecelia Earl at with questions.

Upload Letter of Recommendation

Upload File

Thanks for your nomination! Don't forget to purchase tickets for the nominee and guests!

Nominations have closed for the 2024 Woman of the Year.


2023 DeLand Woman of the Year Ceremony


Volusia County Court Judge Rachel D. Myers was appointed to the bench in 2022. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and her law degree from Liberty University School of Law. She was a prosecutor at the State Attorney’s Office for the Seventh Judicial Circuit from 2011-2015. She then went into private practice; first as an associate at Landis, Graham, French, P.A. and then as the managing partner at her own firm, Myers Law Group, P.A. Judge Myers currently hears civil cases at the Volusia County Courthouse in DeLand.

When Myers first enrolled in law school, she was already several years into her struggle with Stargardt disease, a rare genetic eye disease that causes vision loss. She was first diagnosed near the end of high school after losing close to 80 percent of her vision in a matter of weeks. “It’s been a huge hurdle, but I’m definitely grateful to (use) it as a motivator,” she said. While at Liberty, Myers used large magnifying machines to assist in her schoolwork, and she continues to do so as a judge. She often reminds people that although she has difficulty seeing, she is more than capable of doing what

her job requires. “As I’ve explained over the years, it’s not my brain, it’s my eyes,” she said. “I can do what other people do, I can do what other judges do. I just do it a little differently. Having a hurdle in front of me makes me that much more determined to overcome it.

Myers’ commitment to service to our community is impressive as well. She has served as a judge for Volusia County Teen Court; she is a member of DeLand Chamber of Commerce, Mainstreet DeLand Association, Daughters of the American Revolution, Domestic Violence Advisory Committee, Krewe of Amalee, Dunn-Blount Inn of Court, and the Business Networking Institute. She has served in the past as President of The Volusia County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division, Volusia Flagler Association for Women Lawyers, and The Junior Service League of DeLand. She is a graduate of Leadership West Volusia and founder of both Fuel the Families and DeLand Woman of the Year. In 2010 Myers founded, 4SITE, Inc. a 501(C)3 organization which provided scholarships to low vision individuals in our area who were "Seeking Independence Through Education.”

- The Honorable
  Rachel Myers


2022 DeLand Woman of the Year Ceremony

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Congratulations to our 2022 DeLand Woman of the Year Winner, Linda Ryan!

Among her many accomplishments, Linda is co-founder of ME STRONG, a 501c3 charity whose mission is to support the friends, families, and individuals battling cancer through the power of friendship. ME STRONG has given nearly $2,000,000 to ease the financial burden of patients in Central Florida by assisting with household bills and has funded annual cancer research grants through the Foundation for Women’s Cancer and Conquer Cancer.

After a virtual celebration last year, we were thrilled to come together in person for the 6th Annual DeLand Woman of the Year Awards to recognize 10 distinguished local women. The event took place at the Sanborn Events Center on March 25, 2022.


2022 Nominees

Sakeia Wingate

Becky Adesso

Dr. Rajni Shankar-Brown

Jackie Mosness

Linda Hannon

Leah Dokey

Linda Ryan

Kristi Tyrrell

Emilie Wren

Shannon Young

2021 DeLand Woman of the Year Ceremony


2021 DeLand Woman of the Year Winner Belinda Huttmann

2020 DeLand Woman of the Year Ceremony

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2020 DeLand Woman of the Year Winner Lorna Jean Hagstrom.

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2020 DeLand Woman of the Year Winner Lorna Jean Hagstrom with 2019 Winner Barbara Curtis Underhill.

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The 2020 Nominees, pictured left to right: Savannah-Jane Griffin, Pam Coffman, Jennifer Stephenson, Elizabeth Williams, Lorna Jean Hagstrom, Amanda Sarnes, Barbara Girtman, Susan Clark, Lisa Lewis, and Althea Ross Chavers.

DWOY Tickets

The 4th Annual DeLand Woman of the Year saw the most nominees yet, with 10 outstanding local women honored at the March 1st event. Nominees were lauded with a luncheon banquet at the Sanborn Events Center.

Nominees included Lorna Jean Hagstrom of Advent Health Foundation, Althea Ross Chavers of the West Volusia Boys and Girls Club, Susan Clark of the Neighborhood Center, Pam Coffman of the Museum of Art-DeLand, Lisa Lewis, Supervisor of Elections, Barbara Girtman Volusia County Councilwoman for District 1,  Elizabeth Williams, Personal Trainer, Amanda Sarnes, Co-owner and Marketing Director of Home Team Lending, Jennifer Stephenson, SMA Healthcare and Savannah Jane-Griffin, Executive Director of Community Engagement and Inclusive Excellence at Stetson University.


Event chair Erica Carter presented a brief history of JSL and rundown of current projects before introducing each nominee. JSL membership voted for the winner, choosing Lorna Jean Hagstrom. Thank you to Assistant Chair Gini Myers and committee members for your help on a spectacular community event. 

2019 DeLand Woman of the Year Ceremony


Assistant Chair Erica Opisso CarterRachel Myers pictured with 2019 winner Barbara Curtis UnderhillJennifer Hightower, and Chair Maigan Walters. Committee member Jamie Mathews not pictured.


​The 2019 Award Nominees


2018 winner Mary Gusky

2017 winner Louise Ball Caccamise

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