Five local women honored with Women United Tribute Awards

From left: Riki Sheela, Cynthia Borgen, Ashlea McMartin, Robin Wold and Barb Houg.

Five local women were honored during Thursday’s Women United Tribute Awards Breakfast.

The recipients were nominated based on their work for the community and this year they are Cynthia Borgen, retired Beltrami County Public Health Director, Ashlea McMartin with Sanford Behavioral Health, Robin Wold of Hope House, Riki Sheela, retired BSU nursing professor, and Peacemaker Resources’ Barb Houg.

United Way Executive Director Denae Alamano says Women United meets quarterly to discuss projects.

In 2019, the group worked towards the new shelter for Northwoods Battered Women’s Shelter.

In 2021, they mobilized a mobile food pantry for the Bemidji Community Food Shelf, and next year, they will work toward providing safe transportation for those who lack access.

More information on Women United is available on the United Way of Bemidji Area’s website.


Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers all the beats in north-central Minnesota, such as local government, crime, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University.


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