The Panhandle Business and Professional Women, BPW, announced its winners for this year’s Young Careerist, Woman of the Year and Employers of the Year on Wednesday, April 11.
The Scottsbluff based group, which advocates for the support and advancements of working women, has been recognizing outstanding professional women and local employers for more than four decades.
“We have a very proud history of honoring some of the best minds and businesses in our community and this year’s class is no exception,” said Deb Geis, Panhandle BPW awards chair. “We are truly fortunate to live in a community where women are able to achieves so much personally and professionally.”
The Young Careerist award was given to Kendra Lauruhn, she is a Dental Health Program Coordinator for Panhandle Public Health District. Lauruhn grew the program from four to 10 participating schools in one year. She is an Air Force Veteran and supports various local veteran organizations.
Woman of the Year was awarded to Jennifer Sibal, she is the Western Nebraska Community College Alumni Relations and Stewardship Director and a board member of the Scottsbluff/Gering United Chamber of Commerce, Cirrus House and NEXT Young Professionals. Sibal also coordinates public relations and logistics for the Platte Valley Companies Monument Marathon.
Employers of the Year went to St. Agnes School and Panhandle Coop
St. Agness employs 15 women and practices a “family first” culture. Employees are encouraged to better themselves through advanced degrees and other professional development opportunities.
Panhandle Coop has a total workforce of 300 employees across two states and nearly half are women. Women serve in key roles at the corporate level including chief operations officer, marketing director, HR manager, propane service manager and energy fuel coordinator.
The awards were held at the BPW luncheon, where each were given their awards and spoke about their experiences in their careers.
“I am very honored to be recognized, especially by an organization like BPW who does so many outstanding things for women and women’s issues,” said Sibal.