Carmel Valley resident among 2021 Women of Dedication honorees

The 2021 Women of Dedication honorees.
The 2021 Women of Dedication honorees.


The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary is “Looking to a Brighter Future in 2021,” the theme of its 55th Anniversary Women of Dedication luncheon and fundraiser on Friday, Sept. 17 at the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina. The event honors a dozen extraordinary women — a dynamic and diverse group from throughout San Diego County — for their dedication to the community through volunteerism and service. One of the honorees, Denise Jackson, is from Carmel Valley.

“We look forward to celebrating these dynamos who have continued to work tirelessly during the pandemic to help those in need,” says Judy Burer, auxiliary president. “From volunteering at vaccination clinics to chairing virtual fundraisers for many causes, they have shown their commitment and compassion.”

In addition to Jackson, honorees include: Jamie Carr, Lynne Doyle, Jackie Helm, Ursula Kuster, Deborah Marengo, Ellen Moxham, Julie Cowan Novak, Esther Rodriguez, Roberta Tidmore, Wendy Urushima-Conn, and Danitza Villanueva.

Event co-chairs are Maggie Watkins, Kathryn Stephens and Andrea Naversen with Rosalie Gerevas serving as advisor. Honorary chairs are Jessie Knight Jr. and Joye Blount, a power couple known for their business achievements and philanthropic commitments to The Salvation Army and many other organizations. Joyce Glazer, the philanthropist and longtime publisher, will receive the Peggy Matthews Legacy Award for her decades of community service to The Salvation Army. Sandra Maas serves as emcee, and Clint Bell as auctioneer.

The event, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., begins with registration and shopping at boutiques offering jewelry, clothing, accessories, gift items and more, with 25% of sales donated to The Salvation Army. A luncheon and presentation follow with musical performances by MacKenzie Cartmill and The San Diego Master Chorale. Bryan Verhoye has created music and lyrics especially for the honorees, always a highlight of the event. Those who have been helped by The Salvation Army will also be featured.

Women of Dedication is the signature fundraiser of The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary. Founded in the 1950s, the auxiliary supports The Salvation Army’s social service programs through fundraising, donations, and hands-on volunteer efforts, helping those in crisis to heal, to develop emotionally and spiritually, and to learn new skills which promote self-sufficiency and transform lives for the better.

Philanthropists Ernest and Evelyn Rady will match donations during a “raise the paddle” at the event to help fund the proposed Rady Center, offering housing and services for homeless men and women. Thanks to the couple’s generosity, the Rady Residence opened its doors last November to homeless families at The Salvation Army’s Door of Hope Rady Campus in Kearny Mesa. The facility, with 32 apartment homes, provides families with shelter, food, and support services. The Radys provided a $15 million outright gift to build the Rady Residence and will also match every dollar The Salvation Army raises up to $35 million.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, The Salvation Army has faced ever greater challenges, stepping up with the help of generous donors, dedicated staff, and tireless volunteers to provide emergency food, shelter, and day care. The Salvation Army’s programs are primarily supported through contributions from individuals, businesses, and family foundations, with 81 percent of every dollar raised going directly to local programs.

Join The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary on Sept. 17 as it honors 12 “Women of Vision” while raising funds to support the community’s most vulnerable citizens. Tickets are $125 or $1,250 for tables of 10. Visit to register online or send checks payable to SAWA-WOD to Pamela Lennen, SAWA, 6605 University Ave., San Diego, CA 92115.