Lynne Katzmann hugs Wendy Simpson

A standing-room-only crowd honored women leaders in senior care, and a challenge was issued at the inaugural awards ceremony for the McKnight’s Women of Distinction program.

Forty-one top achievers were honored May 16 at an evening reception at the EvolveHer workspace in Chicago. 

Lifetime Achievement Award winner Lynne Katzmann led the way, thanking a “long line of strong role models,” including her grandmother and mother, the latter of whom was in attendance. 

Katzmann, the founder, president and CEO of Juniper Communities, called for more female representation in provider C-suites — and beyond.

“More importantly, boards of our companies need to reflect gender equity,” she said. “Gender-balanced boards get results. Tonight, I want to challenge all of us to create gender-balanced boards.”

After Katzmann received a standing ovation for her remarks, 21 “Rising Stars” and 19 inductees to the Hall of Honor were recognized with introductions and plaques.