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Brava! Awards

Meet the Brava Recipients

Each year we identify “Women of Excellence” in our state who have made an impact by their service to others and celebrate them at our annual Brava! Award Banquet. Following are this year’s honorees:



(To be honored at the 2021 Celebration due to Coronavirus restrictions)

Monica Alexander
Trailblazer for Women, Captain of Washington State Patrol (Retired)

imgMonica began her career with the Washington State Patrol (WSP) in 1996 as a Trooper Cadet.  She was commissioned as a WSP Trooper on May 1, 1998 and assigned to the South Seattle freeway. In addition to her duties as a trooper, Monica was the traffic reporter for KOMO-TV for six years.

As Captain and Legislative Liaison, some of her many accomplishments include: Wage increase legislation for the Washington state Troopers Association and Washington State Lieutenants and Captains Association, Sexual Assault Kit funding, Sexual Assault Kit Tracking system, Toxicology lab funding, and the Missing Native American Women research and report. Monica holds her bachelor’s degree from Evergreen State College. Monica is the first and only African American female to be promoted to the rank of Sergeant, Lieutenant and Captain in the nearly 100 year history of the WSP.


Dr. Kristie Ebi
UW Global Health Professor, Co-Author of United Nations IP Report, Global Climate Change

imgKristie L. Ebi is a Professor in the Departments of Global Health and Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences at UW. She has been conducting research and practice on the health risks of climate variability and change for nearly 25 years, focusing on understanding sources of vulnerability, estimating current and future health risks of climate change, and designing adaptation policies and measures to reduce the risks of climate change in multi-stressor environments. She has supported multiple countries in Central America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific in assessing their vulnerabilities and implementing adaptation policies. She has been an author on multiple national and international assessments, including the 4th U.S. National Climate Assessment.


Christine Gregoire
Former Governor of Washington State, CEO of Challenge Seattle

imgChristine Gregoire is the CEO for Challenge Seattle, an organization comprised of 17 major international companies and non-profits located in the Seattle region. Challenge Seattle is providing leadership to ensure greater Seattle is one of the most innovative and globally competitive regions in the world.

Previously, Gregoire served for two terms as governor of the State of Washington. In her first term as governor, she created the Department of Early Learning and led on reforms to the K-12 system and investment in higher education.

Prior to becoming governor, Gregoire served for three terms as attorney general for the state. Prior to becoming attorney general, Gregoire served four years as the director of the State Department of Ecology.

In addition to being CEO of Challenge Seattle, Gregoire is a member and former chair of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and a member of the National Bipartisan Governor’s Council. She served as chair of the National Export-Import Bank Advisory Board 2013–2016.

Gregoire holds a JD from Gonzaga University and a BA and teaching certificate from the University of Washington. She is a graduate of the Harvard Executive Management Program.

Gregoire has been married to her husband, Mike, for more than 40 years. They have two children, Courtney and Michelle, and three grandchildren.



Following are our previous years’ Brava! honorees:


  • Colleen Echohawk, Director of Chief Seattle Club
  • Marty Hartman, Director of Mary's Place
  • Georgia Gerber, Sculptor and Advocate for the Arts


WUC Community Civic Leaders

  • Catherine Gibson
  • Frances Heaverlo
  • Karen Lane
  • Pearl Noreen
  • Carolyn Quatier
  • Karen Wong


  • Leslie Jackson Chihuly, President Chihuly Studios and Advocate for the Arts
  • Janet JonesPreston, Global Humanitarian and Community Leader
  • Megan Karch, CEO, FareStart


  • Sara Boos, Artistic Director, Northwest Girlchoir
  • Barbara Earl Thomas, Noted Artist, Writer and Former Director of the African American Museum
  • Trina Westerlund, Founder, Children’s Institute for Learning Differences


  • Sheila Capestany, Founder, Open Arms Perinatal Services
  • Margaret Larson, Broadcast Journalist and Host, KING 5 TV’s New Day Northwest
  • Mary Yu, Washington State Supreme Court Justice


Women of the Century

  • Dorothy C Bullitt
  • Dorothy Stimson Bullitt
  • Harriet Overton Bullitt
  • Katharine “Kay” Muller Bullitt
  • Priscilla “Patsy” Bullitt Collins


  • Janis Avery, CEO, Treehouse for Kids
  • The Honorable Bobbe J Bridge, Founder and CEO, Children & Youth Justice
  • Maureen Browning, Founder, Friendship Adventures


(Ten-year reunion celebration; no awards given)


  • Maggie Walker, Civic Leader and Philanthropist
  • Luly Yang, Fashion Designer and Entrepreneur
  • Sister Kathleen Ross and Martha Yallup, Founders, Heritage College in Yakima


  • Kathy Johanson and Stacy Lill, Founders and Owners, O Wines Winery
  • Lisa Brummel and Ginny Gilder, Ownership Team Seattle Storm
  • Anne Levinson and Dawn Trudeau, Ownership Team Seattle Storm


  • Jennifer James, Urban Cultural Anthropologist
  • Jane Jones, Founder, Book-It-Theatre
  • Jean Walkinshaw, Producer


  • Jane Hastings, Architect
  • Deborah Jacobs, Seattle City Librarian
  • Patrinell “Pat” Wright, Founder, Total Experience Gospel Choir


  • Barbara Bennett, Founder, First Place School
  • Anne Gould Hauberg, Arts & Education Activist
  • Karen Moyer, Co-founder, The Moyer Foundation for Children in Distress


  • Marja Brandon, Founder and Executive Director, Seattle Girls’ School
  • Katharine “Kay” Bullitt, Noted Seattle Civic Leader and Community Activist
  • Dr. Bonnie J Dunbar, President and CEO, Seattle’s Museum of Flight


  • Dr. Linda Buck, 2004 Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine
  • Assunta Ng, Publisher, NW Asian Weekly
  • Colleen Willoughby, President and Founder, Washington Women’s Foundation


  • Jeanne Ehrlichman Bluechel, Music Education Activist
  • Linda Hartzell, Artistic Director, Seattle Children’s Theatre
  • Nancy Pearl, Director, Washington Center for the Book


  • Virginia Anderson, Director, Seattle Center
  • Francia Russell, Co-Artistic Director, Pacific NW Ballet
  • Rita Ryder, Director, Snohomish and King County YWCA