Women Working For a Cause Not Applause

We are so grateful for our collaborations with local non-profit organizations over the last 38 years through our Women in Service Celebration.

Unfortunately, for our 2023-2024 year, we have made the difficult decision to put our Women in Service Celebration on hold.

We will continue to be in support of local non-profit organization projects that will improve the lives of women and girls.  If you are a non-profit organization that would like to partner with us in building a better world for women and girls, please reach out to us at president@scvzonta.org to discuss.

We thank you for your continued support!

Each year the Zonta Club of Santa Clarita Valley hosts a Women In Service luncheon honoring outstanding women volunteers throughout the Santa Clarita Valley.  We celebrate the contributions each dynamic volunteer makes to their non profit organization that share Zonta's mission.


The Carmen Sarro Award

"for Improving the Status of Women through Community Service" 

Carmen Sarro is the epitome of the spirit of volunteerism among Zonta members of the Santa Clarita Valley.

The award recognizes and celebrates the life of our dear member, Carmen Sarro, who had such a positive impact on the people and organizations in the Santa Clarita Valley.

Carmen was a two time president of the Zonta Club of Santa Clarita, a charter member of the Canyon Theater Guild, President of the Santa Clarita Arts Council and active in numerous charities including the Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital Foundation, the Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center and the Boys & Girls Club of the Santa Clarita Valley.

Holly Hanlin selected for Carmen Sarro Award at Women in Service Event March 25, 2023

lt to rt: Nicole Miller, President Zonta Club SCV, Holly Hanlin, Carmen Sarro Award winner, Christine Sexton, daughter of Carmen Sarro

Holly Hanlin was selected from a field of 20 nominees to be awarded the Carmen Sarro Award "for Improving the Status of Women through Community Service" at Zonta’s 38th Women in Service event held March 25, 2023.

All the nominees were nominated by their respective non-profits for their outstanding contribution to the organization, community service. leadership and a difference by "Working  for a Cause, not Applause" to  help others.

Holly was nominated by Soroptimist International of Greater Santa Clarita Valley. A member since 2019, she has served as Vice President and currently serves as President. She has been a part of most of their committees and programs such as "Dream It, Be It", a high school program that gives girls the tools they need to achieve their education and career goals, empowering them to break cycles of poverty, violence, and abuse.

She has been a Girl Scout Leader, volunteer at Henry Mayo Hospital in the Woman’s Unit, The Betty Ferguson Foundation,  Bridge to Home,  Family Promise and more.

The event began with The Canyon High School Madrigals Choir singing the National Anthem and other songs. Piccola Trattoria Restaurant provided delicious food to 135 attendees who all help make our community a place of caring and helping others!

Nicole Miller, president of the Zonta Club of Santa Clarita Valley, welcomed 135 guests and then introduced each of the 20 nominees, as they came on stage to accept a certificate from Zonta and to the applause of the audience.

Christine Sexton, Carmen Sarro's daughter, described her mothers community service and passion for volunteering and the Santa Clarita Valley.  The winner selection was a well kept secret until Christine announced the winner. Holly was very surprised and said that she did not prepare anything to say since she knew she would not be selected as all the nominees were winners.

It was a very uplifting event presented by Zonta whose mission is to "Build a Better World for Women and Girls.

For photos of the event, click here

 What Nominees Have Said:

"I would like to thank you for creating such a beautiful and meaningful "Women in Service Celebration"

"Under such difficult circumstances it was a perfect celebration"

"Thank you for all you do for our community and around the world"

“We are the patchwork of a quilt that holds the community together.”

"It was such an honor to be nominated and then recognized by your organization. Bravo!"

I truly appreciated hearing about all the great ways people and organizations in our valley  have developed to address the needs of our community and continue to actively support.

I look back and truly see this award as the most meaning way to honor volunteers in SCV.  

About Women in Service

The Zonta Club of Santa Clarita Valley has been hosting this event since 1984. This annual celebration honors dynamic and outstanding women volunteers from local nonprofits throughout the Santa Clarita Valley.

These outstanding women contribute their time and expertise at local nonprofit organizations which improve the lives of women and girls in the Santa Clarita Valley, and make our community a great place to live. Nominees were multi-generational, inspiring the celebrants of how volunteer women have strengthened the backbone of our community and set the groundwork for the future.

All nominees are honored; however, one nominee is chosen to receive the Carmen Sarro Award for “Improving the Status of Women Through Community Service”. All nominees must be 16 years or older. Both the nominees and their organizations are recognized for their services to the community as outstanding women volunteers and organizations. Individuals can be re-nominated for their service if they have not received the Carmen Sarro Award for exceptional service and giving.

This award recognizes Carmen, a longtime Zonta member who passed away in 2003. In addition to her Zonta service, she volunteered for several other organizations in Santa Clarita Valley. Zonta wanted to remember Carmen for being an icon through her self-giving and dedication to the community. We encourage everyone to emulate her. Carmen’s daughter, Christine Sexton, takes pride every year in presenting this exceptional award.

All nonprofit organizations are encouraged to nominate “one of their own” for this recognition.

Past Carmen Sarro Award Recipients

Holly Hanlin – 2023

Alison Lindeman – 2022

Sheril Porter – 2021

Mary Jane Hartman – 2019

Nancy Coulter – 2018

Janine Jones – 2017

Jill Bondy – 2016

Pam Ingram – 2015

Linda Pederson – 2014



Pamela Ripling – 2013

Sue Buckley – 2012

Diane Bartley – 2011

Stephanie Weiss – 2010

Nancy Starczyk- 2009

Gerri McCorkle  - 2008

Deborah Holbrook – 2007

Maureen Spindt – 2006

Cheri Fleming* - 2005


Kim Shaffer – 2004

Jill Harper – 2003

Charlotte Kleeman* - 2002

Karin Nelson – 2001

Sandy Hurley* - 2000

Senator Cathie Wright* - 1999

Roberta Veloz* - 1998

Mary Spring* - 1997

Betty Seldner* - 1996

Olive Ruby* - 1995

Ruth Newhall* - 1994

Laurene Weste-McCarthy – 1993

Jan Heidt – 1992

Susan Hayward – 1991

Rosalie Gnam* - 1990

Ruth Chedsey* - 1989

Betty Castleberry – 1988

Betty Burke-Oldfield – 1987

Cheryl Adams - 1986

Event attendance costs contribute to raising funds to help us advocate and empower women and girls. Your donation will enable us to continue this important recognition of our outstanding community volunteers who demonstrate that advocacy in their service work. Zonta has continued to do service work to help women and girls locally and worldwide during this pandemic.

Thank you to our Commuity Sponsors!

Thank you to our Media Sponsors!