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Life and Arts

On the Town: Women of Dignity Health organization holds its first luncheon

Guest speaker Kathy Rose, center, joins Women of Dignity Health members, from left, Leslie Pech, Lauriann Wright, Jill Welton, Glendale Memorial President and CEO, and Raana Hasnat.
(Ruth Sowby Rands)

The Women of Dignity Health’s inaugural luncheon at Glendale Memorial Hospital went off without a hitch.

On Oct. 8, almost 100 local women attended the free event. The organization’s steering committee members said they hope that all will sign on the dotted line to join their women’s financial support group.

Raana Hasnat, a steering committee member of Women of Dignity Health and hospital foundation board member, welcomed the attendees.

“What a group of dynamic women. I can feel the energy,” she said.


Women of Dignity Health
Luncheon guest Jory Potts may be a potential member of Women of Dignity Health. Potts is a vice president of Citizens Business Bank in Glendale.
(Ruth Sowby Rands)

Indeed, the energy flowed as Shelley Burnach and Kim Walden talked about their similar support organization at Dignity Health-Inland Empire.

Their group raised roughly $226,822 to purchase medical equipment, such as ice machines for Community Hospital of San Bernardino and St. Bernardine Medical Center.

In a hospital, ice is used to reduce swelling, provide hydration and store perishables.


At Glendale Memorial, Women of Dignity Health members plan to be as successful at fundraising.

A majority of the program was devoted to guest speaker Kathy Rose, founder of Claiming Your Voice Consulting and author of “Claiming Your Voice — Seven Steps to Freedom.”

She was interviewed by Lauriann Wright, chair of the Women of Dignity Health steering committee.

Rose’s takeaway message was, “Be the hero of your own life and speak up.”

Rose described her controlling father who told her to stay home and not to create conflict. She wound up disobeying her father by graduating from the University of California at Berkeley, moving to Washington, D.C and working for a California senator.

After her presentation, Rose offered a “Using Your Voice” exercise that covered her seven steps:

1. Be the Author of Your Life

2. Change Your Behavior


3. Embrace Change

4. Be the Hero of Your Life

5. Design Your Future

6. Share Your Story

7. Inspire Change

Women of Dignity Health members who attended the luncheon and planned to take advantage of Rose’s good advice, besides Hasnat and Wright, were Jill Welton, president and chief executive of Glendale Memorial Hospital, and Leslie Pech, the hospital’s pharmacy director and a steering committee member of Women of Dignity Health.

Membership in Women of Dignity Health requires attendance at two formal luncheons a year and a $1,000 contribution to the organization. Funds donated will enhance patient services at the hospital.


Velvet Rhodes, Glendale International Film Festival’s founder, toasts to the fest at its opening night celebration.
(Ruth Sowby Rands)

The opening night celebration for the sixth year of the Glendale International Film Festival was held recently at the Pierre Garden restaurant on Artsakh Avenue in Glendale.

Some 50 film lovers dined on a banquet of Middle Eastern delights including a relish tray of tomatoes and cauliflower, and heaping bowls of humus, yogurt and olives.

After the “heavy appetizers,” meals in themselves, trays of beef, chicken, and rice were passed to each table. The customary pitchers of Coca-Cola were kept full.

Festival founder, filmmaker and Glendale resident Velvet Rhodes welcomed her audience during dinner. She promoted some of the festival’s films, all of which are screening at the Laemmle Glendale.

Providing entertainment was Zingarella, with Melinda West on accordion and Janice Mautner Markham on violin. They performed a mix of traditional Klezmir, American standards and Latin tango selections.

Following the 3 p.m. screening on Oct. 17 of the documentary “Robbery of the Heart,” the festival’s awards show will be held at the Brandview Ballroom in Glendale.

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