Join Us Wednesday, June 21, 2023, for the Women of Distinction!
About Women of Distinction
YWCA Madison is proud to have recognized 251 women since the first Woman of Distinction was bestowed the honor in 1974. Their community service, professional achievement, integrity, leadership, and dedication to the lives of others and to the quality of life for all stand as a reflection of YWCA Madison’s historic mission and values. These awards were established to increase community awareness and appreciation of the diverse contributions of women in the workforce and in the community.
Jasmine Banks is proud to be a Madisonian whose family has been in Madison for five generations. Growing up as the product of the South, East, and North sides of Madison, she is the youngest daughter of Peter and Shirley, baby sister to four older sisters, mother to Maryah, and grandmother to Yasmine and Riley.
A graduate of East High School and the American Institute of Paralegal Studies, Jasmine was bitten by the nonprofit bug when as a young mom she was hired as a Receptionist at the Madison Community Health Center, currently known as Access Community Health Centers. It was there that her journey began of giving back to her beloved community. The community that helped raise her and that stepped up to help her paternal grandfather Leroy Banks Sr., raised his five children after the passing of his wife, Ozella.
Like most, Jasmine’s journey has not been a straight line. She has worked in and out of nonprofit work but the majority of her career has been helping others. As a Program Manager at Operation Fresh Start, Jasmine oversees a team of four who daily through a variety of programs empower emerging adults on a path to self-sufficiency through education, mentoring and employment and training.
She is the owner of Perfect Imperfections 608, her natural body care line she started in 2017 after the passing of her mother, Shirley from Cervical Cancer.
After completing United Way Boardwalk Academy in 2020, Jasmine now sits on the City of Madison Affirmative Action Commission, City of Madison Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award Commission, Henry Vilas Zoo Commission, Center for Community Stewardship Board, and Badger Rock Neighborhood Center Advisory Council.
In addition to being a community gardener and garden organizer at Badger Rock, a bird nerd and member of the BIPOC Birding Club of Wisconsin. Jasmine has now added Outdoor Afro Volunteer Leader as a means of giving back and building community. If you ask Jasmine what motivates her, it’s the quote by Mahatma Ghandi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
Alex Lindenmeyer is the co-owner of Short Stack Eatery, the community-focused breakfast spot located in the heart of downtown Madison. Alex has been working hard over the past decade to redefine what a career in the restaurant industry can look like. When she is not cooking breakfast at Short Stack with her team, she is focusing her efforts on the Madison community. This includes being a volunteer bike mechanic at Wheels for Winners, sitting on multiple non-profit boards, and supporting initiatives for wellbeing within the restaurant industry.
Dr. Christina Outlay is the Executive Director of Maydm. Maydm provides girls and youth of color with classes, camps, field trips, and paid high school internships to prepare them for careers in science, technology, engineering, and math. Dr. Outlay holds a B.A. in Psychology, an M.S. in Information Systems from DePaul University, and a Ph.D. in Management Information Systems from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She has 12 years of Information Technology (IT) corporate and military experience from State Farm Insurance, Allstate Insurance, Apartments.com, and the U.S. Navy Reserve, and 15 years of academic teaching and research experience. A Chicago native, Dr. Outlay moved to Wisconsin in 2012 and was an Associate Professor of Information Technology at UW-Whitewater and nonprofit director before joining Maydm. While at UW-Whitewater, Dr. Outlay ran the CyberGirlz middle school summer camp and funded the endowed Christina N. Outlay Information Technology scholarship for Black UW-W IT majors.
As a Black woman with an IT background in corporate and higher education, Dr. Outlay knows the challenges and opportunities for women and other underrepresented groups in STEM. She is committed to showing our youth that a future in STEM is possible for them and providing them with the STEM knowledge, training, and opportunities with local employers to be successful. She regularly talks with employers about the human and business benefits of recruiting and retaining a diverse STEM workforce. She challenges employers to remove the systemic barriers to hiring women and people of color.
Dr. Outlay is a chronic overachiever, constantly juggling multiple priorities, mainly focused on getting Black and Brown people into spaces where they usually don’t have enough representation. She is the President of the Sun Prairie Police and Fire Commission, where she was directly involved in appointing Sun Prairie’s first Black Woman Assistant Police Chief, first Black Sargeant, and first Black Woman patrol officer. She is a Ghana Code Club board member, Wisconsin Literacy board member, past board member for Collaboration for Good, active member of the South Central Wisconsin chapter of Jack and Jill International, and Life Member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. Dr. Outlay has also been previously recognized as a 2022 Wisconsin Most Influential Black Leader, 2019 Madison Magnet Impact Award finalist, 2018 UW-Whitewater College of Business and Economics Service Award recipient, 2017 Brava Woman to Watch, and 2013 UW System Outstanding Woman of Color in Education. She has been quoted in The Capital Times, Madison 365, and Wisconsin State Journal.
In her personal time, Dr. Outlay is a married mom of four and enjoys spending time with family, traveling, reading, gardening…and she LOVES to dance.
Lisa Peyton-Caire is the award-winning Founder, CEO & President of The Foundation for Black Women’s Wellness (FFBWW), a Wisconsin-based non-profit organization committed to Empowering A Generation of Well Black Women. Lisa’s work as a passionate advocate for women’s health was spurred by Mother’s untimely death at age 64 from heart disease in 2006, after which Lisa established Black Women’s Wellness Day, an annual summit now in its 15th year that empowers women and girls to sustain healthy, wellness-centered lives. The Foundation, which celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2022, is an outgrowth and progression of this work which has mobilized a movement in Greater Madison and across Wisconsin to intentionally address and improve Black women’s health. In January 2020, Lisa and team opened Dane County’s first Black Women’s Wellness Center after a successful crowdfunding effort that garnered Lisa national recognition as a GoFundMe Hero making significant local impact. Each year, the Foundation reaches and serves over 7,000 women and their families through a broad array of programs, services and advocacy work, and has grown to have national reach through its many strategic partnerships and its growing network of Wellness Ambassadors now representing 15 states across the United States. An experienced and respected leader, strategist, and educator, Lisa has led impactful work over the past 27 years spanning the PreK – 16 education, non-profit, women’s health, and financial service sectors. She is actively engaged in a number of local efforts to promote thriving, sustainable communities, and serves on the board of the United Way of Dane County, and previously on the boards of Unity Point-Meriter Health, the Center for Resilient Cities, the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute Advisory Board, Sustain Dane, and A Fund for Women. Among her many lasting contributions to community is the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s highly successful DoIT Information Technology Academy (ITA), a pre-college technology training & college access program she conceived, designed and launched with colleagues in 1999 and now in its 24th year. A Mother of five, Lisa holds a Masters of Science degree in Educational Leadership & Administration and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is also a proud former Hampton University student where she completed her first three years of undergraduate studies.
Nancy Saíz was born in Mexico City, Colonia Pensil neighborhood and moved to the west side of San Antonio, Texas with her family at the age of nine. After graduating from Sidney Lanier high school, she moved to Madison, WI to attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison on a scholarship. Nancy received her BA with a Major in Social Welfare, Minor in Spanish and a Certificate in Chicano Studies in 1998.
After graduating with her Bachelor’s degree in 1998, Nancy began working at the Madison Community Health Centers where she noticed the growing Latinx immigrant community in Madison. She observed firsthand how the mainstream systems were not prepared to adequately serve not only the immigrant communities, but most marginalized communities. Nancy began to make connections in the community with other social service providers, entering an already organized network of professionals and expanding her professional and non-profit connections. After working for a couple of years as a Community Social Worker and desiring to make a larger impact within the communities she was serving, Nancy entered the Master’s Social Work program and graduated in 2002. From 2002 to 2005 Nancy worked at the Wingra Clinic on Park Street where she continued to provide general social work services and continued to increase her network of providers that supported community initiatives and created access to those most at risk. However, Nancy realized the nonprofit world in Madison was not enough on its own, despite its good work, to sustainably solve the systemic problems that have deep roots in racial capitalism that continue to oppress the poor and communities of color.
In 2010 Nancy began to work at the City of Madison Community Development Division, Community Resources Unit. Nancy analyzed government institutions, economic opportunities, and community support programs and became an expert on how these affected communities’ outcomes. She now works towards solving systemic problems that affect the communities she serves at scale. Nancy became part of the 2013 City of Madison Racial Equity and Social Justice Initiative and along with other City colleagues assisted in creating tools for government employees to think about and consider racial equity and social justice in their everyday decisions. These toolkits offer the city government policies, procedures, presentations, and training that other city colleagues can take advantage of.
Nancy is the current Vice Chair of the Kind Lesli Ann Ambassadors Foundation. The Kind Lesli Ann Ambassadors was established as a nonprofit organization in 2022 to recognize and support acts of kindness in our community. The organization recognizes elementary, middle, high school students, adults and local businesses who display great kindness to others.
Rosa Thompson is the founding Executive Director of Black Girl Magic Educational Services, a community dedicated to providing safe and affirming spaces for Black girls, rich and engaging programs centered around identity, social-emotional development, STEAM, and the arts with opportunities to network and be mentored by Black women entrepreneurs and professionals in the Madison community. We want to empower Black girls to be healthy in mind, body, and spirit by teaching our girls how to center themselves, mindfulness strategies, and cultivate a healthy and positive identity as a Black girl/young woman. BGMES also hosts the annual Black Girl Magic Conference, which was founded in 2018 as a space for Black girls from across the Madison area to be celebrated and learn from one another.
Rosa is a proud HBCU graduate and she received her bachelor’s degree from Clark Atlanta University and completed her graduate studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. As a Madison East High School graduate, Rosa always knew that she wanted to teach in the same school district where she was educated, and she has committed to improving educational outcomes for students since she began her teaching career. Rosa spent the first 10 years of her career as an elementary educator in the Madison Metropolitan School District before transitioning out of the classroom to her current role as a New Educator Mentor in MMSD.
Thank You to Our 2023 Women of Distinction Sponsors!
On behalf of the women and families we serve, we salute our sponsors and partners with heartfelt thanks. Our incredible sponsors provide critical financial support for YWCA programs and initiatives.
Additional Thanks To: