Penelope of the Year
Penelope of the Year
The Penelope of the Year program of the Daughters of Penelope was instituted in 1958. Through this program members at the Supreme Convention each year, select a recipient who is recognized as an outstanding Daughter of Penelope, who excels in contributions and service to the Daughters of Penelope throughout her many years of service, as well as having participated significantly in the Greek Community, to civic and charitable organizations, to various civic endeavors, and has served and provided unselfish assistance to the Daughters of Penelope and her community.
An application form for a qualified member is submitted by a chapter to the District Committee or Chairman. At the District Convention of each District, delegates review and select a District Penelope of the year. A pin is presented to recognize this outstanding award in the District. The District Penelope of the year is then submitted to the Supreme Convention Penelope of the Year Committee Chairman for consideration. At the Supreme Convention delegates on the Penelope of the Year Committee select one member for recognition as the International Penelope of the Year, who represents outstanding and distinguished service to the Daughters of Penelope and her community.
The 2017-2018 Penelope of the Year recipient is Barbara Maligas of Houston, Texas!
Barbara was raised in Delaware, graduated college in Virginia, then, when her daughter and son graduated college, she accepted an offer to become a territorial sales representative in Texas, where she has lived for nearly 30 years. She converted to the Orthodox faith after meeting Manuel, with whom she celebrates 18 years of marriage in August 2017!
While attending Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Houston, a dear lady invited her to join the Daughters of Penelope Achaia Chapter in Houston, Texas, and she was initiated in 2003. Having the belief that if you belong to an organization you should take an active part in it, the path led from chapter officer to district officer, and continued to National Chairman for Penelope House, onward to become Grand Governor of Zone III for two terms.
After leaving the Grand Lodge, Barbara was offered the opportunity to serve as Convention Secretary and National Legislation Chairman, and is now serving her second term as secretary for the Daughters of Penelope Foundation. On a chapter level, she is serving her third year as secretary on the Board of Directors for the HUD Foundation of AHEPA/DOP 54 Inc.
Barbara is truly honored to be 2017 Penelope of the Year. Upon accepting the award, Barbara said, “Being a 14 year member of the Daughters of Penelope has enriched my life in many ways, but it has been the association with the many devoted, exceptional women in our organization that I consider the greatest blessing. I know that if it were not for the guidance and friendship of these Sisters that have encouraged me on my journey, I would not have been awarded this honor. Thank you Sisters. It is because of you that I have received this esteemed award, and I am sincerely grateful and truly humbled.”