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Honorees for the Celebration of Inspiring Women announced

January 15, 2013

Coastal Carolina University's Women in Philanthropy and Leadership (WIPL) has announced its five Inspiring Women honorees for 2013. The awards will be presented at the Celebration of Inspiring Women on Friday, Feb. 8, at 6:30 p.m. at the Sheraton Myrtle Beach Convention Center Hotel, Grand Ballroom.

The 2013 recipients are: Rebecca Wesson Darwin, president and CEO of Garden & Gun magazine; Muriel O'Tuel, author, educator, and psychologist; Elizabeth Johnston Patterson, former congresswoman and professor of political science at Spartanburg Methodist College; Sarah Reese, opera singer, vocal coach and professional artist consultant; and Jean Hoefer Toal, Chief Justice of the S.C. Supreme Court.

"The individuals chosen by the nominations committee are a group of women who have demonstrated visionary leadership, determination, success and are a source of great inspiration," said Terri DeCenzo, executive director for WIPL. "They have made a difference in many lives not only within our community, but in the world. I look forward to sharing their stories and celebrating their impact."

The Inspiring Women Awards were created to recognize the achievements of women who were born in South Carolina or who have adopted the Palmetto State as their home. The awards pay tribute to outstanding women for their contributions to our state, nation and world. Honorees reflect a diverse group of women from the arts, business, medicine, media, philanthropy and public service.

Coastal Carolina University's Women in Philanthropy and Leadership was established in 2007. CCU President David A. DeCenzo describes the WIPL leaders as "a group of remarkable women who apply their collective vision, wisdom and determination to create a powerful economic force and an inspiring spirit that actively transforms the lives of students. WIPL accomplishes this through scholarships, leadership initiatives and programs such as the Women's Leadership Conference."

The Celebration of Inspiring Women will be presented at the Sheraton Myrtle Beach Convention Center Hotel. The event follows the annual Women's Leadership Conference set for Feb. 7 and 8, also in Myrtle Beach. Registration is now open, and tickets may be purchased online at or by calling 843-349-5033.

For information, visit or call Beth Stedman, 843-349-2145. For media inquiries, contact Martha Hunn at 843-349-2962.


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