Inland Empire Women Honored by Senator Morrell at Annual Recognition Ceremony

Friday, December 1, 2017

This fall, Senator Mike Morrell (R-Rancho Cucamonga) partnered with the Businesswomen’s Association of San Bernardino County to host the 2017 Women of Distinction Ceremony, recognizing the work of 36 women from around the 23rd State Senate District.

“It’s a privilege each year to honor women from throughout the Inland Empire who are dedicated to their friends, family, and community,” said Morrell. “America’s greatness comes from her people, those that go out of their way to improve the lives of those around them. These women not only live up to that ideal, they exceed it.”

Each year, the Women of Distinction Ceremony showcases the service of women who demonstrate a strong commitment to their communities. The 2017 ceremony highlighted the work of Woman of the Year Shelley Burnach of San Bernardino (photo and biography below).

Since the program began, over 500 women have been honored. Awardees are nominated by members of the public. A committee made up of various women’s groups and past honorees selects the Women of Distinction finalists and “Distinguished Woman” from each city.

A full list of honorees and biographies can be found here.


Caption: Highlights from the 13th Annual Women of Distinction Ceremony. Top right, clockwise: Senator Morrell with Mentone finalist Angie Grisafe-De La Rosa and her family; with Redlands finalists Carla Ford-Brunner, Valerie Machain, and Michelle Mainez; with Woman of the Year Shelley Burnach; with San Bernardino finalists Charlotte Baber, Manal Iskander, and Gwendolyn Rodgers; Big Bear Lake finalists Cindy Caretto and Megan Meadors

About Shelley Burnach, 23rd Senate District Woman of the Year

San Bernardino resident Shelley Burnach is a dedicated volunteer whose enthusiasm for serving never wanes. She is always willing to give her time and resources to causes throughout the region, with eyes toward making sure Inland Empire cities are ones of which to be proud.

Shelley has taken on leadership roles in a variety of local organizations. Among the many, she currently serves as Vice President of the Colton Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, as a member of the Board of Friends of Santa Claus Inc. (and in recent years, Chairman of the organization’s annual Christmas Tree Lane Gala), as a member of the St. Bernardine Medical Center Foundation Board of Trustees, and as a member of the The Unforgettables Board. She is also a founding Board Member of Women of Dignity Health as well as an active member of the Businesswomen’s Association of San Bernardino County.

One of her favorite outreach events is coordinating with UCLA to donate hundreds of tickets to football games so that young athletes can attend. She says the joy that comes with their attendance is priceless. Her hope is that through this experience they will be further inspired to do well in school and aim to go to college.

Shelley studied at San Diego State University and Cal State San Bernardino, earning her degree in communications. Professionally, she has worked in the medical industry for over 20 years and at present is an Account Executive for PMT Ambulance and Premier Medical Transportation.

Shelley and her husband Dave have been married for 29 years and have two adult children, Heather and Calvin. The love their family shares for the city and the surrounding region is evident through their volunteer efforts to care for and instill civic pride in their community.

Shelley’s guiding approach to life: “I believe in never giving up, finish what you start no matter the outcome because the road to success is Trying.”