The YWCA Darien/Norwalk has announced the six honorees for the 2018 Women of Distinction Awards and Luncheon on May 10 at Woodway Country Club in Darien. The honorees are Carrie Bernier, Tina Duryea, Scarlett Lewis, Allison Molkenthin and Wendy Ward. Emma Dahlquist will be honored as a Young Woman of Distinction, recognizing the outstanding accomplishments of a woman under 21 years of age. The Darien Times has featured each of the nominees and this week features the last two.

This event is open to the public. Tickets can be purchased at For further inquiries about this event or to become a sponsor, contact

Allison Molkenthin

Allison Molkenthin is an effective and powerful volunteer leader for the empowerment of diverse women in Connecticut, bringing underrepresented voices to the table, working with marginalized communities and working to close the inequality gap in early childhood education. Professionally, Allison advises companies with diverse management teams that expand economic opportunity and has helped fund companies in the U.S., Europe and Africa.  

Allison is passionate about the empowerment of women and girls. In 2017 Allison spearheaded the launch of the Connecticut affiliate of Emerge America, which trains diverse women candidates to run for public office. Serving on the advisory board, Allison recruits candidates and raises funds to teach women the required skills to win elections. Emerge’s first class in the state is training 23 candidates, with 40% women of color.

Allison has been a trustee of the non-profit Waterford Institute for more than 15 years. Waterford provides research based software to bridge the equality gap in early childhood reading-readiness nationwide, helped by an $11.3 million federal i3 grant.

Allison has also been a Girl Scout leader for three troops over f14 years. She was awarded outstanding leader, and daughters Allegra and Christina have received their Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest award possible, and Octavia is working on it. Allison has lived in Darien with her husband and daughters since ’02 and received her degree in mechanical engineering and comparative literature from Brown, her MBA from INSEAD and was a Fulbright Scholar in Morocco.