The Woodward School cordially invites you to attend the 13th Annual
Woodward Women of Distinction Award Celebration
Please join us in celebrating the achievements of
Beth Veneto & Janelle Woods-McNish
for their accomplishments and contributions to the greater community
5:30 pm VIP Cocktail Reception
6:00 pm General Admission
Born and raised in Quincy, Beth Veneto, better known as Ginger Betty, is well known beyond her home city. “Sharing Cookies and Making Friends” is her Team Ginger Betty motto. She has been a professional gingerbread maker creating smiles and sweet memories for over 25 years. Her self-made success is impressive, as she was raised by a tough cookie mom Trixie (Kathryn Norton) and her hardworking father (Andy Veneto), who always held two or three jobs. Together, they instilled a great work ethic and a passion to reach for the stars, in their eight children.
A Quincy High School graduate, voted Most Athletic her senior year, she played on the Quincy High softball team and was tri-captain of the volleyball state championship team. Quincy Koch Club inspired Beth’s passion for sports, which furthered her education when she received a full volleyball scholarship to New York Institute of Technology. Beth was introduced to gingerbread by her very talented pastry chef sister Karen, when she was just 10 years old. Beth spent weekends catering and making gingerbread houses for members of the local country club and Mr. Donuts.
After briefly working at the Marriott Marquis in New York City, she returned home and continued baking magic out of her mother’s house, leaving a frosting trail throughout the kitchen. To make her dream a delicious reality, she received a loan through Quincy 2000. With her loan and gingerbread ideas scribbled on napkins, in 1995, Ginger Betty’s Bakery was born!
Betty is the author of two children’s books, “The Gingerbread Girl” and “A Magical Ginger Betty Christmas”. She also has been a part of the Boston Christmas Festivals Gingerbread House Competition, winning “Best in Show”, “Children’s Favorite” and “Most Creative”. Ginger Betty’s has also been featured on The Food Network, TV Diner, as well as in The Food Network Magazine, Improper Bostonian, and others. In 2013, she was the recipient of the Retailers' Association of Massachusetts Award of Excellence.
In 2007, the GI Ginger Betty Foundation was born after Beth met a soldier on a plane. Ginger Betty’s has delivered thousands of cookies to our brave men and woman all around the world as well as their loved ones waiting on their safe return. Deliveries have been made at Andrews Air Force Base, Otis Air Force Base and shipments have been made to Iraq, Afghanistan, to naval ships at sea, and beyond. She had the experience of a lifetime when she rode in a Black Hawk helicopter at Otis Air Force Base, adding “Black Hawk Betty” to her list of nicknames. The GI Ginger Betty’s Foundation was the proud recipient of the Seven Seals Award, which is sponsored by the Employers Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR). This was an amazing honor. "It is such a privilege to be able to send a sweet salute with our signature ginger snap cookies to our brave men and woman who keep us safe".
The sweet road to success continued this past August, when Ginger Betty’s represented Massachusetts in the Made in America Product Showcase at The White House. From her mother’s house, to the White House, Ginger Betty keeps her legacy alive Sharing Cookies and Making Friends.
In her professional career, Janelle is a Director at Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
, a nationally recognized health
services organization, where she oversees the company's community involvement initiatives. In addition, Janelle received a Master of Business Administration, her second Master
degree, from Simmons College where she not only graduated with honors but was also inducted into the business honor society, Beta Gamma Sigma. Janelle accomplished all of this while working full time and raising her family. In 2016 Janelle was named a 40 under 40 business leaders by the Business Journal. She is the National Spokesperson for Children of the Night and raises awareness to end Human Trafficking and promoting her I Am Valued Movement
Woodward Women of Distinction
2018: Laurie Graf '91 & Kristine Lilly
2017: Wendy Simmons P'12, '16 & Beth Ann Strollo
2016: Chazy Dowaliby & Kathryn Murphy
2015: Judy Farmer & Therese Maloney ’47
2014: Carol Bulman & Michelle Stenberg
2013: Terry Bellotti-Palmieri & Latoyia Edwards
2012: Christa Hagearty & Josephine Shea
2011: Isobel Bertman & Ruth Paven ’46
2010: Dolly Di Pesa & Mary Hurley
2009: Katherine Hesse & Marianne Peak
2008: Sheila McIntyre & Linda Stice
2007: Phyllis Godwin & Rosemary Wahlberg