Honorees Dr. Sharon Nazarian, Kalika Nacion Yap and Anne Shen Smith

Honorees Dr. Sharon Nazarian, Kalika Nacion Yap and Anne Shen Smith


Our CEO Kalika Yap was honored by the ADL at it’s 19th Annual Deborah Awards Dinner on March 6 at the SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills.

ADL’s Deborah Awards are presented annually to outstanding women whose leadership in their professions and civic contributions exemplify the qualities and ideals of the Anti-Defamation League.

Other honorees at the dinner include academic and philanthropist Dr. Sharon S. Nazarian, President, Y&S Nazarian Family Foundation and Chair, Community Advisory Board, Y&S Nazarian Center for Israel Studies, UCLA; and business leader Anne Shen Smith, Chairman and CEO of Southern California Gas Company.

Here’s Kalika’s speech
This particular award means so much to me as the prophetess Deborah exemplified courage, wisdom and leadership – three qualities for which without we couldn’t possibly begin to create a world free of hate. 
They’re also key ingredients in being successful as an entrepreneur.
But don’t be fooled, entrepreneurship is rarely glamorous.  In fact, ask any successful entrepreneur, the experience is more often messy, uncoordinated and full of twists and turns.  
Entrepreneurs are all too accustomed to when things DON’T go as planned. It’s incredibly challenging that even the BEST ideas can’t get off the ground.  
It’s is the only endeavor in which an empty tank can create a burst of energy, spontaneous genius and brilliant insanity.
It is also the home of so many who have made and will make history, it is why I love the work that I get to do and why I’m grateful that I get the chance to do it day after day.
And when things DO go as planned and a business or businesses grows, there’s oftentimes bitter sweetness to entrepreneurial success.  
Often, we, as business owners, find ourselves alone facing challenges we don’t know how to surmount with growing responsibilities, not just to our own families, but for those of people we employ and their families.  
So, we understand the incredible comfort that comes with having a support system, a place where you can go and be protected.  
As an entrepreneur, I have found priceless solace and support by my friends and peers at EO the Entrepreneurs Organization and NAWBO – the National Association of Women Business Owners.
We can never undervalue the importance of simply having a place you can go where like minded people are.  
I joined as an ambassador for the Anti-Defamation League Cyber Allys program because I knew how deeply impactful it is knowing that there was a safe place for you when you feel alone. 
Everyone deserves to feel safe, supported and free to be proud of exactly who they are.  
Everyone deserves the chance to know the feeling of security and self confidence – they are also key ingredients  in entrepreneurial success.  
But THE absolute key ingredient to my success has been the unwaivering support of my family, in particular my partner in life, my husband Rodney and our two beautiful girls Malia and Kailani who not only inspire me to keep going even on the hardest of days, but who are the reason every tough day is surmountable and every great day  is achievable. 
Thank you for this award and please continue to support this amazing organization.  
Kalika with her husband Rodney and daughters Malia and Kailani
Kalika with her husband Rodney and daughters Malia and Kailani

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