Gates Resident Honored as Woman of Distinction

Joseph E. Robach

May 07, 2013



Annual Program Honors Women’s Contributions to Our Community


Senator Robach will recognize Grace Tillinghast of Gates with the New York State Senate’s 2013 Woman of Distinction Award in Albany.


The “Woman of Distinction” program was created in 1998 as part of the Senate’s celebration of Women’s History Month and honors New York women who exemplify personal excellence, or whose professional achievements or act of courage, selflessness, integrity or perseverance serve as an example to all New Yorkers.


Tillinghast is a former college professor and Eastman Kodak Company executive. She left the corporate world in 2007 to work full time in her family business, The Battery. The Battery, located in Gates, was the first indoor baseball and softball training facility in Western New York and recently celebrated its 30th Anniversary of service to our community. While her  involvement in the community and numerous awards exemplify her dedication to Rochester, Tillinghast may be best known as “Mrs. T” at the Battery.


Her work through The Battery has not only taught kids and adults about baseball skills, but more importantly, about life skills. The Battery and “Mrs. T” have become an integral part of the Rochester community, especially in the lives of Rochester’s youth.


“I am proud this year to honor Grace for all of the wonderful contributions she has made to the Gates and Rochester communities. She has truly been an inspiration to the Rochester community for her business success, her great spirit, volunteerism and activism.” Senator Robach added. “Grace is a passionate civic leader, a philanthropist, a notable businesswoman and a most deserving ‘Woman of Distinction’ from the 56th Senate District.” 


In addition to working full time at her family’s business, Tillinghast has served on the Boards of Monroe Community College, Arts and Culture Council for Greater Rochester, National Hispanic Corporate Council, the Cuban American National Council and the Rochester Police Department’s “Do the Right Thing Program.”


Tillinghast will be recognized in a special ceremony on Tuesday, May 7th, at the State Capitol in Albany. Her photograph and biography will be displayed in a public exhibit proclaiming the special contributions of exemplary New York women.