Press Release

Gillibrand Congratulates Women Celebrating Women Award Recipients

Mar 30, 2010

New York, NY – U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand congratulated today the sixteen women of New York City’s Caribbean community who received coveted leadership awards at Sunday’s annual Women Celebrating Women event in Queens. The event, hosted by Dr. Una Clarke and Councilmember Dr. Mathieu Eugene (D-Brooklyn), honored sixteen women for their immeasurable contributions to education, the arts, social work, health and wellness, legal aid, faith-based initiatives, and humanitarian efforts.      

“I offer my heartfelt congratulations to each recipient of this award,” said Senator Gillibrand.  “As New York City struggles to recover from the worst economic crisis in our lifetimes, I commend these women for their advocacy, and for keeping their communities in Queens and Brooklyn moving forward through their volunteerism, love and care.  As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we must recognize the women whose leadership impacts the lives of so many throughout our city.  I would also like to thank my dear friend, Dr. Una Clarke, whose lifelong activism on behalf of New York City’s families and children is an inspiring call to action.”

Dr. Clarke said, “This was our 18th year honoring women in our community.  They are selected from many backgrounds, but share a commitment to and a history of dedication to our community.” 

Councilmember Eugene said, “I am delighted to celebrate Women’s History Month in recognition of the accomplishments of women in Brooklyn, New York City and the United States. Women’s History Month is an important time to reflect upon the invaluable contribution of women to our society and I hope to work together to ensure women receive the best opportunities our community can provide.” 

The sixteen New York City honorees are leaders in their respective fields:  

  • Prof. Blondell Anderson of Nyack College, whose personal motto is “To teach in order to serve,” was recognized for her leadership in education. 
  • Brooklyn native Gwendolyn “Aduke” Anderson, a creator of the Harlem Children’s Theatre Project and a veteran of education posts throughout the tri-state area, was recognized for her longtime advocacy in arts and education. 
  • Dr. Keneca Boyce was recognized for her positive contribution in social services, including serving communities impacted by HIV/AIDS, high incarceration, depression, substance abuse, homelessness and high teen pregnancy rates.  
  • Dr. Michena Brooks, a native of Haiti and orthopedic surgeon, was recognized for her contribution in the field of medicine at the Family Medical Practice Center in Brooklyn, and credits her success to her ability to maintain the balance between motherhood and medical practice.
  • Dr. Barbara Freeman, MD, was honored for her achievements in social work; she is currently an attending physician at Kings County Hospital and Veteran’s Hospital in Brooklyn, where her emphasis is training future leading surgeons in a multicultural setting.  
  • Peggy Griffiths accepted her award recognizing her contributions to alternative education for at-risk youth. 
  • Dr. Victoria E. Henry, PhD, was recognized for her contributions in the fields of medicine and social work: many of which directly benefit programs and initiatives in her native Jamaica. 
  • Rev. Patricia Malcolm proudly accepted her award recognizing her contribution to the faith based community, a testament to her motto, “Do all the good you can, to all the people you can.” 
  • Honored for community service, Althea McKayle is a founding member of the Union of Jamaican Alumni Association and works with the blind. 
  • Honoree Lillian Mitchell, the principal of the Greater New York Academy in Queens, was recognized for her contribution to education.. 
  • As President of the Social Service Employees Union Local 371, Faye Moore advocates for the benefits of the Union’s 17,000 workers in New York City.
  • Honored for her contribution in the field of international diplomacy, Jessica Odle-Baril is the former Consul General for Barbados. 
  • A longtime pro bono community advocate, Leslene Paul-Henry was honored for her contributions in the field of law. 
  • Certified Public Accountant Inge Paula Phillips-Douglas was honored for her humanitarian work and, through The St. Gabriel’s Episcopal Church Humanitarian Fund fosters community wellness around the world. 
  • Honoree Kimberly Richardson proudly accepted an award in recognition of her contributions in education. 
  • Rev. Dr. Melony Samuels, Founder and Director of Bed-Stuy Campaign Against Hunger (BSCAH), was recognized for her contributions in  community service.