The National Council of Negro Women Chicago Central Section held its 6th Annual Breakfast of Honor on March 19 at the Belvedere Chateau. The theme “Celebrating Women & Community Organizations of Excellence,” honored women for their achievements in education, community service, business, and game-changers. The annual event enables the section to raise funds to support their efforts in the community, which also includes scholarships.
The National Council of Negro Women, Inc. (NCNW) is a non-profit membership organization founded in 1935 by educator, civil rights leader, and government official Mary McLeod Bethune. The mission of NCNW is to lead, develop, and advocate for women of African descent as they support their families and communities. NCNW addresses issues of human welfare and rights through public education, community service and advocacy.
The NCNW Chicago Central Section was founded in 2010 by visionary Malaun Rice and a group of women who saw a need to take a stand to save young girls and the community. With a membership of 70+ dedicated women, the section continues to demonstrate initiatives through various programs and partnerships in the community. In 2019, the section became a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
This year’s affair included breakfast, live music, raffles, and fellowship. Guest who attended wore stylish fascinators and unique hats. Maura Gale, a renowned actress, author, evangelist, and creative visionary, was the Mistress of Ceremonies.
Dr. Ramona E. James, President of the Chicago Central Section, began the event with a moment of silence in remembrance of lives lost to COVD-19.
Regina Major, National Board of NCNW as Member-at-Large, brought greetings to congratulate the section on an outstanding event and offered praise for their tireless work in the community. Major encouraged guests to join NCNW. “When sisters stand shoulder to shoulder, nothing can come between us. NCNW is 87 years strong, and we have many more years to go,” says Major.
The awards ceremony began with Dr. James, presenting Jacqueline Record, daughter of the late Tommy Sutton, founder of the Mayfair Dance Academy, a check for $500.00 and the Community Service Award. The Mayfair Dance Academy has been a cultural landmark in the community for the past 63 years.
Dr. James honored two members in the section for their hard work and dedication for the past two years. 2022 Woman of the Year was awarded to Treasurer Michelle Bauseman and Committee Service and Outreach Chair Deborah Jones.
Dr. James recognized First Vice President and Fundraising Chair Andrea Botley with a flower bouquet for her hard work and commitment.
Immediate Past President Melinda Hill presented the 2020 Woman of the Year to Dr. James, who wore many hats, demonstrated leadership and excellence.
Awards were given to women who achieved success in their careers and contributions to the community. The 2022 honorees are:
- Chiquerra Brown – Game Changer
- Dr. Denitra D. Griffin – Business/Entrepreneur
- Robin Woolery – Community Service
- Rev. Yolanda E. Morris – Community Service (Honorable Mention)
- Natasha Robinson, Esq. – Higher Education
The Breakfast of Honor concluded with raffling off elaborate gift baskets and the anticipated Parade of Hats, where women strolled on the dance floor showcasing their best hats.
For more information about the National Council of Negro Women Chicago Central Section, go to chgocentralncnw.org and social media @ccsncnw.
Tammy Gibson is an author, re-enactor, and black history traveler. Find her on social media @sankofatravelher.