24-Hour Crisis Hotline: 269-385-3587

General Contact: 269-345-5595

Women of Achievement

Another way YWCA Kalamazoo promotes empowering women is through our annual Women of Achievement Awards Celebration. This is an annual event that celebrates women who have devoted themselves to social justice and system change.

We are proud to announce the recipients of the 2024 Women of Achievement Awards. Aiming to celebrate women who have devoted themselves to social justice and system change, this year’s recipients have acted as positive forces within their communities and inspirations to people everywhere.

Tickets on Sale Now!



2024 Lifetime Women of Achievement

Mattie Jordan-Woods

Retired Executive Director,
Northside Association for
Community Development

2024 Dorothy I. Height Award for Social Justice Innovation

Dr. Charlae Davis

Executive Director,

Interfaith Strategy for Advocacy & Action

in the Community (ISAAC)

2024 Women of Achievement

Carla Adkison-Johnson, PhD

Professor, Department of Counselor Education and Counseling Psychology, Western Michigan University

Jan Barker

Chief Executive Officer,

Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan

Patricia Carlin

Teacher, Counselor, and Advocate

Jeanne Hess

Vice Mayor,

City of Kalamazoo

Michelle Zukowski Serlin, LMSW

Executive Director and Clinical Social Worker,

Choices For Change Counseling Agency 

2024 Young Women of Achievement

Cherry Acosta 
Kalamazoo College
Kynnedy Brown
Michigan State University
Kalamazoo Promise Scholar
Tayla Dillard
Kalamazoo Central High School
Kalamazoo Promise Scholar
Genesis Griffin
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo Promise Scholar
Aliah Ward
Loy Norrix High School
Kalamazoo Promise Scholar
Breyana Wilson
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo Promise Scholar

2024 Key Sponsor

Women of Achievement Award Sponsor

Reception Sponsor

Dorothy I. Height Award for Social Justice Innovation

2024 Award Sponsors




2024 Young Women of Achievement Award Sponsors

2024 Special Sponsor

2024 Friend Sponsor

Miller-Davis Company

New Mission Vision Tribute

The Mission Vision Tribute, while likely not presented each year, is an opportunity for YWCA Kalamazoo to recognize work by someone that has risen to the challenges of moving our mission forward and supporting thriving circumstances,  despite the difficulties faced by the marginalized and vulnerable populations we serve. This tribute recognizes intentional and fierce efforts to eliminate racism and empower women.

Women of Achievement

Dr. Grace Lubwama

Nominate a Candidate

If you have any questions about the nomination process or the event, please contact Kellie at edeering@ywcakalamazoo.org

Note: Nominations received are good for 2 years of consideration. (Nominations received for consideration in 2023 will be included for consideration again in 2024 if they were not selected to receive an award.)

Sponsor the Event

YWCA Kalamazoo invites businesses and organizations to participate as Sponsors for this annual community celebration.

Please email edeering@ywcakalamazoo.org for more information on how to become a sponsor.

YWCA Lifetime Women of Achievement Award Past Recipients

Sisters of St. Joseph Congregation of St. Joseph, 2023

Janice Brown, 2021
Pamela Enslen, 2019
Judy Jolliffe, 2018
Juanita Goodwin, 2016
Carolyn G. Alford, 2015
Anne Wend Lipsey, 2014
Ronda Stryker, 2013
Kathy B. Beauregard, 2012
Dr. Eileen B. Wilson-Oyelaran, 2011
Pat Coles-Chalmers, 2010
Dr. Martha B. Warfield, 2009
Marjorie Springgate, 2008
Sister Elizabeth (Betty) Veenhuis, 2007
Marian G. Klein, 2006
Judy Sarkozy, 2005
Mary Little Tyler, 2004
Eva L. Ozier, 2003
Barbara L. James, 2002
Suzanne Todd Shepherd, 2001
Ann V. Parfet, 2000
Anna Whitten, 1999
Hon. Carolyn H. Williams, 1998
Judith K. Maze, 1997
Dr. Marilyn J. Schlack, 1996
Jo Jacobs, 1995
Beverly A. Moore, 1994
Mary C. Brown, 1993
Caroline R. Ham, 1992
Martha G. Parfet, 1991
Gayl F. Werme, 1990
N. Lorraine Beebe, 1989
Georgia T. Dungy, 1988
Allene W. Dietrich, 1987
Elizabeth Upjohn Mason, 1986
Betty Lee Ongley, 1985

YWCA Women of Achievement Award Past Recipients


Pamela Coffey
Mary Gustas
Sylvia I. Hicks-Fox, MD, FAAP
Robyn Robinson
Honorable Namita Sharma

Diane Eberts
Leslie Lami-Reed
Lissette Mira-Amaya
Danielle Sielatycki
Beth Washington

Shirley Lampman Johnson
Alisa Parker
Lisa Rodriguez
Judy Sivak
Cori Terry

Ann Fergemann
Wendy Fields
Rosemary Gardiner
Donna Odom
Jane Rooks Ross

Marigene Arnold
Denise Crawford
Dr. Brenda Prater Earhart
Sally Reames
Sandra L. Standish

Kristi Carambula
Lynn Smith Houghton
Cindy Kole
Sam Lealofi
Karianne Thomas

Elizabeth A. Burns
Pam Kingery
Sherry Thomas-Cloud
Jan Van Der Kley

Bonnie Jo Campbell
Mary McLean
La June Montgomery Tabron
Dorothy Young

J. Baraka-Love
Margaret Merrion
Willie Mae Pierson
Heidi E. Stucki

Lola Clark Atkinson
Audrey Lipsey
Bobbe A. Luce
Alfrelynn J. Roberts
Sarah Stangl

Mary A. Doud
Mikell Thurston Griffith
Patti Huiskamp
Sylvia C. Pahl
Earlie M. Washington

Phyllis R. Buskirk
Patricia E. Dolan
Lori Moore
Pamela S. Roland

Loretta Cipkus Dubray
Tara East
Mattie Jordan-Woods

Gwendolyn Hillman
Lois Jackson
Judy Moore

Lisa A. Godfrey
Rosalie Novara
Nancy Owen
Phyllis Seabolt

Janice Brown
Sally Putney
Marie L. Stevens
Sister Elizabeth (Betty) Veenhuis

Jean Forrest
Ellen Kisinger-Rothi
Marilyn A. Potgeisser

Janet M. Dancer
Edith Gardner
Hannah McKinney
Ronda Stryker

Patricia Coles-Chalmers
Mary Carolyn Howard
Dr. Elise B. Jorgens
Alice Kemerling
Virginia E. Norton

Kathy Beauregard
Irene B. Hamilton
Deborah C. Jackson
Marcia S. Jackson

Dorothy I. Height Award for Social Justice Innovation Past Recipients

Stephanie Williams, 2023

Nelly Fuentes, 2021
Josephine Brown, 2019