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YWCA announces 2019 recipients of Women of Achievement Awards

The YWCA Central Maine is proud to announce the recipients of the 2019 Women of Achievement Awards. The Awards Selection Committee reviewed a remarkable pool of applicants this year in order to select the following recipients: Kristen Cloutier (Lee Young Leadership Award); Azenaide Pedro (Marcia Baxter Social Justice Award); Klara Tammany (Tonie Ramsey Service Award); Annette Wilson (Priscilla Gendron Legacy Award).

Kristen Cloutier: Kristen Cloutier is the Mayor of Lewiston and currently serves as the State Representative for House District 60. She previously served as Lewiston City Council President, representing Ward 5. Mayor Cloutier has supported various redevelopment projects and has been an advocate of public art and the role it can play in the economic development of Lewiston. Her council appointments have included representative to the Lewiston School Committee, chairwoman of the Immigrant and Refugee Integration and Policy Development Working Group, member of the Lewiston-Auburn Public Health Committee, member of the Androscoggin County Budget Committee, and member of the Androscoggin Valley Council of Government’s General Assembly. She is also a Class of 2015 alumna of Emerge Maine and was awarded its Rising Star Award in 2017 for her mentorship and support of women running for elected office. Mayor Cloutier resides in Lewiston.

Azenaide Pedro, or Lucy, as many people know her, studied Public Health in South Africa before moving to Lewiston, where she has been a shining leader for health in our community. In October 2018, she joined the Raise-Op Housing Cooperative as its new Cooperative Organizer, helping residents learn how to democratically manage and improve their housing, and working across different classes and cultures to solve challenges together. Lucy works every day to address issues of poverty, safe housing, food access, public safety, racial justice, and community building in the Tree Street neighborhood of Lewiston, the most racially diverse and economically impoverished neighborhood in the State of Maine. She works and volunteers for many organizations that promote social equity. Lucy works and lives in downtown Lewiston.

Klara Tammany: Klara Tammany has been Executive Director of The Center for Wisdom’s Women since 2009. The Center currently serves as a weekday drop-in center for women and has launched a social enterprise called “Herban Works.” The Center is expanding to meet the needs of women who are healing from trafficking/exploitation, addiction, and incarceration, often rooted in chronic trauma, through the residential community called “Sophia’s House,” slated to open in late 2019. Klara holds a MEd in religious education and post-master’s certificate in spirituality from Boston College, in addition to completing the Leadership Development Institute at the Maine Association of Non-Profits. She lives in Auburn. 

Annette Wilson: For the past 20 years, Annette Wilson has worked for the Cutler Institute at the University of Southern Maine. She spent nearly 13 years training and supporting prospective foster and adoptive parents across Maine; for the past 7 years, she has worked to develop curriculum to support child welfare caseworkers, supervisors, and other direct care workers. Annette has also been active in local school and community organizations for two decades. Last year she helped to coordinate the delivery of the Backpack Program, which supports families to reduce food insecurity across the community. Annette helped to shepherd the Lisbon community school PTO to register and receive non-profit status and was able to structure the non-profit to cover all Lisbon School parent groups. Annette has spearheaded many fundraising events for the past eight years for Lisbon schools that have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars. 

We are also excited to announce that the 2019 Women of Achievement Awards Brunch will feature a keynote address from Noelle Chaddock. As Vice President for Equity and Inclusion at Bates College since June 2019, Noelle Chaddock works with colleagues to cultivate a welcoming, inclusive, equitable, and accessible campus community where faculty, staff, students, alumni, community members, and future constituents thrive and feel reflected and represented at Bates College. Noelle oversees the Office of Equity and Inclusion and supports the Office of Intercultural Education. Noelle previously served as associate provost at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee and inaugural Chief Diversity Officer at the State University of New York at Cortland. Noelle holds a PhD in Philosophy from Binghamton University.

The YWCA invites all members of the community to join in celebrating the work of the honorees at the Women of Achievement Awards on Sunday, November 17 at the Hilton Garden Inn Auburn Riverwatch. Tickets to the Women of Achievement Awards Gala are $40 and available for sale now until the date of the event. All proceeds benefit the work of the YWCA in the greater Lewiston-Auburn community. Follow the link for ticket sales

The Women of Achievement Awards Brunch is not only a uniquely powerful celebration of women leaders, it is also an opportunity for the community to come together in support of the YWCA’s work in Lewiston-Auburn. As our biggest fundraiser, funds raised through the event benefit our childcare and aquatics programming, the YWCA’s women’s empowerment programming, and the organization’s ongoing advocacy work for justice and equity in our community.

For more information about the event please contact the YWCA at 795-4050.

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