LAAAWPPI - Women in Action Awards 2011 Journal


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LAAAWPPI - Women in Action Awards 2011 Journal

  2. 2. A MESSAGE FROM THE Event Chair Welcome to the Los Angeles African American Women’s Public Policy Institute’s 6th Annual “Women In Action Awards” event. A very special thank you for your continual support of LAAAWPPI and its leadership training program.Each year we recognize distinguished women who are leaders in theirindustry and are indeed role models for the current and futureLAAAWPPI alumnae. We have also recognized two men, one incorporate America and one in public service, who each recognized thequalifications of and promoted women to leadership positions.A total of 138 outstanding ladies have graduated from LAAAWPPI.We are so proud of our graduates and their personal achievements thatrange from corporate elevation, enhanced entrepreneurial skills,returning to college, working in government including a boardmember and alum working for President Barack Obama’sadministration. None of this would have been possible without yoursupport and generosity.To ensure the future success of our leadership training, each one ofthe founders gives unselfishly of her time. After this event, we willgear-up for the class of 2012.I am grateful to the wonderful committee members and volunteerswho gave unselfishly of their time to make the “Women In ActionAwards” a successful event. A humble thank you does not seemsufficient yet, I thank you!Melrita Evans Fortson LAAAWPPI Vice Chair 3
  3. 3. MESSAGE FROM AngelaDear LAAAWPPI Family & Supporters:Thanks to each of you for sharing in our Annual“Women in Action” Awards Ceremony. Thisyear we have the pleasure of honoring fivedynamic women – Samona Caldwell, CharisseBremond-Weaver, The Honorable Gloria Gray,Commander Regina Scott, Brenda Sutton-Willsand Beverly Todd. Each of these women areleaders in their respective fields and represent thespirit of LAAAWPPI in the work they do each day.Additionally, we are particularly grateful for our corporate sponsors - State FarmInsurance, Southern California Edison, Southern California Gas Company, Verizon,The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, AT&T, GeMCommunication Group and the University of Southern California. Our programcould not exist without the dedicated leadership and support of these companies andorganizations.In 2012, LAAAWPPI will celebrate its 10th year anniversary. As we prepare tocelebrate our 10th year, we look forward to expanding and taking our program tonew levels. We look forward to honing in even more so on our mission of creatinga pipeline of well-trained, qualified women to serve as leaders in the government,public policy and public affairs arenas.Recent statistics remind us that the work of ensuring that women’s voices are heardand that women are seated at the tables of power is not over. Hence, we mustcontinue to fill the pipeline and create a path of leadership for women everywhere.As we approach our 10th year Anniversary, we look forward to continuing to partnerwith each of you to fulfill our mission of “Empowering Women to Lead”.In closing, I remind each of us of the words of The Honorable Shirley Chisholm:“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.”Many, many thanks for your continued support of LAAAWPPI.Sincerely,Angela J. Reddock LAAAWPPI Board Chair 4
  4. 4. HISTORY OF LAAWPPIT he Los Angeles African American Womens Public Policy Institute (LAAAWPPI) is the brainchild of the Los Angeles African AmericanWomen Political Action Committee (LAAAWPAC), and was introduced atLAA A WPAC s Tenth A nni v er sary Celebration inApril of 2002. Although conceived by LAAAWPAC, LAAAWPPI is aseparately organized, non-partisan, non-profit organization with the goal ofpreparing women for leadership in business, government and thecommunity.Hosted on the campus of the University of Southern California,LAAAWPPI offers a 10-week comprehensive educational institute forwomen interested in becoming more engaged in the public policy processand in pursuing careers and opportunities as government, civic, corporateand non-profit leaders and members of boards and commissions. Theinstructors for the classes include individuals who have distinguishedthemselves in the corporate, public policy and, government arenas.LAAAWPPI graduated its inaugural class of 11 dynamic women in April2004. LAAAWPPI now is proud to have more than 130 distinguishedalumnae, each of who are making a difference and impacting andinfluencing the public affairs and governmental process at all levels.LAAAWPPI receives generous support from various corporations andorganizations, including, AT&T, GEM Communication Group, StateFarm Insurance, Southern California Edison, Southern California GasCompany, the Metropolitan Water District, University of SouthernCalifornia and Verizon. 5
  6. 6. Our Master of CeremonyBRODERICK E. RICE – THE EMPOWERTAINERBroderick E. Rice has been acomedic entertainer for 24years. His first album “AliveAlive Alive” jumped to the #2spot on the National GospelBillboard Charts and re-mained in the Top 40 forover 50 consecutive weeks.His second and follow up albums were also Billboard chartingalbums.Broderick has appeared on Lou Rawls Parade of Stars, The TavisSmiley Show, The Bobby Jones Gospel Hour, TBN, The WordNetwork and The Gospel Music Channel. He has performed for,with and among such personalities as Pattie LaBelle, GladysKnight, Oscar Award nominee actress Kerry Washington, BrianMc Knight, R&B artist Neyo, Alicia Keys, Jill Scott, ComedianSteve Harvey, the late Bernie Mac, Cedric The Entertainer andActor Tommy Ford from “Martin”. He also has performed withgospel phenoms, Kirk Franklin, Mary Mary, Yolanda Adams,Donnie Mc Clurkin, Tye Tribbett, CeCe Winans, super model &talk Show host Tyra Banks and Grammy Award winning soulsinger John Legend.Broderick is energetic, spontaneous, articulately quick and witty!He is known for his uncanny impressions of Luther Vandross,Cameo, Bernie Mac, Gospel legends Rev. James Cleveland,Marvin Winans, Bishop T.D. Jakes and Hip Hop artist Snoop D-O-double Gizzle!!!Broderick keeps it clean, but makes it irresistibly hilarious andfun for everybody! He is....Broderick “The Empower—Tainer!!!!” 7
  7. 7. Welcome Program Angela Reddock Chair of BoardIntroduction Barbara Perkins FounderMaster of Ceremony Broderick E. Rice EmpowertainerAlumnae Remarks Dawn Comer Class of 2011Leadership Training Joy Atkinson Executive DirectorAcknowledgements Melrita Evans Fortson Vice Chair of the Board Awards Presentations State Farm Insurance Represented by Samona Caldwell Charisse Bremond Weaver Brotherhood Crusade Gloria Gray West Basin Municipal Water District Commander Regina Scott Los Angeles Police Department Brenda Sutton Wills California Teachers Association, Counsel Beverly Todd ActressRaffle Kristina Dixon Class of 2007Closing Angela Reddock 8
  8. 8. Our Honorees... 9
  9. 9. CORPORATE HONOREE State Farm Represented by: Samona Caldwell Samona Caldwell is a Public Affairs Specialist with State Farm Insurance Companies® in the California Zone. As a Public Affairs Specialist, Samona’s primary goal is to build relationships with community organizations, the media and to educate the public and State Farm associateson public policy issues that relate to the insurance industry.Samona is affiliated with the following organizations: Board  Member: Valley Industry and Commerce Association (VICA), Los Angeles Afri-can-American Women’s Public Policy Institute (LAAAWPPI), Forgiv-ing for Living,  Kids Progress, Inc. (KPI) Advisory  Board  Member: Greater Los Angeles African-American Chamber of Commerce(GLAAACC), Asian Pacific Legal Center (APALC), Los Angeles Ur-ban Education Partnership, Research & Policy Institute of California.Samona is also a member of the Public Relations Society of America(PRSA) and serves as a State Farm representative for the Los AngelesChamber of Commerce and the Los Angeles Urban League.STATE FARM “In 1922, motivated by his philosophy of fairness anddoing right by the customer, the founder, G.J. Mecherle sold his firstauto policy for $11.17, and State Farm was born.State Farm is a family of insurance and financial services companies thattogether serve tens of millions of customers in the U.S. and Canada.Our many lines of business together offer over 100 products. 10
  10. 10. Charisse Bremond-Weaver BROTHERHOOD CRUSADE In January 2006, Charisse Bremond-Weaver assumed the Presidency of the Brotherhood Crusade, the community service and development organization founded by her late father, Walter Bremond, in 1968. She is the first woman to ever hold this post in the organization. As a forward sociopoliticalthinking prodigy and nonprofit advocate, she has set out to maintain theBrotherhood Crusade’s reputation as a powerful, established voice for acommunity that has periodically erupted under the pressures ofsocioeconomic inequality and institutionalized injustice.Charisse’s ability to build corporate and community partnerships hasbeen her distinguishing trademark throughout her years of service. She’sbuilt long-term relationships with government officials, corporateexecutives and community leaders. Through these relationships she hasgenerated over $20 Million to support nonprofit institutions in the areasof health, education and social services. Her latest partnering efforts withThe California Endowment to develop and implement a ten-year plan tocomprehensively transform South Los Angeles embodies and representsthe depth of her commitment and dedication to improved quality of life,social justice, and social equity for all people.She is approaching 23 years of community service and still genuinelyfeels a great passion for the community. Bremond-Weaver is a BoardMember of Green Dot Public Schools, sits on the Community AdvisoryCouncil for The Gas Company, serves on the South Los AngelesInitiatives Community Advisory Committee and the Mayor’sCommunity Development Committee as a special selectee of the Mayor.Charisse is a graduate of Utah State University, where she was recentlyhonored as Alumna of the Year; becoming the first African Americanwoman ever selected for this honor. She attended the institution on awomen’s basketball scholarship and received her degree inCommunications. 11
  11. 11. Beverly Todd ACTRESS Beverly Todd, actress and producer, has built a career on unforgettable performances. She has won a PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD and been nominated for four NAACP Image Awards. Mentored by the master artisan, Sidney Poitier, she has compiled an impressive list of Broadway, television and film achievements.Highlights include acting opposite Whoopi Goldberg in “CLARA’SHEART,” Richard Pryor in “MOVING” and Morgan Freeman in thefilm classic, “LEAN ON ME.” Roles in Poitier’s “THE LOST MAN”“THEY CALL ME MR. TIBBS, and “BROTHER JOHN” her firstleading role, lead to other distinguished work.Beverly’s television appearances include the Lifetime Movie, “TAKENFROM ME; THE TIFFANY RUBIN STORY” opposite Taraji P.Henson and, the long running series, “LINCOLN HEIGHTS” “SIXFEET UNDER” “ROOTS” “THE CLOSER” “HOUSE”“CRIMINAL MINDS” and this last season’s finale of “GREY’SANATOMY.”This spring, Beverly starred in the hit film, “I WILL FOLLOW” thatplayed in theatres across the country and was rated “two thumbs up” byfilm critic, Roger Ebert. He singled out Ms. Todd’s stirringperformance.Beverly is one of the founders and producers of, “KWANZAFOUNDATION PRESENTS FRIENDS THREE, ACELEBRATION OF THE SPOKEN WORD,” which will celebrateits 10th Season in March of 2012. Ms Todd has firmly established herselfas a stalwart figure among strong black women in the Hollywoodcommunity. 12
  12. 12. Brenda Sutton-Wills CALIFORNIA TEACHERS’ ASSOCIATION Brenda Sutton-Wills is Staff Counsel for the California Teachers’ Association where she provides legal advice and representation to CTA staff, its locals, and members in labor and employment matters. She conducts staff and member training on various issuesincluding arbitration skills, social media, education law and advocacy,and sexual harassment avoidance.She serves as Chair of the Los Angeles Hotel Industry DiversityTaskforce charged with working with union and communitystakeholders, hotel general managers, and human resource managers todevelop and implement a diversity program within the Los Angeleshotel industry. This program, through the investment and rigoroussupport of all of the stakeholders, has resulted in a significant increase inAfrican American workers in well-paying union jobs, and theestablishment of a hotel industry training boot camp.Currently, Brenda serves as the Vice President of the Labor andEmployment Law Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association,where she has served in prior office and on the section’s ExecutiveCommittee. Brenda is a mentor whose service is grounded in the beliefthat a genuine and personal commitment to mentoring is essential to theAfrican American community.Brenda received a BA in Journalism and Mass Communications, andMinor in Business Management from Drake University. She attendedUCLA School of Law where she was one of four selected for a multi-disciplinary certificate program in Child Welfare along with her JD.Brenda is married to Blayne Sutton Wills, and they have two really greatkids, Blayne and Bryce. 13
  13. 13. Gloria D. Gray METROPOLITAN WATER DISTRICT Gloria D. Gray dedicated her 36-year career to the Los Angeles County Departments of Human Services and Health Services in the areas of community relations, administration, health care management and human resources. In 2009, Gray was appointed to the Metropolitan Water District (MWD) Board ofDirectors and the L.A. County Board of Supervisors to serve on a waterquality Community Task Force. She is currently a Vice Chair of theMWD Board and serves on the Executive Committee, Organization,Personnel and Technology Committee, Legislative Committee,Communication and Education Committee, and Special Committee onBay-Delta. In April 2010, former Assembly Speaker Karen Bassappointed Gray to the Delta Stewardship Council.For her devoted years of community service, Gray has received severalawards and commendations from several organizations, including the2009 Power Pac Award from the Los Angeles African AmericanPolitical Action Committee and the 2009 Female Democrat of the Yearfor the 51st Assembly District as well as recognition from numerouselected officials.Gloria earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from theUniversity of Redlands, a Health Services Management Certificate fromthe University of California Los Angeles, a Louis Allen ManagementCertificate from the LA County Department of Health Services and aMasters in Governance Certificate from the California School BoardsAssociation.In 2003, Gray retired from the Los Angeles County Department ofHealth Services. She is a proud mother of two daughters, grandmotherof five grandchildren and one great-grandchild. 14
  14. 14. Commander Regina Scott LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT Commander Regina Ann Scott was appointed to the Department in July 1987. During her tenure, she has held numerous positions and worked various assignments within the Department as a Police Officer, Field Training Officer, Senior Lead Officer and Sergeant, and all advance pay grades in the Detective and Lieutenant ranks.On April 16, 2006, Commander Scott was promoted to Captain I asthe Patrol Captain at Southwest where she was responsible for the patrolfunctions of sworn and civilian personnel in an area of South LosAngeles. In May of 2007, she was promoted to Captain II CentralTraffic Division and was later reassigned to Gang and OperationsSupport Division. Two years later Commander Scott was promoted toCaptain III and assigned to Communications Division, which is thelargest division of the Department with 570 sworn and civilianpersonnel and includes both the Metropolitan and Valley DispatchCenters. On October 10, 2010, Scott became the first African Americanfemale appointed to the rank of Commander in the Department’shistory. She is currently assigned as the Assistant Commanding Officerof Information Technology Bureau.After graduating from high school, she joined the United States Armyas a combat medic and pharmacy technician. She has a Bachelor ofArts degree in Organizational Management/Criminal Justice fromAshford University. She is a graduate of West Point Leadership School,and the 216th Session of the Federal Bureau of Investigation NationalAcademy, in Quantico, Virginia. 15
  15. 15. WOMEN IN ACTION AWARDS2006Presiding Elder Carolyn Tyler GuidryMs. Phyllis Currie, General Manager, Pasadena Water & PowerHonorable Joya DeFoor, City Treasurer, City of Los AngelesMs. Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte , School Board Member District 1, LAUSD2007Ms. Carolyn McIntyre, Regional V.P., State & Gov. Affairs, Sempra EnergyMs. Shawn Farrar, Director, Corporate & Diversity Affairs, Sempra EnergyHonorable Jeanette Ndhlov, Consul General, South African ConsulateMs. Faith Culbreath, President, Security Officers United in Los AngelesMs. Holly Mitchell, Executive Director, Crystal StairsMs. Bettye Dixon, Chief Executive Officer, Concourse Concessions, Inc.Ms. Kimberly Freeman, Director of Community Relations, The Gas Company2008Ms. Nolice Edwards, Chief of Staff, Office of Speaker Karen BassMs. Alice Goff, President, ACEA Local 3090 AFSCMEMs. Julia Cooksey, Public Affairs Director, VerizonMrs. Cynthia McClain-Hill , Managing Partner, Strategic Counsel, PLCMs. Tim McCallion, Western Region President, VerizonMs. Tyree Wieder, Retired President, Los Angeles Valley CollegeMs. Ida Yarbrough, Accounting Careers Awareness Program2009Mrs. Sheila Escovedo, Elevate Hope Foundation/Heaven ProductionsHonorable William Bratton, Former Chief, LAPDMs. Jan Perry, LA City Council, District 9Ms. Martha Saucedo, VP of Public Affairs, AEGMs. Aura McCracken, Supplier Diversity Manager, AEGMs. Sandy Banks, Columnist - LA TimesHonorable Penny Toler, VP/GM - LA Sparks2010Ms. Diane Watson, 33rd Congressional DistrictDr. Velma Butler, AFT Staff Guild, 1521AMrs. Barbara Young, Young EnterprisesMs. Kitty Black Perkins, Former Mattel DesignerMs. Tammy Tumbling, Southern CA EdisonMr. John Kennedy, Southern CA EdisonMs. Lisa Cagnolatti, Southern CA Edison 16
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  23. 23. The Urban Issues BreakfastForum is a program activity of: A 501(c)3 not for profit corporation 24
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  28. 28. CONGRATULATIONS COUNCILMEMBER JACQUE ROBINSONMelrita Evans-Fortson & CommitteeOn Another Successful WOMEN IN ACTION Many Blessings CONGRATULATIONS LAAAWPPI 2011 Women in Action Honorees With Special Recognition to Sister-friends Elizabeth Badger Candidate for Brenda Sutton-Wills L.A. City Council 3rd District & LAAAWPPI (Class of 2008) Charisse Bremond-Weaver 30
  29. 29. OFFICERS Women In Action CommitteeAngela Reddock, Esq. Chair Melrita Evans Fortson, Event ChairMelina Abdullah, Vice Chair Joy AtkinsonMelrita Evans Fortson, Vice Chair Samona CaldwellAngela Gibson, Secretary Kristina Dixon, Raffle ChairTina McKinnor, Treasurer Arnetta Mack, Souvenir Journal ChairKristina Dixon, Financial Secretary Patrice MarshallGwen Moore, Parlamentarian Angela Reddock Nicole Watkins Todd Hawkins, The Todd GroupBOARD of DIRECTORS Event ManagementDr. Jodie Armour, USCSamona Caldwell, State Farm Volunteers*Dr. Michael Preston, USC Eboney AndersonValerie Shaw, Commissioner Elizabeth BadgerLos Angeles Board of Public Works Andrea CampbellMichelle Smith-Ballard, Kim CoopageTurner Construction Kristina Dixon*Carolyn Webb de Macias, Angela GibsonPresident Obama’s Administration Jackie Horton Toni Jones*Board member emeritus Ebony Lewis Eugenia MarshallFOUNDERS Tina McKinnorJoy Atkinson Wilma PinderMelrita Evans Fortson Diane RobertsonGwen Moore Monique WattsCelestine Palmer Penni WilsonBarbara PerkinsAngela Reddock Music by: Marvin Lee Jones of Marvelous Music & The ExperienceJoy Atkinson, Executive Director Trio Jazz Band 31
  30. 30. Our Sponsors PLATINUM: Southern California Edison State Farm The Gas Company GOLD: Verizon SILVER: Metropolitan Water District Supporters: Assemblymember Steve Bradford Nestle PIFC Angela Reddock Celestine Palmer SEIU-ULTCW Michelle Smith-Ballard contributed a $1,500 LAAAWPPI scholarship in honor of herrecently deceased mother, Mrs. Thelma L. Smith. A very special thank you to all of our individual supporters. 32
  31. 31. RAFFLE PRIZES PROVIDED BY Ahmanson Theatre Another Phase by Karen Roache B&B Automotive in Canoga Park Buffalo Wild Wings, Crenshaw Location Cabrillo Marine Aquarium City Council Woman Jacque Robinson Darla Claypool Debbie Lumkin (Southern California Edison) Dr. Phil (CBS Studios) Grand Lux Café Healthy Spot Jimmy Kimmel Live, ABC Malia Talanoa Molly Maids (Michelle Barton) NCIS LA (CBS Studios) Neutrogena Peterson Automotive Museum Scarlett Flower Designs Skirball Cultural Center Sportsmen’s Lodge The Doctors (CBS Studios) The Warehouse Restaurants Triple H Experience UCLA Universal Studios Zimmerman Childrens Museum 90210 (CBS Studios) 33
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  33. 33. Los Angeles African American Womens Public Policy Institute (LAAAWPPI) 4201 Wilshire Boulevard Suite 615 Los Angeles, CA 90016 Phone: 323-954-3777 Fax: 323-936-7355 Email: