This Women’s History Month NewFM will be highlighting black women #DoingTheWork in our community. Check out our features below. Use the hashtag #DoingTheWork to highlight women that you know making an impact in your community.
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Liberty City native and NewFM Lead Organizer, Valencia Gunder. Check out her words below:
“Doing the work means always moving on behalf of the community and staying true to my personal mission. I believe in moving forward while always looking back and never forgetting where I came from.”
Marcia Olivo is a social justice advocate and the Director of the Miami Workers Center. Marcia is a recipient of the 2017 Gloria Awards: Women of Vision, receiving the award alongside honorees including former Secretary of State Hilary Clinton.
Teri Williams Cohee is the president and COO of OneUnited Bank, the largest black-owned bank in the country with offices in Boston, Miami and Los Angeles. Thank you for all you do to improve the lives of our community through financial literacy, investing in black businesses and more. In the last two years, OneUnited Bank has financed over $100 million in loans – most in low to moderate income communities. We salute you Teri Williams Cohee for#DoingTheWork.
We honor Francesca Menes for all of the work that she does as the Policy & Advocacy Director at Florida Immigrant Coalition. Francesca leads strategic legislative, policy and voter engagement campaigns locally and statewide for the coalition. She also partners with community members and elected officials, to draft and propose legislation that strengthens our families and our communities.
BlackTech Week founder and entreprenuer, Felecia Hatcher is a White House award-winning entrepreneur, globally sought after speaker and author who works to rid communities of innovation deserts. BlackTech Week works to increase the number of startup founders, technology executives, and engineers of color.
We’re so proud to honor another woman warrior, Marleine Bastien. We appreciate you for all of the work that you do as the Executive Director of Haitian Women of Miami (Fanm Ayisyen Nan Miyami). Marleine has championed the cause of women, children and Haitian families through her dedicated advocacy in the areas of immigration and human rights, HIV/AID, breast cancer and domestic violence.
Jasmen is a community organizer in both Dade and Broward counties working with the Dream Defenders, Black Lives Matter Alliance Broward, and SEIU. Jasmen has organized campaigns around police brutality seeking justice in the cases of Lavall Hall, Jermaine McBean, and others who have been victimized by law enforcement. Jasmen has appealed to the UN regarding human rights violations present in policing and is currently working with others on a campaign demanding that the Department of Justice investigate local law enforcement for their predatory police practices.
Nadege Green is a reporter, covering social justice issues for WLRN Public Radio and Television. We appreciate you for your powerful storytelling and ability to give a voice to the voiceless. In 2016, Nadege was recognized by the(NABJ) National Association of Black Journalistswith three first place awards for investigative reporting, long form and short form radio reporting on policing in Miami-Dade’s black communities. Green’s work has also been honored by the Florida AP Broadcaster Awards.
Dr. Pandwe Gibson is the President and Founder ofEcoTech Visions, a business incubator that houses and supports green businesses in South Florida. EcoTech Visions brings innovation to the middle core of the community, while addressing environmental challenges, systemic poverty, and small business growth by capitalizing on the green collar economy. This model converts the traditional blue collar worker into a “green-collar” work force.
Lutze Segu is a gender justice organizer at Miami Workers Center. She is a strong believer in the power of empathy in the battle against classism, racism, poverty, mental health, childhood trauma and other structural and systemic issues. As a social worker, Lutze has worked with survivors of Domestic Violence, queer homeless youth, and youth from all walks of life. She is also a social justice practitioner, who trains people to embrace radical inclusion and to have tough conversations on issues of race, racism, and other systems of oppression.
Gepsie Metellus is the co-founder and Executive Director of Sant La Haitian Neighborhood Center, a neighborhood resource center that serves as a lifeline for the Haitian immigrant population of South Florida. Her community involvement spans over two decades. In addition to hosting a weekly talk-show targeting the Haitian community in South Florida, Gepsie is a frequent radio and television commentator about the issues that impact the Haitian community. She has also authored several articles and publications about the Haitian experience.
Today we salute Orange County State Attorney,Aramis Donell Ayala, the first African-American state attorney in Florida. She ran on a progressive platform led by her yearning to reform the criminal justice system, giving more power to the people and the community. Last week, Governor Rick Scott removed Ayala from a key murder case after she announced her refusal to seek the death penalty in any case during her term. His action undermines the voters choice and Ayala’s independence as a prosecutor.
Moné Holder is the North Florida Regional Director here at NewFM. Moné has led the organization in the fight for voting rights on the local, state and national levels and develops strategies to build black political power in the state. She currently serves as Vice President of the Board of Directors for Friends In Need Children’s Center, Inc.; a non-profit organization carrying out educational enrichment programs, dedicated to improving the academic and social development of minority children and their families. She is an active member of the Junior League of Jacksonville, Women’s Giving Alliance and a 2017 Delores Barr Weaver Fellow. Moné has been featured on numerous media outlets, providing commentary on civil rights issues that affect communities of color.
Today, we salute Ruth Jeannoel, a mother, wife and lead organizer with the Power U Center for Social Change. Ruth has been organizing since the 4th grade with her first boycott around “opting” out of the states standardized test. Since then, she has been organizing youth of color around dismantling the school to prison pipeline by providing black and brown youth with the tools to build power in their own communities.
Today, we salute Tangela Sears founder of Parents of Murdered Kids Open Page. Sears has fought tirelessly on many issues including HIV, education and gun violence, developing a unique relationship with elected officials and the communities that they often struggle to reach. She has organized forums, town halls, and rallies, appeared frequently in the media, and provided unwavering love and support to many shooting victims and their families. Recently, Sears spearheaded a House bill strengthening protections for witnesses in murder cases.