frederica-wilson_web.jpgNORTH MIAMI – More than 100 people turned out to toast several women whose public, community and personal service earned them recognition during a Women’s History Month celebration in North Miami on Friday hosted by the city’s Vice Mayor Marie Erlande Steril.

The honorees included Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson, state Rep. Daphne Campbell, Miami-Dade County Commissioner Audrey Edmonson, and Miami Commissioner

Michelle Spence-Jones, who were honored for their work in public service.

Campbell was in Tallahassee on legislative work and an aide received her award.

Attorney Karen Andre was honored for her volunteer activities, Johnson and Wales University North Miami Campus President Loreen Chant for her service in education and Dr. Marie Etienne for her work in health and human services.

Pastor Mireille Simon was recognized for her faith-based community work, activist Lucie Tondreau for community spirit and attorney Marie Jo Toussaint for community building.

“We are here to honor the work of great women and their contribution to the community,” Steril said.

“As mothers, sisters, wives and leaders of the community, we never stop working.”

North Miami Mayor Andre Pierre, who co-hosted the celebration, agreed.

“Every woman recognized tonight has contributed to the fabric of our community. I have the distinct pleasure of recognizing them,” Pierre said.

Each honoree – many whom said it was their first time ever being honored for being a woman – received a distinguished introduction from a friend or colleague, along with a special award, during the event titled A Celebration of Women held at the Museum of Contemporary Arts, 770 N.E 125th S., North Miami.

Wilson also was presented with a key to the city by Pierre. She said her work was possible because of the many women who came before her.

“Women’s History Month is a time for us to reflect on the bedrock of the black community and the bedrock of the black community is the black woman,” Wilson said.

“Without the black woman we would not be where we are and I always like to give a shout-out to our grandmothers because, in our communities, our grandmothers are raising our children.”

Spence-Jones encouraged the crowd to live their dreams with God as their guide.

“Whatever your passion is, whatever gift God has given you, whatever purpose God has put in your life, live it out,” Spence-Jones said.

“Every single woman you see up here is driven by their passion, is driven by the purpose that God has put in their lives. When we do that and we stay on His path, we can never go wrong.”