Heroines given honors at community event in St. Albans

City Councilman Leroy Comrie (far r.) honors the Rev. Tracey Whittaby Johnson (fourth from l.) for her service to the community at the Unsung Heroines event. Photo by Steve Mosco
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In celebration of Women’s History Month, City Councilman Leroy Comrie (D-St. Albans) honored more than a dozen women for their community contributions at the Robert Ross Johnson Family Life Center in St. Albans Saturday.

The Unsung Heroines gathering attracted close to 100 guests, who ate and laughed with one another before the councilman presented the honorees with proclamations documenting their tireless efforts to improve the lives of their neighbors across the borough.

“Every year it is a pleasure to take this opportunity to recognize outstanding women who have given so much of their time and talent to the community, helping to ensure Queens remains the best borough in the city,” Comrie said at the seventh annual event. “All of these women have given us the opportunity to make our communities a little better.”

Comrie honored 16 women in total, including Gaye Anderson, community affairs site developer manager for Healthfirst; June Bunch, 33rd state Assembly District leader; Jacqueline Grace Boyce, 29th Assembly District leader; Latasha Smith-Bondswell, CEO of Occasions Banquet and Catering Hall; Beverly Bazil Edge, founder and teacher at The Edge School of the Arts; Gular Hamilton Glover, a minister at the United Church of Christ; Jolander Headly, vice president of Willis Global Energy; Moira Jack, president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. Queens Alumnae Chapter; and Queens Parks Commissioner Dorothy Lewandowski.

“It’s an honor to be recognized by Councilman Comrie as an Unsung Heroine,” said Lewandowski. “As women, we know a lot about birth and renewal and it is fitting that Women’s History Month arrives as spring does at a time of renewal.”

Also honored were Tracey Whittaby Johnson, minister at Holiness Central; Chantal Legros, president and CEO of Southern Queens Park Association; Monica Sanchez, CEO of Miss Caricom Organization; Patricia Thomas, president of Thomas Coaching Co. Inc.; Jenine Taylor, manager in the international finance, reporting and analysis group at MTV Networks; Valencia Robinson-Williams, a resident nurse and co-owner of Thomasina’s Catering Hall; and Cheryl Wills, a journalist, author and NY1 anchor.

Comrie praised each woman individually with a lengthy list of accomplishments and accolades. The councilman joked that the sheer number of honorees made it nearly impossible for him to cite every achievement under the honorees’ belts, but he said the collective deeds of the group display how important women are to their respective communities.

“These women are great examples of how a small group of people can make a big difference,” he said. “Whether it is through the law, creating a nonprofit or working in government, these women are true role models to others.”

Reach reporter Steve Mosco by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4546.

Posted 12:23 am, March 22, 2013
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