Dozens of seniors honored the hardworking women of southeast Queens during the Jamaica Services Program for Older Adults 43rd annual gala at Russo’s on the Bay in Howard Beach.
The Nov. 5 gala honored women who live in southeast Queens and have dedicated their lives to improving the lives of others within their community.
The honorees were York College President Dr. Marcia Keizs, Community Board 12 President Adrienne Adams, Executive Director for Cultural Collaborative Tyra Emerson and Director of Dress for Success Shandeeyaky Shabazz.
Jamaica Services Program for Older Adults Board President William Collins said the women being honored were “women who make Jamaica work.”
Borough President Melinda Katz, who attended the event, said Queens “is a great place to be. We are still at our core a borough of neighborhoods. Folks are fighting for better lives, to take care of their parents. JSPOA represents some of that great work.”
Katz said the honorees could not be thanked enough for the work they do in their respective communities.
ABC News anchorwoman Sandra Bookman, host of the Sunday afternoon show “Here and Now,” was the mistress of ceremonies.
“There is not time or space to list all of the achievements these women have accomplished,” Bookman said, who received a lifetime achievement award at the gala.
Each honoree spoke after being presented with the award.
Keizs remembers when she started her journey to the United States.
“I am delighted to be among the women who make Jamaica work. At York we are trying to fulfill the vision of its founders. As a little girl, I did not know I was started my long walk from Kingston, Jamaica to Jamaica, Queens.”
Adams, who has become a potent force in the community by fighting for resources, said she would continue to stand with her community and take on any obstacles.
Emerson, who organizes the annual JAMS festival in downtown Jamaica. She said JSPOA was important to her family, especially her 85-year old mother. “She goes to JSPOA every day of the week,” Emerson said.
The evening included a cocktail hour, dinner and dancing to old-school music such as Marcia Griffith’s “Electric Slide” and the Temptations “Beauty is only skin deep,” performed by The Brown Sounds.
Reach Reporter Sadef Ali Kully by e-mail at skull
©2015 Community News Group
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