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Buffalo: Mayor Brown holds 'virtual' Women's History Month celebration


Tue, Mar 30th 2021 04:40 pm

Celebration honors 14 women who hold leadership positions in city government

Mayor Bryon Brown on Monday marked Women’s History Month 2021 with a virtual celebration that honored 14 women who hold leadership positions in his administration.

“As mayor, I’ve continued to hire, develop and promote women in leadership and staff positions. Today, I’m pleased to honor 14 amazing women who not only help me lead Buffalo in a direction of diversity, inclusion and opportunity for all, but also work tirelessly on behalf of every resident of this great city,” he said. “I would also like to thank all of the women in my administration for their hard work and dedication each and every day.”‚Äč

The mayor said that, under the extraordinary challenges the pandemic placed on city government, each of the honorees rose above and beyond their traditional duties to help develop creative and innovative strategies to ensure the uninterrupted delivery of services across Buffalo.

The 2021 honorees are:

  • Deputy Mayor/Chief of Staff Betsey Ball
  • Buffalo Police Capt. Amber Beyer
  • Jessica Brown, director of administration and finance
  • Cavette Chambers, senior deputy corporation counsel
  • Shatorah Donovan, chief diversity officer
  • Nicole Drye, deputy commissioner of community services and recreational programming
  • Donna Estrich, commissioner of administration, finance, policy and urban affairs
  • Deputy Mayor Ellen Grant
  • Gladys “G.G.” Herndon-Hill, commissioner of human resources
  • Buffalo Police Chief Dawn Kent
  • Deputy Police Commissioner of Administration Barbara Lark
  • Jessica Lazarin, director, Office of New Americans
  • Lorey Schultz, deputy director, mayor’s office of communications
  • Antoinette Palmer, director, division of compensation and benefits

In in his Women’s History Month remarks, Brown said the national observance gives all Americans an opportunity to acknowledge the incredible achievements and wonderful contributions women have made to this country, local communities, and to each of their lives.

“As we look back, from the women who picked cotton to help build this country, to those who have served in the military and continue to serve – women have always been instrumental to our nation’s success,” he said. From Rosa Parks to Katherine Johnson – the NASA mathematician who just this February had a spacecraft named after her – to our newly elected Vice President Kamala Harris, to the thousands of women who strive and struggle every day for a better life, we celebrate you. This is also a time to recognize our grandmothers, mothers, mothers-in-law, aunts, wives, sisters and sisters-in-law who have such an enduring impact on who we are.”

Brown also noted a quote by Harris as inspiration for all women and girls as they strive to be their best selves: “Dream with ambition, lead with conviction, and see yourself in a way that others might not see you, simply because they’ve never seen it before. And we will applaud you every step of the way.”

Ch. 2 News Anchor/Reporter Heather Ly served as emcee for this year’s Women’s History Month Celebration. The Rev. Rachelle Robinson of New Covenant Baptist Church gave the invocation. City of Buffalo Poet Laureate Jillian Hanesworth presented an original reading and concert violinist Amirah Muhammed was the musical guest.

The virtual ceremony debuted on the Mayor’s Facebook page, the City of Buffalo YouTube channel, and Government Channel 1304. It is available for viewing at any time on the city’s YouTube Channel. To subscribe free of charge, visit www.buffalony.gov/subscribe.

The mayor’s Facebook page can be found at facebook.com/MayorByronBrown.

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