Previous Award Recipients

Champion of Diversity Awardees

Since 2000, the YWCA of Syracuse & Onondaga County has celebrated diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts across Central New York by honoring community members who are committed to advancing equity for all. These are individuals who embody and defend the values of justice, peace, dignity, and equality; actively lead or participate in programs that embrace and promote diversity and inclusion; work to support opportunities for women’s growth and leadership; and help create opportunities for persons and professionals of color.

Community members are nominated by colleagues, friends, and family. The winners are selected each spring by a nomination committee made up of local leaders and previous award recipients. The Champion of Diversity Awardees are then honored at the YWCA Day of Commitment to Eliminate Racism and Promote Diversity, as they are inducted in the Academy of Diversity Achievers.

The YWCA is proud to have honored over 400 Champions of Diversity Awardees since 2000! Congratulations to all of our previous award recipients listed below, and thank you for all you’ve done to increase equality in CNY and beyond.


Award Recipient

Employer/Organization at Time of Award

Award Year

Shawni Davis Luminary Electrical 2022
Eric Jackson Jr. Black Cub Productions 2022
Dr. Lemir Teron SUNY ESF 2022
Joseph Searles Trillium Health 2021
Paul Barone Excellus BlueCross BlueShield 2020
Alberto Bianchetti National Grid 2020
Jeffery Mangram Syracuse University 2020
Diana Perez Syracuse City School District 2020
Jim Reed Excellus BlueCross BlueShield 2020
Robert Simpson CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity 2020
Cherylene Twiggy Billue Jubilee Homes of Syracuse 2019
Deka Dancil Urban Jobs Task Force 2019
Sherry King Excellus BlueCross BlueShield 2019
Melanie Littlejohn National Grid 2019
Pamella Perry YWCA 2019
Emad Rahim Claremont Lincoln University 2019
Kitty Spinelli Joseph’s House for Women 2019
Eva Williams Van Duyn Elementary 2019
Norm Andrzejewski Operation Northern Comfort 2018
Jose Calvar Syracuse Chorale 2018
Alyssa Campbell Bond, Schoeneck & King 2018
James K Duah-Agyeman, Ph. D Syracuse University 2018
Voncile Johnson PGR Foundation, Inc. 2018
Debra Person Exodus House-3 Ministries 2018
Desiree Williams Vera House 2018
Me’Shae Brooks-Rolling Just the Basics Financial Literacy 2017
Nancy Carr Onondaga Community College 2017
Patricia Clark Syracuse City School District 2017
Lamees Galal SUNY Upstate Medical University 2017
Suzanne Galbato Bond, Schoeneck & King 2017
Cynthia Hernandez Housing Visions Unlimited 2017
Melissa Menon DARCO Manufacturing 2017
Dr. Shawn Wiemann Onondaga Community College 2017
Paul Avile’s Onondaga Community College 2016
Upnit Kaur Bhatti Bond, Schoeneck & King 2016
Rasheada Caldwell PEACE, Inc. 2016
Mark Cass Alliance of Communities Transforming Syracuse (ACTS) 2016
Sharon Contreras Syracuse City School District 2016
Sandra Eure 2016
Glenda Gross, Ph.D. Onondaga Community College 2016
Emma L. Johnston PEACE, Inc. 2016
Danielle Laraque-Arena, MD, FAAP SUNY Upstate Medical University 2016
Pete Patnode Onondaga Community College 2016
Patty Radell Interfaith Works of Central New York 2016
Denise Reid-Strachan Onondaga Community College 2016
Betsy Ross Pelrine The Caring Center for Reconciliation 2016
Gwen Sanders Interfaith Works of Central New York 2016
Fawzia Shwani Center for New Americans 2016
Jamie Sindell Onondaga Community College 2016
Azia C. Smith Lockheed Martin 2016
Adam Sudmann My Lucky Tummy 2016
Julie R. White, PhD Upstate Medical Affairs 2016
Adriana Zabala Interfaith Works of Central New York 2016
ArtRage Gallery ArtRage Gallery 2016
North Side Learning Center North Side Learning Center 2016
Haji Adan Somali Bantu Community Association 2015
Zheadric Barbra Syracuse City School District 2015
Beatrice Burse-Wooten Lockheed Martin 2015
Christopher Dambach Veterans Lawn Care 2015
Candace Edwards Huntington Learning Center 2015
Luz Encarnacion La Casita Cultural Center 2015
Preston Fagan Syracuse, Onondaga Count NAACP 2015
Mary Ann Grandinetta Upstate Medical University, Division of Student Affairs 2015
Felicia Hall YWCA Women’s Residence Program 2015
Kathe Harrington Humans of Syracuse 2015
Pam Martin-Louer Onondaga Community College 2015
Jasenko Mondom Syracuse City School District, Refugee Assistance Program 2015
Virginia Robbins Bond, Schoeneck & King 2015
Winston Skerritt Crouse Hospital 2015
Yusuf Soule Syracuse City School District and North Side Learning Center 2015
Kathryn Travalee M&T Bank 2015
Anne Tuttle Onondaga Community College 2015
David VanArsdale Onondaga Community College 2015
Jackie Warren-Moore 2015
Nicole Watts Hopeprint Inc. 2015
Marsha Weissman Center for Community Alternatives 2015
Julie White Onondaga Community College 2015
Earnestine Williams Total Care, A Today’s Options of New York Health Plan 2015
Paul Ang The Advocacy Center at Syracuse University 2014
Robin Best White Branch Library 2014
Kevin Frank Brady Faith Center 2014
Renee Gadoua Freeland Editor/Writer 2014
William Gorman Student at Nottingham High School 2014
Meaghan Greeley Vera House 2014
Catherine Green PEACE, Inc. 2014
Mozart Guerrier SUNY Upstate Medical University 2014
Laura Harshbarger Bond, Schoeneck & King 2014
Sharon Huard Upstate Medical University 2014
Selina Lazarus REACH CNY 2014
Christina Limpert, PhD Onondaga County Public Library 2014
Professor Annet O’Mara Onondaga Community College 2014
Amanda Pendock Onondaga Community College 2014
Emily Ponto Lockheed Martin 2014
Caeresa Richardson Eaton Corporation – Crouse Hinds Division 2014
Susan Savedoff Onondaga Community College 2014
Hema Sundaramurthy Lockheed Martin 2014
Lauren Townes Vera House 2014
Clifford Tsan Bond, Schoeneck & King 2014
Eunice Williams Onondaga Community College 2014
Nicki Arnett- Burke CNY Society For Human Resource Management 2013
Amy Bordynski Onondaga Case Management 2013
Chris Bowers Lockheed Martin 2013
Cathleen C. McColgin, Ph.D. Onondaga Community College 2013
Elizabeth Dailey Onondaga County Public Library 2013
Robert Daino WCNY 2013
Dr. Wynetta Devore Hiscock Legal Aid Society 2013
Cathy Dotterer Onondaga Community College 2013
Farah F. Jadran Syracuse Woman Magazine 2013
Marvin Francis Lockheed Martin 2013
LaVergne Harden YWCA Syracuse & Onondaga County 2013
Soo Hyang Jee Korean Church of Syracuse 2013
Dr. Mona Ivey-Soto SUNY Cortland-Caring Center for Reconciliation 2013
Rev. Dr. Yong Ju Jee Korean Church of Syracuse 2013
Jody L.Crawford Lockheed Martin 2013
Gina Lee-Glauser Syracuse University 2013
Pastor Twiggy M. Eure The Promised Land Church/Virtuous Solutions, Inc. 2013
Mary Meier Upstate Medical University 2013
Jolie Moran Vera House 2013
Michael O’Connor Onondaga Community College 2013
Tamara Panzironi Pulse Fitness and Zumba Studios 2013
HtooLay Paw MAMI Interpreters of Central New York 2013
Joe Scripa Onondaga Case Management 2013
Elizabeth Stewart Lockheed Martin 2013
Tashia Thomas, Esq. OnCare (Onondaga County System of Care) 2013
David Wall Onondaga County System of Care 2013
Evelyn Weisbrod MAMI Interpreters of Central New York 2013
Cheryl Wright Carrier Corporation 2013
Kevin Agee InterFaith Works of Central New York 2012
Chris Aylward The Alamont Program 2012
Dennis Baldwin InterFaith Works of Central New York 2012
Cheryl Beebe Carrier Corporation United Technologies 2012
Shobha Bhatia Syracuse University Department  of Civil And Enviromental Engineering 2012
Patricia Brecht Upstate Medical University 2012
Wendy Carl Isome Onondaga Community College/JOBSplus! 2012
Sandy Fenske Lockheed Martin 2012
Christina Granato Onondaga Community College 2012
Ariene H. Stewart The Bames Foundation 2012
Karen Harrison Onondaga Community College 2012
Barb Karper Le Moyne College 2012
Helena Lamb Vera House 2012
Theresa Lockhart Harper Member of Delta Sigma Theta 2012
Hollis Mathis City of Syracuse Department of Public works 2012
Tanya Passmore Lockheed Martin 2012
Patricia Rector Occupational Health Clinical Center 2012
Kevin Ruane Onondaga Case Management 2012
Hema Sundaramurthy Lockheed Martin 2012
Amy Thorna Onondaga County Public Library 2012
Ron Van Norstrand Fair Housing council of CNY 2012
Aly Wane Syracuse Peace Council 2012
Chris Welch InterFaith Works of Central New York 2012
Ryan Beauford Syracuse University Public Safety Department 2011
Chauncey Browen Vera House 2011
Tom Burton Onondaga Community College 2011
Hui Chen Onondaga Community College 2011
Pamela Crane Onondaga Community Public Library 2011
Marybeth Dutter Onondaga Community College 2011
Jerry Farnett Onondaga Community College 2011
Tomas K.pelis SUNY Upstate Medical University 2011
Richard M.Litz SUNY Upstate Medical University 2011
Michele Malone Lockheed Martin 2011
Theresa Pagano Partners for Learning 2011
William Redfield Trinity Episcopal Church 2011
Jackie Robinson WSTM Television 2011
Flora Rockburn Carrier Corporation United Technologies 2011
Kelly Rodoski Syracuse University 2011
Diane Stefani Lockheed Martin 2011
Katherine Teasdale -Edwards Syracuse City Schools 2011
Christine Vogelsang Syracuse City Schools 2011
Talisha wright Lockheed Martin 2011
Dr. Keith A Alford Syracuse University 2010
Maxine Boney Sidney Johnson Vocation Center 2010
Mia Burse Lockheed Martin 2010
Nancy Connery Onondaga Community College 2010
Dennis Connors Onondaga Historical Association Museum and Research Center 2010
Derrick Dorsey InterFaith Works of Central New York 2010
Rebecca F uentes American Red Cross of Central New York 2010
Diana Gerrish Lockheed Martin 2010
Esther Gray Syracuse University 2010
Dr. Eva Gregory Upstate Medical University Department  of Family Medicine 2010
Geralyn Hall Upstate Medical University 2010
Thomas H Hunter Onondaga Historical Association Museum and Research Center 2010
Gretchen Kinnell Child Care Soulutions 2010
Tanya Lin Hicks Upstate Medical University 2010
Professor Mark Muhammad Onondaga Community College 2010
Rev. Mary Ntsoaki cappa Abundant life Christian Center 2010
Duane Owens Anheuser-Busch Companies 2010
April palozzola Onondaga Community College 2010
Janet Park Onondaga County Public Library 2010
Louise Poindexter Citizen 2010
Kelly Robbins Lockheed Martin 2010
Charles Simpson Upstate Medical University 2010
Dr. David Smith Upstate Medical University 2010
Joanne Spoto Decker Onondaga County Department 2010
Marilyn Spunar Carrier Corporation 2010
Joanne Stevens Citizen 2010
Mr.Gregg Tripoli Onondaga Historical Association Museum and Research Center 2010
Mary wiles Anheuser-Busch Companies 2010
Deborah Willis American Red Cross of Central New York 2010
Sheryl Aiello Educational Consultant 2009
Lisa Alford Onondaga County Department of Aging & Youth 2009
Kathie Briggs Onondaga Community College 2009
Renate C.Dunsmore Onondaga County Public Library 2009
Nakeia Chambers SUNY Upstate Medical University 2009
Molly Corley Lockheed Martin 2009
Mayor Matthew Driscoll City of Syracuse 2009
Yvonne Fish- Kalland Onondaga Community College 2009
Patricia Floyd-Echols Syracuse City School District 2009
Sara Jo Grethlein SUNY Upstate Medical University 2009
Corey Hudson Onondaga Community College 2009
Susan Keeter SUNY Upstate Medical University 2009
Annette Krisak Onondaga Community College 2009
Gina Lee-Glauser Syracuse University 2009
Jeanne Shenandoah Onondaga Nation 2009
Barbara Spears DB & B Financial Services 2009
Mary Stronach MAMI Interpreters of Central New York 2009
Teresa Sullivan Toomey Residential & Community Services 2009
Wanda M Thompson SUNY Upstate Medical University 2009
Jaime Alicea Syracuse City School District 2008
Andrea Barnwell Community Wide Dialogue to End Racism 2008
Cornelia Brown MAMI of CNY, Inc. 2008
Jeff Brunet Upstate Medical University 2008
Bill Cross Onondaga Community College 2008
Ossie Edwards Onondaga County Public Library 2008
Ilian Galan Central New York Services 2008
Dr. Judy Hamilton Syracuse University 2008
Debra Hamilton Schoening Syracuse City School District 2008
Melody Holmes Jail Ministry 2008
Miriam Hudecheck Lockheed Martin 2008
Melanie Littlejohn National Grid 2008
Lura Lunkenheimer Peaceful Schools 2008
Lou Anne Mann Carrier Corporation 2008
Karen Mihalyi Syracuse Community Choir 2008
Mary Nelson Upstate Medical University 2008
Allison Norris Lockheed Martin 2008
Paul Pichoske HSBC Bank 2008
Virginia Polito Felleman Cazenovia College 2008
Marcia Ranieri West Genesee High School 2008
Sister Rose Ann Renna St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center 2008
Kitty Rice M&T Bank 2008
Lorenzo Rice Update Medical University 2008
Dr. Judy Rutkowski Ivey Caring Center for Reconciliation 2008
Paula Trief Upstate Medical University 2008
Gwendolyn Webber-McLeod Gwen Webber-McLeod, Consultant 2008
Kate Williams Lockheed Martin 2008
Ednita Wright Onondaga Community College 2008
Kate Artessa Displaced Homemarker Program 2007
Margaret Collins Onondaga Community College 2007
Carol Dandridge Charles Community Folk Art Center 2007
Bertha Dow Hopps Memorial CME Church 2007
Beth DuBois Onondaga Valley Church 2007
Molly Erickson Lockheed Martin 2007
Cristine Faes Lockheed Martin 2007
Bea Gonzalez Syracuse Common Council, University College 2007
Drake Harrison Onondaga Community College 2007
Nancy Larraine Hoffmann Civil Rights Connection 2007
Donna Hogan Lockheed Martin 2007
Lohaun Jackson St. Joseph’s College of Nursing 2007
Edgar Johson SUNY Upstate Medical University 2007
Karen Jordan Onondaga County Probation Department 2007
George Kilpatrick WCNY 2007
George Lawrence Onondaga County Public Library 2007
Homer Lee Davis, Jr. Citizen Review Board 2007
Oliver Liu Lockheed Martin 2007
Bridget Owens Human Rights Commission 2007
Peter Swords Onondaga Case Management 2007
Ronald Young SUNY Upstate Medical University 2007
Dennis & Sharon Young The Salvation Army of the Syracuse Area 2007
Nicole Blumin St. Joseph’s College of Nursing 2006
Sharon Brangman SUNY Upstate Medical University 2006
Robert Bridge Onondaga Community College 2006
Paul Cunningham SUNY Upstate Medical University 2006
Ardena Harvey Carrier Corporation 2006
Sandra Lane SUNY Upstate Medical University, Syracuse University 2006
Kathy Lotito Lockheed Martin 2006
Vi Marcy Onondaga Community College 2006
Travis Mason Syracuse University 2006
Charles McCarty Department of Social Services 2006
Kathy McCarty Department of Social Services 2006
Karen Norton Onondaga County Public Library 2006
Richard Olanoff Onondaga County Probation Department 2006
Fernando Ortiz, J. City of Syracuse 2006
Donna Saucier Lockheed Martin 2006
Steven Scheinman SUNY Upstate Medical University 2006
Mary Ann Shaw Syracuse University 2006
Jannie Woo SUNY Upstate Medical University 2006
Linda Wright The Salvation Army of the Syracuse Area 2006
Loretta Zolkowski POMCO 2006
Rosemary Agonito New Futures Enterprises 2005
Philip Anderson CoCard & Anderson Properties, Inc. 2005
Shawky Z.A. Badawy SUNY Upstate Medical University 2005
Cheryl Barresi Lockheed Martin 2005
Nancy Cantor Syracuse University 2005
Ronald Daloia United University Professions of Syracuse Chapter SUNY Upstate Medical University 2005
Shavel Edwards UAW Local 624 2005
Frank Fowler Syracuse City Police Department 2005
Anne Graham Excellus BlueCross BlueShield 2005
Janet Hamly Onondaga Community College 2005
Ann Heins City of Syracuse School District and Syracuse University 2005
Howard Hollander Lockheed Martin 2005
Cathy Hubbard IBEW Local 2213 2005
Jessyca Jackson Syracuse University 2005
Jacqueline Jackson-Young Oasis, SUNY Upstate Medical University 2005
Kyung Jin Park Onondaga County Public Library 2005
Kristin Kinsella Lockheed Martin 2005
Mary Lockett National Council of Negro Women, The Syracuse Section 2005
Arcenia London State Unviersity of New York at Oswego 2005
Cheryl McIntyre Lockheed Martin 2005
David Reed Cicero-North Syracuse High School 2005
Leola Rodgers SUNY Upstate Medical University 2005
Tara Ross Onondaga Community College 2005
Henry Sanchez Lockheed Martin 2005
Ann Sedore SUNY Upstate Medical University 2005
Maria Simmons Onondaga Community College 2005
Linda Smith State Unviersity of New York at Oswego 2005
Barry Wells Syracuse University 2005
Denise Williams-Harris Onondaga County, Democratic Committee Member 2005
Jan Barker Fabius-Pompey Elementary School 2004
Karen Calenzo Nottingham High School 2004
Trymeter Carter SUNY Upstate Medical University 2004
Monsignor Joseph Champlin Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception 2004
Nancy Duffy WIXT NewsChannel 9 2004
Gregory Gilroy Fleet Bank 2004
Susan Heffernan Humanitarian Organization for Multi-Cultural Experiences 2004
Patricia Higgins Onondaga Community College 2004
Johnnie Hill-March Le Moyne College 2004
Helen Hudson UAW Local 624 2004
Robert Hughes Fayetteville-Manlius High School 2004
Lynn Kaiser Bristol-Myers Squibb 2004
Kevin McClave Central New York Community Foundation 2004
Debra McClendon-Boddie JOBSplus! 2004
Debbie Miller Lockheed Martin 2004
Theresa Mohamed Onondaga Community College 2004
Robert Morris Lockheed Martin 2004
Al Oram Onondaga County Department of Social Services 2004
Linda Presley-Beauford Carrier Corporation 2004
Ruth Shirley Onondaga County Department of Social Services 2004
K. Bruce Simmons SUNY Upstate Medical University 2004
Cindy Squillace Hospice & Palliative Care Associates 2004
Nina Tamrowski Onondaga Community College 2004
Anthony Tolbert Ed Smith School 2004
Yvonne Young Syracuse City School District 2004
Janet Aaron Town of Skaneateles 2003
Dr. Emmanuel Awuah Onondaga Community College 2003
George Blakeslee SUNY Upstate Medical University 2003
Pearl Brannen IBEW Local 2213 2003
Tommie Bryant SUNY Upstate Medical University 2003
Tonya Collins JOBSplus! 2003
Pamela Daum Lockheed Martin 2003
Karen Davis Carrier Corporation 2003
Linda Ervin Jamesville-Dewitt Central Schools 2003
Monty Flynn Onondaga Community College 2003
Dr. Richard Ford Signature Band & Choir Camp, Inc. 2003
Janice Forde Ross SUNY Upstate Medical University 2003
Jennifer Green Syracuse City School District 2003
Louise Hand Verizon 2003
Sandra Jones Time Warner 2003
Francis McMillan Parks Hendricks Chapel, Syracuse University 2003
Jo Anne Bakeman JOBSplus! 2002
Arethea Brown Vera House 2002
Peter Cappuccilli, Jr. New York State Fair 2002
Al Giacchi Onondaga County Probation Department 2002
Rev. Larry Howard Hopps Memorial CME Church 2002
Denise Johnson Syracuse City School District 2002
Michelle Jones Galvin Onondaga County Department of Social Services 2002
Aggie Lane Beyond Boundaries 2002
Nancy McCarty Democratic Political Activist 2002
Kevin McSweeney Lockheed Martin 2002
Karen Patton Retired School Administrator/Artist 2002
Frederick Richardson Retired Superintendent – Cayuga Correctional Facility 2002
Sally Roesch Wagner The Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation 2002
Shirley Rowser Carrier Corporation 2002
Lysa Simmons Onondaga Community College 2002
Susan Stearns SUNY Upstate Medical University 2002
Maxine Summerhill-Thompson SUNY Upstate Medical University 2002
Wendy Thowdis Cicero-North Syracuse High School 2002
Shelly Van Dusen KeyBank 2002
Mardea Warner Beyond Boundaries 2002
Clara Woodall HSBC Bank 2002
Cindy Block Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice 2001
Beth Broadway Interreligious Council 2001
Floyd Brown SUNY Upstate Medical University 2001
Rev. Nebraski Carter Living Water Church of God in Christ 2001
E. Robert Czaplicki Onondaga County Probation Department 2001
Marilyn Diamond Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice 2001
Erin DuBois Smith Carrier Corporation 2001
Rev. Harold Garman Syracuse University Continuing Education 2001
Barbara Hamilton Delta Sigma Theta Sorority 2001
Renee Harris-Thompson Verizon 2001
Peter Hutter KeyBank 2001
Carrie Jefferson Smith Syracuse University School of Social Work 2001
Anne Messenger Messenger Associates, Inc. 2001
Annette Peters The Syracuse Newspapers 2001
Bonnie Pierce Central New York Labor-Religious Coalition 2001
Lee Joanne Ridley Ridley Electric Co., Inc. 2001
Mara Sapon-Shevin Syracuse University School of Education 2001
Walt Sheppard The Media Unit 2001
Debbie Sydow Onondaga Community College 2001
Derrick Tucker Fayetteville-Manlius High School 2001
Robert Tucker Lockheed Martin 2001
Elaine Walter Onondaga County 2001
Bonnie White Syracuse City School District 2001
Rosita Williams Fleet Bank 2001
Deluxe Corporation Diversity Team Deluxe Corporation 2001
Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation’s Diversity Facilitator Group Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation 2001
David Arrington Niagara Mohawk Corporation 2000
Fran DeKorp Fleet Bank 2000
Elizabeth Dolinsky Aetna U.S. Healthcare 2000
Gregory Eastwood SUNY Upstate Medical University 2000
Linda Hall Onondaga County / Syracuse Human Rights Commission 2000
G. Ronald Hull Lockheed Martin 2000
Colonel Robert Knauff Air National Guard 2000
Vivian Moore Onondaga Community College 2000
Rejeana Ellen Pendleton Carrier Corporation 2000
Carol Weber IAQ Technology 2000