LOCAL Muskegon’s Women of Accomplishment Award

We are proud to announce this year’s 21st annual Women of Accomplishment award goes to Shirley Green, Jenny Hart Locke and Patricia Pickens.

Shirley Green was nominated by Nancy Bierenga. According to Nancy, “Shirley is the neighbor we all want. She sets an example of true servant leadership for many of the youth and adults who are blessed to have Shirley in their life. From her many years of involvement with the Lakeside Neighborhood Association to the Lakeside District Association, to organizing the neighbors and firemen to distribute holiday food baskets for the shut-ins, Shirley can be found working to make life better for everyone else. She may be leading the Halloween Parade, organizing the pumpkin roll or Easter Egg Hunt, or selling water and snacks at the concert in McGraft Park. And along with her, Shirley brings an army of children – her grandchildren and their friends. She mentors those children, modeling what it means to leave the world a better place than you found it. There are women in our community who make more of a splash with their actions, but no one who works more tirelessly, or who is more willing to do the behind-the-scenes (and sometimes dirty) work of improving our community for all of us. Whatever she does, Shirley does with all her heart.”

Jenny Hart Locke was nominated by Dakota Crow and the staff at the Boys & Girls Club of the Muskegon Lakeshore. They wrote, “Jenny is a spectacular mother to her young daughter, Kenzie, and to her other daughter who is on the Dean’s List at Hope College. Her role modeling extends beyond her daughters. She regularly visits the Boys and Girls Club to interact with the youth and provides meals to all members in need. She is a constant advocate for Muskegon’s youth. Jenny has a gift for hospitality and is actively involved in events for both Muskegon Catholic Central and the Boys & Girls Club. In addition, she is an active member of Women Who Care, Muskegon, and recently gave a presentation about the Boys & Girls Club to that group. She moved attendees to tears, especially due to her obvious passion for these youth. Jenny has been a dynamic advocate for the youth of Muskegon County, first as a volunteer at the Boys & Girls Club, then as co-host of their first Gala, hosting other fundraising events, and passionately sharing their mission and her vision with anyone she contacts. Jenny is a team member with undeniable tenacity and delight. She is integral in our ability to inspire and equip all youth, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive and caring citizens.”

Nominated by her seven children, nineteen grandchildren, and ten great-grandchildren, Patricia Pickens’ accomplishments are described as follows: Patricia was born on January 21 in New Castle, Alabama and raised in Muskegon. She retired from the State of Michigan in 1999, where she’d served for 30 years. In 1990 she continued her education and received her Certificate of Achievement in Dietary Management from Auburn University. During the 1960s and 1970s, Patricia was a den mother for Boy Scouts in Muskegon Heights. She was faithfully involved in the PTA at Marquette School and taught a Purity Class via Mt. Zion Church of God in Christ. She was also a mentor to her friends and co-workers at Doo Drop Inn during that time. She was founder of Mt. Zion’s Valentine’s Tea Fundraiser. From the time she became an adult to the present, Patricia has mentored hundreds of children and teens. Young adults and children have seen her home as a safe haven. Young parents seek out Patricia’s wisdom and guidance for parenting. She currently serves as a “Church Mother”, providing spiritual guidance to all that seek her counsel. Through all that work with others in the community, Sherri Jones, Patricia’s daughter who wrote the nomination, says, she “has been an amazing Mother”.

Some of the previous recipients of this noted award were: Judy Kell, Debra Griffen, Jackie Hilt, Claudia Kerr-Bryant, Jenny McNeill, Kristy Weberg, Dolores Brondyke, Sarah Rinsema-Sybenga, Deborah Roest, Janet Day, Mary Jane Butner, Melanie Parsons, Camille Gabris, Dr. Carol Thompson, Shirley Franks, Jeanette Grim, Eloise Selleck, Patricia Stressman, Martha Bottomley and Susan Harrison Wolffis. In all there have been over a hundred women to be honored with this award. The names can all be found on the wall at the Greater Muskegon Woman’s Club in their Women’s Hall of Fame in the Tea Room on the second floor of the club building at 280 W. Webster in downtown Muskegon.

This year’s event will be held on March 25 at 9AM at the Greater Muskegon Woman’s Club, 280 W Webster Ave. in downtown Muskegon. This year’s speaker will be Claudia Kerr-Bryant. The brunch will be catered by Harris Catering.

Reservation forms for the breakfast are available at the Muskegon Area Chamber of Commerce and on the GMWC website, www.MuskegonWomansClub.org Sorry – no
walk-ins on the day of the event – RSVP deadline is March 15.

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