When I relocated to the Phoenix area after retiring from a 35-year career in corporate America, I was determined to use my time to make a difference in the lives of others. What we all know is that there are so many social justice issues to be addressed that the hardest part is deciding where to focus our limited time on this earth.
I immediately reached out to the YWCA of Metropolitan Phoenix and offered to support their work. I had previously served as Board President for the YWCA of Greater Los Angeles so I was familiar with and passionate about the mission of this organization – ELIMINATE RACISM, EMPOWER WOMEN.. I was honored to be invited to become a member of the Phoenix board, and I jumped right in to the work becoming chairperson of the Advocacy Committee. What I discovered is that there was so much that I needed to know about the politics of social justice in Arizona in order to be an effective change agent! So I set myself on a path of learning all that I could.
This year I was accepted into the Flinn-Brown Civic Leadership Academy. This has provided an amazing opportunity to learn about healthcare, immigration, criminal justice, and education inequities across our state. I have also joined the African American Women’s Giving and Empowerment Circle which is a wonderful group of women committed to giving back to our communities in a lasting and tangible way. And finally, I volunteered to be the Connection Committee Chairperson of my beloved sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha. The mission of the Connection Committee is to provide our members with programs, education, and resources to make an impact in the areas of social justice affecting voting rights, healthcare, and making sure communities of color are accurately accounted for in the upcoming 2020 Census.
All of this has been incredibly rewarding for me. What I have discovered in my short time here in Arizona, is that all of us can give some of our time and resources to make a difference in the lives of others. Everything that I have elected to do over the past year has “fed my soul” in ways that a corporate career never could. I look forward to continuing to increase my capacity to do more for our communities!