The Truth Staff
“The pandemic has not halted our celebration of women,” said Lisa McDuffie, CEO of the YWCA of Northwest Ohio during her opening remarks at last week’s 2022 Milestones: A Tribute to Women Awards.
However, while the 27th annual celebration was held as scheduled, it was not held with a live audience as in the past. This year, due to the ongoing fears over the pandemic, it was held virtually.
These honorees have impacted lives,” said Randy Oostra, president and CEO of ProMedica, a longtime sponsor of the Milestones awards.
This year’s honorees were: Jennifer Jarrett in Arts; Marsha Manahan in Business; Mary Werner in Education; Perlean Griffin in Government; Dr. Joan Duggan in Science; Robin Sulier-Charney in Social Services and Juanita Greene in Volunteerism.
Jarrett is chief operating officer of the Arts Commission of Greater Toledo and during her time there has helped greatly increase the organization’s level of funding, has helped preserve and revitalize cultural institution such as the Ohio Theatre and the Valentine Theatre, and has helped bring in diverse communities to share the cultural experiences.
“It’s an opportunity to make the arts a part of the lives of everyone in our community,” said Jarrett about her vision. She was praised by colleagues for being “the intelligent strength behind every group in which you participate.”
Manahan joined Fifth Third Bank in 1983 and is currently vice president and Senior Trust Adviser for the Northwest Ohio Region. She is a relationship manager and fiduciary advisor for trust administration and estate planning. She is also a layer and has served as president of the Toledo Bar Association and as chair of the Medical College of Ohio Foundation, the American Red Cross, the American Red Cross of Northwest Ohio, the Toledo Bar Foundation, Mercy College, St. Ursula Academy and St. Ursula Foundation.
Werner has had a 30-year career as a certified public accountant but that career took an abrupt turn in 2012 when she was recruited to serve as president of her alma mater, St. Ursula Academy.
In 2020, Werner, with the support of her Board of Trustees, instituted an official Board Committee for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as well as a Diversity Advisory Committee. She is and has been involved with numerous community organizations such as the Toledo Community Foundation. Northwest Ohio Scholarship Fund and the Bishop’s Education Council of the Diocese of Toledo.
Griffin was the longest serving Affirmative Action director in the City of Toledo’s history, having served with distinction for over 23 years. She wrote the comprehensive Affirmative Action plan which included hiring and promotional goals to correct disparities and deficiencies throughout city government; a plan approved by the Ohio Civil Rights Commission. She also wrote the City’s Sexual Harassment policy to address issues of hostile work environments.
She convinced city leaders to hold an annual women’s conference, initiated the annual Pacesetter Awards Conference to recognize individuals working for civil rights, designed the Diversity Training Manual for the City, drafted deed restrictions for homeowners in Plats in Washington Village and trained groups through the Department of Health, Education and Welfare to deal with various areas of daycare services.
Dr. Duggan’s medial practice has placed an emphasis on infectious diseases, particularly HIV. In the early stages of the HIV pandemic, Dr. Duggan saw the need for a one-stop shop approach for HIV care, especially for women and opened the Ryan White Clinic that specializes in women’s and pediatric health care, prenatal and prevention service, HIC testing, social services, counseling and other supportive services.
Sulier-Charney, ProMedica Community Liaison, has established the Toledo Help Project, a yearly program with a goal of bringing unhoused people together for family photos; the ProMedica’s Men’s Health & Wellness at the Black Barbershop to address health disparities. She has broken down barriers, working to build trust between medical providers and neighborhoods with health disparities.
Greene, a longtime banker and government department head, has in recent years been the go-to person for groups such as the Toledo Community coalition and the Black and Brown Unity Coalition.
She has also worked with the Parents Institute Advisory Board, the Toledo Lead Poisoning Prevention coalition, Toledo Firefighter Council, Toledo Police Department Chief’s Advisory Board and YWCA’s Dialogue to Change.