Press release: City Announces 2024 Women’s Achievement Award Winners

The following was sent to the Bloomingtonian:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 1, 2024

For more information, please contact:

Marissa Parr-Scott, Program Specialist, Community and Family Resources

[email protected] or 812-349-3468

Angela Van Rooy, Interim Communications Director, Office of the Mayor

[email protected] or 812-349-3406

CITY ANNOUNCES 2024 WOMEN’S ACHIEVEMENT AWARD WINNERS

Bloomington, Ind. – The City of Bloomington honors and celebrates its outstanding women during Women’s History Month by recognizing recipients of the Women’s Achievement Awards. This year’s award categories include the Woman of the Year Award, and Toby Strout Lifetime Contribution Award.

The City of Bloomington’s Commission on the Status of Women is proud to announce Marsha Lovejoy as the 2024 Woman of the Year, and Renee Bridgwaters (Hill) Carter as the 2024 Toby Strout Lifetime Contribution Award recipient. 

During the pandemic, and on top of her full time job at Cook Medical, 2024 Woman of the Year, Marsha Lovejoy, started a local chapter of I Support the Girls. I Support the Girls is an international organization that makes essential items like bras, underwear, and menstrual hygiene productions available for women and girls experiencing poverty, homelessness, domestic violence, natural disasters, or other significant challenges. In pursuit of her mission to provide local women and girls access to products that support their health, dignity, and quality of life, Marsha has worked with national brands and local donors and organizations including Indiana Recovery Alliance, Middle Way House, Richland Bean Blossom Community School Corporation, Monroe County Community School Corporation, and Pantry 279. When she’s not volunteering, Marsha is leading public relations for Cook Medical, where she is a fierce advocate and ally for new moms navigating time off, maternity benefits, and a return to work after childbirth. “Marsha has made it the norm to be a mom and an employee,” Marsha’s nominator says, “Her kids sometimes show up in Webex meetings. It’s not weird, it’s not awkward, it’s just a part of life. This makes it okay for other women to be themselves.” 

The Toby Strout Lifetime Contribution winner, Renee Bridgwaters (Hill) Carter, has demonstrated a life-long commitment to the youth of her community through her many years of service to the Banneker Community Center. Renee’s unique blend of compassion and high expectations encourage the children she serves at the Banneker After School and Summer Camp programs to reach their full potential. Her commitment to the community extends beyond the Banneker Center and into the surrounding neighborhood, where she makes each neighbor, family, and individual feel cared for and encouraged. Reflecting on her service, her colleagues at the Banneker Center said, “[Renee’s] commitment to the Banneker community, both the center and the neighborhood as a whole, has helped us to continue to flourish as a cultural hub for traditionally underserved community members.” 

These Women’s Achievement Award winners will be honored at the 2024 Women’s History Month Luncheon. The luncheon will take place on Thursday, March 28, 2024 at the Monroe Convention Center, 302 S College Ave, Bloomington. Tickets for the luncheon are available at the Buskirk Chumley Theater’s Bloom Box Office.

The National Women’s History Month theme for 2024 celebrates “Women Who Advocate for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.” The theme recognizes women throughout the country who understand that, for a positive future, we need to eliminate bias and discrimination entirely from our lives and institutions.

For more information about the luncheon, please visit the City of Bloomington’s Women’s History Month webpage. For questions, please contact [email protected] or 812-349-3468.

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