Women Officials Gather to Support Each Other, Celebrate Awardees
(Crystal A. Proxmire, Oct. 7, 2022)
Southfield, MI – The Regency Manor Banquet Center in Southfield was filled with the smiling faces of women from all over Oakland County – many of whom had not seen each other since before the pandemic – for the 2022 WONder Woman Awards.
The awards are presented by the Women Officials Network of Oakland County. The nonpartisan organization has a simple mission, to “empower women leaders of today and mentor women leaders of tomorrow.” The group brings women in public office together for networking events, educational opportunities, volunteering, and, of course, the annual awards.
This year three women were named WONder Women: Congressperson Brenda Lawrence, former State Representative Shelley Taub, and former President of the State Board of Education Kathleen Straus.
At 99 years of age, Kathleen Straus has had many years of community service. She served as a member of the State Board of Education from 1993-2016. She also served as President of the League of Women Voters of Detroit. Prior to her role in the State Board of Education, Strauss was President of Center for Creative Studies in Detroit.
Congressperson Brenda Lawrence has been serving since 2015 and is retiring at the end of 2023. Prior to Congress, Lawrence served as the Mayor of Southfield from 2001 to 2015. Before politics, Lawrence worked for the US Postal Service. She was drawn into politics starting out with the PTA, then school board.
Shelley Taub is a former State Representative who served from 2003-2006. She also served on the Oakland County Board of Commissioners from 1983 to 2002, then again from 2009-2002. She also worked as an elementary school teacher, and was a volunteer for Youth Assistance. She was unable to attend, but her son accepted the award on her behalf.
Lawrence, Taub, and Strauss join a long line of WONder Women who have worked hard to be voices for the people, and to help those around them grow and succeed. To learn more about the Women Official’s Network, visit them online at https://www.wonfoundation.net.
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