30 Days of Women Achievement counts down to 30th annual awards


Local celebration of Women’s History Month begins Saturday March 1 with launch of “30 Days of Women of Achievement.”  Each day a special moment of women’s history – “Pearls of Women’s Achievement” – will be shared in social media and at as the awards program for outstanding Memphis and Shelby County women celebrates its 30th anniversary.

The culmination of the “30 Days” will be the 2014 Women of Achievement awards on March 30 at the Holiday Inn- University of Memphis. The third volume of WA essays will be for sale and past honorees will be invited to sign the three volumes at a book-signing party at 4 p.m. The 2014 awards and reception will begin at 5 p.m. Make reservations for $30 at

Since 1985, the Women of Achievement organization has recognized and celebrated women for Heritage, Courage, Determination, Heroism, Initiative, Steadfastness and Vision. The accomplishments of218 individual women and two groups have been celebrated and documented for their important work that changed communities, solved problems and spoke out for rights and justice.

In addition to the daily “Pearls,” we will highlight other community events celebrating Women’s History Month:

March 1st Pearl of Women’s Achievement:

As February comes to a close, so does another celebration of Black History Month. While time dedicated specifically to honoring African American history is important, two of our honorees knew that a mere month was not enough. In 1983, two sisters from North Memphis, Elaine Lee Turner and Joan Lee-Nelson, founded Heritage Tours, the first African American owned tour company in the state. Their mission: to discover, chronicle and share the past of the Midsouth’s African American community. As Joan once said, “You have nothing to hold onto without your history.” We thank these women for their contribution to Memphis and beyond. Together they are the 1990 Women of Achievement for Initiative.

March 2nd Pearl of Women’s Achievement:

According to the American Bar Association’s 2013 report, women now make up 1/3 of all lawyers in the United States. Thanks to women like 1994 honoree Veronica Coleman-Davis, women not only practice law, they found their own firms, too. Coleman-Davis founded Memphis’ first all-female law firm- Coleman, Sorak and Williams. Among other accomplishments, Coleman-Davis was appointed U.S. Attorney for West TN by President Clinton – the first woman and the first African American to hold that post in the United States. On behalf of all women, we thank Veronica Coleman for being a trailblazer in her field.

March 3rd Pearl of Women’s Achievement:

1987 Woman of Achievement for Determination, the late Willie Pearl Butler fought for justice for the poor in our community. Butler organized the local chapter of the Welfare Rights Organization, the Resident Council Association of Public Housing and the LeMoyne Gardens tenants association. She also helped found Memphis Area Legal Services. During her 68 years of life, Butler struggled to achieve for poor people the respect that all people deserve. We celebrate all women who are following in Butler’s footsteps and fighting for economic justice for all.

  • March 3, University of Memphis, “Feminist Coming Out Day,” noon in the University Center Theater, speaker and film. March for Women’s History and Feminism Fair, Alumni Mall, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.  See more events in March on the UofM campus at


  • March 6, Pat Morgan, 2005 Woman of Achievement for Courage, book launch, “The Concrete Killing Fields: One Woman’s Battle to Break the Cycle of Homelessness,” 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Booksellers of Laurelwood


  • March 13, WomenTalk about women’s history, 5:30 to 7 p.m., Memphis Area Women’s Council, 2574 Sam Cooper Blvd.


  • March 26, “Intimate Conversation with Carolyn Hardy”, 2012 Woman of Achievement  for Determination, 5:30 to 6:45 p.m., Memphis Area Women’s Council, 2574 Sam Cooper Blvd. 10 guests maximum, RSVP to



Watch for updates and additional events in email and other media. And watch for more “Pearls” every day, the 30 Days of Women of Achievement!

For more information contact Deborah Clubb, WA president, at or 901-378-3866.

Deborah M. Clubb

Executive Director

Memphis Area Women’s Council


Erase Domestic Crime Collaborative

2574 Sam Cooper Blvd., Memphis TN 38112