Florida Women's Hall of Fame

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Zora Neale Hurston beating a Haitian tambour maman or mama drum

The Florida Women's Hall of Fame is an honor roll of women who have contributed to life for citizens of Florida. An awards ceremony for the hall of fame was first held in 1982 and recipient names are displayed in the Florida State Capitol. The program was created by an act of the Florida Legislature and is overseen by the Florida Commission on the Status of Women (FCSW), a nonpartisan board created in 1991 to study and "make recommendations to the Governor, Cabinet and Legislature on issues affecting women". The FCSW also manages the Florida Achievement Award for those who have improved the lives of women and girls in Florida, an award is focused on outstanding volunteerism. FCSW members serve by appointment and the commission is housed at the Office of the Attorney General of Florida.[1]

History[edit]

President John F. Kennedy set up the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women (PCSW) in 1961, and in 1964 Florida Governor Farris Bryant created the Governor's Commission on the Status of Women (COSW) "to study laws and regulations pertaining to women in Florida and make recommendations to the legislature based on their findings." The Florida Women's Hall of Fame was enacted by the state legislature. Florida Statutes, Title XVIII Public Lands and Property, Chapter 265 Memorials, Museums and Arts and Culture, section 265.001 Florida Women's Hall of Fame, sets the parameters within which the hall of fame operates.[2] In 1982, the first Florida Women's Hall of Fame ceremony and reception was held by COSW at the Florida Governor's Mansion in Tallahassee.[3][4]

Overview[edit]

The purpose of the Florida Women's Hall of Fame, according to the intention expressed in the actual Florida Statute, is "to recognize and honor those women who, through their works and lives, have made significant contributions to the improvement of life for women and for all citizens of Florida".[5]

Each year, women from Florida, or who have adopted it as their home state, are nominated for induction. The governor of Florida decides on the final three nominees from a shortlist of ten nominees.[6] The rotunda of the Florida State Capitol building has a permanent display of photos of Florida Women's Hall of Fame inductees.[7]

Several other states have a Hall of Fame for notable women, including Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Maryland, Ohio and Texas.[8] The United States' National Women's Hall of Fame is based in Seneca Falls, New York.

Florida Women's Hall of Fame Inductees[edit]

Florida Women's Hall of Fame
Name Image Birth–Death Year Area of achievement
Ruth H. Alexander (1938–) 2011–2012 Established the "Lady Gator Athletic" program[9]
Elizabeth "Budd" Bell (1915–2009) 2011–2012 Social worker[10]
Susan Benton 2013–2014 Sheriff of Highlands County, Florida and 2013 President of the Florida Sheriff’s Association. Benton was the first female sheriff elected in a general election in Florida history.[11]
Louise Jones Gopher 2013–2014 First woman from the Seminole Tribe of Florida to earn a college degree.[11]
Dottie Berger MacKinnon 2013–2014 Founder of Joshua House, advocate for women and children[11]
Vicki Bryant Burke (1953–) 2011–2012 Social worker, juvenile justice system[12]
Mary Brennan Karl (1890–1948) 2010–2011 Education pioneer whose efforts were a foundation of what later became Daytona Beach Junior College.[13]
Anna I. Rodriguez (1957–) 2010–2011 Founder Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking[14]
Eugenie Clark (1922–) 2009–2010 Ichthyologist[15]
Claudine Dianne Ryce (1943–2009) 2009–2010 Advocate for missing children[16]
Dara Grace Torres Dara Torres 2crop.jpg (1961–) 2009–2010 Olympic gold-silver-bronze medalist swimmer[17]
Louise H. Cortelis (1932–) 2008–2009 Philanthropist[18]
Gwen Margolis Gwen Margolis.jpeg (1934–) 2008–2009 Member Florida Senate[19]
Betty Schlesinger Sembler (1931–) 2008–2009 Anti-drug activist and wife of Ambassadress Mel Sembler, with whom she co-founded the drug treatment program Straight, Incorporated [20]
Barbara J. Pariente Barbara Pariente.jpg (1948–) 2007–2008 Former Chief Justice Florida Supreme Court[21]
Pallavi Patel (1950–) 2007–2008 Pediatrician, philanthropist who with her husband co-founded Carousel Elephants, the Patel Foundation for Global Understanding[22]
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen Ileana Ros-Lehtinen Congressional Portrait.jpg (1952–) 2007–2008 U.S. Representative
House Committee on Foreign Affairs[23]
Maryly VanLeer Peck (1930–2011) 2006–2007 President of Polk Community College 1982–1997[24]
Peggy A. Quince PQuince.jpg (1948–) 2006–2007 Justice and former Chief Justice Supreme Court of Florida[25]
Caridad Asensio (1931–2011) 2005–2006 Farm worker advocate, founder Caridad Asensio Health Clinic, providing free health care for farm workers[26]
Tillie Kidd Fowler TillieKFowler.jpg (1942–2005) 2005–2006 United States House of Representatives[27]
Lucy W. Morgan (1940–) 2005–2006 Journalist[28]
Shirley D. Coletti (1935–) 2004–2005 Co-founder substance abuse program Operation PAR, Inc[29]
Judith Kersey (1943–) 2004–2005 Scientist worked as an engineer in America's space program[30]
Marion P. Hammer (1939–) 2004–2005 First female President National Rifle Association[31]
Sarah Ann Blocker (1857–1944) 2003 co-founder of Florida Memorial College[32]
Gloria Estefan Gloria Estefan 2009 White House.jpg (1957–) 2003 Entertainer[33]
Mary R. Grizzle (1921–2006 2003 Legislator, advocate of the Equal Rights Amendment, who served in both houses of the Florida state legislature. At the end of her career as a representative, she was the longest-serving member of the legislature. She helped pass bills on waste water clean-up and on married women attaining full property rights without a husband's permission.[34]
Victoria Joyce Ely (1889–1979) 2002 First licensed midwife in Florida, and served in the Army Nurse Corps during World War I; a pioneer in Florida nursing care [35]
Toni Jennings Toni Jennings2.jpg (1949–) 2002 16th (and first female) Lieutenant Governor of Florida[36]
Frances Langford Stuart Frances Langford in This Is The Army.jpg (1913–2005) 2002 Entertainer [37]
Jessie Ball duPont Jessiedupont.jpg (1884–1970) 2001 Philanthropist[38]
Lenore Carrero Nesbitt (1932–2001) 2001 Nominated by President Ronald Reagan to a Federal judgeship[39]
Lynda Keever (1947–) 2001 Publisher, CEO Florida Trend Magazine [40]
Chris Evert Chris Evert.jpg (1954–) 2000 Tennis pro[41]
Paula Fickes Hawkins Hawkins, Paula.jpg (1927–2003) 2000 First Florida female elected to the United States Senate[42]
Marianne Mathewson-Chapman (1948–) 2000 First woman in the Army National Guard to attain rank of Major General.[43]
Althea Gibson Althea Gibson NYWTS.jpg (1927–2003) 1999 Champion tennis player as a pioneering African-American in the sport[44]
Sister Jeanne O'Laughlin (1929–) 1999 First president of Barry University[45]
Dessie Smith Prescott (1906–2002) 1999 First licensed female pilot in Florida, served in the Women's Army Corps in World War II, first female professional guide in Florida[46]
Helen Gordon Davis (1926–) 1998 Florida state legislator, social activist[47]
Mattie Belle Davis Mattie Belle Davis.jpg (1910–2004) 1998 Jurist who helped establish the Florida Association of Women Lawyers[48]
Christine Fulwylie-Bankston (1916–1998) 1998 Poet, social activist, civil rights[49]
Alicia Baro (1918–2012) 1997 Social and political activist[50]
Carita Doggett Corse (1891–1978) 1997 Florida director of Federal Writers' Project[51]
M. Athalie Range M Athalie Range.jpg (1916–2006) 1997 Political activist, first African-American and second woman elected to the Miami City Council[52]
Marjorie Harris Carr Marjorie Harris Carr.jpg (1915–1998) 1996 Conservationist[53]
Betty Castor Betty Castor.jpg (1941–) 1996 Former president USF, member J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board[54]
Ivy Julia Cromartie Stranahan (1881–1971) 1996 Women's suffrage, social activist, environmental activist, helped Seminole tribe move to the Dania reservation[55]
Evelyn Stocking Crosslin (1919–1991) 1995 Physician[56]
JoAnn Hardin Morgan JoAnn Hardin Morgan.jpg (1940–) 1995 First female engineer at NASA, first woman senior executive at Kennedy Space Center[57]
Sarah Brooks Pryor (1877–1972) 1995 Civic activist, historic preservationist, known affectionately as "Aunt Frances"[58]
Nikki Beare (1928–) 1994 Political and social activist, supported the Equal Rights Amendment[59]
Betty Mae Tiger Jumper Betty Mae Tiger Jumper.jpg (1923–2011) 1994 First female chief Seminole Tribe of Florida[60]
Gladys Nichols Milton (1924–1999) 1994 Advocated midwives be recognized as medical practitioners[61]
Betty Skelton Frankman Erde Betty Skelton Frankman (later Erde).jpg (1926–2011) 1993 Aerobatics championship aviator[62]
Paulina Pedroso (1845–1925) 1993 Activist in the Cuban War of Independence[63]
Janet Reno Janet Reno-us-Portrait.jpg (1941–) 1993 former Attorney General of the United States[64]
Jacqueline Cochran Jacqueline Cochran 1943.jpg (1910–1980) 1992 Aviator[65]
Carrie P. Meek Carrie P. Meek.jpg (1926–) 1992 United States House of Representatives[66]
Ruth Bryan Owen Ruth Bryan Owen.jpg (1885–1954) 1992 Florida's first female in the U.S. Congress, U.S. Ambassador to Denmark, appointed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, daughter of William Jennings Bryan.[67]
Annie Ackerman (1914–1989) 1986 Political activist[68]
Rosemary Barkett Rosemary Barkett.jpg (1939–) 1986 Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals, appointed by President Bill Clinton[69]
Gwendolyn Sawyer Cherry (1923–1979) 1986 Lawyer and legislator who introduced into the legislature the Equal Rights Amendment, Martin Luther King state holiday[70]
Dorothy Dodd (1902–1994) 1986 Florida state archivist and state librarian[71]
Marjory Stoneman Douglas Marjory S Douglas Friends photo.jpg (1890–1998) 1986 Everglades preservationist[72]
Elsie Jones Hare (1903–1985) 1986 Educator[73]
Elizabeth McCullough Johnson (1909–1973) 1986 Florida state Senate[74]
Frances Bartlett Kinne 1986 Educator, academic[75]
Arva Moore Parks McCabe (1939–) 1986 Author, filmmaker[76]
Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings.jpg (1896–1953) 1986 Author, won the Pulitzer Prize for The Yearling.[77]
Florence Barbara Seibert Florence Barbara Seibert (1897-1991).jpg (1897–1991) 1986 Biochemist, inventor of the standard tuberculosis test[78]
Marilyn K. Smith (1936–1985) 1986 Volunteerism[79]
Lillie Pierce Voss (1876–) 2012–2013 Writer and early pioneer; interacted with the Seminole Indians as a child, earning the nickname "Sweetheart of the Barefoot Mailmen"
Eartha M. M. White (1876–1974) 1986 Humanitarian and educator who founded the Clara White Mission and the artha M.M. White Nursing Home[80]
Roxcy O'Neal Bolton Roxcy Bolton with Eleanor Roosevelt.jpg (1926–) 1984 Feminist, women's rights, founder Florida National Organization for Women[81]
Clara C. Frye (1872–1936) 2012–2013 African American nurse in Tampa, Florida who established the Clara Frye Hospital
Barbara Landstreet Frye (1922–1982) 1984 Capitol Bureau Chief for United Press International[82]
Lena B. Smithers Hughes (1910–1987) 1984 Developed the Valencia orange[83]
Zora Neale Hurston Hurston-Zora-Neale-LOC.jpg (1891–1960) 1984 Folklorist, anthropologist, and author [84]
Aleene Pridgen Kidd MacKenzie 2012–2013 Assistant Director of Development at Florida State University, first Chair of the Governor’s Commission on the Status of Women
Sybil Collins Mobley (1925–) 1984 Dean of the School of Business and Industry at Florida A&M University[85]
Helen Muir (1911–) 1984 Journalist, author of books on Florida[86]
Gladys Pumariega Soler (1930–1993) 1984 Pediatrician[87]
Julia DeForest Sturtevant Tuttle Julia DeForest Tuttle.jpg (1848–1898) 1984 Business woman, land owner of what became Miami, Florida[88]
Mary McLeod Bethune Bethune42h.jpg (1875–1955) 1982 Civil rights leader[89]
Helene S. Coleman (1925–) 1982 President of the National Council of Jewish Women[90]
Elaine Gordon (1931–2000) 1982 Legislator[91]
Wilhelmina Celeste Goehring Harvey (1912–2005) 1982 Mayor of Key West, Florida[92]
Paula Mae Milton (1939–1980) 1982 Creative arts civic leader[93]
Barbara Jo Palmer (1948–) 1982 Advocate for women in sports[94]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]