Women in American history who overcame challenges to advance in business and labor, while mapping the road to progress for others, served as inspiration during a Women’s History Month program March 21 at the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support in Philadelphia.
Keynote speaker Rev. Dr. Elizabeth Conde-Frazier highlighted several women who “defended the social mores of their times by demonstrating women’s abilities to create organizations … that pave the way for better working conditions and wages.”
Conde-Frazier is the academic dean and vice president of education at Esperanza College of Eastern University. She spoke about activist Lucy Gonzalez Parsons’ “radical compassion” and Maggie Walker, the first woman to charter a bank in the U.S., among others.
While Barbara Franklin served as Secretary of Commerce under President George H.W. Bush, American exports increased, as did trade with China. After she highlighted those accomplishments, Conde-Frazier asked the audience to reflect on how they might follow Franklin’s map to progress.
“This woman used her talents and the sphere of influence that she gained because of her brilliance,” Conde-Frazier said. “What is your talent? What is the influence you might have that can be used to create change and open doors for others?”
The Women’s History Month program theme was “Honoring Trailblazing Women in Labor and Business.” The program culminated with an awards ceremony, in which three DLA Troop Support employees were recognized for their contributions to the advancement of women.
“Today we honor some of our colleagues for blazing a trail for others to follow as exemplary models of public service and government leadership,” Richard Ellis, Troop Support deputy commander, said.
The ‘Woman of the Year’ awardees in their respective categories were:
Barbara Koons, Procurement Process Support, non-supervisor female employee in grades GS-9 and below
Tanya Lawrence, Clothing and Textiles, non-supervisory female employee in grade GS-11 and above
Lisa Marie Vivino, Clothing and Textiles, supervisor/manager of the year
“Women at all levels and in all offices throughout Troop Support have, and continue to make, significant contributions resulting in superior warfighter support,” Ellis said.
The Troop Support Equal Employment Opportunity Advisory Committee hosted the program.