CT Gala and Awards to celebrate 100 Women of Color. ‘it’s time for them to shine’

·2 min read

A congresswoman, a media and entertainment CEO, an entrepreneur, and other past awardees will be the guest speakers for the 7th annual 100 Women of Color Gala & Awards that celebrates local community leaders from many career fields.

UConn lecturer, entrepreneur and author June Archer said he is excited about continuing to celebrate the honorees, whom he calls the “backbones and pillars of our communities.”

“It’s important to not only give them their flowers, but also lift…up those who are from their communities, so that (people) could see what they’ve been doing,” Archer said. “Even some of the unsung heroes that don’t always want recognition, don’t always want to be in the forefront.”

“They’re in the background, but it’s time for them to shine because….(if it) were not for them, we probably would not have made it through the way we did, over the past few years during this pandemic,” he said.

A change this year includes having a local focus, as Archer will have past honorees speak to the honorees of 2022.

“So, we’re super excited that we’ve made that decision to say, you know what, not that we don’t want to honor those who have doing some great things that we can bring back to our community, (as) the whole purpose was to make sure our young people got to see people from other places,” he said. “…embracing them for what they’ve done on the global stage. Now, it’s really about making sure that our young women get to see those from in our community.”

The keynote speakers include: U.S. Rep. Jahana Hayes, D-5; Francine Austin, chief executive officer of Francine Entertainment & Marketing; and Tasha Ruth, CEO of Ruth Consulting Firm, LLC.

Archer said that this year’s message for the awards and gala ceremony is perseverance, as he feels that this describes each honoree in this year’s class, as many of them had to pivot and shift, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“They had to be creative. Most of them had lost their jobs or walked away from jobs to start their own businesses,” he said. “We all know that when trying to accomplish (something) and trying to follow our dreams, no matter how big or small, we have to persevere.”

Archer noted, that “starting your own business or becoming an entrepreneur is not an easy journey.

“There are so many obstacles. There are so many roadblocks. There are so many no’s along this road…in order to get through, you got to go through. In order to go through, you’ve got to get through,” he said.

The 7th annual 100 Women of Color Gala & Awards will begin at 6 p.m. on June 24 at Simsbury Meadows, 22 Iron Horse Blvd, Simsbury. Tickets are $50 and can be bought at eventbrite.com. All the VIP tickets are currently sold out.