Alma Randolph, the latest award recipient honoring the accomplishments of local women, hopes she serves as an inspiration for young girls.
Randolph received the 2020 ATHENA Award during a luncheon on Thursday. It’s given to women who champion women’s issues, devote time to the community and demonstrate excellence at work.
Randolph said she was “beyond elated” to win the award, but credited numerous people for having an impact on her life. “This moment is so much bigger than me,” she said. “It’s for my cousins in attendance today who support me through this journey called life. … It’s for my special friends who stand beside me and hold me up when I need it the most.”
Randolph gave her remarks to about 600 people gathered at the Owensboro Convention Center. She founded the Alma Randolph Charitable Foundation in 1993, which has bought clothing and shoes for more than 16,000 disadvantaged children and raised more than $1.2 million since its inception.
Randolph previously served as a Beaver Dam city commissioner and is the first African-American and woman to hold elected office in Ohio County. She also serves on the Kentucky Human Rights Commission and is the owner of Higher Ground Consulting, LLC, a business designed to work with employers on providing in-house Equal Employment Opportunity Diversity & Sensitivity training for management and non-management staff.
“My prayer is that as a result of me being selected this year’s recipient, one of the little girls will be inspired by my story and as a result, she will stand here some day to receive her ATHENA Award and she will say, ‘this moment is so much bigger than me,’ ” Randolph said.
Olive Burroughs received the Legacy Award, which is a posthumous award given to women trailblazers. In 1995 Burroughs was the first African-American woman elected to the Owensboro City Commission. She helped develop the Neighborhood Alliances and the Owensboro Youth Council.
Girls Inc. and the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce are the ATHENA Award contributors. Throughout the luncheon, numerous people associated with Girls Inc., a non-profit organization that inspires and empowers girls, gave testimony about how the institution helped them. The organization offers mentoring and life skills instruction, among other services.
“Girls Inc. has opened my eyes to an endless stretch of opportunities. If it was not for Girls Inc., I would not be standing here today giving a speech in front of all of you,” said Kaliyah Green, a 14-year-old freshman at Owensboro High School.
by Trey Crumbie, Messenger-Inquirer