Arizona Women’s Hall of Fame to inaugurate eight new women

The Arizona Women’s Hall of Fame (AWHF) will be inaugurating eight new women to its hall of fame.

“There’s such a tremendous legacy of women in our history and this is a really wonderful way to highlight some of that history that wasn’t always at the forefront because they were women,” AWHF Board of Directors Vice President Laura Franco French said.

Four Living Legacies and four Historical Legacies who made major contributions in community service, business, arts and the law will be added to the hall’s more than 100 women.

According to French, the organization had been inducting two living legacies per year but decided to increase it.

“We really wanted to be able to induct more women while they were alive,” French said. “It’s a lot more meaningful when you’re alive to have that kind of honor. To have your family and friends there and we wanted to make sure we could do that.”

AWHF was established by the Arizona Women’s Commission under Governor Bruce Babbitt in 1980.

According to French, AWHF is important because it allows Arizonans to “highlight our history and understand the tremendous contributions of women [during] that history.”

This year’s inductees will be honored at the Arizona Heritage Center in Tempe on May 1, 2019, between 3:00 and 5:00 pm. Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs will be the Honorary Chair of the event.

2019 Living Legacies:

  • Shelley Cohn (Arts), a leader in the Arizona Arts Community;
  • Sharon Harper (Business), President, CEO and co-founder of Plaza Companies;
  • Cindy McCain (Community Service), Board Chair of the McCain Institute, Co-Chair of the Governor’s Trafficking Council;
  • and Judge Barbara Rodriquez Mundell (Legal), first female and first Hispanic to be selected as Presiding Judge of the Maricopa County Superior Court.

2019 Historical Legacies:

  • Kate Cory (1861-1958), ethnographer, photographer and internationally recognized artist;
  • Emma Lee French (1836-1897), she established and maintained Lee’s Ferry on the Colorado River and provided medical services to northeastern rural Arizonans;
  • Guadalupe Huerta (1920-2000), a mentor to Hispanic youth and an activist who advocated and lobbied for the elderly and disabled;
  • and Rosa Lyons McKay (1881-1934), the first female legislator from Cochise County who in 1917 gained national prominence for introducing a minimum wage law for Arizona women.

For more information on the event, click here.

Emily Richardson

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