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23rd Annual National Women of Color Day Awards Nominations: January 22

December 15, 2009, Volume 56, No. 15


The Women of Color Awards are given in recognition of individuals who have conscientiously endeavored to increase respect for women of color at Penn, University of Pennsylvania Health Systems, Presbyterian, Pennsylvania Hospitals and the Delaware Valley community. Annually, awards are given in four categories: faculty/staff, graduate and/or professional student, undergraduate student and community member (new award).

Award Criteria:

Nominees must be affiliated with University of Pennsylvania Health Systems, Presbyterian or Pennsylvania Hospital, the local Philadelphia area and have demonstrated:

• Outstanding leadership

• Distinguished service

• Positive impact on the community

• Commitment to enhancing quality of life for and/or serving as a role model for women of color

Helen O. Dickens Lifetime Achievement Award

The Dr. Helen Octavia Dickens Lifetime Achievement Award is named in honor of the late Dr. Helen Octavia Dickens, its first  recipient. In 1991, Dr. Dickens was nominated for an award of  merit, but it quickly became apparent that Dr. Dickens was no mere candidate. From her early childhood, Dr. Dickens was fascinated by the  miracle of birth. She overcame racism, sexism and rejection to enter  the field of gynecology and obstetrics back in the 1930s. She became  one of the first African-American women to graduate medical school at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Dr. Dickens headed the OB/GYN department at Mercy Douglas Hospital and University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Dickens pioneered the development of teen pregnancy and medical minority affairs programs. She maintained her practice, continued to teach, recruit students and worked tirelessly to increase the presence and permanence of women of color at Penn. Her contributions toward the enhancement of the Philadelphia community spanned a period of over 50 years.

Criteria for Nominee:

• Have no less than 25 years of service with the University of Pennsylvania, University of Pennsylvania Health Systems, Presbyterian, Pennsylvania Hospital or the local community.

• Have worked to increase the presence and permanence of women of color at the above institutions or in the community.

• Candidate should stand out in their field.

• Have innovative approaches to service.

• Show community service activities; including but not limited to:

-having a significant impact on the community

-having a passion for sharing of self with others

• Paragraph of examples of the nominee’s accomplishments that span 25 years should be included.

• As supporting data, please include a resume or CV.

Nomination forms may be obtained on the web at: www.upenn.edu/aarc/WOCAP/awards.html and must be submitted by January 22, 2010. Forms are also available at the African American Resource Center (AARC). Return forms to AARC, c/o WOCAP Nomination, 3537 Locust Walk, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6225.


Almanac - December 15, 2009, Volume 56, No. 15