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Majority Leader Recognizes Outstanding Women

(Yonkers, NY) - Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Senator Shelley Mayer will hold the 2021 Women’s History Month Celebration virtually on Tuesday to recognize exceptional women from their Senate districts.

“What better way to recognize the accomplishments and achievements of women than to look to our own community, and the women who selflessly stepped up during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins. “There are so many strong women to highlight, and this year’s three awardees truly demonstrated exceptional leadership and a commitment to serving their community.”

After reviewing numerous nominees from the community, which included outstanding community organizers, activists, educators, entrepreneurs, and healthcare professionals - the Majority Leader selected: Phyllis Shelton of New Rochelle, Shih-Ying Sun of Dobbs Ferry, and Dara Gruenberg of Scarsdale.

Phyllis Shelton serves as the Director of Community Relations at New Rochelle Municipal Housing Authority (NRMHA). Shelton has been on the frontlines of the pandemic in New Rochelle, once the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020. During that time, she distributed food and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to those in need in public housing, and she performed significant outreach to ensure underserved individuals knew how to get tested for COVID-19 and how to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Shelton also helped organize a COVID-19 vaccine pop-up site in New Rochelle for seniors.

Shih-Ying Sun is the Co-Founder and a Board Member of the Westchester Association of Chinese Americans (WACA) and the Co-Founder and current President of the Greenburgh Evergreen Club (GEC) for Chinese American seniors. During the COVID-19 pandemic, under Sun’s leadership, WACA donated 7,000 face masks to nine local nonprofit organizations and nursing homes, organized a virtual Chinese New Year Celebration, and hosted GEC Zoom classes for Tai Chi, folk and ballroom dance and lectures to help seniors maintain their physical and mental health during lockdown. Sun also helped over 50 seniors schedule an appointment for the COVID-19 vaccine in Greenburgh.

Dara Gruenberg, a Scarsdale resident helped secure PPE for the Village of Scarsdale’s government, spearheaded various COVID-19 fundraising initiatives including coordinating Eileen Fisher’s donation of reusable gowns to White Plains Hospital and organized the village-wide “Chalk the Dale” event to thank local healthcare workers and first responders.

These three inspiring women will be awarded NYS Senate proclamations by Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and will be guest speakers at Tuesday’s celebration. In addition, Stewart-Cousins’ and Mayer’s 2020 nominees will be recognized with a special video tribute, since COVID-19 prevented a formal in-person event last year.

You can watch the Women’s History Month Celebration on Tuesday, March 23, from 7 to 8 p.m. livestreamed on Senator Stewart-Cousins’ Facebook page or on Zoom.

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