UW–Madison Outstanding Women of Color Awards

The annual Outstanding Women of Color Awards acknowledge and honor women of color among UW–Madison’s faculty, staff, students (undergraduate or post-baccalaureate) and in the greater Madison community who have made outstanding contributions in one or more of the following areas:

  • Social justice, activism and advocacy on behalf of disadvantaged, marginalized populations;
  • Community service;
  • Scholarly research, writing, speaking and/or teaching on race, ethnicity, and indigeneity in U.S. society, and;
  • Community building on- or off-campus, to create an inclusive and respectful environment for all.

UW–Madison established the award in 2007 following in the footsteps of the UW System, which launched the Outstanding Women of Color in Education Awards in 1994.

Awards Reception

The 14th cohort of awardees will be honored at a reception on March 3, 2022, from 5–7:30 p.m. in the Pyle Center.

Learn More

Past Honorees

  • Shenikqua Bouges, M.D., Advanced Geriatric Fellow, School of Medicine and Public Health/Division of Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Mary Muse, R.N., M.S.N., State Director of Nursing, Wisconsin Department of Corrections, Certified Correctional Health Professional (CCHP)-RN, CCHP-Advanced
  • Jessica Perez-Chavez, Doctoral Candidate, Counseling Psychology, School of Education
  • Leslie Petty, Ed.D., Assistant Dean of Evening, Executive, & Professional MBA Programs, Wisconsin School of Business
  • Sami Schalk, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Gender & Women’s Studies, College of Letters and Science
  • Monica White, Ph.D., Professor, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, Community and Environmental Sociology, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Watch: 2020-21 UW–Madison Outstanding Women of Color Awards

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2020-21

  • Desiree Bates, Computational Chemistry Leader, Chemistry, College of Letters & Science
  • Shiva Bidar-Sielaff, UW Health Chief Diversity Officer, Madison District 5 City Alder
  • Gina Green-Harris, Director, Center for Community Engagement & Health Partnerships, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Eden Inoway-Ronnie, Chief of Staff, UW–Madison Office of the Provost
  • Laura Minero-Meza, Doctoral Student, Counseling Psychology, School of Education and 2019-2020 Internship at Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior, UC-Los Angeles
  • Ahna Skop, Professor, Genetics, College of Agricultural & Life Sciences
  • Jasmine Zapata, Assistant Professor (CHS), Pediatrics, School of Medicine & Public Health and Centennial Scholar, UW Institute for Clinical & Translational Research.

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2019-20

  • Bianca Baldridge, Assistant Professor, Educational Policy Studies, School of Education
  • Mariela Victoria Quesada Centeno, Graduate Student, Human Development & Family Studies, School of Human Ecology; Director, Wellness Program, Centro Hispano
  • Jennifer Young Choe Edgoose, Associate Professor (CHS), Family Medicine & Community Health, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Melissa Metoxen, Academic Support Coordinator for the Native American Center for Health Professions, School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Cherene Sherrard Johnson, Professor of English, College of Letters and Science

Photos: Outstanding Women of Color Awards 2018-19

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2018-19

  • Christy Clark-Pujara, Associate Professor of History, Department of Afro-American Studies.
  • Taucia Gonzalez, Assistant Professor of Special Education, Department of Rehabilitation Psychology and Special Education
  • Beverly Hutcherson, Outreach and Communications Manager, Diversity and Inclusion and Career Pathways Coordinator at the School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Helen Lee, Assistant Professor of Glass, Department of Art
  • Barbara Nichols, Former Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing
  • Brianna Young, current senior, UW–Madison School of Nursing

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2017-18

  • Fabu Phillis Carter, Poet, Scholar, Teaching Artist, and Outreach Specialist, Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center
  • Joan Fujimura, Professor, Department of Sociology; Holtz Center for Research on Science and Technology
  • Binnu Palta Hill, Assistant Dean and Director of Diversity and Inclusion, Wisconsin School of Business
  • Sagashus Levingston, Tutor, Mentor, Volunteer Teacher, Lead Instructor, The Odyssey Project
  • Denise Thomas, Coordinator of Title VII American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), Madison Metropolitan School District; Financial Specialist for the WiscAMP Program in the College of Engineering
  • Julissa Ventura, Fellow of the Morgridge Center for Public Service Community-University Exchange-South Madison, and PhD Candidate in Educational Policy Studies

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2016-17

  • M Adams, Co-Executive Director of Freedom, Inc., UW–Madison Alumna
  • Joselyn Diaz-Valdes, Senior Advisor, Office of Student Financial Aid
  • Heather Johnson, Assistant Professor, Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Department of Medicine in the School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Lori Kido Lopez, Assistant Professor of Media and Cultural Studies, Department of Communication Arts, College of Letters & Science
  • Esmeralda Rodriguez, Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Curriculum & Instruction, School of Education
  • Emilie Songolo, Senior Academic Librarian, Memorial Library, General Library System
  • Earlise Ward, Associate Professor, School of Nursing; also Health Equity Leadership Institute (HELI) in the School of Medicine and Public Health’s Institute for Clinical and Translational Research

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2015-16

  • Angela Byars-Winston, Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Ruttanatip (Dang) Chonwerawong, Assistant Dean, Student Diversity Programs, School of Education
  • Marla Delgado-Guerrero, PhD Candidate, Department of Counseling Psychology, School of Education
  • Shawnika Hull, Assistant Professor, School of Journalism & Mass Communication; Center for Demography & Ecology, Department of Population Health Sciences
  • Carla Pugh, Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Michelle Robinson, PhD Candidate, Department of Sociology, College of Letters & Science
  • Lillian Tong, Faculty Associate, Center for Biology Education; Director of the University Educators Programs and Services; Director of Faculty/Staff Programs
  • Eva Vivian, Associate Professor (CHS), School of Pharmacy

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2014-15

  • Desiree Alva, Assistant Director, Diversity Affairs Office, College of Engineering
  • Wilma Callaway, Assistant Director and Mentor Program Director, Center for Educational Opportunity
  • Karma Chávez, Assistant Professor of Communication Arts & Chican@ and Latin@ Studies
  • Roberta Hill, Professor of English & American Indian Studies, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies
  • Li Chiao-Ping, Professor of Dance & Chair, Dance Department
  • Saemyi Park, PhD in Political Science
  • Carmen Valdez, Associate Professor of Counseling Psychology

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2013-14

  • Jacquelynn Dawn Arbuckle, Staff General Surgeon and Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Tonya Lynn Brito, Professor of Law, Law School
  • Dawn Bryant Crim, Associate Dean for External Relations, School of Education
  • Rohany Nayan, Ph.D., and Senior Fellow, The Lubar Institute for the Study of Abrahamic Religions

Learn more about Outstanding Women of Color Award honorees for 2012-13

  • Leslie Bow, Professor of English and Asian American Studies, Department of English & Asian American Studies Program, College of Letters & Science
  • Erica Laughlin, Director, Information Technology Academy (ITA), Division of Information Technology
  • Cynthia Lin, Social Justice Education Specialist, Multicultural Student Center, Division of Student Life
  • Ana Martinez-Donate, Assistant Professor of Population Health Sciences, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Nancy Marie Mithlo, Assistant (now Associate) Professor of Art History and American Indian Studies, Department of Art History & American Indian Studies Program, College of Letters & Science
  • Manuela Romero, Assistant Dean for Student Diversity and Academic Services, College of Engineering
  • Araceli Alonso, Faculty Associate & Lecturer, College of Letters & Science and School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Emuye Asfaw, Administrative Officer, Office of Human Resources
  • Diane Gooding, Professor of Psychology, College of Letters & Science; Professor of Psychiatry, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Patty Loew, Associate Professor (now Professor), Life Sciences Communication, College of Agricultural & Life Sciences
  • Sandra Magaña, Associate Professor (now Professor) of Social Work and Director, Latino/Latina Chicano/Chicana Studies Program
  • Idella Yamben, PhD Candidate, Cellular & Molecular Biology, and Research Assistant in Anatomy, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Peggy Choy, Lecturer & Sr. Outreach Specialist, Dance & Southeast Asian Studies
  • Le Ondra Clark, PhD candidate, Department of Counseling Psychology
  • Sheri Williams Pannell, MFA candidate, Department of Theatre and Drama
  • May Lee Moua-Vue, Student Services Coordinator, International Student Services
  • Janice Rice, Senior Academic Librarian, Library System
  • Jacqueline DeWalt, Director of the Precollege Enrichment Opportunity Program for Learning Excellence (PEOPLE)
  • Laura Klunder, Residence Hall Manager, Kronshage Hall-Holt Commons
  • Susana Lastarria-Cornhiel, Senior Scientist, Urban and Regional Planning, College of Letters and Science & College of Agricultural & Life Sciences
  • Mary Layoun, Professor of Comparative Literature, College of Letters and Science
  • Norma Saldivar, Professor of Theatre and Drama, also Chican@ and Latin@ Studies
  • Patricia A. Tellez-Girón, Clinical Associate Professor of Family Medicine, School of Medicine and Public Health

UW System Honorees

The UW System’s Outstanding Women of Color in Education Award was created in 1994 to honor women of color from around the state for their leadership in making significant and lasting contribution to their campuses, their communities, or both. You can view a list of past honorees from UW–Madison of the UW System award below.

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Past Honorees

  • 2019: Mariela Victoria Quesada Centeno, Graduate Student, Human Development & Family Studies, School of Human Ecology; Director, Wellness Program, Centro Hispano
  • 2018: Christy Clark-Pujara, Associate Professor of History, Department of Afro-American Studies.
  • (UW System Award suspended 2016–17)
  • 2015:  Earlise Ward, Associate Professor, School of Nursing; also Health Equity Leadership Institute (HELI) in the School of Medicine and Public Health’s Institute for Clinical and Translational Research; and Heather Johnson, Assistant Professor, Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Department of Medicine in the School of Medicine and Public Health
  • 2014: Lillian Tong, Faculty Associate, Center for Biology Education; Director of the University Educators Programs and Services; Director of Faculty/Staff Programs; and Shawnika Hull, Assistant Professor, School of Journalism & Mass Communication; Center for Demography & Ecology, Department of Population Health Sciences
  • 2013:  Carmen Valdez, Associate Professor of Counseling Psychology, School of Education; and Roberta Hill, Professor of English & American Indian Studies, College of Letters & Science, and the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies
  • 2012:  Tonya Lynn Brito, Professor of Law, Law School; and Jacquelynn Dawn Arbuckle, Staff General Surgeon and Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • 2010:  Leslie Bow, Professor of English & Asian American Studies; and Ana Martinez-Donate, Assistant Professor of Population Health Sciences
  • 2009:  Patty Loew, Professor, Life Science Communication, College of Agricultural & Life Sciences
  • 2008:  Janice Rice, Senior Academic Librarian in College Library
  • 2007:  Linda Greene, Evjue Bascom Professor of Law, Law School
  • 2006:  Alberta Gloria, Professor of Counseling Psychology, School of Education
  • 2005:  Gloria Ladson-Billings, Kellner Family Chair in Urban Education and Professor of Curriculum & Instruction, School of Education
  • 2004:  Linda Denise Oakley, Professor, School of Nursing; and Joann Pritchett, Director of Diversity, School of Pharmacy
  • 2003:  Hazel Symonette, Senior Policy Planning Analyst
  • 2002:  Seema Kapani, Director of Diversity Programs & Learning Communities
  • 2001:  Ada Deer, Senior Lecturer in Social Work
  • 2000:  Gloria Hawkins, Assistant Dean, School of Medicine & Public Health
  • 1999:  Amy Ling, Professor & Director, Asian American Studies
  • 1998:  Lucille Badger, Community Leader; Stanlie James, Professor, Afro-American Studies Department; and Nancy Rodriguez, Student
  • 1997:  Linda Stitt, Program Director, Wisconsin Union
  • 1996:  Nellie McKay, Professor, Afro-American Studies Department
  • 1995:  Mercile J. Lee, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs