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Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys Names 2015 Founders’ Award Winners and Announces Annual Fundraiser

The Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys (GABWA), a 34-year-old voluntary bar organization focused on the enrichment and empowerment of women and advocating for children’s issues, recently announced the winners of its 2015 Founders’ Awards.  The Founders’ Awards were established in 2006 to recognize the accomplishments of women and organizations that embody the mission of GABWA and the legacy of its founders:  Former Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears, Judge Bensonetta Tipton Lane and Judge Barbara A. Harris.

“The annual Glitter Gala and Auction is GABWA’s signature fundraising event of the year,” GABWA President Adwoa Ghartey-Tagoe Seymour explained. “We are excited to honor our award recipients and increase awareness of and raise funds for GABWA’s 501(c)(3) charitable arm, the GABWA Foundation, Inc. The proceeds from the Gala and Auction benefit the programs of the GABWA Foundation, including our Sister to Sister Mentoring Program, Wills Project, and scholarship program. We look forward to highlighting these programs at the Gala, which promises to be another wonderful GABWA event.”

The 2015 award winners are as follows:

  • Leah Ward Sears Award for Distinction in the Profession- Given for outstanding contribution to the advancement of black women in the legal profession.

Winner:  Chief Judge Myra H. Dixon, Fulton County State Court

  • Barbara A. Harris Award for Service to the Community- Given for significant impact on the social, political and economic equality of minorities and women.

Winner:  Bettieanne C. Hart, Bettianne Childers Hart, Attorney at Law, LLC

  • Bensonetta Tipton Lane Award for Commitment to the Family- Given for use of professional and personal leadership to strengthen the community through family and child-related programs and initiatives.

Winner:  Tomeika Daniel, Supervising Attorney at Macon Regional Office of Georgia Legal Services Program

  • Zenith Award for Distinction in the Profession (Individual)- Given for achievement of a high level of professional success and extraordinary service to black women and children through both professional and personal leadership.

Winner:  Helene D. Gayle, M.D., M.P.H., President and CEO of CARE USA

  • Zenith Award for Service to the Community (Organization)- Given for exceptional leadership in serving the community by taking a leading role in enhancing the welfare, health, education or political or financial empowerment of minority communities.

Winner:  Atlanta Business League

  • Zenith Political Action Award- Given for significant impact on the political landscape at the local, state or national level by advancing the political interests of groups that have been historically underserved, such as minorities, women and children.

Winner:  Janice C. Mathis, Vice President of Citizen Education Fund

The winners will be honored on July 25, 2015 at the GABWA and GABWA Foundation’s annual fundraiser, the Glitter Gala and Auction.  The event will be held at the Intercontinental Hotel Buckhead at 7:00 pm. The proceeds from the Glitter Gala and Auction support the GABWA Foundation’s award-winning charitable projects.  Tickets may be purchased online at


GABWA was founded in 1981 by a group of African-American women who desired to form a voluntary bar organization with a focus on women and children’s issues, increasing black female representation in the judiciary and in public offices, and taking a proactive stance on political issues. Today, GABWA has an active membership of over 800 women and men who strive each day to fulfill the organization’s mission: to nurture, support andgalvanize the power of Black women attorneys, advocate for women and children and empower our communities.  In furtherance of this mission, GABWA has successfully spearheaded several signature programs that have had a profound impact in Georgia, including its Legally Speaking television show, its Professional Development Academy, and its Judicial and Public Office Academy.




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