BY JURRY TAALIB-DEEN
Journal Staff Writer
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. host 36 annual event
Edna Brown, Ohio State Senator, set quietly at the table with her family as the name of the 2016 Mother of the Year was announced at the 36th Annual, Breakfast for M’Lady Scholarship Program. Senator Brown was unaware that she was that Mother of the Year.
Before announcing the name, organizers read a little of her background information. The Mother of the Year was born and raised in Toledo; which didn’t catch Senator’s Brown attention. Then, the organizers said the Mother of the year graduated from Whitney High School, which, Senator Brown would later tell The Toledo Journal that instantly got her attention. “Not many people in Toledo graduated from Whitney High School,” she said.
When organizers started describing her political accomplishments, Senator Brown’s eyes could be seen brightening up, and the look of, “Hey, that’s me,” took over her face.
Held on Saturday, May 7, at the Pinnacle in Maumee, Ohio, the event not only announces the mother of the year, but the organization also awards scholarships to high school seniors. The event then closes out with their signature fashion show.
Bessie Mack, committee chairperson, told The Toledo Journal the event salutes motherhood, awards scholarships, and concludes entertaining the 450-500 in attendance with a fashion show.
Ms. Mack said the mother of the year is first, nominated by family, friends, or members from the community. Once the organization receives those nominations, committee members look at the contributions to the overall community, by those nominees, and how their motherhood as affected immediate, and extended family.
“Senator Brown has worked to make Toledo a better place to live for everyone, and a good place to raise kids,” Ms. Mack said.
The four scholarship recipients were Jada Marie Boles, a senior at Toledo School for the Arts, Taylor E.B. Coleman, a senior at Central Catholic School, Ryonna Birchfield, a senior at Notre Dame Academy, and Daijah Blackburn, a senior at Rogers High School. Collectively, the recipients received a total of $5,000.
“We want to make sure the students get a good start in college,” Ms. Mack said.
Nominating her mother was Kathy Dadz. “My mother raised for daughters who she constantly encouraged to get a good education, and become successful in life. Due to that encouragement, that’s exactly what all four of us have accomplished,” she said.
Ms. Dadz laughed, and said it was hard keeping the event a secret from her mom. “She can be a little nosey at times,” she said.
“I’m just completely taken by the award,” Senator Brown said. “I can’t express how overcome I was, and how honored I am.”
“The fact that there was no hint that I was going to be the Mother of the Year, makes it that more precious,” she said.