President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf will on December 30 be presented the maiden edition of the highest and most prestigious award of the African SHEROES Awards (ASAs), The Ultimate SHEROES Award at the Paynesville City Hall, organizers have said.
ASAs is a newly initiated premier international awards program celebrating the achievements of the most successful and inspiring females of African descent.
The President was selected by the organizers of the ASAs for the highest honor because of what they termed as her great achievement in politics and setting the bar for other African women to follow. The ultimate SHERO is a woman who has continuously risen to the challenge of matching social impact with economic value and broken the glass ceiling, organizers of the event has said.
The ASAs, a Liberian event, was created specifically to honor women who strive for success in spite of the limitations society puts on being a woman or girl, the organizers said at a press conference on Tuesday in Monrovia. The ASAs is an initiative of Barkue Tubman and Salamartu Duncan.
“What better way to inaugurate the first ever ASAs than by honoring the first female President in Africa’s history,” they asked in the release.
The two officers noted that President Sirleaf, throughout her life, has and continues to defy all odds and has set herself with distinction in the global community-making other women to look up to her as that perfect role model.
The president’s achievements in all of the sectors that she has served make her the obvious winner of the maiden award, Ms. Tubman said at the press conference.
“These types of women and girls who continue to rebuild, invest, serve their communities, success in business, philanthropy, government and politics, arts and culture, media, technology, medicine and science.
“The resilience of African women is incredible. For centuries African women and their descendants have continuously risen to the challenge of marching social impacts with economic value.”
Tubman and Duncan, who both addressed the press conference, said each year the organization and its partners will recognize African women for demonstrating excellence – from economic growth to social change from local to global reach across multiple sectors. This is the first award program of its kind, commencing the Liberian series of an initiative that is intended to be taken continental.
Some of ASA’s partners include the Association for the Advancement of Liberian Girls (AALG) and African and American Women for Peace and Women and Girls Empowerment and Cultural Exchange (AAW Peace). Sheroes are not just limited to women only, but also a supporter and advocate for the rights of women and girls.
“Our aim is to grow this platform across the African continent and in the Diaspora and to build a platform for mentees and mentors,” Barkue said.
Several women and girls who have received nominations will be awarded along with President Sirleaf at the December 30th event. There are several categories, which are place in two phases, SHEROES, Liberian women age 21 and above and the youth category, girls ages 16 to 20.
Categories include entrepreneur, humanitarian, creative arts (actress, singer, beauty and fashion, arts and culture, writer, journalist, media personality) and science and technology.
In the adult categories there are also politician/government and medical legal professionals’ awards.
“The event is a red carpet semi formal event and is an event of celebrating achievers and building a network of African women role models who are Liberians,” Ms. Duncan said.