2023 Recipients of the Women of Impact Award Announced


Ann Arbor, MI, February 9, 2022 – The Joyce Ivy Foundation today announced the 2023 recipients of the Women of Impact award. This award recognizes the achievements of rising female leaders who have demonstrated professional talent and a commitment to improving their communities.

The 2023 Women of Impact award recipients are Dr. Sally Afia Nuamah, professor, activist, writer, and filmmaker; and Dr. Sydney McKinney, Executive Director of the National Black Women’s Justice Institute.

“This year’s Women of Impact have centered their careers on helping Black women and girls thrive,” said Katharine Janes, JIF ’12 and Chair of the Women of Impact Selection Committee. “Drs. McKinney and Nuamah use their platforms to conduct action-oriented research, share people’s lived experiences, and advance systemic change. We can think of no better individuals to serve as mentors and examples to our Summer Scholars. We are so lucky to have Drs. McKinney and Nuamah join our Joyce Ivy community, and we look forward to honoring them and their work at our Gala in May. “

Dr. Sally Nuamah

Dr. Nuamah is a professor, activist, writer, and filmmaker. Currently, Dr. Nuamah is a Professor at Northwestern University. Her first book, How Girls Achieve, has been the recipient of multiple national and international awards. Dr. Nuamah is also the creator of a global scholarship organization for young women, TWII Foundation, and film, HerStory, focusing on the work of the Foundation in Ghana. In 2019, she was named Forbes Magazine “30 under 30 in Education,” awarded an Andrew Carnegie Fellowship, and in 2021 was named a recipient of the Marilyn J. Gittell Activist Scholar Award from the Urban Affairs Association. Her second book, Closed for Democracy, was recently released with Cambridge University Press.

Dr. Sydney McKinney

Dr. McKinney is the Executive Director of the National Black Women’s Justice Institute (NBWJI), a national nonprofit working to end the systemic criminalization of Black women and girls. Dr. McKinney holds a Ph.D. in sociology and an M.A. in law and society from New York University, as well as an M.P.H from Columbia University. She earned her B.A. from Tufts University. Dr. McKinney is committed to advancing rigorous research, policy, and capacity-building that center and elevate the voices, experiences and expertise of system-impacted Black women, girls and gender-nonconforming people.

The 2023 Women of Impact recipients will be honored at the 18th annual Summer Scholars Gala, which will be held in Lathrup Village, Michigan on May 20, 2023 at 6 pm. The Gala also honors the Joyce Ivy Foundation Leader of the Year, Dr. Jennifer Carlson, MacArthur Fellow and Professor of Sociology, who will address the 2023 Summer Scholars and Gala guests.

Past Women of Impact award recipients include:

2022: Echo Brown, author; Kimberly Dowdell, Marketing Principal at HOK Architecture and Design; Christina Koch, NASA astronaut; and Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson and Monique Lamoureux-Morando, Olympic Gold Medalists and Founders of the Monique and Jocelyne Lamoureux Foundation.

 2021: Megan Red-Shirt Shaw, Director of Native Services at the University of South Dakota; Sarah Politis, VP of Business Development and Creative at Wayfarer Entertainment; and Camille Stewart, Head of Security and Privacy Policy for Google Play & Android.

2020: Denise Fair, Chief Public Health Officer, City of Detroit – Detroit Health Department and Amy Peterson, Co-Founder and CEO, Rebel Nell.

 2019: Anna Clark, Journalist and Author of The Poisoned City: Flint’s Water and the American Urban Tragedy; Allison Drutchas, Policy and Product Counsel, Waymo; Dr. Asha Shajahan, Medical Director of Community Health, Beaumont Health; and Stella Safari, Director of gBETA Detroit.

 2018: Nia Batts & Katherine Cockrel, Co-Founders, Detroit Blows; Cynthia Shih, Management Consultant & Performing Songwriter, McKinsey & Co; and Tiffany Taylor, Vice President, Deputy Chief People Officer, Teach For America.

 2017: Veronica Scott, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, the Empowerment Plan; Linzie Venegas, Vice President, Ideal Group; Tiffany Brown, Communications Director, Mission Flint Office; and Allyson Carpenter, President of Student Government, Howard University.

For 2023 Gala sponsorship opportunities, please contact Nadia Schreiber at nadia.schreiber@joyceivyfoundation.org.