2021 YWCA Honorees back row l-r; Rosalind Martin, Keira Wyatt, and Imani Mfalme-Shula; front row l-r; Dr Amy Elliott, Kirby Deal and Jackie Holloway

By Vivian Shipe
KNOXVILLE, TN — For thirty-six years the YWCA across the nation has paid tribute to honor the accomplishments of women who exemplify it’s mission;  women who empower other women, work to eliminate racism, and work diligently to promote peace, justice, freedom, and dignity.
The women are selected nationally by a panel who ranks them as best each year in the following categories, arts and culture, business and industry, community enhancement, education, emerging leader, racial and social justice, and science, technology, and environment.
The seven women chosen in Knoxville for 2021 have been exemplary in their fields for many years. Keira Wyatt of C.O.N.N.E.C.T Ministries will be recognized for business and industry, and  Vice Mayor Gwen McKenzie who is also the

Gwen McKenzie
Knoxville Vice Mayor

executive director of Legacy Housing Foundation, will be recognized for Racial and Social Justice. 
Also to be honored during a reception on September 9 at the Mill and Mine Event Center will be Rosalind Martin with the Knoxville Museum of Art, Imani Mfalme-Shula, with the Community Defense Fund of East Tennessee, Dr. Amy Elliott with Oak Ridge National Laboratories, Kirby Deal with Girls Inc. of Tennessee Valley, and Jackie Holloway, founder and director of Canvas Can Do Miracles.