ULM logo
ULM Women’s Symposium announces 2021 award winners

Published March 22, 2021

Still time to register! Free for UL System students, $10 for UL System employees

The University of Louisiana Monroe will host the 5th Annual Women’s Symposium virtually on Tuesday, March 23, 2021. During the awards ceremony, four awards and two student scholarships will be presented.

The 2021 award and scholarship winners include:

WHAT: ULM Women's Symposium

WHEN: Noon-5 p.m., Tuesday, March 23, 2021

WHERE: Accel Events, accelevents.com/e/2021WomensSymposium

TICKETS & REGISTRATION: ULM and UL System students – free, ULM and UL System employees – $10 (use coupon code “student” or “ulmemployee”), general public – $15, register at alumni.ulm.edu/e/women-s-symposium-2021

INFO:ulm.edu/womens-symposium Jaleesa Harris, jharris@ulm.edu


·      12-12:30 p.m. – Welcome

·      12:30-1 p.m. –  Keynote address

·      1:15-1:45 p.m. –  Awards Ceremony

·      2-2:45 p.m. –  Breakout Session #1

·      3-3:45 p.m. –  Breakout Session #2

·      4-4:45 p.m. – Breakout Session #3

·      4:45-5 p.m. –  Closing

Legacy Award – Sue Nicholson









  Sue Nicholson

The highest recognition bestowed by the ULM Women's Symposium Board, the Legacy Award honors one extraordinary individual for her inspiration, dedication, and significant contribution to her community. The recipient of this award is known for her exemplary character, high level of integrity, and ability to treat others with respect.


The 2021 recipient of the Legacy Award is Sue Nicholson. Nicholson is the president and CEO of the Monroe Chamber of Commerce and recently announced her retirement after 16 years with the chamber.


Her nomination stated, “Sue is an advocate for women's leadership and has also done so much for the Monroe community. Sue has made an indelible mark on the Northeast Louisiana community, and we are better due to her service.”


Lisa Miller Distinguished Leader Award – Dixie Tooke-Rawlins, D.O.

Dixie Tooke-Rawlins, D.O.

The Lisa Miller Distinguished Leader Award honors a woman who has demonstrated a continual level of notable, sustained, and outstanding contributions throughout her career. The award winner makes an extraordinary effort to build relationships while providing exceptional guidance, leadership, and dedication to the organization she is a part of.


The 2021 recipient of the Lisa Miller Distinguished Leader Award is Dixie Tooke-Rawlins, D.O., president and provost of the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine.


“Dr. Rawlins has had a lifelong career in the medical field. She is the Founding Dean of the VCOM system and is currently the President and Provost. She has founded medical schools in medically under-served areas across the country including VCOM-LA at ULM … She has created leadership programs for women in the American Osteopathic Association. She is a past President of the American Osteopathic Foundation. She mentors and provides opportunities for women in the medical community. She started International Clinics to address women's health needs not only in the United States but in Latin America as well. She is well known and well respected in the medical community,” stated her nominator.


Kristin Chandler Rising Professional Award – Jerrica Bennett

Jerrica Bennett

Named after the founder of the ULM Women’s Symposium, the Kristin Chandler Rising Professional Award honors a woman who is making significant contributions as a young professional. The recipient of this award strives to positively influence and inspire others and displays outstanding involvement in her chosen field and/or community.


Jerrica Bennett is the recipient of the 2021 Kristin Chandler Rising Professional Award. Bennett is the website and social media manager for the Monroe/West Monroe Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.


“Jerrica constantly strives to promote MWM is the best way. She is actively searching for ways to better our community. Jerrica is a graduate of Southeast Tourism Society Marketing College and received the title of a Travel Marketing Professional (TMP). Jerrica currently serves as the Holiday Trail of Lights Social Media Committee Chair. She served on the Downtown Monroe Alliance Board as the Marketing Committee Co-Chair. Jerrica is full of fun, creativity, and love for the Ouachita Parish community. Monroe-West Monroe is a better place because of Jerrica,” stated her nominator.


Vanguard Award – Richard Shrubb, Ed.D.

Richard Shrubb, Ed.D.

The Vanguard Award Honors an individual or group that has lead by example both in and out of the workplace/organization to support gender equality. The recipient believes gender inclusion is a part of effective talent management, provides gender-aware mentoring and coaching opportunities, and practices other-focused leadership. 


Richard Shrubb, Ed.D., is the recipient of the 2021 Vanguard Award. Shrubb is a member of the graduate faculty and coordinator of the Doctor of Educational Leadership program in the College of Education in the Department of Curriculum, Instruction, and Leadership at Louisiana Tech University.


His nominator said, “Dr. Shrubb epitomizes the characteristics of the Vanguard award. He has always focused his time and energy to develop leadership talent among a diverse student population including people of color, women, and those with socio-economic disadvantages. Dr. Shrubb has supported the Women's Symposium since 2018 (when he was introduced to the event) and has attended every Women's Symposium since that time. He wrote a piece for Bayou Life that appeared in the May 2018 issue praising the vision of the Women's Symposium and the even itself. He is a champion of equity and is doing good work.”


Emerging Student Leader Scholarship – Shacorria Green

Shacorria Green

The Emerging Student Leader Scholarship honors a ULM student who contributes to the empowerment, motivation, and encouragement of peers and fosters positive change. The recipient of this award shows exemplary leadership qualities through student organizations, academic excellence, and community service. The recipient of this award receives a gift of $1,500.


Shacorria Green is the recipient of the 2021 Emerging Student Leader Award. Green, from Shreveport, is a senior majoring in criminal justice. She has served as the ULM NAACP president since 2019. She is currently the vice president and a founding member of the Cultural Diversity Council, and a member of the Campus Activities Board, College Democrats, Rotaract, and National Society of Leadership and Success.


“As her advisor, I've seen first-hand the work and dedication Shacorria has put into organizing the NAACP. She cares about others and fights for diversity and inclusion among ULM Students,” stated her nominator.


Empowering Student Leader Scholarship – Brittany McNamara

Brittany McNamara 2021
Brittany McNamara

The Empowering Student Leader Scholarship is awarded to a non-traditional ULM student who is committed to empowering themselves and others around them, all while continuing to pursue an education. The recipient of this award receives a gift of $1,500.


Brittany McNamara is the 2021 recipient of the Empowering Student Leader Scholarship. McNamara is the digital marketing strategist for KTVE/KARD-myarklamiss.com, in West Monroe. After working in various roles in the advertising and media industry, McNamara decided to return to ULM in 2018 to earn her Bachelor of Business Administration in marketing. Being a mother, a wife, and working full-time, ULM Online was the perfect fit for McNamara’s  busy schedule. She is a junior, planning to graduate in Spring 2022.