Current Honorees

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Gladys Gladstone Rosenberg,
Women in the Arts » Music

Pianist and educator who was instrumental in developing and fostering classical music in Utah. As a pianist, Rosenberg was asked to solo with the Utah Symphony on more than a dozen occasions. (She was a close friend of longtime Utah Symphony music director, Maurice Abravanel.) However, Rosenberg’s greatest contribution came in the form of teaching. Beginning in the 1950s, Rosenberg became a member (and later chair) of the piano faculty at the University of Utah, where she influenced countless young pianists over the next fifty years.
Karen Ashton,
Women of Charity » Philanthropy

Creator of Thanksgiving Point and the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival. Raised in Murray, Utah, Ashton met her husband, Alan, on a blind date and worked full-time as a homemaker and mother to the couple’s eleven children while he founded and ran WordPerfect. Later, she and Alan built Thanksgiving Point as a thank you to the community. The development includes a 55-acre garden, Children’s Discovery Garden, restaurants, reception areas, 18-hole golf course, and the world’s largest dinosaur exhibit. Ashton was also instrumental in fundraising for a new children’s library in Orem, Utah, and spearheading the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival. Ashton serves on a number of boards in Utah and is the recipient of numerous community service awards.
Lois Anne Sebatane,
Women of Charity » Humanitarian Service

Lois Sebatane is an educationist and humanitarian who has contributed to the establishment of national NGOs in Lesotho in the following areas: HIV/AIDS, nonformal and adult education, early childhood education, and consumer education. Born, raised, and educated in Utah, Sebatane joined the Peace Corps shortly after graduating in 1967 from Westminster College in Salt Lake City. Since that time, Sebatane has served on committees that developed policies for Early Childhood Education, organized and established the Lesotho national HIV/AIDS organization that coordinates all HIV/AIDS activities in the country, organized and helped establish both the Lesotho Nonformal and Adult Education Association, and the Consumer Education Association in Lesotho, among other activities dealing with women and children’s issues. Sebatane has also obtained grants that contribute to the training of Basotho in areas of entrepreneurship (small business development), HIV/AIDS awareness, and general rural development projects in agriculture, business skills, and other development areas. Sebatane has retired from teaching at the National University of Lesotho, but continues her efforts to help the Basotho people in their fight against HIV/AIDS and in improving education resources for children and parents in literacy and problems of children with disabilities.
 
Maria L. Salazar y Trujillo,
Women of Charity » Community

Lifelong advocate of foster children who personally mothered nearly 100 children, including some with severe behavioral problems, from the early 1950s until her death in 1987. Trujillo not only devoted her life to foster children, she also recruited other foster mothers. Trujillo was an active member of the Catholic Women’s League and the Third Order of St. Francis. She was also involved in the early organization of La Morena Café, which provides food, fellowship, and job training to vulnerable citizens as well as funding for other outreach programs.
Kuniko Muramatsu Terasawa,
Women of Letters » Publishing

Reporter, editor, typesetter, and publisher of The Utah Nippo, a Japanese-language newspaper founded by her husband, Uneo Terasawa, in 1914. The Utah Nippo circulated through some of the most tumultuous periods of the twentieth century, including World War II, when the government banned the publication of many Japanese-language newspapers following the bombing of Pearl Harbor. In addition to her work as a newspaperwoman, Terasawa was also an activist senior citizen, especially when representing the interests of fellow Issei (first-generation Japanese Americans).
©Image courtesy of Special Collections Department, J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah.
Ione Bennion,
Women in Education/Business » Education

Former dean of women at Utah State University (1945-1952) and teacher for twenty-eight years in Logan City School District. In addition to her teaching and administrative duties, Ione Bennion helped establish Planned Parenthood in Logan as well as the Young Mothers program, whose purpose was to allow teenage mothers to continue their education. She also served on the Women's Legislative Council and was influential in the creation of the Utah State University Women's Center.

©Image courtesy of Special Collections & Archives Merrill-Cazier Library Utah State University.
Ivy Baker Priest,
Women in Public Service » Politics

After serving for several years as Utah’s Republican National Committeewoman and heading up the women’s division of the Republican National Committee, Priest was appointed Treasurer of the United States by Dwight D. Eisenhower. She was only the second woman to hold that office. After eight years in national office, Priest ran for state treasurer in 1966 and again in 1970, becoming the first woman elected to a statewide office in California, where she served alongside Governor Ronald Reagan.
 
Edith Roblez Melendez,
Women of Charity » Community

Prominent civic and community leader, particularly with regard to Hispanic concerns. Melendez was integral in the founding of Jordan School District Cultural Awareness as well as SOCIO (Spanish Organization for Community, Integrity, and Opportunity). She was also Outreach Director for the Utah State Food Stamp Program, adviser to the University of Utah College of Sciences program for Ethnic Affairs, and a member on the Governor’s Hispanic Council under Governor Scott Matheson.
Jane Manning James,
Common Roles/Uncommon Lives »

One of the first black settlers in Utah. Born in Wilton, Connecticut, James joined the LDS church as a teenager and moved to Nauvoo, Illinois, where she became part of the household of Joseph Smith. James finally settled in Salt Lake City with her husband Isaac James. When Isaac left Jane and their six children in 1869, Jane provided for the family by spinning, sewing, soap making, and working as a laundress. As noted by historian Henry J. Wolfinger, “[Jane Manning Jame’s] life was not one which brought financial reward or historical recognition. Rather, her achievements were personal. At a time when the racial attitudes of the larger society and the local community were becoming increasingly rigid, and their practices increasingly discriminatory, she managed the difficult task of maintaining her racial and religious identification without sacrificing a sense of personal dignity.”
Sarah Elizabeth Carmichael,
Women of Letters » Literature

One of Utah’s earliest poets and among the few during her time to achieve national recognition. Carmichael’s first published poem appeared in The Deseret News in 1858 and garnered so much attention that some doubted its authorship. Nevertheless, Carmichael received public praise and encouragement from Eliza R. Snow, and The Deseret News went on to publish more than fifty of her poems over the next eight years. Often called a literary genius, Carmichael’s poems were featured in several anthologies, including a two-volume collection, A Family Library of Poetry and Song, assembled by acclaimed American Romantic poet William Cullen Bryant.
©Image used by permission, Utah State Historical Society, all rights reserved.
Chipeta,
Women in Public Service » Common Roles/Uncommon Lives

Wife of Chief Ouray and primary representative for the Uncompahgre Utes in helping to negotiate a treaty with the United States government in 1880. The treaty was precipitated by an event a year earlier in which a group of White River Utes killed eleven men and took several women and children hostage in northwestern Colorado. Legend has it that Chipeta played a pivotal role in rescuing and housing the hostages. Following the treaty, however, Chipeta and her husband accepted relocation from their native Colorado to Utah in order to avoid bloodshed. Chipeta remained in Utah, a "Queen of the Utes," until her death in 1924.
Elizabeth McCune,
Women of Charity » Philanthropy

Although best known for her magnificent mansion on capital hill, McCune was also a noted suffragist and philanthropist. She was a member and patron of the International Council of Women, a position which granted her and other delegates an audience with Queen Victoria at Windsor Castle in 1899. In 1905, McCune was appointed by Governor William Spry as a trustee of the Agriculture College of Logan (Utah State University), where she served for ten years, including two as vice-president. Later, in 1911, she was appointed by President Joseph F. Smith to the general board of the Relief Society, where she continued her many church and civic responsibilities until her death in 1924.
©Image used by permission, Utah State Historical Society, all rights reserved.
 
Georgia Lathouris Mageras,
Common Roles/Uncommon Lives » Common Roles/Uncommon Lives

Greek midwife and, according to Helen Papanikolas, "the most important member of Utah's Greek immigrant community and a symbol of the color of uniqueness of Greek immigrant life." Through the course of her life, Mageras -- or "Magerou," as she was called -- served her countrymen and other underprivileged immigrants as a nurse, matriarch, matchmaker, peacemaker, and especially as a midwife who was reputed to have never lost a mother or child during her many years of practice.
Sarah M. Kimball,
Women in Public Service » Politics

Influential suffragist, political activist, and religious and community leader. As a suffragist and activist, Kimball was president of the Utah Woman’s Suffrage Association (1890-94) -– later voted “Honorary President for Life” –- as well as a national delegate and Utah’s honorary vice president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association (1895). She was also a member of the territorial committee of the People’s Party and delegate to the Utah State constitutional convention in 1882. As a religious and community leader, Kimball was president of the Salt Lake 15th Ward Relief Society for over forty years (1857-98) as well as secretary and counselor in two LDS General Relief Society presidencies.
Reva Beck Bosone,
Women in Public Service » Politics

Utah’s first woman member of Congress and one of its first female lawyers. Bosone spent her early career as a high school teacher before winning election to the state legislature in 1932 as a Democrat. Bosone’s chief accomplishment as a state legislator was sponsorship of a minimum wage and hours law for women and children. Later, as a Salt Lake City judge, Bosone fought against alcoholism, juvenile delinquency, and poor jail conditions. Bosone was elected to Congress in 1948 and again in 1950, where she supported women’s rights, Indian rights, and equal educational opportunities years before they were popular issues. She ended her career as the chief judicial officer for the U.S. Post Office Department.
Helen Zeese Papanikolas,
Women of Letters » History

Researcher, writer, and ethnic historian who chronicled the everyday lives of Utah peoples. Her book, The Peoples of Utah, is widely considered the most important work on Utah ethnic peoples. Papanikolas was instrumental in organizing the ethnic archives at the Oral History Archives, located in the University of Utah's Marriott Library. As founder and first president of The Peoples of Utah Institute, Papanikolas located artifacts associated with ethnic life, produced a major museum exhibit, and sponsored lectures and other programs. During her lifetime, Papanikolas was a leading authority on Greek immigrant life in the United States, and she presented papers at national and international conferences and consulted for television documentaries and other projects.

©Image used by permission, Utah State Historical Society, all rights reserved.
Patty Sessions,
Common Roles/Uncommon Lives »

An unsung Mormon woman of the nineteenth century. Shortly after her marriage, Sessions stepped in, untrained, to help her sick mother-in-law deliver a baby – the first of 3,997 babies she would deliver over her lifetime. Sessions converted to Mormonism in 1834 and moved to Nauvoo, where she experienced a multitude of challenges, including polygamy. Despite these challenges, Sessions was known as a woman of great faith, power, and independence. She drove her own team to Salt Lake City only two months after the vanguard company in 1847. Once in Utah, Sessions moved to Bountiful, where she spent the last three decades of her life as a widow. Later she was elected president of the Indian Relief Societies, an organization devoted to helping impoverished Native Americans, and she established the Patty Sessions Academy, a free school for the community.
©Image used by permission, Utah State Historical Society, all rights reserved.
Ellis Reynolds Shipp,
Women in Science » Science/Medicine

One of the earliest female doctors in Utah. After graduating from the Women’s Medical College of Pennsylvania, Shipp returned to Salt Lake City and opened a School of Obstetrics and Nursing where she would eventually train 500 women as midwives and nurses. She also delivered more than 6,000 babies. In addition to her contributions to medicine, Shipp also served as a member of the General Relief Society Board, the president of the Utah Women’s Press Club, a member of the executive board of the Desert Hospital, and as a delegate to the National Council of Women in Washington, D.C.
©Image used by permission, Utah State Historical Society, all rights reserved.
Florence Ware,
Women in the Arts » Art

Illustrator, costume designer, interior designer, and muralist. Ware is perhaps best known for her paintings of landscapes and other works of nature. After receiving her bachelor’s degree from the University of Utah, Ware enrolled in the Chicago Art Institute, where she graduated top of her class with high honors. Upon returning to Utah, Ware began teaching art at the University of Utah –- an occupation she continued for the next twenty-five years. She also became the first president of the Association of Utah Artists in 1940 and founded the Ogden’s Palette Club and Utah’s Pageant of the Arts in American Fork.
Image "Used by permission, Utah State Historical Society."
Maude Adams,
Women in the Arts » Entertainment/Theatre

Noted actress, drama teacher, and inventor of the high-powered incandescent lamp (which made colored movies possible). A child star at age five, Adams would rise to even greater fame for such parts as Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, Duke of Reichstadt (the son of Napolean II) in L’Aiglon, and Peter in Peter Pan. Historian Anne Seagraves observed that Adams “put more acting and emotion into one scene than most ordinary actresses knew how to use during an entire play.” During her acting career, Adams split time between her acting company in San Francisco and her family’s ranch in Salt Lake City. She later taught drama to young women at Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri, before retiring at age seventy-eight.
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