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"Women Who Dare" Celebrating Women's History Month

March 21, 2024

Earlier this month, Youth of Valor Empowerment (YOVE) and the Alliance of Career Development NonProfits (ACDN) kicked off Women’s History Month by hosting an impassioned breakfast centered on the development and mentorship of Miami-Dade County’s future leaders called “WOMEN WHO DARE: Stories of Hope, Courage, and Determination.” Now in its 17th year, guests arrived at Miami Dade College - Wolfson Campus Auditorium to enjoy a complimentary morning meal provided by North Miami’s own Chef Dominique, which evolved into an uplifting community dialogue encouraging YOVE participants and accompanying guests to dream big. Organizers thanked the Honor Guards representing the Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation Department for delivering the Pledge of Allegiance.

The event also featured a panel discussion spotlighting the region’s most powerful, influential women leaders who shared their success stories in hopes of inspiring the women and girls in attendance to attain greatness. Moderated by Dr. Cassandra Arnold, Deputy Chief of Staff for Equity and Engagement for the Office of Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava, distinguished speakers included the following:

• Dr. Malou C. Harrison, Executive Vice President and Provost, Miami Dade College, (Guest Speaker)
• Ms. Wanda Smith, Vice-Provost for Strategy and Institutional Effectiveness, Miami Dade College (Guest Speaker, Retired Lieutenant Colonel from the United States Navy, and YOVE Advisory Member)
• The Honorable Linda Singer Stein, Miami-Dade County Court Judge (Guest Speaker)
• Dr. Marie O. Etienne, President, Florida Nurses Association and Professor of Nursing, Miami Dade College (Guest Presenter)
• Dr. Helen M. Bermudez, Associate Dean of Academic and Faculty Affairs, Miami-Dade College (Panelist)
• Vice-Mayor Mary Estimé-Irvin, City of North Miami (Panelist)
• Dr. Eva M. Francis, Author, Speaker, and President of Brilliant Healthcare Recruitment and Staffing (Panelist)
• Ms. Clora Adkins, Retired Correctional Captain, Vice President and Treasurer, Women’s History Coalition of Miami Dade County, Inc. (Panelist)

While explaining the multiple challenges and setbacks they faced as women while establishing their career trajectories, they affirmed their commitment to overcoming the odds and remaining laser-focused on the endless possibilities of future prospects.

Aligned with YOVE’s mission to inspire at-risk, yet promising high school girls of Haitian and African American descent, Dr. Pierre also acknowledged the support from Commissioner Bastien and Vice Mayor Estimé-Irvin, which bolstered YOVE programming and broadened the spectrum of the organization’s reach throughout Miami-Dade County. She acknowledged their selfless advocacy, which directly benefits the organization’s young members by providing equitable pathways for career development and college readiness opportunities.

“YOVE’s Annual Women’s History Month event provides a special moment in time for us to spotlight the groundbreaking achievements of the change-making women in our local neighborhoods while amplifying the voices of young girls and women who have supported YOVE since its inception,” Pierre shared. “We aim to help our participants boost their self-esteem and confidently step into the world while feeling, looking, and being their best, which will manifest into personal success stories including high school graduation, college completion, career success, and personal advancement.”

“WOMEN WHO DARE” was made possible by sponsorship support from the Smart & Sexy Corporation and The Alliance of Career Development Nonprofits (ACDN), in collaboration with Miami Dade College- Wolfson Campus. Additional sponsors include the Office of Miami-Dade County Commissioner Marleine Bastien, the Office of North Miami Vice Mayor Mary Estimé-Irvin, the Greater North Miami Chamber of Commerce, Global Innovative Foundation, Inc., Nationwide Payment Systems, and Brilliant Healthcare Recruitment and Staffing. For more information regarding YOVE’s mission or becoming a sponsor for the organization’s future events and programs, please contact Dr. Alourdes Pierre at:

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