Women's History Month Event at Bushwick Family Residence Honors Exceptional Women from the Community
(March 23, 2021 – Brooklyn, NY) – In celebration of Women’s History Month, Bushwick Family Residence—a transitional shelter for 87 families run by Volunteers of America-Greater New York—in partnership with Community Council President Barbara Smith, celebrated Women’s History Month by recognizing two outstanding members of the Brooklyn community.
When NYPD Assistant Chief Judith R. Harrison became the first Black woman to be named Commander in Patrol Borough Brooklyn North, one of the first things she did was help to deliver presents to the children residing at the shelter during the holidays. Both staff and residents were appreciative, and they were even more so when Chief Harrison returned the following month to provide lunch for the entire shelter. Such acts of kindness mean a great deal to the families residing at the shelter and also demonstrate the Chief’s commitment to strengthening relations and open communication between the community and law enforcement.
Ms. Harrison received a special award for her dedication to the Brooklyn community and her historic achievement, in honor of Mae C. Jemison, the engineer, physician and former NASA astronaut who was the first Black woman to travel to space.
Jeanette Wright, the New York City Department of Education Liaison for Bushwick Family Residence, has also been an exceptional ally to staff and residents. She has provided unwavering support to the families at the shelter who have children in the NYC Public School system, helping them navigate the children’s education throughout the pandemic. In appreciation of her ability to always come through in support of the children, no matter what obstacles there may be, Ms. Wright received an award in honor of the late Cicely Tyson, the actress who is best known for her portrayals of strong Black women.
Both Ms. Wright and Chief Harrison are role models of successful, compassionate and civically engaged women, for the children and families at Bushwick Family Shelter whose families turn to Ms. Wright for help with any school issues and appreciate visits from the Assistant Chief Harrison and her team.
As Anton Nimblett, Program Director at Bushwick Family Residence pointed out, “We are so appreciative of the valuable and varied partnerships Volunteers of America-Greater New York forms with the Bushwick community that allow us to better serve our families and feel a real part of the neighborhood.”
And as 83rd District Council Member President Barbara Smith, who has been a generous supporter of Bushwick Family Residence and was inspired to organize this celebration, declared, “This is a great month to recognize some outstanding women and no better partner to do this with than VOA.”
First Deputy Commissioner Benjamin Tucker was present and spoke of his great esteem for Chief Harrison and the importance of Women’s History Month and community partnerships.
“The NYPD is honored,” said Police Commissioner Dermot Shea, “to have Assistant Chief Judith Harrison serve in the Department and to see her work in the community recognized. Her many roles in the NYPD, including her current historic position as the first female Black Commanding Officer in Patrol Borough Brooklyn North, continue to impact individuals both inside and outside of the Department.”
First Deputy Commissioner Benjamin Tucker with the NYPD Community Affairs team.
Jeanette Wright with Assistant Chief Judith Harrison.