March 28, 2023

The Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin River Valleys will honor eight influential Women of Distinction from the Twin Cities and Rochester during a luncheon event April 8, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., at The Depot in Minneapolis.Women of Distinction provides an opportunity to link women leaders of the present with future women leaders being developed through programs and activities in Girl Scouts.

This year’s honorees are: Gail Boudreaux, executive vice president, UnitedHealthcare; Kim Nelson, division president, General Mills; State Sen. Mee Moua; Nancy Lindahl, consultant, Creative Strategies Plus; Dr. Patricia Simmons, Mayo Clinic; Susan Boren, principal, Spencer Stuart; and Yvonne Cheung Ho, president/CEO, Metropolitan Economic Development Association.

The keynote speaker is Dr. Mae Jemison, the first African-American female astronaut in space. Dr. Jemison was on board the Space Shuttle Endeavour September 12-20, 1992. The event is emceed by Robyne Robinson, Fox 9 news anchor and local businesswoman.

A chemical engineer, scientist, physician, teacher and astronaut, Dr. Mae Jemison has had a wide range of experience in technology, engineering and medical research. Dr. Jemison blasted into orbit aboard the space shuttle Endeavor, Sept. 12, 1992, the first woman of color to go into space.

At sixteen, she entered Stanford University where she graduated with a bachelor of science in chemical engineering, and fulfilled the requirements for an A.B. in African and Afro-American studies. She attended Cornell Medical College where she earned her doctorate in medicine in 1981.

Jemison founded The Jemison Group Inc. to research, develop, and implement advanced technologies suited to the social, political, cultural, and economic context of the individual, especially for the developing world.  She also is the namesake for the Mae C. Jemison Science and Space Museum at Wright Junior College in Chicago, dedicated in 1992. She is currently a member of the college’s faculty in the environmental studies program and is director of The Jemison Institute for Advanced Technology in Developing Countries at Dartmouth.

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