In celebration of March being Women’s History Month, Alcorn State University President Felecia M. Nave gave a speech on the right to vote among women and how women have overcome challenges to become successful.
The National Organization of Blacks In Government (BIG) hosted a Zoom presentation, “Valiant Women of the Vote,” with Nave as the keynote speaker Friday, March 12.
BIG’s goal is to be an advocate for equal opportunity for Black professionals in government. BIG develops programs that enhance ethnic pride and educational opportunities and provide a platform for major local, regional, and national issues that affect African American government employees.
In her speech, Nave spoke about how recent women have had the right to vote and how society overlooked their greatness for decades.
“It has only been 100 years since women gained the right to vote,” said Nave. “This group is a testament to the capabilities of women. Just imagine if we would have been afforded the rights we deserve earlier. Imagine if the conversation today wasn’t about shattering glass ceilings but instead about all the brilliant women dominating in their fields and bettering humankind. What if we stopped being surprised by women’s greatness? Because we have always been great. It has just taken a very long time for the world to recognize just how great.”
Nave explained the characteristics of brave women that set the stage for her and others to achieve various goals in their careers.
“Valiant women have shown a willingness to be vocal, be advocates, and be undeterred by whatever obstacles or situations that have tried to disrupt their path. They are vocal at all costs. They advocate for others at a sacrificial level, and they are undeterred by obstacles. Most importantly for progress is that valiant women bring others along with them to ensure the work doesn’t start and end with their efforts. Their success is justice for all.”
The standards that were laid by Nave’s predecessors are what fuel her to be the best at whatever she does today. She uses the inspiration to perform at a high level while leaving a legacy that will transcend generations after her.
“As Alcorn State University’s first female president, I lean on examples of courageous women and stand on the shoulders of giants to ensure I am the leader our community needs. I am certain that they do not need a leader who is simply the first. They need a president who leads with humility and grace while building on the incredible legacies of those who came before and making sure the work continues after I’m long gone.
BIG showed their recognition for Nave’s speech and hard work by presenting her with an appreciation plaque in her honor.