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Sister Summit Legacy Awards Honors Lowcountry Women of Color
8/26/2015 3:20:12 PM

By Kristen Wright Matthews

On September 17, history will be made at Founders Hall at Charles Towne Landing State Historic Site (1500 Old Towne Road, 29407) when the Sister Summit Foundation presents its inaugural event - The Sister Summit Legacy Awards. The only event of its kind in the Lowcountry, this prestigious awards ceremony was established to recognize the hard work, selflessness and unwavering commitment of some of the most dynamic women of color in our community.

“Women of color brilliantly serve this community, and the current cultural climate makes it the perfect time to recognize them and celebrate their work in the Lowcountry. The girls in our program need to know there are women around them who are doing great things and that their future can be just as bright,” said Deona Smith, founder and executive director of the Sister Summit Foundation.

This year’s honorees will be recognized in the following categories:
Dr. Maxine Smith, (Lifetime Achievement); Dorothy Harrison, Charleston Water System (Business); Carolyn Hunter, McDonald’s (Philanthropy); Rita Scott, WCSC - Live 5 News (Media); Erica Wright, Charleston Metro Chamber (Rising Star); Mary Jackson, fiber artist (The Arts); Angenita Owens, Owens Christian Academy (Education); Dr. Ida Spruill, Medical University of South Carolina (Medicine); Thomasena Stokes-Marshall, Mount Pleasant Town Council (Social Justice); and Mabel P. Smith (Founder’s Award).

“Being selected as the Rising Star for the inaugural Legacy Awards is extremely humbling. I have the honor of sharing a platform with women who have paved the way for me. Because of their unwavering courage and commitment to this community, I am able to walk confidently through doors that they’ve opened for me while blazing my own trail,” said Rising Star honoree Erica Wright.

The Legacy Awards, presented by Blue Choice Health Plan Medicaid, will support the Sister Summit Foundation in providing a variety of programs for women and girls in Charleston metropolitan areas, as well as the often neglected rural communities where resources are scarce.

“This event is vital to maintaining and expanding our programs,” says Smith. “We meet with local women and girls each month to educate, inspire, and uplift them.” 

The evening will begin with a cocktail reception in the private courtyard followed by dinner and the awards ceremony in the great hall. The event will also feature an open bar, dessert and dancing led by the Charlton Singleton Band featuring Quiana Parler, and dinner provided by Carolima’s Catering and Events. Tickets may be purchased online at or by calling (843) 793-8684. Sponsorship opportunities and advertising in the souvenir book are available.

The Legacy Awards is also sponsored by The InterTech Group, Medical University of South Carolina, Rick Hendrick Automotive Group, C&A Unlimited/McDonald’s, Charleston Water System, Southwest Airlines, Ascue’s Auto Body & Paint Shop, Berkeley Electric Cooperative, and Coca-Cola.

The Sister Summit Foundation is a South Carolina 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to the social, cultural and economic empowerment of women and girls through programs that promote education, entrepreneurship, the arts, and opportunities for personal and professional development. Since 2011, nearly 4000 women and 500 girls have benefited from Sister Summit programs including, but not limited to Sister Circle, Sister Cinema, Fit Divas and Soul Camp for Girls. For more information, log on to

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