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Chirlane McCray,
First Lady of New York City


Chirlane McCray, First Lady of New York City, was the recipient of Brooklyn Rising’s First Annual Shirley Chisholm Woman of the Year award.

December 17, 2021

Ms. Sashagay Lindo

Executive Director

Brooklyn Rising

Dear Sashagay and the Brooklyn Rising Team:

Thank you for the wonderful letter, your outstanding activism, and your very kind gesture in awarding me the Shirley Chisholm Woman of the Year award. I am honored to humbly accept.

Shirley Chisholm was a great hero of mine when I was growing up—a leader who showed it was possible to take on the status quo and stand up for Black women, equality, and justice across the country.

As our Administration has worked to continue that legacy, it warms my heart to know future generations, through Brooklyn Rising and beyond, have taken up her call to action. We must end domestic violence here in New York City and all over the world—and it is only possible if we make change together, in common cause. Thank you again for your activism, your courage, and this beautiful award. I will cherish it.


Chirlane McCray

View the original letter.

View the event program.

Kathy Hochul,
Governor of New York

Kathy C. Hochul, Governor of New York, was the recipient of Brooklyn Rising’s V-Day Woman of the Year 2022 award.


February 25, 2022

Dear Friends:

It is a pleasure to send greetings to Brooklyn Rising and all of the organization’s supporters who are committed to its ongoing mission to end violence against women and girls worldwide through activism and artistic expression.

Each year, Brooklyn Rising joins with the one billion people across the globe to bring attention to the violence committed against women and girls. Together, in a spirit of compassion and concern, you express support for the many around the world who are survivors of violence.

In solidarity with One Billion Rising, OBR Youth Revolution, and the V-Day Global Activist Movement, Brooklyn Rising highlights the creativity that lies within young women of all backgrounds from Brooklyn who share their time, talents, and inherent gifts. Celebrated in approximately 200 countries worldwide, this day conveys an important universal message in an effort to “Break the Chain” of physical, mental, emotional, and economic abuse. It is an issue that transcends race, religion, and nationality, and its harmful effects reach families of all socioeconomic backgrounds.

Through this united effort, you stand up to show there is strength in numbers, and it is inspiring that you add your voices and extend your hands in support of others. I am honored to be the chosen recipient of your “V-Day Woman of the Year 2022 Award” and want to assure the young people of Brooklyn Rising that I am committed to ending all forms of violence and to strengthening laws and policies here in New York State and beyond.

I appreciate your advocacy of such an important cause, and your focus on the spiritual, intellectual, physical, and emotional well-being of young women.


Kathy Hochul



View the original letter.

View the event program.

Brooklyn Rising’s Second Annual

Shirley Chisholm Woman of the year ceremony will take place

Tuesday, March 8, 2022 in Brooklyn, New York.

This year’s recipient will be Adrienne E. Adams,
Speaker of the New York City Council.



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This is precisely the time when artists go to work.

There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity,

no need for silence, no room for fear.

We speak, we write, we do language.

That is how civilizations heal.

                                    – Toni Morrison

We are the poetic philosophers of an unseen world. We are the very language of difference and magic.

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