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Syracuse Deputy Mayor Owens among five to be honored by Upstate at Black History Month celebration Feb. 13

Sharon Owens

Sharon Owens, deputy mayor of Syracuse, will be among five honored by Upstate Medical University at its Black History Month Celebration Feb. 13.

The event will feature an awards presentation, dance performance and a free luncheon catered by Creole Soul. The event, which is free and open to the public, will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Campus Activities Building, Elizabeth Blackwell Street.

In addition to receiving her award for community service, Owens will speak on “Where I come from and why I love Syracuse.”
Owens has worked for more than 30 years in the fields of housing, community development, human services and government.

In her current position of deputy mayor, Owens oversees city programs and services that address quality of life in our community, including Neighborhood and Business Development and Parks and Recreation, as well as the Police and Fire Departments. Owens also serves as chief of staff to the Mayor. Prior to this appointment, Owens served as CEO of Syracuse Model Neighborhood Facility Inc.

“We’re pleased to welcome the public to our celebration of Black History Month,” said Gloria Lopez, JD, assistant vice president for diversity and inclusion. “Our celebration will be one that inspires, engages, entertains and unites us.”

Joining Owens as an award recipient will be Natividad Cabrera of Synergy/Mercy Works; Cassandra Bradford of the Joslin Diabetes Center; and Taia Jones-Lucas of Upstate’s Medical/Surgical Unit. Being honored posthumously will be William (Don) Terry III of the Faculty & Staff Association for Diversity/President’s Diversity Council.

Kayla Green, a student at Jamesville-Dewitt High School, will present a dance performance.

Interim President Mantosh Dewan, MD, will offer welcoming remarks.

Additional Black History Month events are planned for this month and all are free and open to the public unless otherwise stated. In addition to the Feb. 13 celebration, the events include:

—Elizabeth Blackwell Day. Tuesday, Feb. 26. Noon. Room 4414A Academic Building. Presentation: “Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell,” by Sharon Brangman, MD, Distinguished Service Professor and chair of Geriatrics.

—Sara Loguen Fraser Day. Wednesday, Feb. 27. Noon. Room 1144 Academic Building. Presentation: “Dr. Sarah Loguen: Underground Railroad Princess,” by Vanessa Johnson.

—Student National Medical Association Gala. Friday, Feb. 15. 7 p.m. to midnight. Marriot Syracuse Downtown, 100 E. Onondaga St. $25 students; $40 general admission.

Black History Month events are supported and coordinated by Upstate’s Faculty & Staff Association for Diversity, Division of Student Affairs and Office of Multicultural Affairs, Student Medical Association, Medical Alumni Office, Office of Diversity and Inclusion and the Office of the President.