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story.lead_photo.caption Five local and very accomplished ladies received honor and recognition Saturday evening for their service to the Texarkana area during the 24th annual Tribute to African-American Women Awards Banquet. Pictured, from left, are Angela Featherson, Angela Pickett-Murphy, LaMoya Burks, Dorthy King Pace and Yolanda Wise-Johnson. Photo by Stan Shavers

Five local and very accomplished ladies received honor and recognition Saturday evening for their service to the Texarkana area during the 24th annual Tribute to African-American Women Awards Banquet.

Like last year, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc. and Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. hosted the event at Texarkana College's Truman Arnold Student Center.

The Honorees included:LaMoya Burks, who received the Fannie Pettie Watts Award, Angela Marie Featherson who received the Viola Tyler Goings Award, Yolanda Yzette Wise-Johnson, who received the Myrtle Tyler Faithful Award, Dorothy King Pace, who received the Pearl Anna Neal Award and Angela Pickett-Murphy who received the Arizona Cleaver Stemons Award.

Upon being presented with her award, Burks, a native of Texarkana, Texas, and the Wamba Community as well as a Distinguished Honors Graduate of Pleasant Grove High School, said her award actually belongs to the community at large.

"This isn't just my award, it's our award and may we all continue to be trailblazers," she said. "Thank you all so much."

After receiving her award, Featherson a 1987 graduate of Liberty Eylau High School who received a bachelor of science degree in education in 1991, credited her success to God.

"Praise God from who all blessings flow and I also want to thank my parents, because this is not about me," she said. "I also want my daughter Lauren, to do better than me someday."

For her part, Johnson, who was born in Tyler, Texas and raised by her parents - the late Calvin and Lucy Wise, also credited God for her success.

"It's both and blessing and an honor just to be here," Johnson, a Texas Senior High School graduate, Class of 1982 and retiree from the United Parcel Service after 27 years, said. "I'm only able to be here because of the precious grace of God."

As for Pace, she offered thanks to her parents as well as to any and all who were, in any way, connected to her receiving her award.

"I have had a wonderful life and wonderful parents," Pace, who was born in Alexandria, La. to a family of 12 children, said. "Three weeks after moving to Texarkana, I was hired by TISD and I learned to love it here, so thanks to all of you who had anything to do with allowing me to receive this honor."

Finally Murphy, a native of Texarkana, Ark., who graduated from Arkansas High School in 2000, before starting her involvement in the ministry in 2002, also acknowledge God and thanked him for His grace and mercy.

"I became who I am today only because of God and I can't thank Him enough," she said. " I also want to thank my husband Derek - we've been married for 17 years. I also want everyone to know that you have the power to change someone's life with your words."

Next year, the Tribute to African-American Women Awards Banquet will be celebrating its Silver Anniversary.

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