Senator Steve Saland (R,I,C Poughkeepsie) today announced that Shirley A. Adams of Poughkeepsie has been selected as a 2007 New York State Senate Woman of Distinction.
The Senate's "Women of Distinction" program was created in 1998 to honor New York women who exemplify personal excellence, or whose professional achievements or acts of courage, selflessness, integrity or perseverance serve as an example to all New Yorkers.
For the past 26 years, Shirley Adams has dedicated her life to public service. Before moving to Poughkeepsie, Shirley served under New York City Mayors Ed Koch and David Dinkins. She was appointed as First Deputy Commissioner of the New York City Community Development Agency and subsequently reappointed to that position by Mayor Rudy Giuliani. During her career in New York City government, she received many awards including 1989 Woman of the Year from the Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women, Women’s Advisor Program.
After relocating to Poughkeepsie in 1995, Shirley was appointed Executive Director of the Catherine Street Community Center, which provides after school and social service assistance to children and families. In 1998 she was appointed to the Dutchess County HIV/AIDS Planning Counsel and served as Chair for six years. For her service to AIDS organizations, she received the 1998 Distinguished Service Award from the NYS Department of Health, AIDS Institute and the 2004 Community Service Award from the Dutchess County HIV Health Service Planning Council.
Shirley serves on several boards and committees, including the Dutchess County Criminal Justice Coordinating Council, the Poughkeepsie Area Chamber of Commerce, the Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery, the City of Poughkeepsie Rotary, where she served as president in 2004-2005, and she is the Board Chair of the Poughkeepsie Housing Authority. She earned a B.A. in Psychology and Special Education from Bennett College in North Carolina and an M.A. in Public Administration from New York University.
"Shirley Adams exemplifies the qualities of selflessness and dedication to public service that have earned her many much deserved accolades," said Senator Saland. "I have worked with Shirley for a number of years and have never ceased to be amazed at her energy, her enthusiasm and her ability to get the job done. The people of Poughkeepsie are indeed lucky to have Shirley as their advocate," Saland continued. "Her name will now join the list of Women of Distinction from across the State who have worked to enhance the quality of life of their communities," Saland added.
The 2007 Women of Distinction were honored in ceremonies at the Empire State Plaza in Albany on June 5th.