Michigan Women’s Historical Center showcases great accomplishments of women across the state

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By Kevyn Collier-Roberts
Listen Up Lansing Staff Reporter

“Every woman here is an inspiration,” said Caitlyn Perry Dial, the museum director at the Michigan Women’s Historical Center & Hall of Fame.

Michigan Women’s Historical Center & Hall of Fame is a hidden gem here in the Lansing area. The museum showcases the many historical accomplishments of Michigan women, both deceased and alive. In the museum each woman being acknowledged has her own plaque on the wall with a few paragraphs briefly explaining her remarkable story.

Quotable gifts sit along the shelves of the museum's gift shop.

Quotable gifts sit along the shelves of the museum’s gift shop.

On June 10, 1987, the Michigan Women’s Historical Center & Hall of Fame was dedicated to the public. The Michigan Women’s Studies Association, which was founded on Michigan State University’s campus, decided to establish a museum that was specifically dedicated to women’s history.

The Michigan Women’s Historical Center & Hall of Fame is one of a kind, seeing that it is the first of its kind in the nation and the only women’s museum in Michigan.

Each year new women are nominated and inducted into the Hall of Fame. In order to be considered as a Hall of Fame honoree, the lady of interest must have been born in Michigan, died in Michigan, and done something significant. Once the final group of women are chosen after being approved by multiple board members during different rounds, the Michigan Women’s Studies Association hosts a benefit in the month of October to honor the new inductees into the Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame.

Sue Carter, along with nine other accomplished women, hang front and center on the Hall of Fame wall in the historical museum.

Sue Carter, along with nine other accomplished women, hang front and center on the Hall of Fame wall in the historical museum.

In 2015, Sue Carter was inducted in the Women’s Hall of Fame and acknowledged for being a trailblazing radio journalist. Carter started her career as a radio broadcaster. As she thrived in her career, she became the first woman to join the news staff at WVIC/Lansing and WXYZ/Detroit. Carter was also the first woman news director in 1977 at WAVZ/New Haven and WABX/Detroit in 1978.

Carter has received great recognition for her copious accomplishments. She is the winner of three Emmy awards and was inducted in 2006 into Michigan’s Journalism Hall of Fame.

Some of the other 2015 Hall of Fame inductees include Linda M. Woods, the first female veteran to carry an Eagle staff, Candice S. Miller, the first woman elected Michigan Secretary of State, and Representative Maxine Berman, the former Michigan Representative and advocate for women’s health.

The Michigan Women’s Historical Center & Hall of Fame also has an exhibit on display entitled Great Girls in Michigan History. This exhibit highlights nine different girls from various areas around Michigan, with different dreams, who all accomplished something significant before the age of 20. This exhibit features women like Serena Williams, Tricia McNaughton (Saunders), MaryLou Hernandez, and Myra Komaroff (Wolfgang).

Serena Williams, MaryLou Hernandez (Olivarez Mason), Myra Komaroff (Wolfgang), and Tricia McNaughton (Saunders) hang along the wall of the Great Girls in History exhibit.

Serena Williams, MaryLou Hernandez (Olivarez Mason), Myra Komaroff (Wolfgang), and Tricia McNaughton (Saunders) hang along the wall of the Great Girls in History exhibit.

The Great Girls in Michigan History exhibit is appropriate for all ages and is on display for the public until February 2017.

The Michigan Women’s Historical Center & Hall of Fame is located at 213 W. Malcolm X St. in Lansing, MI. Hours of operation are Wed-Sat. from noon until 4 p.m. and closed on holidays.

Admission is required to explore the museum. An admission for adults is $3, $2 for students, and children 5 and under is free.

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