crew. The love I felt when I first came there. You know when you meet special people. Shiva has been an avid supporter of the work that I do. She has made an
impact in my life. Advocating for us through grant processes. I know I can call her whenever I need to.”
In accepting her award, Alder Bidar-Sielaff stated, “Thank you for the work that you do Will and Becky. I wish I had met your mom. I can feel her spirit here. It is
through her love that she brought you here to our community. I met you through Fabiola. Someone used the word genuine and I can’t find a better word to describe
you. This is a community where we seldom give the space for people who want to do different work, new work or are trying to just make a difference by being right
there in their own community. That is the work we need to see more of. I hope that we will continue to support you.”
The next recipient, Lisa Peyton-Caire, is the founder of the Foundation for Black Women’s Wellness. Her work, like Green’s, was born from the loss of her mother in
2006 from heart disease. Starting with a one-day summit, the work has become a progression, which has mobilized a movement in the Greater Madison community
to intentionally address and improve Black women’s health.
In choosing Peyton-Caire, Green recognized her work in the community, but also its impact on her as the daughter of a mother who left too soon.
“I can only imagine how hard it is to do it,” Green said. “We are trying to help people who are hurting and who need us, and we are hurting too from the loss of our
Fighting back tears, Peyton-Caire graciously accepted the award, acknowledging, “It is difficult not to be emotional in accepting this award, which means more to
me than any award that I have ever received and I have received quite a few. When Will approached me to let me know he was giving me the award, I was
overtaken by emotion because of the connection we share. When you lose your mother, it is a profound experience and it changes your life. In both of our cases it
was our mothers’ last breath that gave us the gift of life and accelerated our push towards our purpose and giving our contributions to the world. In my case, it is
really fighting for the health and well-being of Black women. It was inspiring seeing the way our mothers sacrificed and gave everything in their being, so we might
live the fullest lives that we could under insurmountable challenges as black women.”
Madison is richer community thanks to those honored and for Will and Becky Green’s efforts to mentor positively.