City names Arielle Brandy as 2019’s ‘Leaders Under 40' honoree
SOUTH BEND, Ind.—The City of South Bend hosted an awards ceremony on Thursday night at the Charles Black Community Center to honor local leaders making an impact.
One of the night’s award winners, Arielle Brandy, was celebrated as 2019’s “Leaders Under 40” honoree.
Brandy serves as the national committeewoman for the Indiana Young Democrats, the democratic board member of voter registration for St. Joseph County, vice president of St. Joseph County African American Democratic Coalition and political action chair for the South Bend chapter of the NAACP.
“I was not expecting it and when I got the news that I would be receiving it I was in my office and I cried because in the past, I have gone to the previous three award ceremonies and a lot of the people that have been honored are people I’ve looked up to people that have mentored me,” Brandy said.
City Clerk Kareemah Fowler was honored with the award in 2018.
Recently, Brandy was selected as one of 22 Hoosier women in Indiana for the inaugural civic leadership class of Hoosier Women Forward
Brandy is also a full-time mother of two girls, who were in attendance to watch her receive the award on Thursday night.
“To have them there and be able to watch that makes me tear up but also it’s a moment for me because at one point I was a statistic, I was a young teenage mother trying to navigate life and figure it out and to have my daughter and be able to show her what you are able to do in times like that, and rise up and become a leader like this, it’s an honor to be able to show this to them,” Brandy said.
The 29-year-old was born and raised in South Bend and says it’s uplifting to see her work making a difference.
“It helps me realize that the work I am doing is making an impact I talk about this a lot in public service there are more defeats than there are victories there are a lot of times where we feel like we’re in a constant battle of trying to make the biggest impact we can and try to stay with our moral compass with trying to do what we think is right for the people and the good of the people,” Brandy said.
Brandy is currently working on obtaining a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Indiana State University.
A short documentary following Brandy’s advocacy work was just showcased at the 30th Annual Notre Dame Student Film Festival.
Brandy’s photo is displayed on the city’s billboards in celebration of Black History Month.
Other honorees included Pastor Hardie Blake, Jr., Samuel L. Brown, John Collins, Jr., Jonathan Davis, Jr., Janice Hall, George Hill, Consuella Jackson-Hopkins, Carlton L. Lyons, MD, Pastor Jonathan Miller, Tasha Reed Outlaw, Maurice Scott, Marguerite Taylor, and Pastor Rickardo Taylor, Sr.
Antonius Northern received the Obama Award. A special tribute was made to Frankie’s BBQ.