The 2018 honorees for the Brighton Area Women’s History Roll of Honor have been announced.

Among those being recognized during Women’s History Month in March are three pioneers for women’s voting rights. Nina Jones Cord Stowe was the first woman elected to the Brighton School Board in 1913 and a leading advocate for women’s suffrage. She became a rural teacher in 1926 and taught at the Foster School on Gregory Road in Iosco Township until 1929. Charlotte L. Haight Mellus and Haidee F. Judson Brady were the first two women to vote in the Village of Brighton’s council elections in 1919 following passage of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote. Mellus became a certified nurse and helped her husband establish his medical practice in Brighton before helping to operate a summer camp for girls at Silver Lake. Brady was a 1917 graduate from Michigan Agricultural College, the forerunner of Michigan State University, where she became a member of the first women’s MAC tennis team. Her contributions were recognized with a varsity letter from MSU in 2002. She also taught in the Brighton School District.

Also being recognized is Reneé R. Nix, who established Brighton’s Jumpin’ All-Stars Jump Rope Team in 2007, which earned first place at the International Jump Rope Competition in 2012. A substitute teacher for K-12 students since 2001, Nix has been active leading the Lindbom and Hornung Elementary Jump Rope Clubs, encouraging her students to share skills with Hartland Community Education, and hosting over 35 international exchange students in her home.

Sarah Richardson-Burns was a 1994 BHS graduate who co-founded an Ann Arbor based biomedical device company whose products are still utilized today on electrodes used for a variety of purposes including deep brain and spinal cord stimulation. After being diagnosed with colon cancer in 2013, she founded Align Botanica to develop products combining ancient healing knowledge and medical evidence-based information. These products were in the testing phase when Sarah passed, and her sisters continue to develop products using mindfulness and nature’s medicines.

Mary Zizka St. Pierre, a 1968 BHS graduate who was one of the first female radio DJ’s working in Detroit as Midnight Mary until leaving radio in 1989 to earn her nursing degree. She became a trauma nurse and taught Advanced Cardiac Life Support for 20 years and now serves as a member of the Livingston County Nurse Reserve Corps helping to teach CPR classes and immunization clinics. Zizka St. Pierre has been an avid local volunteer, serving as a member of the Livingston Sunrise Rotary Club and co-chairing the annual “Midnight in the Tropics” fundraiser. She also volunteers yearly with the United Way’s Community Connect and delivers Christmas packages for Livingston County Catholic Charities.

Natalie Klein was named the Athletic Championship Honoree for her selection as the 2018 Miss Bowling by the Michigan High School Interscholastic Bowling Coaches Association. During state match play, she finished seventh and eighth her first two years, second her junior year, and third her senior year, leading all girls and boys in the 2018 state final six-game qualifier block. Klein averaged 209 in KLAA competitions, over 20 pins higher than second place.

The Roll of Honor has been recognizing women from the Brighton Area since 2003 as a part of their efforts to bring awareness to women’s contributions to society. The honorees will be celebrated during a March 23rd ceremony at the Brighton District Library. You’ll find full biographies of all the nominees posted below. (JK)