Muriel M. Chalem Receives Unsung Heroine Award
Tuesday, March 02, 2004
Special to suffredin.org
Evanstonian Muriel M. Chalem received the 2004 Unsung Heroine Award from the Cook County Commission on Women's Issues. Chalem, representing Cook County's 13th District, was honored along with sixteen other women - one from each of the 17 county districts - during Women's History Month at a March 2 breakfast at the Chicago Cultural Center.
Merri Dee of WGN-TV was emcee the event. County Board President John Stroger and Women's Issues Commission Chair Peggy Montes gave brief remarks.
Honorees were selected based on their contributions to their communities, families and professional endeavors that are vital, but seldom recognized. "These honorees are our neighbors, our mothers, our sisters and our daughters," Jennifer Vidis, Executive Director of the Cook County Commission on Women's Issues, said. "They are drawn from the community they serve."
Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin, Women's Commission member Trina Janes (Skokie) and 2003 award recipient Lali Watt (Wilmette) led the selection committee for the 13th County Board District, which includes areas of Evanston, Glencoe, Glenview, Kenilworth, Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, Niles, Northbrook, Skokie, Wilmette, Winnetka and Chicago's 49th and 50th Wards.
"Muriel Chalem has a long history of involvement with the community. She organized the first ever First Night Evanston, an event that has puts Evanston on the map as a place to be each New Year's Eve", commented Commissioner Suffredin.
First Night Evanston just celebrated its 11th year and is the largest event of its kind in Illinois. The 2003 celebration had 250 performers at 17 different venues and attracted a crowd of many thousands who came from all over the area to partake in the fun.
Chalem is also a founding member of Mikdosh El Synagogue and, with her late husband, founded the United Soccer Association of Evanston. She is a former president of the Evanston Arts Council and currently serves on the board of Next Theater. She continues to serve on the board of First Night Evanston.