Belinda Wells, Brenda Jacobs, Dr. Bettye Gragg and Dr. Felicia Watkins Brown. Not pictured: Rosie Coleman

Five Drew County women were recognized Saturday night at the Drew County NAACP banquet which featured guest speaker State Rep. Darrin Williams, the first African-American selected to be Speaker-designate of the state House of Representatives.

The Drew County NAACP’s 2012 “Phenomenal Women” awards went to Dr. Felicia Watkins Brown, Dr. Bettye Gragg, Brenda Handley-Jacobs, Belinda Wells and Rosie Smith-Coleman. Gaynell Jamison gave a tribute to each woman.

Also, Chapter President Tommy Daniels was also honored with a Silver Lifetime Award.

Arkansas House of Representatives Speaker-designee Darrin Williams

After dinner, Monticello lawyer P. Luevonda Ross introduced her longtime friend and Arkansas House of Representatives Speaker-designed Darrin Williams. Williams, a 43-year-old Democrat from Little Rock who represents state House District 36 in Pulaski County, gave a rousing speech in line with the banquet theme, “Your power, your decision – VOTE!”

Kymara Seals, deputy state director for U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor, served as mistress of ceremonies, and Kirby Merritt provided music at the event which was held at the Gibson Center on the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

Drew County Judge Damon Lampkin and Mayor Allen Maxwell brought greetings from the county and city, while Sandra Campbell gave a welcome from UAM.

Drew County Judge Damon Lampkin (center) welcomes attendees.