The Greater Kansas City Chapter of Societas Docta, Incorporated will host the Seventh Biennial Nefertiti Award and Scholarship Luncheon on Sun., March 19, 2023, at the Marriott Hotel in Overland Park.

The goal of the Nefertiti Award and Scholarship Luncheon is to honor women of color who have provided outstanding service throughout the Greater Kansas City area. At this year’s event the organization will honor 12 phenomenal women who have committed their lives to serving others in the community and in their various fields. 

The National Societas Docta, Inc. was founded in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1987 and is an organization of African American women who have earned doctoral degrees in various fields. The Greater Kansas City Chapter was chartered in 2007 and has championed the organization’s mission by working diligently to inspire and support women to achieve educational and professional excellence.

The members are committed to networking and mentoring minority women to enhance the quality of their education, as they encourage and inspire them to pursue doctoral degrees in various areas and provide financial support in the form of scholarships for those they mentor.


Since November 2021, Marshaun Butler has served as vice-president and administrator of Saint Luke’s Hospital of Kansas City, Crittenton Children’s Center.  In this role she leads and oversees Crittenton’s long-term strategy, initiatives, and programs.

Local Leadership/military 

Myra D. Everett is senior communications engagement specialist, employee outreach lead and signature event coordinator with Honeywell in KCMO where she organizes community outreach through employee engagement and planning and leading signature events like the National Science Bowl for Missouri and Kansas. 

Higher Education

Sally Ellis Fletcher is the associate dean for students at the University of Missouri-Kansas City in the School of Nursing and Health Studies. In this role she promotes application of the SoNHS’s core values, and student success in undergraduate and graduate programs.


Mya JoDa Jones is owner of the Mane Statement Salon and Barber in Lee’s Summit and Ste.One.Six in Independence.  She is an entrepreneur, leader, motivator, visionary, hair artist, boss, principal creative of her salons and has created a dream team offering dynamic beauty experiences in her total 25 suite salons. 

Mass Media

Julee Jonez, Radio Broadcaster in Kansas City for 20 years, can be heard weekdays from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. on “The Mid-Day Party” show on KPRS-FM, Hot 103 Jamz. Known for her powerful on-air presentation, her listeners experience the three E’s: entertainment, education, and encouragement. 

Local Leadership/Politics 

Stacey Knoell serves on the staff of KS Gov. Laura Kelly as the executive director of the Kansas African American Affairs Commission. She has filled leadership roles within the Kansas Democratic Party since 2017.  Previously she worked as a math teacher and a deaf interpreter. 

Public Service 

Donna Peyton has served as community outreach director for the KC Convoy of Hope for eight years. Motivated by a passion to serve, she ran for and was elected to the Raytown School District Board in 2021, where she served until taking office as 2nd District Jackson County Legislator in January 2023

Community Service 

Sgt. Salatha Solomon, who has worked in law enforcement for 24 years, is the operations sergeant for Kansas City, MO Regional Police Academy. As operations sergeant, she assesses and supports the wellness of personnel in the following areas: emotional, financial, social, spiritual, occupational, physical, environmental and intellectual. 

Mass Communications 

Since 1988, Carrie Stapleton has been the president and owner of Phillips-West Public Relations & Communications, an award-winning, full-service firm for organizations wanting to build inroads and strengthen their brand with culturally and ethnically diverse markets.

Health Qiana Thomason is the president and CEO of Health Forward Foundation, an independent purpose-led foundation working to build and support inclusive, powerful, and healthy communities characterized by racial equity and economically just systems.


Dr. Helen J. Walker is a retired educator from the Kansas City Public School District where she served for more than 30 years.  An ordained and licensed minister of God and member for over 40 years at St James United Methodist Church, she is a gifted intercessor, prayer warrior, speaker, and teacher. 

Civil Rights 

Dr. Carmaletta M. Williams is Chief Executive Officer of The Black Archives of Mid-America in Kansas City, Inc. As a notable writer, motivational speaker, editor and educator, Dr. Williams expertly communicates her love and knowledge for African American studies, diversity, inclusion and equity.