In 1961, President John F. Kennedy established the President’s Commission on the Status of Women. Eleanor Roosevelt was the chair and Esther Peterson of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Women’s Bureau was vice-chair.
Its 1963 landmark report recommended that each state form a similar commission. Today there are approximately 270 state, county and local commissions for women located in the United States and its territories.
These commissions are advocates for equality and justice for women and serve their communities in a variety of ways depending on the resources available. Many maintain shelters for the abused, others have tutorial programs for teens and illiterate adults, testify before their legislators on issues that impact women and their families, and disseminate information to their constituency.
Each commission functions independently, responding to the needs of its particular community and reporting to its own local government.
The Miami-Dade County Commission for Women, established in 1971, is one of the first women’s commissions in Florida. There are several other women’s commissions in Florida at the local and state level. Most of these women’s commissions are members of the National Association of Commissions for Women, based in Washington, DC.
The Commission for Women is an advisory board to the Board of County Commissioners, the County Administration and the public at large about issues pertaining to the status of women. The Commission for Women also advocates for the women in the community and strives to improve their quality of life.
- Monica Interian, Chair (D7)
- Sarah Zabel, First Vice Chair (D4)
- Lourdes Abadin, Second Vice Chair (D13)
- Marie Eloi, Member at Large (D2)
- Sharon Kendrick Johnson, Immediate Past Chair (D6)
- Gabrielle Johnson (D1)
- Clora Adkins (D1)
- Diana Palacios (D3)
- Christine Butler (D4)
- Gail Epstein (D5)
- Melinda McNichols (D60
- LaSonya Rodgers (D8)
- Charo Valero (D8)
- Rose Martin (D9)
- Viviana Greer Digon (D10)
- Maria Santa Maria (D10)
- Michelle Lapiana (D11)
- Daneila McVea Smith (D11)
- Sonia Perez (D12)
- Josefina Oramas (D12)
The Commission for Women has several committees that are reflective of the issues and concerns of its constituents. These committees are:
- Executive Committee
- Events and Fundraising Committee
- Economic Empowerment Committee
- Legislative Commitee
- Commission Goals/Bylaws Committee
- Communications Committee
- Violence Against Women and Girls Committee
- CEDAW Committee
- Elderly Empowerment Committee
- The Miami-Dade County Commission for Women (CFW), one of the first women’s commissions in Florida, is proud to be among the 270 state, county and local commissions for women located in the United States and its territories.
We serve as an Advisory Board to the Board of County Commissioners and the County Administration with respect to all matters affecting the status of women. Our members are appointed by the County Commissioners from all district, and we are a diverse group of women representing the many cultures and ethnic backgrounds that make up Miami-Dade County.
The CFW, through the collaboration with Mayor Daniella Levine Cava, our Commissioners and various stakeholders and community organizations in Miami-Dade works to advocate for women in a multitude of ways to make sustainable changes to improve the status of women in our County. In alignment with the Convention to Eliminate Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), the CFW makes annual recommendations to the County Commissioners about improving the status of women in our community and advancing policies and programs that promote gender equity. We further advocate for expanding paid parental leave, advocating for domestic workers, improved access to healthcare and many more policies affecting women. We collaborate with the League of Women Voters to commemorate Women’s Equality Day and each year during Women’s History Month we celebrate with a kickoff event celebrating women in Miami-Dade. The CFW also co-sponsors the “In the Company of Women Awards” with the Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade, an event that recognizes outstanding accomplishments of women in our community in various professional categories. Through our “Young Woman Achiever” scholarship program, we have recognized several seniors graduating from the Young Women’s Preparatory Academy.
We could not move forward without the support of the Board of County Commissioners. We are always grateful for our Executive Director, Monica Skoko Rodriguez, who helps to turn our vision into action. And lastly, thanks to all the unsung heroes who make these efforts possible and to our founder Roxcy Bolton, who advocated for our creation to give women’s issues a voice and a forum.
I look forward to serving as the Chair to bring more innovative ideas to the forefront such as a women’s resources website that is currently in the works. I encourage others to step forward with their challenges and assist the CFW in inspiring women to take a stand on issues affecting them.
Our work is not done!
Chair, Miami-Dade County Commission for Women
The Status of Women in Miami-Dade County and CEDAW
On September 1, 2015, the Board of County Commissioners enacted Ordinance #15-87, the "CEDAW" ordinance. In the CEDAW ordinance, Miami-Dade County adopted the spirit and principles of the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), the international women's rights treaty. By enacting this ordinance, Miami-Dade County commits to being proactive about improving the status of women in our community and advancing policies and programs that promote gender equity. In connection with this ordinance, the Commission Auditor and the FIU Metropolitan Center prepared the Status of Women in Miami-Dade County 2016 report and the Commission for Women prepared Recommendations.
Equal Pay Miami-Dade Initiative
The Miami-Dade County Commission for Women is proud to partner with The Women's Fund Miami-Dade on its Equal Pay Miami-Dade initiative, a campaign to encourage the private sector to close the wage gap between men and women. Learn more about the Equal Pay Miami-Dade.
In the Company of Women Awards
The Miami-Dade County Commission for Women is a co-sponsor of the annual "In the Company of Women" awards, which recognizes outstanding women for their professional achievements, volunteerism, and contributions to the community. Learn more about the annual awards.
Julia Tuttle Statue
The Miami-Dade Commission for Women was pleased to collaborate on the creation of the historic Julia Tuttle statue, unveiled on July 28, 2010, in downtown Miami's Bayfront Park. Known as the "Mother of Miami," Julia S. Tuttle is recognized as the only woman founder of a major American city. The statue is located at the southern end of Bayfront Park, next to the playground. The statue is a 10 foot bronze with scenes that are typical of Miami in 1896, the year of its founding, depicted on Julia's skirt.
Recognition of Women's History
The Miami-Dade County Commission for Women supported the initiative to replace one of Florida's two statues currently in National Statuary Hall in the U.S. Capitol with a new statue of Marjory Stoneman Douglas. Mary McLeod Bethune was eventually selected for the replacement statue by the Florida Legislature in 2018. The Commission for Women is also working to increase the number of Florida Historical Markers that recognize women and women’s accomplishments in Miami-Dade County. Some of the women that will be recognized include Amelia Earhart, Julia Tuttle, Eleanor Galt Simmons, Marion Manley and Barbara Baer Capitman.
The following offices and agencies provide assistance and services that are especially useful for women:
To file a claim for sex discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, credit and financing practices, family leave and domestic violence leave contact the Commission on Human Rights.
The Miami-Dade County Department of Community Action and Human Services, provides a myriad of social services. Catalyst Miami also provides assistance and information for low to moderate income women and the YWCA in Miami also provides services and programs to women and children. In South Miami-Dade, MUJER, Inc. provides services and assistance to low income women, including migrant workers.
For free legal services for low income women, contact Legal Services of Greater Miami. The Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center assists immigrants and asylum seekers with their immigration cases and has a special unit to help immigrant women who are victims of domestic violence and who have immigration issues.
For homeless assistance, contact the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust. The Homeless Assistance hotline is 1-877-994-4357.
For help finding a job, contact South Florida Workforce.domestic violence survivors.
The Commission for Women is looking for volunteers to serve as liaison between the Advisory Boards and the Miami-Dade County community at large. There are three seats available to serve in County Commission Districts 7, 9 and 13.
All volunteer members must be permanent residents of Miami-Dade County. In addition, members should have demonstrated an interest in the field, activity or sphere covered by the board.
The primary consideration in appointing volunteer members is to provide the board with the needed technical, professional, financial, business or administrative expertise.
Please note: all volunteers must pass a background check, provided by Miami-Dade County.
For more information, please read the Standards for Creation and Review of Boards Generally.
Duties & Responsibilities:
To serve as an advisory capacity to the community and Miami-Dade County, in respect to all matters pertaining to the status of women, including but not limited to discrimination against women, employment of women, education of women, establishment of day care centers in the community and attitudes towards women in the community, and to make periodic reports and recommendations to these bodies in respect of such matters.
To serve as a medium for responsible persons to utilize and consult with in attempting to understand and solve the many complex problems involved with dealing with the status of women.
To make findings and recommendations to the County Commission and the County administration regarding such matters as are presented to the Commission.
For more information, please read the Commission for Women Advisory Board Code of Ordinance.
The Office of Community Advocacy is looking for volunteers to serve as liaison between the Advisory Boards and the Miami-Dade County community at large.
- Inside the Connections Directory you will find a directory of Women's Organizations and Programs.
- Aqua Foundation for Women
- Dress for Success Miami
- The Junior League of Miami
- League of Women Voters of Miami-Dade
- Woman's Club of Coconut Grove
- Women's Chamber of Commerce of Miami-Dade
- Women's Fund Miami-Dade
- YWCA Greater Miami-Dade
- Broward County Commission on the Status of Women
- California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls
- Florida Commission on the Status of Women
- Georgia Commission on Women
- Maryland Commission on the Status of Women
- Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women
- New York City Commission on Gender Equity
- San Francisco Commission on the Status of Women
- Seattle Women's Commission
- American Association of University Women (AAUW)
- The Feminist Majority
- Institute for Women's Policy Research
- League of Women Voters
- Ms. Magazine
- National Organization for Women (NOW)
- National Women's Law Center
- National Women's Political Caucus
- National Women's Hall of Fame
- National Women's History Alliance
- National Women's History Museum
- Women in Military Service for America Memorial
- Women's Sports Foundation
Commission for Women
Board Agendas and Meetings
Leaving Miami-Dade County
You are now leaving the official website of Miami-Dade County government. Please be aware that when you exit this site, you are no longer protected by our privacy or security policies. Miami-Dade County is not responsible for the content provided on linked sites. The provision of links to these external sites does not constitute an endorsement.
Please click 'OK' to be sent to the new site, or Click 'Cancel' to go back.