Mae Suramek, ’95

Joseph CarrickLeave a Comment

Outstanding Young Alumnus Award

“… I was definitely very honored and humbled to receive this award. It wouldn’t matter if I won any other award out there I don’t believe it would matter as much to me as this award right here.”

HC 15 Awards for Mae_cdw (10)-1After graduating from Berea College in 1995, Mae served in the AmeriCorps program in Harold, Kentucky, at a domestic violence shelter in Lexington, Kentucky, and at a refugee resettlement center in Raleigh, North Carolina. She also spent eight years working in the field of human rights enforcement and advocacy for city and state governments in Kentucky and North Carolina. In 2004, she returned to her alma mater, where she served as Berea’s alumni director for nine years. Upon her 40th birthday, she left Berea “to find that place where her deep gladness meets the world’s deep needs” and became the executive director of the Bluegrass Rape Crisis Center, a non-profit service and advocacy organization whose mission is to eliminate sexual violence and human trafficking in 17 counties in central Kentucky. Mae is the former chair of the Berea Human Rights Commission and is an avid blogger on social justice issues via her Plain Jane Activism blog. Mae ran for Berea City Council in 2014, and while she lost her bid by 200 votes, she helped to renew civic engagement among everyday Bereans, and helped to diversify the voices and faces represented in local campaigns and elections. In her various roles, Mae has provided internships, employment opportunities and mentoring to countless fellow Bereans. Mae has a B.A. in psychology from Berea College and an M.A. in counseling from Eastern Kentucky University. She believes, with every fiber of her being, that the world is more whole when we focus on that which binds us, rather than what divides us.

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