The Louise Tanner Brown Award Goes to Rashida Lovely

Louise Tanner Brown (1883–1955), lived in Scranton, businesswoman, civic leader and activist in the civil rights movement, educator, orator, dramatist, and humanitarian. In Scranton’s growing African American community in the early 20th century, she operated the G.W. Brown Trucking Co. and made it a success. Brown lived her life in Scranton as a successful businesswoman, Ms. Louise was among the local elite. She was a sophisticated woman with a signature style and a voice so eloquent it was known to drop jaws. In 1923, Louise Tanner Brown made a life-changing choice to continue her husband’s trucking business following his unexpected death. Despite criticism, she managed his trucking company for more than 20 successful years.

The Louise Tanner Brown Award will honor a local resident who respects great character and dedication to the success of the community, the county, and whose ideals align with those of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Meet Rashida Lovely

RASHIDA LOVELY of Dunmore is biologist, entrepreneur, businessowner, dance instructor, mentor of youth and young adults, minority advocate and civic leader.

In 2009, she and her husband, Keith, and their three young sons, Curtis, Dahon and Rashid, moved from urban New Jersey to Dunmore for a safer, better quality of life.

In 2015, she opened Newave Studios in Scranton to give disadvantaged and at-risk kids a low-cost, creative outlet where they can learn to dance, explore the arts, science and technology, pick up technical skills and see examples of wholesome families. The studio began at Wyoming Avenue and Olive Street before she moved it to 1818 Jackson St., where it remains.

She is one of 5 co-founding members is the North East Pennsylvania Black chamber of Commerce, established in 2020, and is its director of operations.

She is also the co-founding member of the North East Pennsylvania Pan African Coalition, NEPA’s only black owned and operated social organization which is recognized by congress and the House of Representatives.

In 2021, Lovely was nominated to the environmental Justice board of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental protection where she currently serves.

Her list of awards include:

Congressional honors, House of representative honors, Penn State excellence in diversity award recipient.

The recipient of a Celebrating Women in Conservation Award from PennFuture, an environmental watchdog organization committed to protecting the air, water and land and empowering citizens to build sustainable communities for future generations. And the recipient of National organization black women green future award of excellence.