Women’s, gender, sexuality awards shines light on The Kadie Project


Cam'ron Hardy

Ky Newson (left) and Angie Hunt (right) laugh as Hunt gives a speech about Newson before presenting her with the 2020 Women of Achievement Awards Wednesday evening at 7th Street Underground.

Cam'ron Hardy, News Editor

Ky Newson was presented with the 2020 Women of Achievement Award at the Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Awards Ceremony by a close friend, Angie Hunt.

Hunt also gave a heartfelt speech while giving the award.

The event took place on Wednesday at 6 p.m. in the 7th Street Underground of the Student Union.

This was the first time the ceremony has been held since 2020 due to COVID-19.

The event was supposed to happen shortly after the lockdown took place, but never happened, so the awards that were supposed to be given out then were given out that night.

A close friend of hers, Angie Hunt, presented the award with a heartfelt speech.

Hunt and Newson met each other in grad school around 2009 when Newson was being interviewed for a project that Hunt was a part of.

Hunt gave a positive explanation for nominating Newson. She said that Hunt had perseverance, passion and was just overall a hard worker. She also said how much of a “beautiful heart” that she had and the impact that she has in the community.

“And the things that she’s done for this community to Charleston for the campus and the community is amazing,” Hunt said. “Ky has touched so many students, helping them do a college visit, fill out college applications, fill out the financial aid if they need it, you know, just working with them to learn what’s possible in the world. I mean, I will say if someone like Ky had been in my life when I was 16 my life would have been so much different because I you know, when you don’t know there are possibilities.”

Hunt said that she has been a part of the women’s studies program at Eastern since around 2005 and that she had been wanting to nominate Newson for a while, and said she knew that when she nominated her that she would win.

Newson said winning the award brought her “a lot of joy.” She also said having that personal and work relationship with Hunt made the award that much better and she felt honored and humbled.

Newson is an Eastern alum and has lived in the area since 2005. She landed a job in a domestic violence agency, which is how she met Hunt.

Newson is also the Director of Advocacy for the sexual assault, counseling, and information services (SACIS), and has been at the company since 2019.

In this position, Newson has started The Kadie Project with co-founder Kate Shanks.

The Kadie Project began in 2018 and Newson said the purpose of it is to provide and promote multicultural and educational resources.

“When we started, it was collecting new or gently used resources that represented diversity inclusivity just like anything that represented a celebrated multiculturalism,” Newson said. “So, we collected those resources first for a community daycare, and then when we graduated from the daycare to classrooms, because we saw that that was the need. Teachers need to build especially new teachers or new to the field needing to build their classroom resources.”

The Kadie Project named after Ky’s daughter, Kadence, who was confronted with racism at three-years-old and Newson took the event as a learning opportunity.

The project has collected over $5,000.

For more information, contact [email protected].

Cam’ron Hardy can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]