Cheers West Edition


Wave Staff Report

Juanita Crattic, Bennie Lee Jones and Mable Wesley, all at least 100 years old, were honored recently during Biddy Mason’s 200th Birthday Celebration.

The fourth annual A Call for Boldness Bridget “Biddy” Mason Unsung Shero Legacy Celebration paid tribute to black women “whose experiences and challenges were greeted with bold, spirit-lead wisdom and steadfast determination that propelled them to pursue their goals and achieve their many accomplishments.”

Wanda Austin

Wanda M. Austin has been appointed interim president of the University of Southern California by the university’s Board of Trustees.

Austin is known for her work in aeronautics and systems engineering and is co-founder of the nonprofit MakingSpace Inc. She also was the first female and African-American president and CEO of the Aerospace Corp, a nonprofit that applies science and technology to issues affecting the nation’s space program.

She earned her bachelor’s degree from Franklin & Marshall College, master of science degrees from the University of Pittsburgh and a doctorate in systems engineering from USC.

Natalya Cardona

Natalya Cardona was among one of 75 undergraduate and graduate students selected for a prestigious pre-doctoral program.

Cardona, a cellular and molecular biology major at Cal State Dominguez Hills, is a Sally Casanova Scholar and will receive a $3,000 grant for her doctoral pursuits.

She’s considering UC San Francisco and UC San Diego for her summer research program, where she hopes to work on a project focusing on disease mechanisms or treatment development. She hopes to be a biology professor some day.

Compiled by Dorany Pineda.

Cheers! features the everyday accomplishments of everyday people in South Los Angeles. To submit an item, send an email (with picture) to