Planned Parenthood

Central and Western New York
Local News

Planned Parenthood Honors Community Leaders

Agency also Welcomes National Advocate For Education Shelby Knox

Planned Parenthood of Western New York welcomes Shelby Knox as keynote speaker at “Celebrate with Friends,” an evening event for Planned Parenthood of Western New York to be held on Wednesday, April 28th, 2010 at Kleinhans Music Hall located in Buffalo. Doors open at 5:30 pm with dinner served at 6:45 pm. Supporter tickets are $75.00 and Benefactor Tickets are $125.00. Benefactor tickets include the price of admission to special Benefactor Reception from 5:00-6:00 pm and prominent listing in the program book. Reservations are required by April 16. Please call (716) 831-2200 and select option 4 to make a reservation.

Shelby Knox is a young, passionate activist and organizer working to promote sex education, women's rights, and youth empowerment. Knox starred in the award winning 2005 documentary film The Education of Shelby Knox, a film that followed Knox, a then 15-year-old high school sophomore, as she battled to have sex education included in the curriculum at her high school in conservative Lubbock, Texas. In recognition of her courageous support for comprehensive sex education, Planned Parenthood will present Shelby Knox with its 2010 Education Award.

Planned Parenthood is also extremely proud to honor three outstanding members of the community with awards.

The 2010 William B. Hoyt Advocacy For Choice Award
Linda Ray and Colden Ray, Community Volunteers

Linda Ray and Colden Ray are a mother and daughter duo who are proud to advocate for choice and Planned Parenthood at every opportunity.

Linda Ray was a Planned Parenthood patient and a volunteer in Texas during the ‘70s. She gives credit to her daughter Colden for re-igniting her passion for Planned Parenthood and for choice when Colden invited her to accompany her to the March for Women’s Lives in Washington, D.C. in 2004.  From that memorable event forward, Linda has volunteered for, and invested in, Planned Parenthood of Western New York. She provides fund development expertise to the agency’s leadership and is a member of its Promise for Tomorrow multi-year giving Society.  

Colden Ray has been actively involved in Planned Parenthood since 2003 after returning to Buffalo from Boston, MA, where she was a leader in advocating for access to reproductive healthcare and choice. For Planned Parenthood, she has volunteered in community outreach, as well as being a medical clinic assistant and an advocate for comprehensive sex education. Colden is committed to social justice and currently works in housing and community development, as well as consulting in the field of HIV/AIDS.

Planned Parenthood of Western New York 2010 Health Award
Margaret M. Toohey, President, Lewiston Insurance Agency, Inc.

Margaret Toohey demonstrates what it means to make a positive impact on the health of her community through leadership and volunteerism. As a former member and Chair of Planned Parenthood’s Board of Directors, Toohey has devoted nearly a decade of service to support the agency’s long-term success. In 2006, she played a crucial role in Planned Parenthood’s merger of the Erie and Niagara County offices. She continues to work on the agency’s behalf as a member of its Development Committee to assist in fundraising for the mission. Also a board member of the governing board of Niagara Falls Memorial Hospital for nearly 10 years, Toohey is currently serving her second term as board secretary and has chaired the hospital’s Community Alliance, an outreach and networking initiative that aids in fundraising, volunteer recruitment and community relations. An active member of her church, graduate of Leadership Niagara, and President of a self-built successful insurance agency, Lewiston Insurance Agency, Toohey remains committed to the advancement of health care in Niagara County and throughout Western New York.


Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York, Inc.


Amy L. White

Director of Marketing & Communications
Phone: (716) 831-2200 ext. 5910 Email: [email protected]


April 28, 2010

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Planned Parenthood Honors Community Leaders