Austin College professionals are at work to bring the ATHENA Award back to the area this fall, recognizing two exemplary leaders from Grayson, Fannin, or Cooke counties with the ATHENA Leadership Award® and the ATHENA Young Professional Leadership Award at a dinner Thursday, September 11. The program is offered by Austin College and its Texoma Women Get Connected program.
“Austin College is pleased to take the lead in this effort to acknowledge distinguished leaders in the local region,” said Austin College President Marjorie Hass. “All who live and work in this region benefit from the presence of prominent citizens who make our communities better places. To have a role in recognizing these leaders is one way to show appreciation and esteem for the honorees and the greater communities in which we share.”
Nominations for the 2014 awards will be accepted through July 30, with completion of the applications. Event sponsors also are needed, with $2,500 and $5,000 sponsorship levels available. To be recognized on the event invitations, those sponsorships must be made by July 30. Table Sponsorships, $1,000 each, also are available and must be completed by August 15. See more information about sponsorship. For more information, contact Jill Joiner Roberts, Austin College director of development, at 903.813.2422.
“The ATHENA Award® program is a worthy one for support and development,” said Kris McKinney, who along with Hillary Luckett Clark, co-chairs the Texoma Women Get Connected Committee. “The participation of area business leaders in this program sends a clear message of investment in the community and its growth by identifying and honoring its leaders.” The co-chairs are Austin College alumnae: Kris graduated in 1978, and Hillary, in 2009.
The ATHENA Leadership Award® is presented to individuals who have attained and embody the highest level of professional excellence in their business or profession, devote time and energy to improve the quality of life for others in the community, and actively assist women in realizing their full leadership potential.
ATHENA Young Professional Leadership nominees are emerging women leaders who demonstrate excellence, creativity, and initiative in their business or profession; provide valuable service to improve the quality of life for others in their community; and clearly serve as role models for young women, both personally and professionally.
The ATHENA Award had been presented locally in the past by the Sherman and Denison Chambers of Commerce, but had not been awarded in several years. Those awards recognized more than 30 local women, including Janie Bates, Margaret Ann “Cookie” Hill, Donna Hunt, Anna McKinney, Honey Minshew, Frances Pelley, and Gail Utter. A list of all known recipients is included on the Austin College Athena Award website.
The ATHENA Leadership Award Program is administered by ATHENA International, a non-profit women’s leadership organization, along with licensed host organizations and sponsors. Over 6,000 awards have been presented in the U.S. and around the world since the program’s inception in 1982.
Austin College, a private national liberal arts college located north of Dallas in Sherman, Texas, has earned a reputation for excellence in academic preparation, international study, pre-professional foundations, leadership development, committed faculty, and hands-on, adventurous learning opportunities. One of 40 schools profiled in Loren Pope’s influential book Colleges That Change Lives, Austin College boasts a welcoming community that embraces diversity and individuality, with more than 36 percent of students representing ethnic minorities. A residential student body of 1,250 students and a faculty of more than 100 allow a 12:1 student-faculty ratio and personalized attention. The College is related by covenant to the Presbyterian Church (USA) and cultivates an inclusive atmosphere that supports students’ faith journeys regardless of religious tradition. Founded in 1849, the College is the oldest institution of higher education in Texas operating under original name and charter.