"Athena is the only award that recognizes women for their support of other women in business," notes Beth Marcello, chair of the Athena Awards, which will recognize local women during its annual luncheon on Sept. 30.
"We know that not just in Pittsburgh but everywhere women's salaries tend to be less than men's," she adds. There are also fewer women, in proportion to the population, on corporate boards and in top corporate jobs. "That's why awards programs are important for celebrating women who have risen to the top and who are supporting women around them."
The Athena awards recognize women who demonstrate exceptional career success, community involvement and mentoring of other women. This year's Athenas garnered a record number of nominations. The finalists are:
- Lenore Blum, distinguished career professor of computer science, Carnegie Mellon University
- Theresa Bone, vice president and corporate controller, EQT Corporation
- Maurita Bryant, assistant chief, Pittsburgh Bureau of Police
- Laura Ellsworth, partner-in-charge, Jones Day, Pittsburgh Office
- Titina Ott, vice president worldwide alliance and channels, Oracle Corporation
Finalists for the ATHENA Young Professional Award, given for only the third year to a woman 35 or younger, are:
- Marisa Bartley, business development officer, Citizens Bank
- Erin Isler, director, loan syndications, PNC Capital Markets LLC
- Amiena Mahsoob, director of education programs, World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh
This year’s luncheon is once again expected to sell out, gathering nearly 900 attendees. Only a few tables are left and are available here
Marcello points to "a real diversity among the group of finalists," who are involved not only in the business world but in local nonprofits, health care, education, public service and other fields, in many local spheres. "They're involved in health-care organizations, regional-development organizations, in addition to their very stellar careers, and it increases their impact on their communities."
She is particularly pleased with the results of the award for young professionals: "These are women on the path for leadership, already exemplifying those Athena qualities of success and giving back to other women." Their commitment at such an early point in their careers, she concludes, "is profound."
The ATHENA Awards Program Luncheon, presented by the Allegheny Conference on Community Development, will be held at the Westin Convention Center Hotel.
Writer: Marty Levine
Source: Beth Marcello, Athena Awards