A Message From The President

April 2014

SPOILER ALERT!   At our April meeting, you will be wowed when you meet the 2014 Dr. Sylvia Richardson Young Women of Promise.  The YWP Committee has selected ten high school juniors in Hillsborough County from 27 nominations.   All of the students excel academically and devote hours to community work.  You will be inspired by their stories and amazed by their accomplishments.  I always leave the meeting feeling confident that there is a younger generation of strong women leaders.

I’m grateful to Linda Devine who graciously agreed to chair the YWP Committee again this year.   YWP is one of our signature events and requires an intense time commitment.   Fortunately, Linda has remarkable organizational skills and many enthusiastic volunteers on her committee.   In March Linda contacted me to schedule a meeting at the University of Tampa fountain to sign the beautiful certificates which will be given to the honorees.   On the day of the meeting it was raining and there was a tornado watch.   I emailed Linda and suggested that we reschedule our meeting or at least the location because of the weather.  Linda assured me that the weather was not an issue.  I followed Linda’s instructions and pulled up in front of Plant Hall.  Linda walked out of the building wearing a rain coat, holding an umbrella and carrying a plastic garbage bag which contained the beautiful, oversized certificates.   I thought to myself: Linda is dedicated!

She climbed into my SUV, unwrapped the certificates and handed me a pen that she had pre-tested on the paper.  As I signed the certificates, we spoke about the YWP Program.  Linda loves being involved with this program because she connects with other Athena members, especially our newer members.  Her face lit up when she described speaking with the parents of the girls who call to RSVP for the lunch meeting.  She engages a parent and asks “How did you motivate your daughter?  What did you do to raise such a remarkable child?”  We’d all like to know the answers to these questions!

Thanks so much to Linda and all of the committee members who have worked hard to make the 2014 YWP program memorable.