ATHENA award luncheon honors outstanding women

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Local professional woman and volunteer, Barbara Winter, received the 2002 ATHENA Award at a luncheon sponsored by the Greater Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce at the 11th annual Women in Business Conference on April 18. Currently vice president of organizational resources for Ent Federal Credit Union, Winter was previously associated with Colorado Interstate Gas (CIG) for almost 30 years. She was presented the ATHENA sculpture – and joins women in hundreds of cities throughout the United States, Canada and Russia who have been recognized for their personal, professional and civic contributions.
Criteria for the award includes: assistance to women in reaching their full leadership potential; commitment of time and energy to improving the quality of life for others in the community; and a demonstration of excellence, creativity and initiative in one’s business or profession.
Nominator, Karen Conway who had worked with Winter at CIG, cited her former colleague’s many contributions including: serving as a board member and advisor to several non-profit organizations on development of effective human resource policies and procedures; coaching female executives (both profit and non-profit) and mentoring minority girls to achieve their personal best.
The Women’s Advisory Council, headed this year by chairman Cindy Fowler, develops each year’s ATHENA Award program based on current workplace and professional development topics. “Barbara Winter is well qualified to receive this year’s award as an example of the kind of woman we like to recognize.”
A capacity crowd of 630 attended the luncheon, and following the ATHENA Award presentation, heard keynoter, Emory Austin, discuss the value of “An Ounce of Difference.” Some of the other topics covered included “Leadership During Turbulent Times,” “Laughing in the Face of Stress,” and “The Power of a Good Fight…How to Negotiate Conflict, Confrontation and Consensus.”
According to Chamber spokesman, Lyn Pelz, corporate interest and support for the annual event continues to grow. “More than 50 companies purchased tables for the luncheon and sent employees to take part in the morning’s personal and professional development sessions,” Pelz said. “The Chamber’s Women’s Advisory Council considers the ATHENA event as key to its mission to provide business to business networking opportunities.”