Good Place Akron

Athena International

ATHENA Women’s Leadership Day

By: Katie Sobiech


September 18th marked a special day for women leaders in the Akron area. Women of all ages and life experiences gathered for the 5th Annual Women’s Leadership Day Celebration at the Fairlawn Country Club.

ATHENA is an international leadership awards program that presents awards annually to two individuals in Northeast Ohio - one individual from the Greater Cleveland area and one from the Greater Akron area.

The ATHENA Leadership Award® is presented to a woman ---or man--- who is honored for professional excellence, community service and for actively assisting women in their attainment of professional excellence and leadership skills.

Passing the Torch

Experienced women leaders each invited a guest, who they viewed as an “emerging leader”. They shared stories, advice and lunch in the beautifully adorned country club.

Keynote Presenter was Dianne Newman of Shifrin Newman Smith Law Group, also Co-Chair of the Women’s Endowment Fund. She was an award recipient as well.

Newman is known to be “a firecracker”.

This group of women as a whole, are known for giving of themselves to improve Northeast Ohio for others.

Inside Business Magazine

Inside Business magazine highlighted 12 recipients of the ATHENA Award in Northeast, OH, including:


Geri Presti Forest City Enterprises


Dianne Newman Shifrin Newman Smith Law Group


Diana Bilimoria Case Western Reserve


Katerina Papas Summit County Children Services


Nancy Tinsley University Hospitals


Janine Janosky Austen BioInnovation Institute

Dr. Margaret Larkins-Pettigrew University Hospitals

Roxia Boykin Summa Health System

Heidi Gartland University Hospitals

Suzanne Allen Akron Community Foundation

Cortney Kilbury CMHA


Kristin Oswick with Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.


Year-Round Relationships

Though this is a once-a-year-event, they do have meetings and other opportunities to learn, grow and network all year-round.

Proceeds from the event benefit the Women’s Endowment Fund of the Akron Community Foundation, a 501©(3) public charity.

For more information go to:

If you have any story ideas, questions, or comments you can contact: