Nominations for this year’s ATHENA Leadership Award are open. Nominations must be submitted online at by February 28.

The ATHENA Leadership Award honors an exemplary leader who has achieved excellence in their business or profession, served the community in a meaningful way and, most importantly, actively assisted women to achieve their full leadership potential. Nominations are sought throughout the community and the recipient will be selected based on the above criteria.

Previous recipients include Margaret Ann Jessup, Sheila Feipel, Grace Luttrell Nanavati and Desiree Logsdon, to name just a few.

Illinois Women in Leadership past-president and ATHENA committee chair, Emily Rabin, said IWIL is excited to present the ATHENA Leadership Award for a fifth year. “We are delighted, once again, for the opportunity to honor female leaders in Springfield, Illinois, who support and mentor other women in the area. We strongly encourage nominations from all sectors of the community.”

IWIL, which has more than 200 members, will announce this year’s recipient on July 26 at an event held at Erin’s Pavilion. United Community Bank is the event’s presenting sponsor.

ATHENA International is an organization that supports, develops and honors women leaders. More than 7,000 community leaders from over 500 cities and eight countries have received the ATHENA Leadership Award since its inception in 1982. Its rich history, international scope and emphasis on mentorship make this award one of the most prestigious leadership awards.

“IWIL supports ATHENA’s philosophy of recognizing those who incorporate the talent and expertise of women into the leadership of our businesses, communities and government,” said Rabin. “The ATHENA Leadership Award honors and illuminates the leaders who support and mentor women, with the goal of encouraging and fostering such leadership for our community, which is something we also encourage through our members at IWIL.”

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