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15th Annual Top Women Awards Honor Leaders

TOP WOMEN (L to R). LIESL WEST, VICKY STEVENS, DEBBIE DALTON, PAM BOILEAU, LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT WINNER GINNY MACKIN, EMILY COOPER, CHERIE GRAHAM, BETTIE RAY BUTLER, EMILY ROLEWICZ, KRISTEN MAXWELL, SYLVIA SPURY, LARA INGRAM, CONNIE EVANS, ANNETTE PRIVETTE KELLER, LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT WINNER CONGRESSWOMAN CHRISTY CLARK

October was a big monthMelinda Gates pledged $1 billion to promote gender equality and eliminate the

GINNY MACKIN WAS THE GUEST SPEAKER

barriers that women face at work. And Business Today recognized 13 local women who make a difference in business, politics, education and community service.

Business Today’s Top Women were selected by their new peers—prior winners from 15 years of recognizing local women

Judges included Pat Cotham, Mecklenburg County Commissioner; Laura Engel, marketing director at Aquesta Financial; Cheryl L. Kane, an instructor at UNC-Charlotte and Business Today columnist; and Karen Lawrence, owner of It’s My Affair.

There were 20 nominees all in all.

They all responded to the following: How did you overcome what once looked like failure? All the

LIESL WEST & FAMILY SHARE A TOAST

answers were outstanding, but Bettie Ray Butler stood out. She had six part-time jobs in college and when she was not working she was a volunteer. At age 22 she was accepted int three doctors programs without having a Master’s degree.

“At the time, I did not realize the level of opposition, resistance and emotional trauma that I would endure,” She did, of course, and went on to become  director of the Urban Education Graduate Program at UNC-Charlotte.

They were recognized at the Champagne Reception & Business Expo in October at River Run Country Club for extraordinary accomplishments and  leadership.

The Presenting Sponsor of Top Women was Duke Energy. Platinum Sponsors were Lake Norman Chrysler Jeep Dodge and Novant Healthcare. Gold Sponsor was Davidson Wealth Management. Piedmont Plastic Surgery was the Silver Sponsor. Aquesta was the Champagne Sponsor.

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