Year: 2017

All Year: 2017

May 12, 2017

Nashville Cable Presents 2017 Power of Inclusion Award Recipients

Alliance Synergy Group’s Roxianne Bethune, First Tennessee Bank and Pathway Women’s Business Center recognized for their commitment to diversity and inclusion

On Wednesday, May 10th, Nashville Cable celebrated it’s 12th Annual Power of Inclusion Awards and acknowledged individuals and corporations who “Pay It Forward” with their commitment to diversity and inclusion in the local community. Social justice educator, advocate and mediator Kasar Abdullah was the Keynote speaker and gave a dynamic presentation on global citizenship.

Each year at this luncheon, CABLE provides an award to an individual, a business and a not for profit for enhancing and inclusion in Nashville. The nominees have demonstrated inclusive behavior and actions to support their nominations. These include utilizing unique approaches to enhance business diversity, diverse employee development and retention strategies, creating an inclusive and diverse employee environment that supports and sustains its diversity through strategic initiatives, a record of accomplishments and support for cultural awareness, community and organizational change.

The recipient of the Individual Power of Inclusion award is Roxianne Bethune of Alliance Synergy Group. Bethune was nominated because she is a devoted, tireless promoter of business equity and inclusion through her role as Project Manager of DBE on numerous projects including the Music City Center, Omni Hotel, Country Music Hall of Fame, Bridgestone Arena, Ascend Amphitheater, and the Nissan Renovation Project resulting in DBE, prime and partnerships resulting in more than $250 million to diverse companies and unparalleled opportunities to diverse communities.

The recipient of the Business Power of Inclusion award is First Tennessee Bank because of its long and storied history of diversity and inclusion as exhibited by its awards and recognitions including 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers by Workers Mothers Magazine since1995; 2017 Diversity Leaders Award by profiles in Diversity Journal; 2017 Top LGBT-inclusive business by Human Rights Campaign; and the Top 50 Companies For Executive Women by National Association of Female Executives in 2009 and 2012-2016. In Middle Tennessee the leadership is 66% female.  The bank has relationships with minority and female business and currently spends well over 10% with them.  Through the First Tennessee Foundation they supported non-profit organizations in the community. They have donated more than $70 million and volunteered more than 20,000hours to more than 1000 not for profit organizations. They have a formal diversity programs with employee resource groups, mentoring programs, special women’s initiatives and a diversity networking association.

The Not for Profit Power of Inclusion award recipient is the Pathway Women’s Business Center. This organization is committed to ensuring that women are afforded resources to reach financial empowerment and stability through entrepreneurship.  The center is intentional with its diversity and inclusion initiatives that focus on entrepreneurship education, removal of barriers to enhance participation, providing of tools and flexible programming and cultural competency and inclusive partnerships.  Its partnerships with AARP, AWAKE, Beech Creek Baptist Church, the Oasis Center, and colleges and universities such as Lipscomb, Vanderbilt and Meharry Medical College have help to expand entrepreneurship education for diverse populations including minority medical professions. In 2016, they held 159 classes and delivered 8900+hours of education. In 2016, they originated 153 loans totaling more than 38.1 Million to 144 clients.  Through their clients, they have created 45 new businesses, 59 new jobs and more than $2 million in new capital.

All of the nominees are contributors to a diverse and inclusive Nashville. We would like to recognize them below:

  • The Individual Award recognizes someone whose personal behavior is a model of inclusion and is a catalyst for inclusive relationships among diverse populations in the community.
    • Roxianne Bethune, Alliance Synergy Group
    • Stephen Handy, Pastor, McKendree United Methodist
    • Rita Mitchell, First Tennessee Bank
    • Davita Taylor, Metro Nashville Airport Authority
    • Alisha Wix, Skanska USA
  • The Business Award recognizes a Corporation that ‘walks the talk’ and demonstrates a commitment to diversity and inclusion in their employment practices, programs and community outreach.
    • Advance Financial
    • Bank of America
    • Biscuit Love
    • First Tennessee
  • The Not-for-Profit Award recognizes a Not-for-Profit entity that facilitates understanding and promotes opportunity for underserved communities.
    • Discovery Center
    • Girls to the Moon
    • Interfaith Dental
    • Intrepid College Prep
    • OZ Arts
    • Pathway Women’s Business Center

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April 5, 2017

 Nashville ATHENA Program Honors Patricia Glaser Shea with the 27th Annual ATHENA Award 

The Nashville ATHENA Awards and Scholarship Program announced its 2017 award recipients on March 30th, 2017 at OZ Arts Nashville with special guests Mayor Megan Barry and OZ Arts CEO Tim Ozgener. Patricia Glaser Shea was honored with the 2017 ATHENA Award, and Dr. Tameka Winston received the Young Professional Leadership Award. Shea is among 23 ATHENA nominees selected this year by middle Tennessee organizations and associations, and Dr. Winston represents a class of 25 Young Professional Award nominees.

“Every year it is to no surprise that we have such an impressive and outstanding group of women representing the ATHENA and Young Professional Leadership classes. It’s always very hard for our judges to select one recipient in each category because of how outstanding each of these women are,” says ATHENA Chair Mendy Mazzo. “Patricia and Tameka have gone above and beyond to improve the communities in which we live and to inspire both women and young girls. Roxianne and I congratulate each of our recipients and our 48 nominees for their dedication and inspiration. It’s been a true honor to chair this amazing program!”

CEO Emeritus of YWCA Nashville and Middle Tennessee, Shea continues her work with the organization in a consulting role. She has re-shaped the community conversation on domestic violence, expanded services for women and children, changed laws to improve safety for victims of domestic violence, and ensured the financial stability of the 118-year old non-profit. During her 11 years leading the organization, Shea also founded the YWCA’s Advocacy Committee and MEND initiative, increased those served by domestic services and programs to over 10,000 a year, spearheaded a $1.4 million renovation for the Weaver Center, and launched a transitional housing program for women and their children to move back into the community. A co-chair of Mayor Barry’s Gender Equity Council and board member of the CNM, Shea was nominated by the International Women’s Forum’s Tennessee chapter.

Havingworked in higher education for over fifteen years, Dr.Winston is the department chair and an award-winning professor in the Department of Communications at Tennessee State University. An author and Sirius XM radio show host, she uses her platforms to serve as a mentor to, advocate for and inspire students and young adults throughout the Nashville community and nationally. Dr. Winston was nominated by Women in Higher Education in Tennessee.

Presented by Saint Thomas Health, Nashville ATHENA continues to be a premier program, powered by CABLE. The annual event is organized and sponsored through the collaborative efforts of local women’s organizations in partnership with local businesses, corporations and individual sponsors, unlike other cities, which rely upon their local Chamber of Commerce.

The ATHENA Awards Program honors business and professional women for their career success, service to community and encouragement of women. This year’s ATHENA nominees include:

Council Member Burkley M. Allen

Rebecca Bayne

Renee Bobb

Rev. Dr. Gwendolyn Hill

Brown Felder

Rebecca S. Climer

Dr. Angela J. Gaskin

Rep. Brenda J. Gilmore

Dr. Glenda Glover

Kim Hawkins

Rita F. Johnson-Mills

Elizabeth L. Knox

Marlee Mitchell

Hasina A. Mohyuddin

Mekesha H. Montgomery

Patricia Glaser Shea

Laura Smith

Joycelyn A. Stevenson

Dr. Wendy J. Thompson

Nicole Tremblett

Evette White

Tawana Williams

Dr. Letha Woods

Shannon Wright

To see our event video of the Traditional Nominees Click Here

ATHENA also provides the unique opportunity to feature rising women in the community who use their vision and persistence to excel, while reaching out and opening the way for others. This year’s ATHENA Young Professional Leadership Award nominees include:

Katie Alexander

Sloan C. Allen

Dr. Nicole K. Arrighi

Tonya Austin

Staci L. Bockman

Christina M. Carlisle

Meg M. Chamblee

Erin D. Coleman

Nikki N. Fant

Amanda Strickland Floyd

Meagan E. Frazier

Hart Harrison

Kellee N. Hill

Monchiere’ Holmes-Jones

Royya L. James

Penny Grace Judd

Daveisha S. Moore

Sarah S. Moore

Tera Rica Murdock

Chara H. Rand

Dr. Crystal G. Rucker

Crissy Wieck Welhoelter

Caroline Randall Williams

Dr. Tameka Winston

Alisha Wix

Launched in 1993 through the support of the Patrons Society and local sponsors, the ATHENA Scholarship Program awards middle Tennessee high school females and young women, both traditional and non-traditional, scholarships for continuing their education. This year ATHENA presented $17,000 in scholarships to eight deserving students, who include:

Lauren Cravens ATHENA Patrons Society scholarship 

Shelby Farrar UPS scholarship 

Samantha Hawkins Tony and Mendy Mazzo scholarship 

Helena Makendengue Women in Technology scholarship 

Gabrielle Napper  First Tennessee scholarship 

Lean Shakhtour Saint Thomas Health scholarship 

Sabrina To ATHENA Patrons Society scholarship

Mendy Mazzo, Vice President of Skanska, serves as the 2017 ATHENA Awards Program Chair with the support of co-chair Roxianne Bethune, Senior Executive President of Alliance Synergy Group, LLC.

”Mendy and I are honored to be involved with this organization and program,” says Bethune. “This program would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors, committee members, CABLE and nominating organizations. I look forward to chairing the 2018 awards program, and celebrating another incredible class of women leaders.”


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March 15, 2017

Executive Leader Academy: Time well spent

Time well spent

Guest Blog by: Dr. Katherine Y. Brown
Three words that come to mind when I reflect upon my participation in the Cable Executive Leadership Academy (ELA) are “time, well, spent”
As successful leaders we must make critical decisions on how we invest our time, what we invest our time in, and who we will invest our time with. As the 2005 recipient of the ATHENA International Young Professional Leadership Award, I was invited by Linda Peek Schacht to participate in the ELA program. Having completed many leadership programs in the past I was a bit hesitant.  What would I would learn and how this program would be different? As I read more about it, I decided this executive leadership program could be a great program for me.
The program exceeded my expectations and impacted my life. It was a safe place to share ideas. Rarely does a program require its participants to commit to confidentiality when sharing ideas. This was great!
It gets better.
All of the program participants were equally powerful and knowledgeable in their respective industries, and I didn’t know everyone in the room, which enabled me to develop new relationships with many women who are now lifelong friends. Through the small group discussions and executive coaching sessions, I was able to develop many key, quality connections because we were able to flush out our ideas and thoughts together in confidentiality. What impressed me the most from these sessions is that my executive coach, Diane Watson, still keeps in touch with me over two years later.  Now that’s commitment.
There were an abundance of resources available to help you learn more about yourself. People who finish the program and stay committed to success are going to be successful. You have access to standardized assessments to learn about yourself, you explore how to make your company better, but more importantly you explore how to make you better. The self-assessment and leadership exercises are in addition to lecture, discussion, and coaching. The only commitment was my time.
There are a lot of workshops and training programs facilitated by people who have less experience than their target audience. We see this everyday and it’s challenging. The ELA provides seasoned facilitators with over 20 years of experience who are willing to share their expertise. When people understand where you have been, not because they read it in a book, but rather because they have lived it; they are able to give unique insights and perspectives. You won’t find this everywhere. This program leaves you inspired after each session, while simultaneously wanting and seeking to learn more.
A safe environment with colleagues committed to your success sounds like something that should happen every day, but advanced leaders know that it doesn’t. I was at a place in my career that I needed that and this program was the solution. In my daily work, I am the founder of Learn CPR America, coordinator of KYB Leadership Academy, executive director of Roberta Baines Wheeler Pulmonary Hypertension Awareness Group, owner of Katherine Brown Consulting, and a mother of four.
What does this mean? It means I spend my days caring for others and wearing many hats. This program helped me care for me, while redefining how I would use my leadership skills to care for others who I served in my daily work.
The program helped me hone my focus, reaffirm the mission of my organization, and propel my career to the next level. This program left me energized, and I still use what I learned in my daily work. I’m definitely thankful for the opportunity to participate in the Cable Executive Leadership Academy and to earn the Foundations of 21st Century Leadership certificate. For women considering this program or a program that will provide the skills to elevate your leadership capabilities, look no further. You won’t be disappointed.
For more information and to register for Cable’s Executive Leadership Academy – Click here
Dr. Katherine Y. Brown & Associates
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February 7, 2017

Announcing the 2017 ATHENA Award Nominees

Nashville ATHENA Program Committee would like to announce its 2017 ATHENA Award Nominees and Young Professional Leadership Award Nominees.  Celebrating its 27th year, the Nashville ATHENA Awards Program has been, and continues to be, a unique CABLE program, organized and sponsored through the collaborative efforts of local women’s organizations in partnership with local businesses and individual sponsors, unlike other cities which rely upon their local Chamber of Commerce.

The ATHENA Awards Program, held on Thursday, March 30, 2017, honors business and professional women for their career success, service to community and encouragement of women.  The 2017 ATHENA nominees include:

Councilmember Burkley M. Allen Kim Hawkins, ASLA Joycelyn A. Stevenson
Rebecca Bayne Rita F. Johnson-Mills Dr. Wendy J. Thompson
Renee Bobb Elizabeth L. Knox Nicole Tremblett
Rev. Dr. Gwendolyn Hill Brown Felder E. Marlee Mitchell Evette White
Rebecca S. Climer Hasina A. Mohyuddin Tawana Williams
Angela J. Gaskin, MD Mekesha H. Montgomery Letha Woods, PH.D.
Rep. Brenda J. Gilmore Patricia Glaser Shea Shannon Wright
Dr. Glenda Glover Laura Smith

ATHENA provides Nashville CABLE with the unique ability to feature nominees who use their vision and persistence to excel while reaching out and opening the way for others.  This year’s ATHENA Young Professional Leadership Award nominees include:

Katie Alexander Amanda Strickland Floyd Sarah S. Moore
Sloan C. Allen Meagan E. Frazier Tera Rica Murdock
Dr. Nicole K. Arrighi Hart Harrison Chara H. Rand
Tonya Austin Kellee N. Hill Dr. Crystal G. Rucker
Staci L. Bockman Monchiere’ Holmes-Jones Crissy Wieck Welhoelter
Christina M. Carlisle Royya L. James Caroline Randall Williams
Meg M. Chamblee Penny Grace Judd Dr. Tameka Winston
Erin D. Coleman Daveisha S. Moore Alisha Wix
Nikki N. Fant

“Each year our ATHENA nominees exemplify the spirit of Athena- the goddess of truth, wisdom, bravery and fierceness,” says Mendy Mazzo, ATHENA Chairwoman.  “This year we are honored to celebrate another strong class of women that embody these characteristics through their leadership and community involvement, which continues to elevate our ability to highlight the achievement of women throughout Middle Tennessee.”

Mendy Mazzo, Vice President for Skanska USA Building, Inc., serves as the 2017 ATHENA Awards Program chairwoman with the support of Co-chairwoman Roxianne Bethune, Senior Executive President, Alliance Synergy Group,  LLC.

”Mendy and I are honored to be involved with this organization and program,” says Bethune.  “We look forward to announcing our scholarship recipients soon and the wonderful events leading up to our 27th annual program. It’s important to this program to give back and uplift the great ability and success of women and girls in our community.”

Launched in 1993 through the support of the Patrons Society and local sponsors, the ATHENA Scholarship Program awards Middle Tennessee high-school females and young women, both traditional and non-traditional, scholarships for continuing their education.

The 27th annual Nashville ATHENA Awards Program will take place on Thursday, March 30, 2017 at Oz Arts beginning at 6pm.


About Nashville ATHENA Awards and Scholarship Program

Each year during Women’s History Month in March, Nashville joins more than 500 communities throughout the world honoring exceptional women leaders. In Middle Tennessee nearly 50 women are nominated each year for special recognition as the embodiment of ATHENA’s spirit. Nominees each exemplify leadership, superior performance, commitment to community, and unselfish assistance to women and women’s issues. The award will be announced at the 27th annual ATHENA Awards Program held on March 30, 2017. For more information, visit or follow Nashville ATHENA Award and Scholarship Program on Facebook and ATHENA_Award on Twitter.  The ATHENA Award is powered by Nashville Cable.

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