About the ATHENA Awards Program

Taking its name from the Greek goddess of strength and wisdom, the Greater Pittsburgh ATHENA Awards luncheon is one of the largest annual gatherings among the hundreds of ATHENA International-affiliated events presented around the world.

The Greater Pittsburgh ATHENA Award recognizes exceptional women who demonstrate excellence in their profession, contribute to their community and help other women to succeed through mentorship. The ATHENA Young Professional Award recognizes an emerging leader age 35 or younger.

In 1982, Martha Mayhood Mertz, owner of Mayhood/Mertz Realtors, Inc., found herself to be the only female member of the Lansing, Michigan Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.

She resolved to recognize the outstanding professional women in her community and to encourage the opening of leadership opportunities for them. Thus, the ATHENA Award® Program was born.

The ATHENA Award’s focus on mentorship distinguishes it from other awards recognizing women in business.

By honoring exceptional leaders, the ATHENA Award Program inspires others to achieve personal and professional excellence. Each Recipient receives a handcrafted ATHENA Award sculpture, with a unique design inspired by the Greek Goddess Athena, who represents courage and wisdom guided by reason.

Learn more about the ATHENA Leadership Model and Mertz’s 2009 book, Becoming ATHENA: Eight Principles of Enlightened Leadership.

2016 Chair
Beth Bershok

Herbein + Company, Inc.

2016 Vice Chair
Jerry Cozewith

Sarah Heinz House

2016 Host Committee

Brandee Abel

TiER1 Performance Solutions

Hahna Alexander


Josie Badger

The PEAL Center

Lynn Banaszak

Carnegie Mellon University, Disruptive Health Technology Institute

Jenn Beer

Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce

Cori Begg-Parise

University of Pittsburgh School of Law

Laura Benson

Burns White

Maris Bondi

UPMC Health Plan

Jennifer Cairns

Sarah Heinz House

Kate Cromie

Eckert Seamans

Mickey Denner

Allegheny Conference

Mike Ellis

Highmark Inc.

Mike Ellis

Highmark Inc.

Candyce Fly Lee


Anne Flynn Schlicht

Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship, Chatham University

Laura Freedman

Southpointe Wealth Management of UBS Financial Services

Stephanie Garbe

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.

Jeanne Givner

FedEx Ground

Brooke Huber


Alison Kilmartin

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP

Nina Krietemeyer

Hirambo Inc.

Amiena Mahsoob

World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh

Beth Marcello

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.

Wendy McCabe

Pittsburgh Magazine

Suzanne Meyer

MSM Digital

Lee Ann Munger


Michelle Naccarati-Chapkis

Women for a Healthy Environment

Susan Orr

Foundation of HOPE

Bonnie Pfister

Allegheny Conference

Allyce Pinchback

Pittsburgh Urban Magnet Project (PUMP)

Lynne Popash

Regency Global Transportation

Pam Quatchak

Point Park University

Sabrina Saunders

Strong Women, Strong Girls

Janel Skelley

Allegheny Conference

Debbie Stockdale

Schneider Downs & Co., Inc.

Bayh Sullivan

The Ellis School

Brendan Surma

AEC Group

June Swanson

Meyer, Unkovic & Scott LLP

Heidi Szuminsky

Waynesburg University

Melia Tourangeau

Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

Alison Treaster

Allegheny Conference

Christy Uffelman

Align Leadership

Dan Unkovic

BPU Investments

Megan Walsh

Sisterson & Co. LLP

Kim Wick


Marisa Williams


Tasha Wilson-Batch

Best of the Batch Foundation

Kristin Winkowski Joyce

Consultant, Allegheny Conference

Athena Award

ATHENA Awards Program of Greater Pittsburgh

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