2016 Athena Award Nominees, Event Keynote Speaker Announced

Mar 31, 2016
Agnus Berenato, television sports analyst and the winningest women’s basketball coach at both the University of Pittsburgh and Georgia Tech—and, who was just named head women’s basketball coach at Kennesaw State University in Georgia on Wednesday—will keynote the 24th annual Athena Award Dinner on May 19, when the Regional Chamber and co-presenter The Vindicator/vindy.com honor and recognize 21 Athena nominees.
Agnus Berenato, television sports analyst and the winningest women’s basketball coach at both the University of Pittsburgh and Georgia Tech—and, who was just named head women’s basketball coach at Kennesaw State University in Georgia on Wednesday—will keynote the 24th annual Athena Award Dinner on May 19, when the Regional Chamber and co-presenter The Vindicator/vindy.com honor and recognize 21 Athena nominees. 
Berenato, who will focus on “Having It All But Changing the Rules,” is a motivational speaker and color analyst for the American Sports Network, providing game-day commentary and insight for women’s basketball games. She was the head women’s basketball coach at the University of Pittsburgh from 2003-2013, taking the team that had the all-time worst record in the Big East Conference to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament in just five years. Berenato was also head coach at the Georgia Institute of Technology from 1989-2003, leading the women’s team to 223 victories. The mother of five had a 100 percent graduation rate amongst her student athletes who completed their eligibility.
The Valley’s Athena Award program, recognized by the Athena International as one of the top five largest in the U.S., honors area business and professional women who have demonstrated excellence in their chosen career, provided leadership in the community and mentored or contributed to the growth of other professional women. 
Also during the dinner, the recipient of the $1,500 Athena Scholarship, created in 2007 through a partnership with the Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley, will be announced. The scholarship fund, a component fund of the CFMV, will further the goals of the Athena mission and promote education. The recipient of the Athena Scholarship has demonstrated initiative and excellence in her educational or work pursuits, a proven record of community involvement and service and commitment to, and experience in, mentoring others.
For the fourth year, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield will also present additional scholarships in the amount of $1,250 each to two additional scholarship applicants.
The event opens with a cocktail reception (cash bar) at 5:30 p.m., followed by the dinner and program at 6:15 p.m. Cost of the dinner is $70 per person. Invitations will be mailed in mid-April. Reservations are required by May 13 by contacting Amy Young at (330) 744-2131 ext. 12; by email at Amy@regionalchamber.com, or by accessing the events calendar on the Regional Chamber website: www.regionalchamber.com.
The Athena Award nominees for 2016 are:
Connie Bobby
V.P. Treasury Management Officer
Huntington Bank
Atty. Karen Bovard
Johnson & Johnson Law Office
Stacie Butler
Head Golf Professional, North Course
Mill Creek MetroParks Golf Courses
Kathy Cook
President
St. Joseph Warren Hospital, Mercy Health
Monica Craven
Executive Director
Habitat for Humanity of Mahoning Valley
Sharon DeFrances
Managing Director, Private Client Services
Talmer Bank and Trust
Angela DiVito-McClellan
Executive Director
Coalition for a Drug-Free Mahoning County
Bonnie Dodge
Pinnacle & Platinum Premier Team Leader
Perfectly Posh Independent Consultant
Sarah Hadley
Executive Director
Senior Independence
Debbie Horvath
Volunteer Coordinator
Southern Care Hospice
Rebecca Keck
Executive Director
SMARTS (Students Motivated by the Arts)
Susan Krawchyk
Executive Director
Mahoning County Veterans Service Commission
Diana McDonald
President
Mahoning County Medical Society Alliance
Dr. Meredythe "Mimi" McNally
Board Certified Gastroenterologist & Internal Medicine
Salem Regional Medical Center
Nina Melfi
Assistant Vice President
KeyBank
 
Sarra Mohn
Partner
Jet Creative
Kathryn Orr Scheel
President
Silcox Dental Supply
Gina Pastella
Executive Vice President, Operations
VEC, Inc.
Erica Richley
Special Education Director
Summit Academy Management
Gail Riess
Executive Director
Gateways To Better Living
Kenya Roberts-Howard
Executive Director
YWCA Warren
Barbara Rombach
Director, Surgical & Specialty Offices
Mercy Health Physicians Youngstown