The Texas Women’s Foundation has turned its Leadership Forum & Awards Celebration April 27 into a daylong event of learning and leadership, culminated by an awards program led by Jenna Bush Hager, daughter of ex-President George W. and Laura Bush, and a best-selling author and co-host of NBC’s Today.
The event at the Omni Dallas Hotel will begin with #BESTSELF, a half-day empowerment program for girls ages 13 to 16. Then it will feature Leadership Forums with the 2023 Maura Women Helping Women and Young Leader award recipients discussing their journeys. In the evening the Awards Celebration and dinner will showcase Hager and the award winners.
“We invite you to join us for a day of leadership and inspiration. Our event now includes middle and high school students as we strive to celebrate and encourage Texas women leaders across generations. Jenna Hager, whose Texas roots run deep, brings her entrepreneurial spirit and phenomenal journalism career to make this event a ‘must attend’ this spring,” Miki Woodard, TXWF president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.
Hager said that women in her family were her examples.
“I look forward to emceeing this event honoring women who have elevated women and girls and created opportunities for advancement and leadership. I am fortunate to have learned from my grandmothers, Barbara Bush and Jenna Welch, and my mother, Laura, who showed me how to be an impactful woman who lifts up others to achieve their potential,” Hager said in a statement.
Maura Women Helping Women Award
The Maura Women Helping Women Award has been presented for 44 years to more than 220 individuals who have catalyzed change for women and girls. The committee was led by Brenda Jackson, selection co-chair, and Hilda Galvan, TXWF chairwoman and selection co-chair.
Here are the honorees:
Froswá Booker-Drew, Ph.D. (Dallas) is the CEO of Soulstice Consultancy, LLC providing DEI, leadership training, community engagement strategies and philanthropic/partnership guidance for institutions. She is also the CEO of R2 Foundation (Restoration and Reconciliation Foundation) providing support for Black led nonprofits. As a connector of networks, Booker-Drew has led the effort in building partnerships supporting growth for organizations led by people of color.
Madeline Burillo-Hopkins, Ed.D. (Houston) is the Vice Chancellor Workforce Instruction for the Houston Community College System and College President where she has been an advocate for workforce education, diversity, and equity. She initiated innovative educational workforce programs and partnerships to improve upper economic mobility in underserved communities. She also has been instrumental in developing technology summer camps for girls and increasing female participation in computer science and non-traditional areas.
Aimee Cunningham (Austin) is the president and CEO of The Boone Family Foundation and a highly experienced principal in the progressive movement. She leads its mission to create equity for women and girls to drive innovation and justice for students in public schools; and to steward and create accessible green spaces. She has led the charge supporting policies that impact women and families.
Mary Pat Higgins (Dallas) is the President and CEO of the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum where she leads its mission to teach the history of the Holocaust and champion human rights to combat prejudice, hatred, and indifference. Under her leadership, the Museum opened a new state-of-the-art facility on September 18, 2019, accommodating an expanded core exhibit focused on the Holocaust, other genocides, and human and civil rights in the U.S.
Jill Louis (Dallas) is managing partner of Perkins Coie’s Dallas office, a member of the firm’s Corporate & Securities practice, and co-chair of the Infrastructure Development practice. Her practice focuses on advising companies with growth-oriented, liquidity-creating, and transformational strategies. She is also the host of RelevantNOW, an environmental, social, and corporate governance-focused podcast examining the intersection of business and public interest.
Young Leader Award
The Young Leader Award recognizes breakthrough leadership from a trailblazer who is achieving success in a field, initiative, or sector, and creating a path of opportunity for other women to follow, the foundation said.
This year’s recipients:
Ann Sheu (Dallas) is the founder of Mpowered Families, a training and coaching company with a unique approach to empowering individuals with tools to have a family life filled with purpose, alignment, and connection. A highly sought-after keynote speaker, she inspires audiences to create a strategic plan toward achieving their Decade Dream.
Prof. “Bee” Nance (Katy) is the COO of Generation Teach, a multimillion-dollar educational nonprofit whose vision is to end racial injustice and inequity in education. She is also the author of a children’s financial literacy book called “Sunny Gets Money,” and the founder of The Rising Sunny, an organization that teaches families how to build wealth.
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