Award Winner Gives Back to the Community that Helped Her

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Since she’s received her ATHENA Award, Rebecca Rutledge said looking at it inspires her everyday. Not just because she achieved the award, but because of the hope it inspires in others.

“I’m very honored to win this award,” she said. “I was surprised I was nominated. I saw the list of the former winners. They are strong women who served the community.”

Rutledge described the ATHENA as an international award for women who have contributed to the community. A luncheon was held at The Brown Estate on May 15. It was hosted by former ATHENA winners and some members of the Orange Rotary Club. First Financial Bank and Capital Title sponsored the event.

In fact, the former award winners nominate the newest award recipients. To them, Rutledge’s community service stands out.

Since the inception of the ATHENA Award Program in 1982, over 5,300 ATHENA Awards have been presented in over 500 communities in the United States, Canada, China, Russia, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and most recently India, according to information from the organization.

The ATHENA Leadership Model captures women’s unique experience and wisdom and forms the basis for fresh dialogue about leadership in the 21st century.

With a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, ATHENA invited national authorities on women’s leadership to survey ATHENA Recipients about their individual and collective leadership practices and priorities. The ATHENA Leadership Model was developed from eight core tents of leadership that reflect ATHENa Award Recipients’ unique ways of knowing and leading: Authentic Self, Celebration & Joy, Collaboration, courageous Acts, Fierce Advocacy, Giving Back, Learning, Relationships.