ATHENA NextGen: Empowering Women Leaders


ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Forty seven percent of U.S. workers are women. Women own 10 million businesses across the country. The proportion of women with college degrees has quadrupled since the ‘70’s. But despite these statistics, women are still underrepresented in the boardroom and in professions in STEM. Now one organization is empowering educated women, helping them get to the top of their fields. Women leaders

“I have wanted to be a scientist since I was a little girl.”

As a child, Karen Corbin didn’t know any scientists except one she saw on TV.

“I partially attribute it to Wonder Woman. She wore a white lab coat sometimes because she was trained in science,” explained Karen Corbin, PhD, RD, Associate Investigator- Advent Health Translational Research Institute, Founder and Chief Geek- Geeks That Speak.

Now, a leading investigator studying the gut microbiome, Doctor Corbin is part of a group that helps women climb the career ladder.

“We bring in women from different industries with different leadership styles,” said Karen Keene, ATHENA NextGen Co-founder.

These three women are the founders of ATHENA NextGen focusing on eight principles.

“When you walk into an interview, when you walk into a negotiation, when you walk into a presentation, know that you have every right to be there,” said Keene.

Another principle, advocate fiercely.

“Not just for yourself, but for those that are rising up behind you that need your help in their career,” said Corbin.

Living authentically can mean the difference between success and failure.

“They’re trying to lead like a man, or they’re trying to fill somebody else’s,” explained Traci Smith, ATHENA NextGen Co-founder.

“Understanding who you are and your values and how you want to lead,” Jennifer Johnson, ATHENA NextGen Co-founder.

And it’s imperative to build relationships throughout your career.

“A mentor or a sponsor … and they are two different things. You know, we can have a mentor at every level of our career,” said Keene.

A sponsor is someone at work who will advocate for you.

These women want you to know …“You have to show up to be seen,” said Smith.

And don’t let anything stop you.

ATHENA International has groups in more than 48 states and 11 countries. ATHENA NextGen is located in Orlando Florida.

Contributors to this news report include: Marsha Lewis, Producer; Bob Walko, Editor, Matt Goldschmidt, Photographer

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