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2021 Class of Outstanding Women Awards Honorees

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Since 1980, YWCA Richmond has celebrated local women leading our region and inspiring future leaders through its annual Outstanding Women Awards.  We recognize the following women who have been selected as the 41st Outstanding Women Awards honorees in nine different categories:

 


ARTS & CULTURE:

Priscilla Burbank, a retired corporate attorney, presided over the Innerwork Center (formerly The Chrysalis Institute) for 5 of her 15-year board term, leading it through a period of falling membership to create a new mission and hire its first Executive Director. During her 15-year term at the Visual Arts Center, she served on the Executive Committee and chaired several others. She was pivotal in focusing VISARTS’ mission on creativity, saving and rebuilding the Craft and Design Show, and hiring its current director. Priscilla currently serves on the Richmond Symphony Board and has held leadership positions in other nonprofits, including the Richmond Children’s Museum and FIGHTSMA (formerly Andrew’s Buddies).

BUSINESS:

Linda Nash has founded and led several family-oriented businesses here, and mentors women leading start-up ventures. While raising her own three children, she began an after-school care program in a church loft that evolved to six all-ages workplace child-care centers here and in Northern Virginia serving hundreds of families. After their sale, she founded, led, and after a decade sold PartnerMD, a membership medical practice that grew to a network with dozens of doctors and thousands of patients from Richmond to Seattle. She is now the founding CEO of WellcomeMD, a network of holistic medical clinics in Richmond, Charlotte, and Naples.

EDUCATION:

Barbara Couto Sipe is the President and CEO of NextUp RVA. She has worked in the Greater Richmond community for over 20 years developing several large-scale collective initiatives to improve the lives of children, youth, and older adults. Barbara has led NextUp RVA for 7 years and worked tirelessly to accomplish its vision that all Richmond middle schoolers have access to high-quality, out-of-school-time learning experiences.

HEALTH & SCIENCE:

Jeniece Roane, MS, RN, NE-BC has been a registered nurse for 28 years. She is the associate vice president for operations for the Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU. Presently, she is also serving as the interim vice president for patient care services and the interim chief nursing officer for the VCU Medical Center. Jeniece has a keen interest in the proactive prevention of non-accidental childhood trauma by establishing community partnerships and providing education and outreach to historically marginalized populations.

HUMAN RELATIONS & FAITH IN ACTION:

Chlo’e Edwards is the CEO of Chlo’e Edwards Consulting, Inc. with a mission to mutually empower you and the community surrounding you. In addition, she serves as a Policy Analyst at Voices for Virginia’s Children and leads policy and advocacy work in domains related to the social determinants of health (SDOH) with a focus on healthcare, family economic security, trauma-informed care, and equity. In 2020, Chlo’e founded Virginia’s first Racial Truth & Reconciliation Week, which was recognized by Governor Ralph Northam.

LAW & GOVERNMENT:

Margaret Ivey is a Clinical Professor of Law Emerita at the University of Richmond School of Law. She retired in 2020 after 25 years of service on the faculty, where she served as Director of the Law School’s Clinical Placement Program. In addition to spearheading the program’s growth and development, Professor Ivey taught an upper-level domestic violence seminar. She is a member and past president of the Board of Directors of the Virginia Poverty Law Center, a member and immediate past chair of the Virginia Bar Association’s Commission on the Needs of Children, and a former member of the Virginia Bar Association’s Board of Governors and Community Service Council.

MARKETING & MEDIA:

Shayla Varnado is a current business strategist and founded Black Girls Wine in 2016 after deciding that there had to be more to experience and enjoy for Black women who love wine and desire luxury in everyday living. She decided to create a space that would educate and inspire black women around the world. The launch of Black Girls Wine Society came shortly after her exit from her corporate job in 2019. Since the pandemic began in early 2020, Shayla made a few critical pivots that have allowed the brand to see great growth and expansion to reach an international audience.

NONPROFIT LEADERSHIP:

Grace Gallagher is the founder of The Cameron K. Gallagher Foundation with a vision to erase the stigma associated with anxiety, depression, and mental illness in teens through program delivery in schools across the region. She has raised over $4M to promote compassion, self-acceptance through SpeakUp5k ™ race events nationally and SpeakUp workshops for teens. Grace’s work is driven by her mission to fulfill her daughter, Cameron’s, dream to be a positive force that works to cultivate awareness and understanding of teenage depression and anxiety.

VOLUNTEERISM:

Dena Frith Moore spent most of her career in merger and acquisition investment banking and business consulting. Dena began working with the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond as its Director of Strategic Initiatives in 2019. Dena’s board service includes the Board of Directors of CARITAS, the Board of Directors of Greater Richmond SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now), the Board of Visitors of UNC-Chapel Hill, the Vestry of St. James’s Episcopal Church, the Board of Directors of the Virginia Resources Authority, and the Board of Directors of Impact Makers. She also currently volunteers with the Virginia Medical Reserve Corps to provide support to local COVID vaccine clinics.