20 Most Inspiring Women
Leaders 2024

COVER STORY

Combining Beauty with Technology to Create A New Era | Liz Bacelar

She founded a company to advise top brands like Gucci, Tiffany, and H&M about innovations. The combination of lifestyle, retail, and tech brings new growth opportunities. Now, Liz Bacelar is working as executive director of global tech innovation at Estée Lauder. In her current work, she focuses on NFTs and the metaverse. ‘It is an evolution of the internet that CEOs and CMOs cannot ignore.’

An Impactful Leader | Aude Slama

Aude Slama is not just the Managing Director and President of Slama Global Search. She is a woman of principles that make a true impact on individuals she comes across every day. She has values and navigates strictly within trustworthy, quality networks. She impacts everything she does: in both her professional and personal life.

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Accountability. Credibility. Trust. | Christie L. Clark

Very few people truly exemplify and embody the essence of the credit union movement, “People Helping People,” like Christie L. Clark. This is how Christie leads ACT 1st Federal Credit Union and what she instills in each credit union team member. “To have Accountability to the “Not for Profit, But for People” code of conduct we increase awareness of the exceptional benefits of being a member of a credit union. Introducing and offering low-cost products and services that truly fulfill member financial needs continually builds Credibility as it relates to the credit union’s commitment to everyone’s on-going financial wellness.

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A True Inspiration | Clare Ducksbury

Clare Ducksbury is an inspirational leader, an advanced thought-leader in the mass claims/class actions space, and most importantly, a pioneering leader who strives to educate her team to progress collective action knowledge and expertise within their respective disciplines. Clare is a people person with a particular focus on ensuring the core values of Case Pilots are reflected in everything her team does.

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A Story of Innovation, Resourcefulness, & Creativity | Devee Joy McNally

Devee McNally will be the first person to say her intention was never to own a business. She never thought she would be working with a team, collaborating, creating, and developing thoughtful products in a beautiful office space. From the start, her only goal was to provide households with the Junk Drawer Organizer® because it would solve a problem and make their lives more joyful. However, after the initial success of her flagship item, she was driven and inspired to create other innovative, useful products which over time has led to establishing the madesmart® brand as an industry leader in home organization with approximately 400 items that provide storage and organization throughout the home.

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A Leader with Passion | Emily Pearl Goodstein

In the last four years, Emily Goodstein has built a successful, growing, values-focused business and she has learned more than a few lessons along the way. Emily is the Founder and CEO of Greater Good Strategy, which has grown from a one-woman shop into a team of more than 60 digital marketing and fundraising experts along with a badass 4-woman executive team specializing in research, fundraising strategy, content creation, graphic design, digital analysis, and more

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A Great Motivator | Jenni McKenna

One of Jenni McKenna’s, Owner & CEO of McKenna Property, qualities that have made her a great leader is her dedication to customer service. She is always thinking about the level of customer service they provide to both the tenants and owners. When implementing new procedures and systems, a serious discussion is held between all team members on how they can leverage these additions to improve their customer service. “This results in most of our systems being oriented around the experience of the client and ensuring that they have nothing but pleasant thoughts of us.

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Goal-oriented Leader | Maria DeLorenzis Reyes

Maria DeLorenzis Reyes has over 30 years of experience working in corporations and then starting and building her own business. The combination of corporate and entrepreneurial experience, coupled with business education in varied industries is one of her most significant qualities. Most people come with either corporate or business ownership backgrounds. Maria has the unique perspective of seeing things from both sides – inside multi-million and billion-dollar organizations and building her own businesses and that of her clients.

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Empowering & Engaging | Stephanie F. Donner

The C-suite is beginning to take on a new look. Historically, women as CEOs were unheard of. However, while still not the majority, it is no longer an anomaly. According to a March 2023 Challenger, Gray & Christmas report, 32 percent of new CEOs were women in the first three months of 2023, an all-time high.

Companies increasingly understand that having more diversity at the top is suitable for businesses. When Inspire Clean Energy’s (Inspire) former CEO decided to step down a year ago, he and the company’s founder hand-selected Stephanie F. Donner, who was then serving as Inspire’s Chief Legal Counsel and People Officer, to step up into the role. Stephanie has since brought transformative change to both Inspire’s revenue and culture. 

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A Multi-Faceted Leader | Trudy Darwin

Trudy Darwin’s first corporate job after graduating from University in the late ’90s was with what the industry labeled a dot.com, where she worked on the marketing side of web development for eCommerce companies, moving to web-based sales and digital brand awareness. From this, she moved quickly up the proverbial ladder to become Director of Marketing and Sales for global U.S. businesses in industries such as; Telecom, Technology, Training, and Publishing. During this time, she received ongoing training in sales management and leadership styles.

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Top 20 Outstanding Women
CEOs of 2023

COVER STORY

Uplifting Seniors towards A Better Future | Wendy Jones

Wendy Jones, Founder and CEO of Next Steps 4 Seniors, LLC is the design and creative force behind the company’s programs and services. These programs and services were created and implemented due to Wendy’s laser focus on supporting vulnerable seniors. Her mission is to elevate the lives of these aging seniors who have been too little valued and cared for in our society.

A Force of Strength & Intention | Amanda Johnson

Amanda’s leadership throughout her tenure at Beacon is seen in every aspect of the organization — not just the strategic focus one would expect from a CEO, but a hands-on style of leadership—overseeing the implementation of new software systems, service lines and championing the recent renovation and workflow of Beacon’s new 25,000 square feet headquarters in Anchorage, Alaska.

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A True Inspiration | Clare Ducksbury

Clare Ducksbury is an inspirational leader, an advanced thought-leader in the mass claims/class actions space, and most importantly, a pioneering leader who strives to educate her team to progress collective action knowledge and expertise within their respective disciplines.

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Empowering African Americans Locally & Globally | Deidre Johnson

Deidre Johnson is the CEO and Executive Director of The Center for African American Health (CAA Health), an organization dedicated to health equity and working to improve African Americans’ social determinants of health. CAA Health values and centers community with its hub in the traditionally African American community of Northeast Denver.

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Creating Health, Happiness & Community Cohesion | Joan Kanigan

Joan Kanigan, CEO of the Western Development Museum (WDM), took an extraordinarily unique yet bold step as a leader in 2021. She initiated a 360o Performance Assessment to better understand how she was performing and where she needed to improve—all through an honest and critical feedback system to know where she was standing as a leader and a manager.

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Inspiring the Future of Construction | Leah Hamilton

Coming from a family with over 50 years in the construction industry, Leah knows what it takes to get her hands dirty. Growing up on a farm, she learned how to operate just about every piece of equipment and had worked for her father’s residential building company but at the time hadn’t considered construction as her career aspiration.

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Bringing A Change | Shirley Wang

Shirley Wang has unwavering opinions and a strong vision for the design of Plastpro’s products and the standards to which they must be manufactured. She is an out-of-the-box but also efficient thinker, and this allows her to creatively devise viable solutions when it comes to meeting customers’ needs.

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A Bold Leader | Venu Dhupa

The Westway Trust is a 23-acre estate in trust for the benefit of the community. Venu Dhupa is the leader who has brought a different vision to running this dual enterprise.

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Guiding Children towards a Better Future | Veronica Robinson

Veronica Robinson, the CEO of Stepping Stones Behavioral Solutions leads with the Golden Rule in all facets of life. Her purpose is to treat everyone with the same kindness and grace. She demonstrates a deep respect for those that she serves with a willingness to gladly perform any task, whether it is changing diapers or cleaning toilets if it needs to be done.

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