And the Award Goes To…

Letter from the editor

Letter To The Editor HeadshotIt’s that time of year again. WILMA’s Women to Watch Awards is around the corner, and on September 8, we’ll honor this year’s thirty-five finalists and announce seven category winners.

Maggi Apel, who serves as co-director of WILMA’s Women to Watch Leadership Initiative, and I (shown left from the 2018 awards) will be on the stage for the program, but there’s a full team at WILMA working on nomination forms to magazine pages to the party itself.

I’ll never have that Oscar speech moment, so allow me to squeeze this in here.

Thanks to the incomparable events team of Elizabeth Stelzenmuller and Jamie Merrill for not just putting on a mega awards party but coordinating the entire nomination process and photoshoot logistics. Thanks to designer Suzi Drake for directing the group photos and the issue’s special awards section and to designer Tara Weymouth for conceptualizing the social media looks around the finalists and their headshots.

Thanks to the talented photographers Madeline Gray and Summer Lambert, who worked with the finalists, and to jewelry designer (and former award recipient) Lisa Brown, who made this year’s custom awards bracelet.

Thanks to our Women to Watch Advisory Board members who culled through hundreds of nominations to make the difficult decisions on the finalists and winners.

Thanks to Maggi’s friend who had to reschedule an out-of-town gals trip, and now she can come celebrate with all of you. Thanks to my husband who was OK with delaying leaving for Disney until the morning after the party so that I can celebrate with all of you.

The morning of September 9 is going to hurt, but the evening of September 8 is going to be epic.

This is about the time that the playing-off music would start, so I’ll end with apologies for leaving anyone else who works on this massive project for WILMA.

The special section starts here, so check out the impressive group of women who work a hundred different ways to improve their organizations and the community.

WILMA’s fall issue, however, isn’t just about the awards.

Click here to read about several women working on innovative projects to address food system issues. Click here to learn about how Lia Ballentine built a snack subscription service that counts Fortune 100 companies among her clients. And check out our leadership section here for advice on intentional networking and info on area business counseling resources.

One final note on awards season: Congratulations to the YWCA Lower Cape Fear for running its Women of Achievement Awards for the past thirty-eight years and recognizing the work of nearly 500 local women. The YWCA closes out its awards program with a legacy celebration September 27 (info:

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