Via: My Sweet Charity

The 2019 Leadership Forum and Awards Dinner Co-Chairs Retta Miller and Thear Suzuki have just revealed plans and the honorees for this year’s Texas Women’s Foundation fundraiser.

Taking place at the Omni Dallas on Thursday, May 2, the dinner will be presented by AT&T with Ellevest CEO/Founder Sallie Krawcheck as the keynote speaker thanks to the Catherine M. Coughlin Endowment for Women’s Leadership at Texas Women Foundation.

Named by Fast Company as one of “100 Most Creative People,” Sallie “is the author of ‘Own It: The Power of Women at Work,’ a book empowering women to be successful leaders in their careers.”

According to Texas Women’s Foundation President/CEO Ros Dawson Thompson, “Sallie has made it her mission to help women unleash our financial power, so that we can build savings and wealth in order to invest in women to make powerful change in our communities and world.”

Another highlight of the evening will be the presentation of the Maura and the Young Leader awards.

Given to women “who have catalyzed change for women and girls,” this year’s Maura Awardees are

Dee Dee Bates is a successful financial executive who became one of the first female partners at New York Life (Dallas General Office). She has provided career opportunities for many women by leading New York Life’s Women’s Market Unit (Dallas), an initiative focused on hiring and promoting women into leadership positions. She passionately promotes and advocates for women’s empowerment, economic literacy, diversity and inclusion. She founded and helped charter several women’s organizations such as Women’s E-initiative and Women’s Top of the Table – focused on empowering women in business and advancing women’s leadership. As president of the Collin County Black Chamber, she is collaborating with local branches to begin a new women’s program within that chamber. She and husband, Kerry, are proud and faithful parents of their three children, Ikeyia, Kiara and Keislyn.

Sally Dunning is an outstanding leader who has led the way in advancing equity and opportunities for women and girls in our community. She has worked tirelessly for equal access to quality healthcare, education, the arts and adoption to create forever families. As chair of Greenhill School Board of Trustees, she helped to expand student diversity and instituted scholarship programs to advance gender equality. She co-chaired Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas with a goal of $12.5 million, which was exceeded in order to ensure accessible healthcare for all women covered by the affiliate. She served on the board of Annie’s List as a strategic plan was created to help elect more women to local, as well as state offices. Also, she has served on numerous other boards and community initiatives. As an interior designer, she established The Design Studio and worked for many individuals, clients and companies for more than 50 years.

Ana I. Hernandez is senior vice president and senior loan officer at PlainsCapital Bank. As a first-generation college graduate born in Mexico, she believes in paying it forward by helping others. In her field, she provides financial solutions to businesses on gaining access to capital to help them achieve their business goals. She is a strong advocate for education and the importance of empowering women with financial literacy. She is an active mentor to young women attending Dallas-area middle and high schools and young Latina professional women. She volunteers her time equipping women who are victims of financial and physical abuse with the knowledge they need to be economically secure, both in English and in Spanish, at organizations such as The Family Place and Genesis Women’s Shelter. In addition, she serves on several committees and boards, and on weekends, she volunteers feeding the homeless or packaging meals that feed children in disadvantaged countries with Feed My Starving Children, a Christian nonprofit organization.

Ashlee Kleinert is an entrepreneur in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors. She and her husband, Chris, co-founded The Kleinert Foundation in 2017 to understand and address social issues with a focus on sex trafficking and vulnerable populations in our community. In 2011, she founded Ruthie’s Rolling Café, a gourmet grilled cheese food truck with passion and purpose. The belief that an act of kindness is never wasted fuels the “Random Snacks of Kindness” program, feeding unsuspecting groups at various shelters, schools and businesses. In 2009, she co-founded Executives in Action (EIA), generating more than $5 million of human resource capital for North Texas not-for-profit organizations. EIA merged with in 2016, expanding the platform to a national level. She has been honored to engage in partnership and service with Texas Women’s Foundation, New Friends New Life, Shelter Ministries of Dallas, St. Philip’s School, SMU Dedman College, SMU Maguire Center for Ethics and Rebecca Bender Initiative. Her faith and family are her greatest treasures.

Nicole Small is chief executive officer of LH Holdings, Inc. and president of Lyda Hill Philanthropies. From her deep and long-standing involvement at The Hockaday School to her work at Lyda Hill Philanthropies, she has a passion for advancing women and girls. Most recently, she spearheaded Lyda Hill Philanthropies’ If/Then initiative, a platform aimed to elevate positive and successful female STEM professionals with a focus on funding their work and sharing their stories, developing and supporting programs for middle school girls to learn about STEM opportunities, and engaging media partners to help shift the perception of women in STEM. Prior to Lyda Hill Philanthropies, she was CEO of the Perot Museum of Nature & Science where she led the merger of three existing Dallas museums and the development of the $200 million new museum. While at the museum, she was a strong supporter of women in leadership roles, as well as advocate for programs focused on inspiring girls to pursue careers in science. She currently is a member of The Hockaday School Board of Trustees, Dallas Assembly, YPO, Charter 100 and International Women’s Forum. She serves on many boards and resides in Dallas with her husband, two daughters and a dog.

The Young Leader Award which is presented to “trailblazers under 40 who are achieving success in a field, initiative or sector, and creating a path of opportunity for other women to follow,” will be presented to

Dr. HaeSung Han is a licensed clinical psychologist and board-certified art therapist. She co-founded POETIC, an intensive aftercare program for exploited and trafficked girls exiting the juvenile justice system. POETIC directly targets the vulnerabilities that perpetuate the cycle of re-victimization for girls through a four-systems model that includes an on-site school, 24/7 access to a therapist and case manager, art therapy and paid internships. She saw firsthand the need for POETIC while serving as the first clinical director at the Letot Residential Treatment Center. She is a member of the board of the North Texas Art Therapy Association. She provides training nationally on the assessment and evidence-based treatment of youth who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation and sex trafficking. She also consults with agencies on developing and implementing trauma-informed systems of care, programming and culture.

Ana I. Rodriguez is a non-profit executive, inspirational speaker and organizational strategist who works to create leadership opportunities for diverse groups. She serves as the director of the SMU Cox Latino Leadership Initiative, the country’s only business-school-based national center of excellence focused on expanding the diverse corporate leadership pipeline and accelerating top Latino talent into executive positions. She works with Fortune 500 companies to recruit, retain and develop top talent, providing access to a growing multi-cultural talent pipeline that creates key advantages for their global organizations. She also leads an initiative to increase diversity at SMU by hosting high school students from underrepresented and marginalized communities to tour and learn about continued education and opportunities at SMU throughout the year. She is a proud Dallas native and graduate of SMU.

Sponsorships and ticket availability can be found here.