Women from across North Carolina are being celebrated by their peers, co-workers, families, and organizations who support their positive leadership traits. These forward thinking, inclusive and compassionate leaders practice core values that help others to climb. 

Angie Hall


SPONSORED BY: Defining Our Purpose


Angie has learned that everyone will not be as passionate about things like she is.  They might not even work nor hold the same level of intensity as she is able to. Angie finds it best to leave people where they are and not force them to be what she thinks they should be.  She has a strong passion for serving the under privileged.  She has served at food shelters and aids single moms who need a break from the burden of trying to make ends meet. Angie has served in the medical field assisting patience and learning how to move with compassion and integrity in her daily life.

Ann Jagger


SPONSORED BY: The Magics Is Me, Inc


Ann has served on non-profit boards Special Olympics, and spent time mentoring students of all ages. Her children’s programs are amazing! The Magic Is Me, a year-long tour filled with fun and interactive sensory experience, Bub-Bub-Bubble-ee, The Vowel Movement, I Am the Key, International Luminary Adventures, and her latest addition, Celebrate My Gifts Ques are all designed to keep that flame of personal power burning bright as children head into uncharted waters.

Aleyah Pryor-Pankey




As the Executive Director for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at UNC Health Care, Aleyah has many opportunities to build relationships with individuals from all walks of life. “When people feel valued they are more likely to roll up their sleeves and contribute to solutions,” she stated. Recently recognized as a diversity leader by the Triangle Business Journal. Aleyah hopes that her leadership will encourage people to put aside their differences and work together towards change for the greater good of humankind. Learn more about Aleya

Ashley Popio




As the founder of the Women’s Theatre Festival, Ashley works with non-profits raising funds, promoting awareness, and providing opportunities for women in the arts and in theater. Through these opportunities, she is passionate about combating the invisibility of women’s voices and encouraging inclusiveness across a broader spectrum of the arts so that women and other marginalized groups are not minimized. Ashley has built a powerful platform for both talent and voices to be heard by all. Learn more about Ashley


Ashley Wechter


SPONSORED BY: WF University Athletic Dept.


Ashley position at the Assistant Athletic Director at Wake Forest University gives her many opportunities to flex her leadership muscle especially in a work environment where only 21% of the leadership are women. She believes women should be each other’s best advocate and that banding together has a huge impact on students, families, and our community. Ashley is a volunteer for Help Our People Eat (H.O.P.E.) in Winston-Salem and has been involved with Santa’s Helper since 2002. Learn more about Ashley.

Caterri Woodrum


SPONSORED BY: North Carolina Museum of Art


As the Executive Director of North Carolina Museum of Arts, Caterri Woodrum wants to enhance the aesthetic of indoor and outdoor spaces. Caterri believes an emerging woman is a woman that’s constantly growing and developing themselves especially through the company of others. Caterri says, “We are all emerging – constantly learning and growing as women, colleagues, friends, spouses, mothers, and daughters.”

Cheryl Jenkins


SPONSORED BY: BJD Leadership Training


Southern sweet would best describe this Emerging Leader, Cheryl Jenkins.  As the Director of Student Leadership and Service at Meredith College, (an all women’s college located in Raleigh, NC), Cheryl spends her day helping guide and encourage young women to embrace be the best that they can be.  When we asked her what she sees as one of her greatest missions to fulfill she responded, “A couple of years ago, I decide that my mantra and my most focused action would be to constantly lift others up.”

CJ Scarlet


SPONSORED BY: The Badass Girl’s Guide


For CJ Scarlet, leading with compassion and integrity means being authentic in everything she does. When she engages with you, ego is out the window and she goes toe to toe!  As a fighter for justice for victims of sexual crimes, CJ believes that armed with the right information more women can be empowered to fend-off attackers. Her recent book, “The Badass Girl’s Guide”, is sweeping the nation and on it’s way to becoming one of the top sellers for women who are looking for ways to protect themselves and to build their confidence.

Deb Meehan


SPONSORED BY: NC Medical & Commercial Realty


This amazing leader seeks to bring about change in every size and in every way!  A bold advocate for those that need a hand up, she gives and encourages others to give right along beside her.  The founder of Wild, Wacky, Wonderful Women of the World, Deb enjoys the camaraderie of wonderful women that have join forces with her to stand tall for change.  As a commercial broker, Deb practices the same philosophy in her professional life as she does in her personal one; treat others with the same respect you would want to be treated!


Donna Berkelhammer


SPONSORED BY: Legal Direction


Donna Ray Berkelhammer has been mystified and intimidated by the legal system; so she went to law school. Her passion is helping micro business owners and entrepreneurs understand how to create a strong business foundation and to make sound decisions for themselves, their customers, their families and their employees. She created Legal Direction; to not only make legal advice affordable but helpful in starting your own business. Donna also believes in making time for work, family and rescuing dogs.

Jillian Hishaw


SPONSORED BY: PC-Max of Raleigh


Recently recognized by the Clif Bar Co. as a “Food Industry Change Maker, “Jillian Hishaw is an innovated strategist that helps protect North Carolina’s precious farm land.  As legal counsel steeped in agriculture, food systems and asset protections, she is a powerhouse that for the last 12 years has made it her passion to focus on agriculture and environmental laws. One of her life lessons has been know that humility doesn’t mean the lack of confidence. She is the Executive Director of FARMS. Learn more about Jillian. 

Dr. Katrina Damon


SPONSORED BY: Damon Vaughn – Real Estate Specialist


Gifted with an abundance of energy that radiates into the room as soon as she speaks, Dr. Katrina Damon has made it her life’s mission to inspire other to understand that they are important! She is a seasoned professional with 20 years of expertise in management and administration of information technology operations, staff, and resources with experience in higher education, corporate, government, and community organizations. Her and her husband Barron lead young leaders programs on a ongoing bases.

Maria Adoskina




Native Russian with the biggest warmest smile sets Maria apart from many women leaders who carry her amazing workload and responsibilities.  As an advocate for world peace and reconciliation, she builds bridges daily between people of different culture and ethnicity. Maria will tell you flat out that as a leader you absolutely must have a great team if you are going to be successful.  Learn more about Maria and her work.

Mary Ann Magann


SPONSORED BY: BJD Leadership Training


Mary Ann Magann is still trying to get a clear image of what life holds for her and where she can best use her leadership gifts and talents.  She says that reading, spending time with family, listening to jazz, and making snowman earrings are the best ways she’s able to restore her energy.  One of the greatest service-leadership opportunities, Mary Ann was apart of missionary teams inside of Cuba.  She goes wherever she can and relishes in the new friendships as well as the culture she is exposed to. Mary Ann says an emerging woman is “A woman who is always ready to step forward out of the rut she is in.”

Sally Orcutt




Sally Orcutt is a speaker, author, workshop leader and the voice of encouragement to hundreds of people.  Sally is an amazing community leader who rolls up her sleeves and gets involved in her community.  She is an advocate of inmate reform that leads those that have served time back into being a productive part of the community.  Compassion and integrity described by Sally simply means to listen first and to genuinely hear what others are saying. “Be inclusive,” she remarked. Sally restores her energy every morning by mediating and practicing her faith.

Solana Spark




As a mental health and substance abuse counselor Salona has always felt a tug in the direction of serving those that struggle with finding their own voice and personal power. Her love for dance and forming relationships with people of all walks of life are woven throughout her career and in her community service where she has worked with single moms, teens, and those that suffer from addictions.

Steffanie Lafors


SPONSORED BY: A Photographic Memory


Stephanie Lafors uses her photography skills to capture the beauty of the people in the world. She has always loved photography since she got her first camera at age nine. Stephanie believes sleep and surrounding yourself around positive people is the best way to restore oneself. She also believes that an emerging woman is “A woman who, regardless of age, understands what her purpose in life is.  She goes after her dreams and goals and doesn’t let anything hold her back.”

Stephanie McDilda


SPONSORED BY: Flashpoint International


Stephanie McDilda knows what it’s like to lead with compassion and integrity. As a coach, consultant, and speaker on the subject of Heart-Based Leadership, she has spent over 30 years mastering and teaching leadership skills that can measure higher morale and an increase in profit margins. As an advocate for bringing more love into the world, Stephanie has a wonderful light that she brings to any room or stage that she walks onto.

Talitha Batts


SPONSORED BY; Success Outside The Box


Talitha is an award winning speaker, author and facilitator. Her desire is to be a positive impact on millions of people.  To empower, love, transform and energize people is her driven mission. She leads with compassion and integrity which to her means serving the best interest and investing in the development of others.  Talitha uses her broad knowledge, experience and leadership skills to empower and equip others to lead.


Tamara Gibbs



Courageous. Encouraging. Strategic. 

Tamara has a profound faith that pushes her to become an amazing leader. As a mentor for “Community in Schools” programs located in Durham County, Tamara has worn many hats.  As an adjunct professor, she  encourages students to put their best foot forward.  Her recent project is a documentary about the murders of three Chapel Hill Muslim students and the road to forgiveness. She is involved in the Beautiful Project, which allows African American women to see their natural beauty beyond borders.  Learn more about Tamara


Vonda Farrow


SPONSORED BY; Artsy Vision, LLC.


Vonda is a published children’s book author and  illustrator.  As an advocate for children, she believes that we need to always ask the question,”is this in the best interest of the child?” As a leader she’s learned to embraces different prospective even if she doesn’t agree with them.  She also feels that people will work harder for you if they feel appreciated.  Her legacy is making sure that her daughters understand how to be authentic. Vonda has been a part of Emerging Women NC leadership team for the past year.

How to Nominate

Emerging Women NC is looking to celebrate and support women across North Carolina that are redefining leadership by practicing positive leadership traits.
To nominate a woman to be consider as one of our Community Leaders, fill out the attached nomination form. Click Here