(Courtesy Photo)

     The ATHENA Award is an international award presented to an exceptional individual who has achieved excellence in his/her business or profession, has served the community in a meaningful way and has assisted women in reaching their full potential. The Shiawassee Regional Chamber of Commerce became involved in the ATHENA Program in 1988 and the award has been presented locally for thirty-four years. The Schluckebier Hood Wealth Management Group of STIFEL is the presenting sponsor of the ATHENA Award in Shiawassee County.

   The 2021 ATHENA Award Recipient is Laura Archer of Owosso. Laura has given her time and talent to many causes in Shiawassee County. As the Chief Executive Officer of the Shiawassee Family YMCA, Laura has expanded programming, grown the membership and developed new partnerships. Prior to her current position, Laura served as the Dean of Health and Human Services at Baker College and as the Principal of Pathways Alternative High School.

   Laura has participated in numerous community projects and served on several local boards. She currently serves on the board for the Shiawassee Regional Chamber of Commerce, is co-chair of the Alliance for a Drug-Free Shiawassee and is a member of the Rotary Club. Laura has been a volunteer and previously served as a board member for Respite Volunteers of Shiawassee and the American Red Cross.

   In 2020, Laura was instrumental in the establishment of mobile food pantries throughout the county. In 2021, Laura spearheaded a partnership between the YMCA and the United Way to establish Shiawassee SOARS, an initiative to feed families in need and to provide economic support for local restaurants.

   The award nominator stated, “Laura Archer works tirelessly for the good of Shiawassee County and fully embodies the spirit of ATHENA. She is a role model of a successful woman in leadership and willingly shares her time and expertise to assist other women in becoming successful for the good of the community.”

   Archer will be formally honored at the Shiawassee Regional Chamber of Commerce 2021 Annual Dinner and Awards Night on Thursday, June 10 at Bear Creek Farm Event Barn in Laingsburg.

   The Shiawassee Regional Chamber of Commerce connects leaders and supports entrepreneurs so that together we build an extraordinary Shiawassee Region.

2021 ATHENA Recipient Announced was last modified: March 30th, 2021 by Karen Elford