Board of Directors
Athena Leadership is operated by an annually elected Board of Directors.
2013 – 2014 Board of Directors
|President||Lindy Norris, The Dufresne Group|
|Vice President||Dana Oftedal, Red River Mutual|
|Treasurer||Vanessa Kunderman, London Life|
|Secretary||Denise Darling, Think.Shift|
|Director, Funding||Kayla Dickin, MTS Allstream Inc|
|Director, PR & Communications||Lisa Pitura, Manitoba Public Insurance|
|Director, Philanthropy||Lana Bakun, MTS Allstream Inc|
Lindy Norris, Founder & President
Company: The Dufresne Group (TDG)
Position: Director of Advertising
Recreational & Community Involvement: St. Amant Foundation, Board Member and Communications & Development Committee Chair; United Way of Winnipeg, GenNext Council Member; Canadian Youth Business Foundation, Mentor
Who I Aspire To: Gail Asper: She’s a woman of distinction with a strong voice and kind heart. Asper has amassed success across business, nonprofit, and the humanities, and embodies everything Athena Leadership strives to be; this tenacity and boundless optimism are what make her a local inspiration to us all.
Sheryl Sandberg: As one of few women on Facebook’s executive team, Sandberg (only 42 in her role) is an outstanding success. She’s a highly sought board member, advocate for women in the workplace, and possesses charisma money can’t buy.
Coco Chanel: As the founder and catalyst behind one of the most successful fashion business empires in the 20th century, Chanel pursued her dream through modernist thought and pioneering change. She secured her position as a woman business mogul (a rarity at the time!) through determination, power, and grace.
Why Athena Leadership:In 2011, I realized an opportunity to create a leadership development forum for young women professionals. There lacked formal structure to channel talent in providing leadership development, philanthropic opportunity, and streamlined vision through a network; and a need existed in uniting mentorship, strategic growth, and insight from well-established leaders. From this, Athena Leadership was founded and has been gaining momentum since. Support from our mentors paired with Athena Leadership’s collective energy, zest for learning, and high potential are what has and will continue to create stronger leaders.
Dana Oftedal, Vice President
Company: Red River Mutual
Position: Director of Marketing
Recreational & Community Involvement: GDC of Manitoba BlueSky Organizing committee, Firefighters’ Burn Fund Fire Safety Program committee member, Marathon Runner.
Who I Aspire to: Rebecca Van Dyck, Head of Consumer Marketing, Facebook. “Rebecca Van Dyck’s career is a chronicle of cool: She shepherded Nike’s “Just Do It” campaign around the world, launched the iPhone and iPad at Apple, gave Levi’s its first global brand identity last year with the Go Forth campaign, and this past February joined the world’s largest social network.” – Fast Company, 100 Most Creative People in Business (Rebecca Van Dyck ranked #2 on the list)
Why Athena Leadership:“There is a special place in hell for women who do not help other women.” – Madeleine K. Albright”
Denise Darling, Secretary
Position: Interaction Designer
Recreational & Community Involvement: Good Deeds Committee (TS), New Media Manitoba volunteer
Who I Aspire to: Julie Taymor
Why Athena Leadership: Because of the personal enrichment we derive from our mentors, the support and direction from peers, and the eventual guidance we will be able to provide to other women.
Vanessa Kunderman, Treasurer
Company: London Life
Position: Financial Security Advisor
Recreational & Community Involvement: Spokesperson for the Canadian Cancer Society, Development Committee for LITE
Who I Aspire to: It’s a tie. Marissa Mayer for all her trailblazing work at Google and now Yahoo. I’m a lover of technology, leadership and balance, and her work with these major companies while balancing family is truly admirable. Second, Sophia Amoruso for her incredible – modern – business sense with Nasty Gal and one of the fastest growing companies to date – sans debt. Her youth is also something that I find inspirational.
Why Athena Leadership: Despite all the courageous, motivational and inspiring things that Athena Leadership represents, it’s the individuals behind the organization that I find the most thought-provoking, empowering and exciting. Never have I been surrounded by a more like-minded yet diverse group of women who all want to do well in their communities and in their personal lives. I think a powerful, eager and intelligent group of young women is tough to beat.
Lisa Pitura, Director, PR & Communications
Company: Manitoba Public Insurance
Position: Manager, Communications
Recreational & Community Involvement: Board member of The Dream Room Project and The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre, United Way volunteer
Who I Aspire to: I am inspired by strong, passionate women who do what they love and make a positive difference. Some of these women include: - Indra Nooyi, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of PepsiCo., “At the end of the day if I stand back and have regrets, it is never going to work. You just look forward and get on with life. What’s important is trying to be the best and working to get there.”
-Nora Ephron, Writer, Producer, Director, ““Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.”
- Coco Chanel, Designer and Founder of Chanel, “A girl should be two things: who and what she wants.” I aspire to be the best person I can be to myself and others.
Why Athena Leadership: Women coaching, mentoring and helping each other is a special thing. We understand the issues and challenges we face in navigating our careers, our philanthropic endeavours, and in day-to-day life. Athena Leadership gives us a forum to connect, share, learn and grow.
Kayla Dickin, Director, Funding
Company: MTS Allstream Inc.
Position: Youth Market Manager
Recreational & Community Involvement: Art & Soul committee
Who I Aspire to: Jenna Lyons-President and Creative Director for J.Crew or Amanda Lang, anchor for the Lang and O’Leary Exchange on CBC News. These two individuals exemplify my two passions, marketing and finance, and are both evidently leaders in each industry. But then again, what I believe is more important is what kind of person you become. I hope when my peers describe me, I’m known as someone who is humble, full of integrity, influential, driven, charismatic and kind-hearted.
Why Athena Leadership: Athena Leadership provides enduring opportunity for likeminded influential leaders to network, share expertise, gain perspective as well as advice on business and community involvement. Most importantly, it inspires personal and professional development.
Lana Bakun, Director, Philanthropy
Company: MTS Allstream Inc.
Position: Channel Relationship Manager – Marketing
Recreational & Community Involvement: Lana has been and continues to be involved in the community with a variety of non-profit organizations and community events including The United Way of Winnipeg.
Who I Aspire To: Melissa Weiss, VP Global Marketing & Strategy at Shopbop.com. It is not who I aspire to but the authentic person that I am, the qualities and values I live my life with and who I will become. Others can give you inspiration but the drive and determination within is what makes it happen! I aspire to be better than I was yesterday and stand the test of time like Chanel.
Why Athena Leadership: Athena Leadership offers members the opportunity to network with a strong, diverse group of leaders in Winnipeg, build relationships within the community in which we live and work through community involvement and develop oneself both professionally and as an individual.