Previous Winners

These women were honored at the Inspire Awards for excelling in their professional lives and emerging as leaders and role models in the community.
Inspire Awards Winner Logo

Woman of the Year

Dr. Anitra Warrior

2021 Woman of the Year

Dr. Anitra Warrior

Morningstar Counseling and Consultation

Pat Lopez

2020 Woman of the Year

Pat Lopez

Lancaster County Health Director

2019 Woman of the Year - Alice Dittman

2019 Woman of the Year

Alice Dittman

Former president and CEO of Cornhusker Bank

Dittman received her honor Wednesday during the fifth annual Inspire — Celebrating Women’s Leadership Awards at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

Dittman worked at the bank her family owned for nearly 40 years, serving as president from 1975-92 and then serving another 21 years on its board of directors.

In 2011, she started a $1 million micro-lending program for entrepreneurs that’s administered through the Lincoln Community Foundation.

2018 Woman of the Year - JoAnn Martin

2018 Woman of the Year

JoAnn Martin

Ameritas CEO

Martin was honored Wednesday during the fourth annual Inspire — Celebrating Women’s Leadership Awards.

Martin, who has been with Ameritas since 1984 and has served as the insurance company’s CEO since 2009, was one of 11 women honored for both their professional achievements and their contributions to the community.

Watch her Inspire video.

2017 Woman of the Year - Barbara Bartle

2017 Woman of the Year

Barbara Bartle

Lincoln Community Foundation President

Lincoln Community Foundation President Barbara Bartle was named Woman of the Year on Wednesday at the third annual Inspire — Celebrating Women’s Leadership Awards.

Watch Barbara share her thoughts on leadership, the need for female role models, and what inspires her.

2016 Woman of the Year - Wendy Birdsall

2016 Woman of the Year

Wendy Birdsall

President of the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce

Wendy Birdsall, president of the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce and Lincoln Partnership for Economic Development, was named Woman of the Year at the 2016 Inspire – Celebrating Women’s Leadership Awards.

Watch Birdsall share her thoughts on leadership, work ethic and the need for female role models.

2015 Woman of the Year - Donde Plowman

2015 Woman of the Year

Donde Plowman

Dean of the University of Nebraska – Lincoln College of Business

Donde Plowman, dean of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Business, was named Woman of the Year. She was honored for her efforts in raising $80 million in private donations to construct a new College of Business Administration building, which broke ground earlier this year. As dean of the College of Business, she has developed a lecture series for female students to learn from successful women in the community. She endorses and supports mentoring programs for women and freely gives her time to attend and speak at RISE and Women in Philanthropy events as well as sits on many boards that affect the community.

All Award Winners

2021 Award Winners

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (LARGE)

Lynn Roper

Merrill Lynch

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (SMALL/MEDIUM)

Dr. Betsy Tonniges

Primrose School of Lincoln at Wilderness Hills

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION

Dr. Susan M. Fritz

University of Nebraska

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Stacy Orsborn & Stasi Grenfell

Victress

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE

Judi gaiashkibos

Nebraska Commission on Indian Affairs 

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN HEALTHCARE

Dr. Judith M. Burnfield

Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN NONPROFIT

Michaella Kumke

Food Bank of Lincoln

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN PHILANTHROPY

Karen Griffin

Olsson

Diane Temme Stinton

FOUNDERS AWARD

Aakriti Agrawal

Girls Code Lincoln

Diane Temme Stinton

INSPIRE SCHOLARSHIP

Deseree Chavez & Andrea Orozco-Lopez

 

Diane Temme Stinton

YOUNG LEADER'S AWARD

Batool Ibrahim

2020 Award Winners

Diane Temme Stinton

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (LARGE)

Diane Temme Stinton

TMCO

Aletta McClendon

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (SMALL/MEDIUM)

Aletta McClendon

Zen Salon and Physical Wellness

Dr. Helen Abdali Soosan Fagan

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION

Dr. Helen Abdali Soosan Fagan

University of Nebraska

Susan Larson Rodenburg

EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Susan Larson Rodenburg

SLR Communication

Patty Pansing Brooks

EXCELLENCE IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE

Patty Pansing Brooks

Brooks Pansing Brooks Law

Karen McGivney-Liechti

EXCELLENCE IN HEALTHCARE

Karen McGivney-Liechti

CHI Birth Center

Alynn Sampson

EXCELLENCE IN NON-PROFIT

Alynn Sampson

Food Bank of Lincoln

Holly Ostergard

EXCELLENCE IN PHILANTHROPY

Holly Ostergard

Crete Carrier

Evada Palmer

FUTURE BUSINESS LEADER

Evada Palmer

Zainab Funnah

FOUNDERS AWARD

Zainab Funnah

2019 Award Winners

Cori Sampson Vokoun

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (LARGE)

Cori Sampson Vokoun

Sampson Construction

Dr. Beth Lau

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (SMALL/MEDIUM)

Dr. Beth Lau

Associated Anesthesiologists PC

Tracy Anderson

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION

Tracy Anderson

Lancaster County 4-H Coordinator

Nichole Hansen

EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Nichole Hansen

Handersen Publishing

Jennifer Knecht

EXCELLENCE IN HEALTH CARE

Jennifer Knecht

Immanuel Communities

Cathy Martinez

EXCELLENCE IN NON-PROFIT

Cathy Martinez

Autism Family Network

Linda Robinson Rutz

EXCELLENCE IN PHILANTHROPY

Linda Robinson Rutz

United Way

Pam Dinneen

FOUNDERS AWARD

Pam Dinneen

Mourning Hope Grief Center

Myah Anderson

FUTURE BUSINESS LEADER

Myah Anderson

Melissa Ripley

EXCELLENCE IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE

Melissa Ripley

Lincoln Police Department

2018 Award Winners

Rhonda Peed

EXCELLENCE IN PHILANTHROPY

Rhonda Peed

Co-Founder of Sandhills Publishing

Khamisa Abdalla

EXCELLENCE IN NONPROFIT

Khamisa Abdalla

Asian Community & Cultural Center

Melissa Newton

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (LARGE)

Melissa Newton

Executive Vice President of Talent & Organizational Strategy at Olsson Associates

Rachel Henry

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (SMALL TO MEDIUM)

Rachel Henry

Senior Marketing Consultant with Unanimous

Jen Landis

EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Jen Landis

Pincurl Girls

Peggy Reisher

EXCELLENCE IN HEALTH CARE

Peggy Reisher

Executive Director of the Brain Injury Alliance of Nebraska

Brigadier Gen Wendy Johnson

EXCELLENCE IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE

Brigadier Gen Wendy Johnson

Commander of the Nebraska Air National Guard

Patsy Koch Johns

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION

Patsy Koch Johns

Nebraska State Board of Education member

Ina Bhoopalam

FOUNDERS AWARD

Ina Bhoopalam

Founder of Like a Girl LPS

Azcia Fleming

FUTURE BUSINESS LEADER & SCHOLARSHIP WINNER

Azcia Fleming

Lincoln High School

2017 Award Winners

Barb Bettin

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (LARGE)

Barb Bettin

President & CEO of the YMCA of Lincoln

Lanelle Herink

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS (SMALL TO MEDIUM)

Lanelle Herink

Partner at HBE Becker Meyer Love LLP

L. Shanna Letcher

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION

L. Shanna Letcher

Advocate for African-American students at Lincoln Public Schools

Mailani Veney

EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Mailani Veney

Owner of DealAnyDay

Cynthia Harris

EXCELLENCE IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE

Cynthia Harris

Administrator of the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Service's Office of Consumer Affairs

Teresa Harms

EXCELLENCE IN HEALTH CARE

Teresa Harms

Executive Director of Clinic With a Heart

Karen Bell-Dancy

EXCELLENCE IN NON-PROFIT

Karen Bell-Dancy

Executive Director of the YWCA of Lincoln

Kathryn LeBaron

EXCELLENCE IN PHOLANTHROPY

Kathryn LeBaron

Lincoln Industries

Mary Costello

FOUNDERS AWARD

Mary Costello

Founder of Matt Talbot Kitchen

Jaden Ferguson

FUTURE BUSINESS LEADER & SCHOLARSHIP

Jaden Ferguson

Junior, Lincoln Southwest High School

Lilia Lark Fromm

INSPIRE SCHOLARSHIP

Lilia Lark Fromm

Won a $1,000 scholarship.

2016 Award Winners

Lynn Ayers

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS, 100 EMPLOYEES OR LESS

Lynn Ayers

Executive Director, Child Advocacy Center

Lyn Wineman

EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Lyn Wineman

President & Chief Strategist, KidGlov

Lauren Mosser

FUTURE BUSINESS LEADER & SCHOLARSHIP

Lauren Mosser

Senior, Lincoln Southeast High School

AshLea Allberry

FOUNDERS AWARD

AshLea Allberry

100's of Women Who Care

Dr. Tracy Bender

EXCELLENCE IN HEALTH CARE

Dr. Tracy Bender

Occupational Therapist, Lymphedema & Cancer Rehabilitation Specialist, Southeast Nebraska Cancer Center

Beatty Brasch

EXCELLENCE IN PHILANTHROPY

Beatty Brasch

Executive Director, Center for People in Need

Pat Leach

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION

Pat Leach

Director, Lincoln City Libraries

Christie Hinrichs

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS, 101 EMPLOYEES OR MORE

Christie Hinrichs

President & CEO, Tabitha

Leirion Gaylor Baird

EXCELLENCE IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE

Leirion Gaylor Baird

Lincoln City Council

2015 Award Winners

Avary Pansing Brooks

INSPIRE SCHOLARSHIP

Avary Pansing Brooks

Student at American University

Elizabeth Whitacre

INSPIRE FUTURE BUSINESS LEADER

Elizabeth Whitacre

Student at University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Kathy Campbell

EXCELLENCE IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE

Kathy Campbell

State Senator

Kimberly Rath

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS – LARGE

Kimberly Rath

Chairwomen & Co-Founder of Talent+

Liz Neeley

EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS – SMALL

Liz Neeley

Executive Director of the Nebraska Bar Association

Marilyn Moore

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION

Marilyn Moore

President of Bryan College of Health Services

Marsha Lommel

EXCELLENCE IN HEALTH CARE

Marsha Lommel

President & CEO of Madonna Rehabilitation

Rhonda Seacrest

EXCELLENCE IN PHILANTHROPY

Rhonda Seacrest

James C. & Rhonda S. Seacrest Foundation

Tawnya Starr

EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Tawnya Starr

Vice President of Sales for Firespring

Event Galleries

2020

Hosted at the Embassy Suites

2019

Hosted at the Pinnacle Bank Arena

2018

Hosted at the Pinnacle Bank Arena

2017

Hosted at The Cornhusker Marriott Hotel

2016

Hosted at The Cornhusker Marriott Hotel

2015

Hosted at The Cornhusker Marriott Hotel