2019 WILMA'S Women to Watch Awards

Join us on October 11 to celebrate the
2019 Women to Watch Awards Finalists!


Now in its eighth year, WILMA's Women to Watch Awards spotlights regional women who are the movers-and-shakers, the disruptors, the inspirations for successes to come. This year more than 200 nominations and applications were received, 13 judges read through all the details,  35 finalists were hand-selected and, ultimately,  seven winners will be named at this celebratory event.


Wilmington Convention Center
5:30 - 6:30 p.m. - Cocktail Hour with Hors d'oeuvre, wine and beer
6:30 - 7:30 p.m. - Awards Ceremony
7:30 - 10:00 p.m. - Food Station Open

Music by Lunar Tide

Tickets include food, wine and beer, an awards ceremony, and a special reveal of the overall category winners. There will also be music and dancing to round out the night!

Cocktail attire preferred


Introducing the 2019 Women to Watch Finalists: 

Finalists listed alphabetically.


  • Gwen Baker – President, CDM Federal Programs Corporation
  • Catherine Hawksworth – Owner, Modern Legend
  • Ruth Ravitz Smith – President, RR Smith Strategic Solutions (R2S3)
  • Alyson Smist - Assistant General Manager, Wilmington Sharks
  • Lorin Van Zandt - Co-Founder/President, MISSIO Hair

Rising Star:

  • Kobe Campbell - Licensed Professional Counselor Associate, The Healing Circle LLC
  • Estefania Gutierrez – Paralegal, David Creech Law Firm PLLC
  • Lee Rochelle – Supervisor, Guardian ad Litem Program
  • Michaela & Annabelle Sanchez – Musicians, Entangled Dreams
  • Leah Sherrill – Founder, Special Pedals

Health Care:

  • Buffy Andrews - Owner & Wellness Guru, Made Well Center for Wholeness
  • Candice Curtin - Chief Executive Officer, Pressure Dx
  • Lauren Gainor - Medical Director, Inpatient Pediatrics & Newborn Services, Coastal Children's Services
  • Candy Lee - Dementia Care Nurse Specialist, Lower Cape Fear Hospice
  • Rebecca Mullaney - Owner and Psychotherapist, Stable Ground Counseling


  • Lauren Brooke Brown - Owner/Cosmetic Tattoo Artist, Lasting Looks By Lauren Brooke LLC
  • Donna Gargett - Executive Director/Founder, Blank Canvas Awareness Art
  • Kim Henry - Executive Director, Theatre for All
  • Jamie La Londe-Pinkston - Program Coordinator, DREAMS of Wilmington
  • Gale Smith – Artist, Gale Smith Art


  • Janelle Babington - Founder/Executive Director, American Red Lion Disaster & Abuse Fund
  • Evelyn Bryant - Chief Executive Officer, Northside Bridge Builders
  • Angie Hill - Chief Executive Officer, Brigade Boys & Girls Club
  • Emily Klinefelter - Founder/Foster Mom , Foster Pantry
  • MaLisa Umstead - Founder/Executive Director, A Safe Place

Public Service:

  • Stephanie Boucher – Lieutenant, Wilmington Police Department
  • Mebane Boyd – Director, New Hanover County Resiliency Task Force
  • Jessica Loeper – Chief Communications Officer, New Hanover County
  • Elizabeth Peterson - Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development, North Carolina Cooperative Extension
  • Lauren White – Lieutenant, New Hanover County Sheriff's Office


  • Jessica Gaffney - Theater Department Chair, CFCC
  • Kellie Griggs - Assistant Professor, UNCW School of Nursing
  • Darlena Moore – President, The Gilbert Scholarship Inc.
  • Crystal Sutherland - Founder/President, Journey to Heal Ministries
  • Kendall Tidey – Facilitator, Adult Transgender Support Group

Any female resident of New Hanover, Brunswick or Pender County is eligible for the W2W Awards.‚Äč

Click on the Buy Tickets tab above to make a reservation for the 2019 Women to Watch Awards Celebration!  

Photos from last year's award ceremony can be found by following the links below.
Women to Watch Awards 1
Women to Watch Awards 2

WILMA’s Women to Watch Awards is part of the WILMA Leadership Initiative. If you would like to be a sponsor of the Initiative, please contact Melissa Pressley, VP of Sales, at (910) 343.8600 x 203 or [email protected]

If you have questions or for more information email Vicky Janowski and Maggi Apel, co-leaders of the Leadership Initiative, at [email protected] To learn more about WILMA's Leadership Initiative, click here.


Tickets Price
2019 Women to Watch Awards - Early Bird Pricing
2019 Women to Watch Awards - Individual Seat
2019 Women to Watch Awards
2019 Women to Watch Awards - Table for 10 people (Your table will be reserved) - Early Bird Pricing
Register to Buy

Event Discussion


Friday Oct 11, 2019

5:30 PM to 10:00 PM


Wilmington Convention Center

515 Nutt Street
Wilmington, NC 28401