Chamber Presents Dottie Berger MacKinnon Woman of Influence Award to Rhea Law

WOI Winner PicTampa, Fla. – Rhea Law, Chair of the Florida offices of Buchanan, Ingersoll & Rooney was selected as the recipient of the 2016 Dottie Berger MacKinnon Woman of Influence Award, presented by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce.  In her professional career, she has achieved numerous recognitions from her peers and was the first female to lead a major law firm in the state of Florida. Highly involved in civic and charitable work, Rhea has held the top leadership positions with many Florida based organizations including the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, Tampa Bay Partnership and the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties. She was appointed by Governor Jeb Bush to serve on the board of the Florida Council of 100, where she currently is the chair.

“Rhea’s professional, community and philanthropic work in our city is among the very best.  For initiative, community involvement, professional accomplishments, leadership, vision and selflessness, Rhea has set the standard for us all,” said John Ramil, 2004 Chamber Chair.

The Woman of Influence Award recognizes a woman whose leadership has made a positive impact in Hillsborough County.  It pays tribute to an individual who exemplifies outstanding professional values; demonstrates the ability to go above and beyond the normal expectations of a leader; and serves as an inspiration to the community. Rhea Law was presented the award at the Chamber’s annual Women of Influence Luncheon featuring Gay Gaddis, Founder and CEO of T3, the largest woman-owned independent advertising agency in the country, before a record audience of 900 attendees.

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The Chamber’s Women of Influence committee supports the community

The Chamber’s robust Women of Influence (WOI) committee has had a busy 2013 thus far! In addition to welcoming Viola Davis at their annual luncheon to a record crowd, they’ve hosted a Women’s Series Lunch with a humorous and informative panel of doctors, as well as a Pearls of Wisdom event with a panel of local non-profits. In addition to all of that, the group has started extensive outreach projects throughout the Tampa community, with a focus on women.

Early in the year, the group came together to discuss a committee mission statement. They decided on: “Through our leadership and service, the Women of Influence Committee will inspire and educate women through identification and response to business and community needs in collaboration with community partners.” This statement has given the committee a renewed focus and direction in 2013. Here are a few projects the group has tackled so far.

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Teaming up with Hillsborough Community College, a few WOI women attended a mentoring session with students from HCC’s Women’s Mentoring Network group. Sharing their stories and expertise, the WOI committee members gave insight and advice to the students. One student, pictured here with Beth Kerly of the WOI Committee (left), attended the next WOI committee meeting to express her thanks. She was so appreciative of the ladies taking their time to share guidance with the young women.

woipic2In conjunction with the March Pearls of Wisdom event previously mentioned, the WOI group held a Dress for Success purse and accessory drive. They encouraged committee members and attendees to the Pearls event to donate their slightly used items to women in need. The group collected a slew of handbags, necklaces, earrings, wallets, belts and more to deliver to the Tampa chapter of Dress for Success. Debra Palmer of the WOI committee, pictured here, dropped off the donated items and they expressed their sincere gratitude to the group.

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In mid-April, the WOI committee partnered with the University of South Florida’s EnhancingU program for student athletes. About 10 women went to USF to attend a “networking night” arranged for just the female student athletes. The students attended to learn and practice networking techniques from business professionals. Discussion followed with a Q&A session as well as recommendations from the WOI ladies to help improve their networking skills. The female students played a variety of sports and studied everything from fashion design to environmental engineering – but they were all very eager to learn about the WOI members’ career paths. Both groups truly benefited from the evening’s program.

The WOI committee has extensive plans for future outreach projects and events throughout the rest of the year, so stay tuned to TampaChamber.com for all the details!

Oscar Nominee and Tony Award Winner Viola Davis to Speak at Women of Influence Event

Today, the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce announced Oscar Nominee and Tony Award Winner Viola Davis, will deliver the keynote address at the Chamber’s 7th Annual Women of Influence Luncheon on Wednesday, April 10, 2013 at A La Event Carte Pavilion. Sponsorships, corporate tables and tickets are now available.

Tony-winning actress Davis’ powerful and emotional performances in such plays as “Intimate Apparel” and “King Hedley II” made her a formidable presence on the American theater scene in the late 1990s and 2000s. Her profile in film skyrocketed with her turn as the morally ambiguous mother of a sexually abused student in “Doubt” (2008), which gained near universal acclaim from critics and earned her a first Oscar nomination. Soon after Davis returned to Broadway and won Tony and Drama Desk Awards for her performance in the revival of August Wilson’s “Fences” prior to wowing audiences with her portrayal of Aibileen Clark, the longtime maid of a white household in “The Help” (2011), which earned her a second Academy Award nomination.

“The Chamber’s women’s programming is instrumental in providing networking and professional development opportunities to female executives. Since our first Women of Influence luncheon, all of our women’s programming has brought in more than 7,000 in attendance,” said Bob Rohrlack, President & CEO of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce. “We are excited to host Viola Davis for our 7th Annual Women of Influence Luncheon and look forward to the inspiring message she will deliver to our attendees.”

About the Women of Influence Luncheon

In 2007, the Chamber identified a growing demand from members for programming designed to foster success among female business professionals in the Tampa Bay region. Out of this need grew the Women of Influence Luncheon, an annual event designed to offer local women an opportunity to develop relationships and discuss issues specific to women in business. Previous luncheons have welcomed entertainment journalist Giuliana Rancic, Soledad O’Brien, acclaimed special investigations correspondent and host of CNN’s In America documentaries, real estate mogul and Shark Tank judge Barbara Corcoran, Elizabeth Gilbert, best-selling author of Eat, Pray, Love, and Sarah Blakely, founder of SPANX. The luncheon annually sells out with an average crowd of more than 800 attendees. Click here for the WOI Luncheon page.

Chamber Presents Woman of Influence Award to Dottie Berger MacKinnon

Dottie Berger MacKinnon is the winner of the inaugural Woman of Influence Award, presented by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce. MacKinnon is a former Hillsborough County Commissioner, and the Founder of Joshua House, Kids Charity of Tampa Bay, Inc. and A Kid’s Place. In addition to this year’s WOI award, MacKinnon was also the recipient of the H.L. Culbreath Jr. Profile in Leadership Award in 2010.

“Dottie truly embodies the outstanding professional values that characterize this award. Her servant-leader manner, coupled with tenacity and a heart for children, serves as a powerful testimony to the impact of one person on a community,” stated Dr. Ronald & Renee Vaughn.

The Woman of Influence Award recognizes a woman whose leadership has made a positive impact in Hillsborough County. It pays tribute to an individual who exemplifies outstanding professional values; demonstrates the ability to go above and beyond the normal expectations of a leader; and serves as an inspiration to the community. MacKinnon was presented the award at the Chamber’s annual Women of Influence Luncheon featuring Giuliana Rancic before a sold out audience of 850 attendees.

Entertainment Journalist Giuliana Rancic to Speak at Women of Influence Event

Today, the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce announced that Giuliana Rancic, entertainment journalist and co-anchor of E! News, will deliver the keynote address at the Chamber’s 6th Annual Women of Influence Luncheon on Wednesday, April 25, 2012 at A La Event Carte Pavilion.

“Giuliana has a fascinating story of growing up in Italy in an impoverished neighborhood, moving to the United States as a young girl and ultimately becoming a well-known entertainment journalist. Her love of journalism started before she even learned English and we are looking forward to hearing her story of how she overcame various obstacles in her life and career,” said 2012 Women of Influence Chair Renee Scott, State Farm Insurance Company.

Rancic is currently co-anchor of E! News alongside Ryan Seacrest and is the co-star of E!’s Fashion Police alongside Joan Rivers. She is also on the board of directors for the National Italian American Foundation, author of FabFitFun, a daily newsletter focused on beauty, health and wellness and a member of American Women in Radio and Television. Some of her charity work includes Operation Smile, Dress for Success, Mercy Home for Boys and Girls in Chicago and the Children’s Miracle Networks. Giuliana earned her B.A. in Journalism from the University of Maryland and her Master’s in Journalism from the American University in Washington, D.C. While in attendance, she worked for a capital news bureau covering a number of stories related to the Pentagon, Supreme Court, White House and State Department.

Her new book, I Do, Now What? was recently released and in 2006, Giuliana released her highly-praised debut book, Think Like a Guy: How to Get a Guy by Thinking Like One, a practical and funny handbook on landing the man of your dreams.

About the Women of Influence Luncheon
In 2007, the Chamber identified a growing demand from members for programming designed to foster success among female business professionals in the Tampa Bay region. Out of this need grew the Women of Influence Luncheon, an annual event designed to offer local women an opportunity to develop relationships and discuss issues specific to women in business. Previous luncheons have welcomed Soledad O’Brien, acclaimed special investigations correspondent and host of CNN’s In America documentaries, real estate mogul and Shark Tank judge Barbara Corcoran, Elizabeth Gilbert, best selling author of Eat, Pray, Love, and Sarah Blakely, founder of SPANX. The luncheon annually sells out with an average crowd of more than 800 attendees.

For more information on the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, please visit http://www.tampachamber.com.