Heels, Hopes and Higher Education: Management Women to hold annual fundraiser in-person

Heels, Hopes and Higher Education
Posted at 12:00 AM, Aug 24, 2021

ASHWAUBENON (NBC 26) — Although women make up around half the U.S. population, only around eight percent of CEOs at fortune 500 companies in 2021 are women. Some local ladies are working to change that statistic.

In 1983, 13 women came together to form Management Women, an organization that now has almost 100 members.

“The whole idea was to bring women to share their experiences and their triumphs, challenges, from a work perspective," said Lori O'Connor, past president of Management Women. "Bring those together so they could share ideas and experiences.”

20 years later, the organization’s Heels, Hopes and Higher Education fundraiser has raised nearly $400,000 in scholarship money for local women.

“Every dollar goes back to women," said O'Connor. "So by attending, you're helping build the future leaders of our community.”

The all-day event this year includes educational speaker Kelly Thompson, a silent auction, raffle buckets and more; the topic is "advance with confidence."

“It gives hope to those young women that might not be able to go to college and pursue their secondary education," said Melinda Kekstas, chair of the HHH fundraiser. "Women need support to go to college, so we're looking for all the help that we can get to make these women's dreams come true.”

After having to hold the annual HHH event virtually last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they’re hoping to have a big turnout this year.

"Anyone who is passionate about helping young women, particularly succeed, this is a great venue to do it," said O'Connor. "Because not only can you learn and get educated yourself, but you also have the ability to network and meet some amazing women.”

The Heels, Hopes and Higher Education fundraiser is on Wednesday Cctober 20th at the Radisson in Ashwaubenon. Registration is $119 and includes a luncheon and cocktail party afterwards. You can register for the event here.