Meet Our Inspirational Influencers of 2022!

Influencers are women who invest in themselves, give back to their community, and break through glass ceilings in any industry. They are thought leaders, coaches, authors, inventors, entrepreneurs, senior-level executives, and more. Since 2017, IAW provided nearly one million women with services, resources, education, and community to thrive in an interconnected world. For our Influencers, we showcase their expertise on larger platforms, expand their network, grow their skills, and develop personalized marketing material.

This past October, we celebrated the achievements of thirteen Influencers who were nominated by their peers at the IAW Inspirational Influencer Gala Award Ceremony and Virtual Expo. Hundreds of members gathered in Las Vegas for a day of celebration, connection, and support. Plus, our special guest speakers Tunde Oyeneyin and Randi Zuckerberg inspired us with their personal and professional journeys. 

Each woman who received an award was passionate about her industry or cause and invested not only in themselves but in their community. They demonstrate the core values of the IAW community to dream, lead, and rise together. 

Now, meet the women we are honored to be a part of their journey!

Coach of the Year

Yengyee Lor

Yengyee Lor

Yengyee is a facilitator, Professional Certified Coach, trainer, project manager, and keynote speaker. She launched Faithful Consulting LLC in October 2015 to promote social change in the workplace through coaching, training, and consulting. In 2021, she was a Margaret Ashida Leadership Honoree and a Marketplace 2021 Business Excellence Award Finalist. When she is not working, Yengyee loves to travel and explore with her two kids. Learn more about her on her website here.

Community Impact

Lucy Bloom

Lucy Bloom

Lucy has been the Director of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives at the Kansas Department for Children and Families for the last five years. Part of her work there is involved with the Serenity Life Resource Center, a collaboration of community leaders who help individuals and families grow strong with resources including education, mental health services, and leadership development. Lucy especially loves the center’s equine therapy where she can help individuals find comfort and support with horses.

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

Dr. Tonia Holmes-Sutton

Dr. Holmes-Sutton

Dr. Tonia Holmes-Sutton is a National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT) who serves as an advocate for critical education issues including diversity, equity, inclusion, restorative justice, social-emotional learning, and educator preparation, recruitment, and retention. She presently serves as the Executive Director for Teach Plus Nevada and is the Director of the Nevada National Board Professional Learning Institute. Dr. Holmes-Sutton works in collaboration with local, district, state, and national education partners and stakeholders to transform teaching. Learn more about her on her website here.

Global Impact

Eliz Nestrovo

Eliz Nestrovo

Eliz is the founder and CEO of AKAEVA Consulting LLC a company providing consulting and business strategies for individuals and businesses in Central Pennsylvania. AKAEVA Consulting delivers grant writing and management services, foreign language, and corporate image consulting with one-on-one coaching, seminars, training seminars, and workshops. She also serves as the Special Interest Group Chair for Economic & Community Development and International Programs operated by the U.S. with the American Grant Writers’ Association, plus the Founder and President of the US-Bulgarian Chamber in America, located in Washington, D.C. Read about her journey here or listen to her advice on Unlimited HERizons.

Global Impact

Aimmee Kodachian

Aimmee Kodachian

Aimmee is the author of “Tears of Hope,” a memoir of the 13 years she lived through the 1975 Lebanese Civil War. Her mission is to empower humanity through education and inspiration. She does so through her TV show, networking events, speaking, coaching, and her Negotiator Mind™ online programs. Find out more about her life or television show on her website here.

Health & Wellness

Sue Rodrigues

Sue Rodrigues

Sue’s been a certified professional health coach for the last 14 years and loves helping her clients instill small behavior changes leading to significant differences. Her services include accountability groups, weekly or monthly coaching, mindfulness, nutrition, self-care habits, and more. She shared some advice on IAW’s podcast, Unlimited HERizons, where she encouraged listeners to point out the positives of what went right in their day instead of the negatives. Find out more about her services on her website here. 

Initiator/Next Gen

Britney Crosson

Britney Crosson

Britney is the host and executive producer of the top global marketing podcast, The Social Sunshine Podcast, owner of Fun Love Media, a social media management and content creation agency based in Houston, TX, and the founder of Small Biz Social Society, a membership that helps ambitious entrepreneurs stand out on social media. She shares her mental health struggles, triumphs, and stories with her over 15 million viewers. On IAW’s podcast, Unlimited HERizons, Britney gave tips on how to build your brand on social media and encouraged listeners to share their personality online, not just their business. Learn more on her website here.

Innovation

Kelly Gaines

Kelly Gaines

Kelly, CCMP, is the President of the Nevada Subcontractors Association, one of the most influential networks of non-union multi-trade companies and businesses in Nevada. She helped to pass state policy AB290, which added steps to increase safety and training in construction.

Leadership

Amanda Laferriere

Amanda Laferriere

Amanda is the Chief Product Officer at SigFig. She is an industry expert in product development, design thinking, and user-centric product strategy delivering top-line revenue growth through enhanced user experience and improved customer satisfaction. She leads teams that build products that matter and solve problems in bold, new ways.

Lifetime Achievement

Karen Booker

Karen Booker

Karen, CIT CCC, has 30+ years of experience in management services in Education and Outreach, Policy Analysis, and Operational Diagnosis. She aided in program development and policy analysis for the NYC housing agency, managed NYC’s real estate property operations and other housing-related projects with budgets ranging from $500,000 to $100 million, and directed the largest municipal housing education program in the nation. Plus, Karen is IAW’s NYC Chapter President.

Member of the Year

Suzanne Castle

Suzanne Castle

Suzanne is a creative strategist, certified John Maxwell consultant, and president of the IAW Fort Worth Chapter. Her clients range from dancers, theaters, visual artists, CEOs, schools, and anyone who is seeking creative solutions. A terrible accident on the stage meant Castle had to change careers early in her life. Growing up in an art-focused church inspired her to bring the arts to more public settings through religious endeavors. She also received her master’s in divinities with a specialty in spirituality and art plus a doctorate in liturgical, artful theology. Read about her journey here or listen to her advice on Unlimited HERizons.

Woman Business Owner

Courtlyn Jones

Courtlyn Jones

Courtlyn is a graphic designer with 5+ years of experience, whose work translates from screens to physical spaces through considered design and management of teams, supporting brands spanning from consumer goods to print media. They are the founder and CEO of The Design Database an online membership-based marketplace designed as a global community to support female and non-binary visual artists (graphic designers, fashion designers, illustrators, web designers, photographers, writers, etc.) by connecting them with other Creatives, as well as with clients and companies looking to hire. Their mission is to give Creatives a place to connect and grow within their fields and be successful in the very competitive creative industry. Learn more on her website here.

Women Supporting Women

Tunisha Walker-Miller

Tunisha Walker-Miller

Tunisha is a champion for Small Businesses, MWBE Consultant, state lobbyist, speaker, and expert on government at all levels in New York State. She was the first African American Woman to serve as Executive Director of the New York State Senate Conference of Black Senators. From her role with the New York State Senate Democrats, Tunisha was later appointed as an Affirmative Action Administrator for the NYS Department of Labor – Division of Equal Opportunity Development by Governor Andrew Cuomo. In 2019, Tunisha decided to take her consulting services to the next level by founding The Source Consulting Group, LLC as a New York-certified Minority Women-Owned Business (MWBE). Learn more about her on her website here.