Dr. Shelley Armstrong named 2021 ATHENA winner

The Greater Shreveport Chamber honored Shelley Nicole Armstrong, Ph.D., M.A.T., MCHES as the 2021 ATHENA Leadership Award recipient at its 31st Annual Leadership Award Luncheon Wednesday, presented by Willis-Knighton Health System.

“We are delighted to recognize Dr. Armstrong as the 2021 recipient of the ATHENA Leadership Award,” said Dr. Timothy Magner, President of the Greater Shreveport Chamber. “In addition to her pioneering work in online teacher education, Dr. Armstrong has dedicated herself to transforming the physical and mental health of our young people through her community projects, Kids on the Run and YOUth FIT. We are so pleased to be able to recognize Dr. Armstrong for her leadership, focus and dedication.” 

Dr. Shelley Armstrong’s passion for higher education, health and fitness has changed the lives of thousands in her community and across the U.S. during her 21-year career. Armstrong has mentored and motivated countless female students and athletes through her roles as academic program director, chair of health and exercise science, senior woman administrator of intercollegiate athletics at Walden University, and an NCAA Division I cross-country coach.

While her numerous career accomplishments are notable, her community projects, Kids on the Run and YOUth FIT, are equally impressive. In 2019, YOUth FIT, which promotes fitness, received the National Outstanding Youth Program Award. As a professor, coach, community leader and mom of two young girls, Armstrong continually sets an example of living up to and beyond her leadership potential.

Dr. Armstrong was selected from among 16 especially accomplished honorees including: Lyndsi Alvarez of Precision Waste Solutions; Krystle Renee’ Beauchamp of the Parish of Caddo; Kathleen ‘Katie’ Bursley of United Way of Northwest Louisiana; Susan East of American Armature & Power Tool Repair, Inc.;

Jana Freeman Forrest of BOM Bank; Von Jennings of Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana; Julie Gilley Milam of BRF’s Entrepreneurial Accelerator Program (EAP); Leslie Peck of SporTran; Margaret Claire Rebouche of Willis Knighton Health System; Miranda Small of Sam’s Town Hotel & Casino; Karen Soul, Ph.D. of Centenary College of Louisiana; LaToria Willis Thomas of United Way of Northwest Louisiana; Keely Verges of Brentwood Hospital; Felecia Latonya Williams of My Spa My Way and Ryan Williams of Seedlinks Behavior Management.

For  more than 30 years, the Greater Shreveport Chamber has awarded the ATHENA International Leadership Award to a woman or man to honor their attainment of the highest level of professional excellence by showing creativity and initiative in their business or profession; to showcase their devotion, time and energy to improve the quality of life for others in the community in a meaningful way; and to demonstrate how they have opened doors for other women to achieve their full potential. In total, over 450 people from Shreveport-Bossier have been ATHENA honorees, and Dr. Armstrong is the 53rd ATHENA International Award Recipient from our area. Her name will be added to the long list of outstanding professionals from across the globe who have been honored for their dedication to community service, professionalism and female empowerment. 

Since the program’s inception in 1982, more than 8,000 exemplary leaders in over 500 communities have received the prestigious ATHENA Leadership Award in the United States, Bermuda, Canada, China, Greece, India, Russia, United Arab Emirates and United Kingdom. By honoring exceptional leaders, the ATHENA Leadership Award Program seeks to inspire others to achieve excellence in their professional and personal lives.

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