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Athena’s Holly Smithson Honored As CEO of the Year by San Diego Business Journal

Updated: Apr 16, 2020

San Diego Business Journal Honors Athena’s CEO in Non-Profit Category

June 9, 2019 - Athena, California’s premier advocate for professional women in STEM, is recognized for its CEO, Holly Smithson as San Diego’s CEO of the Year in the Non-Profit Category. This annual awards ceremony is hosted by the San Diego Business Journal (SDBJ) and showcases prominent business leaders making their mark in history while elevating San Diego’s stature in the global business community. 

“I’m deeply honored to receive this recognition by my peers," said Holly Smithson, Athena CEO, "and I can’t help but notice the number of female CEOs that are leading other San Diego institutions with distinction like the SDBJ, the District Attorney, The Port of SD, SD Airport…it’s clear this region understands the relationship between diversity and sustained performance."

This tribute acknowledges industry leaders’ leadership and achievements within their company and community. These chosen CEO’s are recognized for generating vibrant cultures and thriving businesses while spurring the local economy. The San Diego Business Journal is hosting a reception and awards program to honor the winners, finalists and regional business community on June 19 at National University in La Jolla, California. 

About Athena Athena is a women’s empowerment organization that fast tracks women in STEM through leadership development. In transforming female scientists and technologists into corporate leaders, the goal is to widen the bridge and empower 1 million women leading in STEM, by 2030. Its 20+ year history of advancing women in one of the nation's leading STEM hubs marks Athena as a premier women's empowerment advocate. For more information visit: and follow @athenasandiego. 

About the San Diego Business Journal Each year the San Diego Business Journal recognizes industry leaders’ great achievements within their companies and in the community. The winners and finalists are lauded for demonstrating determination and insight yielding huge successes for their organizations. These executives have taken the lead in driving their businesses and the local economy. The San Diego Business Journal honors these CEOs by hosting an exclusive reception and awards program to honor the winners, finalists and guests.  Learn more about the Most Admired CEO at


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