As a third generation Auburn grad, you could say AU was definitely in our blood. But based on my major in Broadcasting, Auburn wasn’t my first choice… A wonderful letter from President Philpott changed my mind by welcoming me to the Auburn Family. Once I stepped on campus, there was never a doubt that this is where I belonged.

Like so many Auburn students, I learned much about myself, how to be independent and how to work hard while balancing the friendships of college. What I learned most of all, though, was resilience — how to stand up for what you believe in when others criticize your character and motives. It has been an excellent lesson that has helped me through adversity — walking off an airplane to find my employer went bankrupt and I that qualified for food stamps. Three years later, I was the youngest female to ever hold a regional executive position at a five-star hotel company. It’s helped my author 4 books and teach presentation & communication skills to executives around the world.

Developing women (and men!) leaders is my passion, and it started at Auburn. My senior year, 10 high-profile female friends joined together to form a female honorary for senior women. It took 10 years for the charter to be established within the University and today The Cater Society is proud to honor more than 300 Auburn Women leaders. Just a few years ago, I had the privilege of speaking to the 2015 graduating class. It was truly a highlight for me as an alum!

As Dean Foy remarked to me at a luncheon for the Top 5 Miss Auburn candidates in 1981, “Young lady, do you know where the color of your hair came from?” He smiled and said, “it’s between Opelika and Montgomery!” Meaning Auburn the city, like the color of my hair. I am proud to be Auburn family, and passionate to empower the future women of Auburn by preparing them to be their most successful self. We can only do that by creating opportunities for each other as women.