Two northeast Johnson County women are the winners of this year’s ATHENA awards presented by the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce. SuEllen Fried of Prairie Village is the leadership award honoree and Susan Leonard of Fairway is the young leadership award honoree.
Fried is the founder of BullySafeUSA and is recognized for her advocacy for women and children in abusive relationships. She has written or co-authored four books on child and peer abuse and bullying. She was recognized by President George H.W. Bush for her 30 years of volunteerism with the Kansas Department of Corrections.
Besides being noted as an anti-bullying expert, Fried has been a leader in dance therapy and has served as president of the Kansas Mental Health Association and chairman of the group Prevent Child Abuse America.
Leonard is the middle school principal at the Pembroke Hill School. She has a record of success in “educating students, elevating teachers and collaborating with parents,” according to her citation. She is a donor and educator for lung cancer and juvenile diabetes research, a steering committee member of the Kansas City Area Education Research Consortium and a coach of several youth sports teams.
The leadership award honors a person “who has achieved the highest level of professional excellence, devoted time and energy to the community and, especially opened the doors of leadership opportunity to women,” according to the Chamber.
The young professional award is presented to emerging women leaders across professional sectors for exemplary leadership.