Local area leaders, businesses, and young professionals came together on September 19 at the Palm Beach County Convention Center to celebrate 23 years of ATHENA in Palm Beach County and to honor three exceptional recipients with the 2014 ATHENA Award. This year’s recipients are Shannon R. LaRocque, P.E., Assistant County Administrator for Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners in the Individual category; Lewis, Longman & Walker, P.A. in the Business/Organization category, and Samantha Schosberg Feuer, Of Counsel at Akerman LLP, in the Young Professional Leadership category.

The ATHENA Awards, presented by Wells Fargo, honor individuals, businesses, and young professionals who have achieved professional excellence, mentored, actively served the community, and helped women to reach their leadership potential.

The Individual ATHENA Award, sponsored by Southern Waste Systems/Sun Recycling, was presented to Shannon R. LaRocque, P.E. Ms. LaRocque was the first female state president of Florida Engineering Society in the organization’s then 90-year history. In that role, she inspired, guided and mentored a number of women who in their words said “She paved the way” and “She continues to advocate for other professional women….. She is a guide post.”

The Business/Organization ATHENA Award, sponsored by Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLP, was presented to Lewis, Longman & Walker P.A. Shareholder Michelle Diffenderfer accepted the award on behalf of the firm. Lewis, Longman & Walker, P.A. a well-respected and successful organization in our community, has embraced a culture of professional success with a strong emphasis on the importance of providing leadership within the community. They have provided the flexibility and environment needed for their associates to raise a family while operating a successful business.

The Young Professional ATHENA Award, sponsored by CityPlace, was presented to Samantha Schosberg Feuer, Of Counsel at Akerman LLP. Ms. Feuer, co-founder of the Women's Foundation of Palm Beach County, is committed to investing in women and girls, encouraging leadership, and assisting women of all ages to positively affect their economic, political, and social status.

The ATHENA Awards are hosted by the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches and sponsored by Wells Fargo, SWS/Sun Recycling, CityPlace, Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLP, South Florida Fair, Southwest Airlines, The Palm Beach Post, and Toshiba Business Solutions of Florida.


L-R: Chamber Chairman Mark Nosacka (Good Samaritan Medical Center); Samantha Schosberg Feuer (Akerman LLP); Shannon LaRocque (Board of County Commissioners, Palm Beach County); Michelle Diffenderfer (Lewis, Longman & Walker, P.A.); and Amanda O'Hayre (Wells Fargo)