Left to Right: Sharon Flanery, Amy Thomas, Judith L. Wellington, Kitty Dooley
Women of Achievement
Congratulations to our 2015 Honorees!
On Friday, March 6th, 2015, from noon-1:30 p.m., the 19th annual YWCA Women of Achievement Awards luncheon took place at Embassy Suites in downtown Charleston, WV with a sold-out crowd of 500 attendees. This year’s YWCA honorees were Sharon Flanery; Kitty Dooley; BrickStreet Empowerment Award winner, Amy Thomas; and Judy Wellington.
A coal miner’s daughter from Fairmont, Kitty Dooleydecided to become an attorney at the age of 12. After completing her undergraduate degree in journalism at Marshall University in 1980 where she was an ROTC cadet, she served in the US Army for more than four years. She earned her Army parachutist badge while still a cadet and finished her military career as a captain. Kitty received a Juris Doctor degree from West Virginia University in 1990. As a private practice attorney in Charleston, Kitty has worked hard to better her community. As the Chair of the Board of Commissioners for the Charleston-Kanawha Housing Authority, she spearheaded a $60 million effort to rebuild Charleston’s most depressed public housing. She has also served with the Children’s Home Society of West Virginia, the J.R. Clifford Project honoring West Virginia’s first black attorney, and the Kanawha Institute for Social Research and Action. She is a member of the Mountain State Bar Association, Inc., the West Virginia and American Associations for Justice and the Charleston Branch of the NAACP.
Sharon Flanery is recognized by The Best Lawyers in America® and Chambers USA as being one of the country’s leading lawyers in the field of energy, mining, natural resources, and oil and gas law. Earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Petroleum Engineering from West Virginia University in 1978, she worked as a reservoir engineer in Appalachia and in Saudi Arabia before receiving a Juris Doctor degree from Duquesne University in 1991. As a petroleum engineer she brings real-world experience to her law practice as a member of the Executive Committee and leader of the Energy and Natural Resources Department at Steptoe & Johnson PLLC in Charleston. Sharon actively supports the professional development of women in the field through the Charleston Area Alliance’s Women in Energy forum. She received the 2011 Best Lawyers Oil & Gas Lawyer of the Year award for the Charleston area.
Judith L. Wellington
Judith L. Wellington is the President and CEO of the Clay Center for the Arts and Sciences of West Virginia. After earning a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Harvard University in1975, she went on to use the analytical and problem-solving skills of her science background in unique ways and in a variety of fields. Her work led her to the Philadelphia zoo, and later to the New Jersey Academy for Aquatic Sciences - operator of the New Jersey State Aquarium - where she served as President and CEO. Through this work, Judy quickly learned that a cultural institution can have a major impact on a city and, more importantly, can change the lives of the individuals it serves. Judy serves on the boards of the Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Arts Council of the Kanawha Valley and East End Main Street. She is an on the Advisory Board of the University of Charleston Business School, and the Advisory Council of the Pittsburgh Area Remake Learning Council.
Amy Thomas is a graduate from South Charleston High and West Virginia State University. Amy was the office manager for the start-up Nextel in West Virginia for several years. Currently she is working toward a double major in criminal justice and social work from West Virginia State University. Upon graduation, her goal is to serve her community through law enforcement as a community advisor or victims advocate. Amy is a survivor. She spent more than 15 years in a physically and emotionally abusive relationship before finding YWCA’s Resolve Family Abuse program. Through Resolve, she received the support and advice she needed to become free from her abuser and to provide a safe environment for her two children. As a speaker, Amy has shared her store at the Domestic Violence Awareness Council’s Annual Gala, and at the YWCA 2014 White Hot Soiree. Her goal is to serve her community through law enforcement as a community advisor or victims advocate.