Leading Ladies

by CoVaBizMag

A Dozen Women Excelling at Work, Helping the Community, Raising Future Success Stories and So Much More

By Barrett Baker, Leona Baker, Betsy DiJulio and Grace Silipigni

With the influx of talented and extraordinary female role models in Coastal Virginia, we found it challenging to narrow our pool of top women professionals down to just 12. Women today are expected to multi-task like masters, often balancing lucrative careers with family life, charitable work, networking and social functions and so on. Their lives are full and as varied as the women you will read about below. This year we feature founders, vice-presidents and executive directors in fields such as architecture, finance, nonprofit and human resources. We hope you enjoy learning more about them and are just as impressed and inspired as we were by their insight and advice.


Lauren Coughlin

Professional Golfer


Jeanne Evans-Cox

Executive Director, Central Business District Association


Lisa DeNoia

Co-founder, 1701 Virginia Beach Coworking; Port & Starboard; Fathom Coffee


Sandra Gardner

Owner, Fun Fetal Photos; Bodacious Bazaar


Dawn Glynn Leading Ladies

Dawn S. Glynn

President and Regional Executive Officer, TowneBank Chesapeake/Portsmouth/Suffolk/North Carolina


Valerie Harriell Leading Ladies

Valerie Harriell

Vice President of Human Resources, Volvo Penta of the Americas


Kathy Howell, Leading Ladies

Kathy Howell

Owner/President/Creative Director, Howell Creative Group


Photo by David Uhrin

Amanda Insetta

Executive Director, The Virginia Gentlemen Foundation


Donna Phaneuf, Leading Ladies

Donna Phaneuf, FAIA

President, VIA design architects, PC


Alison Reed, Leading LadiesPhoto by David Uhrin

Alison Reed

Assistant Professor, Department of English, Old Dominion University
Co-founder, Humanities Behind Bars


Photo by Glenn Knight

Doretha Spells

Vice President for Business Affairs and Treasurer, Hampton University


Nicole Stuart, Leading Ladies

Nicole Stuart

President, Top Guard Security

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