Welcome back !


Empowering Like-Minded Women Leaders

An organization built over four decades ago by groundbreaking women to support and empower like-minded leaders in the community. Today, our membership continues to grow and lead with true grit, grace and gusto!


To be Florida’s preeminent professional organization for successful women leaders.


Connect, inspire and elevate a diverse group of accomplished women leaders who enrich the community.

Core Values


Elevating expertise, accomplishments, excellence


Being inclusive, genuine, transparent


Creating a safe, uplifting, nurturing environment


Fostering relationships, collaboration, FUN


Expanding scholarships, community engagement, influence


Florida Executive Women (FEW) was established in 1980 by Shirley R. Pickford to promote the place of women in the profession and to establish a mutual support system for executive women.

Brief Timeline

Funding FEW

In 1978, Shirley contacted Caroline Wine, executive assistant to Buell Duncan, the Chairman of the Board of Sun Bank (now Truist). Mr. Duncan authorized an award of $500 to support our founding. Shortly thereafter, Shirley met with Terry Harned, the membership secretary of the Citrus Club.

The Citrus Club

The Citrus Club was the most prestigious professional and social Club in Central Florida at the time. Unfortunately, they didn’t allow women to become members. We pushed, built our case and were successful in breaking the barrier that had existed for so many years. FEW was now able to hold luncheons at the Citrus Club and in support, Terry helped to register the name, Florida Executive Women (FEW).

Attracting Members

To qualify as a member, one had to earn $25,000 a year. At that time, only about 2 to 3% of women earned that much. It is equivalent to about $100,000 in today’s dollars. 100% of the first women invited to join, accepted and became the founding members. These founding members and some early members contributed greatly to the growth and development of FEW.

40 Years 
of FEW

Founding Members

Shirley R. Pickford

Ann Eidson

Patsy Fawsett

Phyllis Grindle

Janice Halker

Terry S. Harned

Virginia Poe

Virginia Roth

Notable Members

Honorable Glenda E. Hood
Former Mayor, City of Orlando

Honorable Toni Jennings
Former 6th Lieutenant Governor of Florida

Martha Hanie
Former Comptroller, Orange County

Rear Admiral Louise Wilmot
Former Military Leader, Naval Training Center

Captain Barbara Beil
Former Military Leader, Naval Training Center

Past Presidents

1980 Shirley R. Pickford
University of Central Florida (Founding President)

1981 Marjorie Bekaert Thomas
Ivanhoe Communications, Inc.

1982 Ann Eidson
George Eidson Agency, Inc.

1983 Charlotte M. Dutton
Dutton & Schwarten Insurance

1984 Jacqueline A. Borrowes
Jammal & Associates, Inc.

1985 Cynthia Sucher
Winter Park Memorial Hospital

1986 Janice R. Springfield
SunBank, N.A.

1987 Kitty Wrenn
Ernst & Whinney

1988 Robyn LaBreck
LaBreck Management Resources, Inc.

1989 Beryl H. Davis
City of Orlando

1990 Margie E. Varney
Greater Orlando Chamber of Commerce

1991 Joane Wiesenfeld Dowd
Promotion Products

1992 Jennie Loudermilk
University of Central Florida

1993 Judy Fontenot, Norell
Temporary Employment Agency

1994 Kathleen Russell
City of Orlando

1995 Shyla Reich
Shyla G. Reich Realty, Inc.

1996 Becky Cherney
Florida Health Care Coalition

1997 Martha Haynie
Orange County Comptroller

1998 Kate Kinsley
Datawise, Inc.

1999 Katherine Vaccaro
Sprint Publishing & Advertising

2000 Sibille Pritchard
Brooksville Development

2001 Beth G. Smith
SunTrust Investment Services

2002 Janet Hardin
Federal Express

2003 Cecelia Rivers
University of Central Florida

2004 Deborah Donovan
Donovan Consulting Group

2005 Francie Owen Dear
Walt Disney World

2006 Norma Stanley
Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed

2007 Kyle Smith

2008 Sandra J. Wilkening
Sandra J. Wilkening & Company, P.A.

2009 Diane Trees
University of Central Florida

2010 Laura Cosgrove
Eidson Insurance

2011 Meredith Level
Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed

2012 Kerry Giedd
Eola Eyes

2013 Susie Carlton
Element Funding

2014 Debra Hendrickson
Winter Park Chamber of Commerce

2015 Katie Seymour

2016 Belinda Cooper
Sunshine Bank

2017 Pam Ghezzi
Oakbridge Wealth Advisory Group

2018 Carol Felsing
Felsing, LLC

2019 Amy Pennock
Pennock Consulting Group

2020 Beverly Paulk

2021 Verbelee Nielsen-Swanson
Oxford Eyes

2022 Beth Mock LeBlanc
MLB Creative