Women’s History Month has a new event for Richmonders to look forward to. Our inaugural Strong Voices luncheon celebrated the power and stories of women in our community, and we’ve already set our sights on planning for next year.

More than 400 guests joined us for a midday event on Wednesday, March 20, featuring the stories of nine women who shared authentic, heartfelt and inspiring stories about their personal and professional lives.

Our featured speakers told us about battling cancer, finding the inspiration to be an entrepreneur, succeeding in male-dominated fields and giving voice to women of the past, among other topics. Through their stories, we connected with their unique paths.

Hosted by RTD Executive Editor Paige Mudd, the first woman to hold the position at The Times-Dispatch, Strong Voices also showcased videos from the women in our newsroom sharing the stories of Richmond women throughout history who were trailblazers in their fields.

It was an honor to see so many people gather together to reflect, learn, applaud and prepare for the future. Thank you to our featured Strong Voices for sharing your stories with us.

  • Heidi Abbott, a lawyer with Hunton Andrews Kurth
  • Lakshmi Challa, managing attorney with the Challa Law Group
  • Christy Coleman, CEO of the American Civil War Center
  • Laura Lafayette, CEO of the Richmond Association of Realtors
  • Kelli Lemon, a social entrepreneur and radio/podcast personality
  • Cheryl Marin, an Air Force veteran with Dominion Energy
  • Pamela Reynolds, a supporter of Richmond’s arts scene
  • Lisa Sims, executive director of Venture Richmond
  • Nancy Thomas, president and CEO of the Retail Merchants Association

Strong Voices was made possible by our presenting sponsor Sonabank and its P.O.W.E.R program along with supporting sponsors Saxon Shoes and The Market at 25th.

Thank you for making Strong Voices a success. Keep an eye on Richmond.com for videos from the event.

We hope to see you at upcoming RTD Events.

Up next from the RTD

March 26: Metro Business Live: Commercial real estate hot spots in Chesterfield and South of the James

March 27: Back Roads (beer and) Celebration: Sneak peek of the documentary “Back Roads: People, Places and Pie Around Virginia” and a first taste of Legend Brewing Company’s Back Roads Black Lager

April 13: One Day University: A half-day seminar for lifelong learners. Hear from noted professors on a unique set of topics. Don’t worry – no tests!

April 18: A Taste of Richmond: A foodie delight featuring local restaurants, chefs, wine, beer and more. Taste the local flavor, with expert tips to savor.

May 18: Legendary Athletes: Who are the greatest athletes from Richmond? Which high school did they go to? Did they go pro? Our sports team has debated the list and we’ll unveil the standouts at Legendary Athletes.