Sandra Gallion and Elizabeth Mosser were named award recipients at the ATHENA Leadership Award Breakfast on March 6 at the Richlin Ballroom. Sandra Gallion, prevention associate for the Harford County Office of Drug Control Policy, received the ATHENA Leadership Award. The ATHENA Young Professional Leadership Award was presented to Elizabeth Mosser, associate dean for academic operations at Harford Community College (HCC).

ATHENA Awards are presented to individuals who have demonstrated exemplary leadership in their career and assisted the advancement of women in their professional communities. The presenting sponsor for the ATHENA Leadership Award Breakfast was Harford Mutual Insurance.

After 20 years as the office manager for Union Medical Clinic, Gallion now works with the county to teach drug and alcohol prevention and mental health practices to the community, with a focus on reaching elementary and middle school-aged youth. She has been involved with the Level Volunteer Fire Company since she was 16 years old and eventually became its first female president. She also volunteers for the Char Hope Foundation and currently serves as president of the board of directors. Over the years, Gallion has received many honors including the Charlie Riley Foundation Support Award, Harford's Most Beautiful Shining Light award, and Harford/Cecil Volunteer Fireman's Hall of Fame Award.

Mosser currently leads the College's Achieving the Dream (ATD) initiative. ATD provides a roadmap to student success for all students, regardless of their goals or academic needs. A subject expert, she leads, directs, and educates the campus and external community on the development of the initiative. In addition, she sits on numerous boards and various committees for Harford Family House and the Family Services Committee for Habitat for Humanity Susquehanna, and also volunteers as a mentor for youth in the Boys & Girls Clubs of Harford and Cecil Counties. Mosser also provides free self-defense training to community organizations, and participates in civic efforts with many groups at HCC. Mosser has received numerous honors including a National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) Excellence Award and Harford Star Award.

Susan Muaddi Darraj, Associate Professor of English at Harford Community College, was the keynote speaker at the event. She is an author, lecturer in Johns Hopkins University's MA in Writing program, and faculty in Fairfield University's MFA program.

Hosted by the Harford Community College Foundation, the ATHENA Leadership Award Breakfast is part of ATHENA International, which is dedicated to creating leadership opportunities for women and recognizing their achievements in their communities and on the national level. Event proceeds are designated to the ATHENA Leadership Scholarship, a $1,000 award given to adult students returning to college who exemplify professionalism and commitment to the community. An additional $500 Emerging Leaders Scholarship is also funded.

The ATHENA Awards highlight what recipients have accomplished in addition to paving a path for future successes. By honoring exceptional leaders, the ATHENA Leadership Award Program seeks to inspire others to achieve excellence. Nominations for next year's award will open in fall 2020.