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A small group of diverse professional women began meeting together in Winston-Salem in August of 2017. What started as a safe place to seek counsel and encouragement evolved into a team of collaborators committed to recognizing, encouraging, advancing, and connecting women in the workplace. In 2018, the group became a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization called the REACH Women's Network.



The REACH Women's Network seeks to advance economic development and promote gender equality by elevating the collective voice and influence of professional women.


In pursuit of this mission, the Network aims to strengthen the vitality, creativity, productivity and sustainability of our workplaces, our economy and our community.


We aspire to close the gender gap in order to ensure that women can earn equal pay and have the same access to career advancement opportunities as men.

REACH Women's Network Core Value

What is the Gender Gap?

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Economic Impact of Women

Companies with women in leadership are..

  • more profitable (by 15%)
  • more innovative (holding 20% more patents)
  • more respected (Fortune's most admired companies have 2x more women in leadership roles)
  • more likely to retain employees

Core  Values

We believe that advancing gender equality is a universal movement and that elevating the voice and influence of women will strengthen the vitality, creativity, productivity, and sustainability of our families, our workplaces, our economy, and our community.

 Guiding  Principle

In all efforts, we collaborate and participate before we originate. 

Programming & Membership

REACH Women's Network is still being developed. More information about programming and membership will be available in Spring 2020. If you are interested in the REACH Women's Network, please provide your email address below so we can keep you informed. 


Iris Cole  (co-chair)  – Founder and CEO at Do Good Artist and She Raises the Bar

Julia Townsend  (co-chair) – SVP and General Manager at Renfro Corporation

Sue Henderson  (treasurer) – Sr Advisor to the Office of the President at Wake Forest Univ

Shaheen Syal  (secretary)  – Director of Communications at Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation

Carol Reeve  (communications) – Founder + Chief Strategist at Girl on the Roof

Kami Chavis  (at large) – Assoc Provost for Academic Initiatives at Wake Forest Univ

Shon Gilmore  (at large)  – Director of Communications for PainPathways Magazine

Monica Aaron – Director of Business Transformation at Tata Consulting Services

Lawren Desai – Executive Director and Curator at a/perture cinema

Chris Douglas – Partner at Womble Bond Dickinson

Alyson Francisco – Professor, Director of Center for Women in Business at Salem College

Kimberly Gregg – Owner at Diamondback Grille

Ursula Henninger – Partner at King & Spalding

Cheryl Hicks – Assoc Director, OPCD at Wake Forest Univ

Jerri Irby – VP Human Resources at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center

Leah Sieren King – Pediatric Surgeon at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center

Cheryl Lindsay – Director, Human Resources & Inclusion/Diversity at Hanesbrands

Shannon Meares – Supervisory Attorney at National Labor Relations Board

Amy Taylor North – President at Piedmont Wind Symphony

Valerie Pasche – Anesthesiologist at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center

Katherine Perry – Program Director at Leadership Winston-Salem

Kate Reece – Executive Director at Wake Forest Center for Private Business

Bobbie Shrivastav – CoFounder/CEO at Docsmore, CoFounder/CEO at Benekiva

Valerie Solomon – VP Asst General Counsel at RAI Services Company

Tiffany Waddell Tate – Assoc Director for National Engagement at Wake Forest Univ

Mary Craig Tennille – Director of Annual Giving and Stewardship at Summit School

Katherine White – Group Account Director at Wildfire

Advisory Board

Marie Arcuri – Dealer Principal at Flow Lexus

Lilicia Bailey – Chief People Officer at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center

Ragan Folan – Retired, former President + CEO, Old Salem Museums and Gardens

Linda Garrou – Retired Senator; Board Chair at Winston-Salem Foundation

Susan Jaffe – Dean of Dance at UNC School of the Arts

Camille Kluttz-Leach – Vice Chancellor + COS at Winston Salem State University

Cathy Pace – CEO at Allegacy Federal Credit Union

Allison Perkins – Executive Director at Reynolda House

Mamie Sutphin – Director of Community Engagement Programs at RAI Services Company

Data Sources

Lane and Little.  “Absent from the table: Why the Triad’s biggest boardrooms still cater to men.” Triad Business Journal. March 15, 2018.

Helmore, Edward. “New York Stock Exchange has its first female leader in 226-year history.” The Guardian. May 25, 2018.

Connley, Courtney. “Reminder: Today isn’t Equal Pay Day for black, Latina or Native American women.” CNBC. April 10, 2018.

Guzior, Betsey. “Self-employed women face pay gap, too.” The Business Journals. May 9, 2018.

Blumberg, Jonathan. “Companies with more female executives make more money– here’s why.” CNBC. March 2, 2018

Keenan, Alex. “New study shows more women in Fortune 100 & 500 boards.” Yahoo Finance. January 16, 2019.

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