Bertino-Tarrant named 2012 ATHENA Award winner
This year the Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry honored its 25th ATHENA Award recipient, Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant.
Jennifer follows a long list of Joliet Region “All Stars” as the 2012 ATHENA winner.
Founded in 1982 by Martha Mayhood Mertz, ATHENA International is a non-profit organization that seeks to support, develop and honor women leaders. The program inspires women to reach their full potential and strives to create balance in leadership worldwide.
Mertz developed her vision for ATHENA International while serving on the Board of Directors of the Lansing Michigan Regional Chamber of Commerce. As the only woman on the Board, she recognized that the Chamber’s boardroom did not reflect the reality of the business community.
The more Mertz observed, the more she became convinced: If women’s strengths and contributions as leaders were publicly acknowledged, they could no longer be dismissed. In 1982 in Lansing, Michigan, Mertz spearheaded a new leadership award program: The ATHENA Award, named for the strong, enlightened goddess. The award would go to individuals who excelled in their professions, gave back to their communities and helped raise up other leaders, especially women.
As the Superintendent of the Will County Regional Office of Education, a past school administrator, and past teacher, Jennifer’s work ethic and contributions have demonstrated strong leadership skills that represent working women well.
By being involved in community activities and initiatives, Jennifer has been a voice for schools and children. Jennifer has made her position and offices more accessible to the community and has initiated man efforts that have supported the community, recognized our educators and enhanced learning opportunities for students.
As a school leader, Jennifer strongly believes our schools have the ability to create successful students. The activities she participates in or organizes, Jennifer does so in order to grow as an individual, while supporting the needs of our children and students.
As a county official, Jennifer is fortunate to be in a role where she is able to promote and initiate programs that help our community. The role of “public servant” is one that Jennifer takes seriously, and she is honored to represent educators in our country.
As a mom, Jennifer hopes her character and work ethic will allow her children to see her as a role model. Jennifer strongly believes in service to others and, above all, this is what she wants her children to learn from her.
Some of Jennifer’s accomplishments and awards include:
Outstanding Career Achievement Award from Joliet Catholic Academy
Recognized as Cambridge’s Who’s Who
Troy School Foundation Past President
Beta Rho Vice President
Computer 2 Kids President
Relay for Life Past Children’s Activities Chair
Joliet Chamber Education Committee member
Girl Scout 5 Year Recognition Pin
Wilco Career Center board member
Will County Center for Economic Development board member
Junior Achievement board member
Delta Kappa Gamma member
Zonta Club Past Fundraising Co-Chair and Scholarship Chair
Illinois Association of Regional Superintendents
Association of School Administrators
Advocated United for Joliet Children
Congratulations to Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant as the 2012 ATHENA Award recipient.