The Emerald Coast Chapter of the American Business Women’s Association (ABWA) recently sponsored a presentation about the Okaloosa County Take Stock in Children Scholarship Program at the monthly meeting. Take Stock is administered through the Okaloosa Public Schools Foundation and provides scholarships, mentors and hope to students who have great potential but may not have the financial resources to attain a post-secondary education. The featured speaker was Take Stock in Children Alumna Jamie Allende Shaffer who shared the story of her time as a Take Stock Scholar in Okaloosa County. The knowledge that she had a Take Stock Scholarship upon her graduation from high school, combined with support of her mentor, assured Jamie’s success. After graduating from Northwest Florida State College, she returned to the Okaloosa County School District—this time as an elementary teacher. In her fifth year of teaching at Bob Sikes Elementary School, she serves on the School Advisory Council and is a club sponsor.
The ABWA mission is to bring together women of diverse occupations and to provide opportunities for them to help themselves and others grow personally and professionally through leadership, education, networking support and national recognition. The organization was established in 1949 to give women access to leadership, networking, and recognition opportunities—the three basic elements of career achievement. Through online business courses, insightful and timely seminars, and the opportunity to be part of both a local and national organization, ABWA has become the place to be for women who want to connect, learn and grow. In ABWA, all members are encouraged to rehearse and master business skills and concepts that are valued in the workplace by being engaged in both local and nationally ABWA sponsored events!
Pictured, from left to right: Dort Baltes, Special Projects Coordinator, Take Stock in Children; Jamie Allende Shaffer, Take Stock in Children Alumna; Cindy Frazier, Take Stock in Children Program Coordinator; and Barbara Britt, ABWA Programs Chair.