The Women’s Foundation of Arkansas was launched in 1998 when two of our founders, Pat Lile and Olivia Farrell, saw the need for funding dedicated to investing in projects that support women and girls in our community. These women were instrumental in seeking out prominent female leaders from “Top 100 Women in Arkansas,” where the idea for an organization for and by women was initiated. We strive to not only expand educational opportunities for women who do not have access to them, but also empower and equip women with necessary resources for emerging occupations, improve the economic status of women, and promote a mentorship for women and girls who are in need of tangible and emotional support.
In 1999, the first Power of the Purse luncheon was held to announce the grants made possible to support these causes with donations from the original founders. WFA now holds this fundraising event each year to honor accomplished women, announce grants made that year, and highlight other WFA programs.
2017 Luncheon Details
Where/when: Marriott Downtown Ballroom, Little Rock| October 3, 2017 from 11:30 am – 1:00 pm
2017 Power of the Purse event chairs: Kathy Webb and Carl Vogelpohl
Woman of the Year in Business: Sharon Tallach Vogelpohl
Women of the Year in Philanthropy: Shayla Copas
1st Lady’s Woman in Public Service: Betty Dickey
Keynote Address: Krista Bourne
Learn who we are, what we do, and how you can help women in Arkansas be stronger. When women succeed, Arkansas succeeds.
** We are SOLD OUT of Friend Level ($1,000) Sponsorships! ** Patron, Benefactor, Partner, and Presenting level sponsorships still available until August 31st.
Sponsorships are available now! 2017-Power-of-the-Purse-Presenting-Sponsor-Information Please email sponsorship form to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail form with check to:
200 River Market Ave., Suite 100 Little Rock AR 72201
Please keep checking our website for our formal announcement of this year’s honorees and details about ticket reservations.
Sharon Tallach Vogelpohl
2017 Woman of the Year in Business
Launching her agency career as an intern at Mangan Holcomb Partners in 1994, Sharon Tallach Vogelpohl became a principal in the firm in 2005 and was named president in 2010. Along the way, she has nurtured many advertising and public relations campaigns from strategic development to award-winning recognition. Her twenty-year career spans the spectrum from copywriting to crisis communications for clients in every imaginable category. Sharon’s experience includes award-winning work for nameplates such as Verizon Wireless, J.B. Hunt, Walmart, Simmons Foods, Stephens Inc., Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, Delta Dental of Arkansas and RiceTec, Inc.
A magna cum laude graduate and four-year NCAA Division I letter-winner at Centenary College of Louisiana with a degree in business communications, Sharon is a member of the Arkansas Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America and serves on the Emerald Forum of the American Association of Advertising Agencies.
She was selected by Arkansas Business as a 40 Under 40 honoree in 2005, featured in the Where are they Now? 20th Anniversary issue as a finalist for Arkansas Business Executive of the Year in 2013 and as a member of the “Arkansas Power List” in 2016. She serves on the boards of numerous nonprofit and community organizations and was recently appointed by Governor Hutchinson to the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Advisory Committee. A past President of the Rotary Club of Little Rock (Club 99) in its Centennial, Sharon currently chairs the Rotary International Branding Initiative, leading a committee of Rotarians from around the world in developing a branding campaign strategy for the international service organization that will debut in 2017.
2017 Woman of the Year in Philanthropy
Shayla Copas has worked extensively with Arkansas non-profit organizations for the past twenty years; including co-chairing the Heart Ball for the American Heart Association, co-chairing the Opus Ball for the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, and she founded and served as past co-chair of the Arkansas Woman of Inspiration for Children’s Advocacy Centers of Arkansas, two years in a row.
She has also served on numerous boards in the central Arkansas area including; Easter Seals of Arkansas, UAMS Psychiatric Institute Advisory Board member, and is currently appointed by Governor Asa Hutchinson as a commissioner for the Arkansas Governors Mansion. Past awards and accomplishments include the 2017 Heart Ball Jerry Davis Award, Arkansas Business 40 under 40, and the 2015 KARK Distinguished Service Award by DHS Division of Community Service.
She is also a national award-winning interior designer with her firm Shayla Copas Interiors. Shayla’s firm has been nationally published and recognized for their work, as well as continually named by regional publications as a top design firm in the state of Arkansas. The award for Woman of the Year in Philanthropy acknowledges a woman who is committed to empowering and inspiring women and girls.
Inaugural First Lady’s Woman in Public Service
Betty was born at Black Rock on February 23, 1940 in Walnut Ridge. In 1962 she graduated from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She spent the next several years raising five children, an adopted son, three biological siblings, and a foster daughter while teaching second grade.
In 1985 she graduated from UALR School of Law in Little Rock and began working at City Attorney for Pine Bluff and Redfield. From 1991 to 1993 she was the Commission Attorney for Arkansas Soil & Water Conservation Commission. In 1994 she was elected Prosecuting Attorney of the Eleventh Judicial District, West, and was reelected in 1996. She ran unsuccessfully in 1998 for Attorney General. She served from 1999 to 2003 as Commissioner of the Arkansas Public Service Commission. In 2003 she became Chief Legal Counsel to the Governor. In 2004, Governor Mike Huckabee appointed her Chief Justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court, then appointed her Associate Justice of the Court in 2005.
When she completed her service on the Court she taught as an adjunct professor at UALR, then joined NPACE, to serve her country as a Professor at Sea, serving on the USS-DG McFaul, a navy destroyer serving in the Middle East.
She is the first woman in Arkansas to be elected Prosecuting Attorney, the first woman to serve as a Governor’s Chief Legal Counsel, and the first woman to serve as Chief Justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court .
She is the widow of Charles M. Davis, MD, and she has six children and thirteen grandchildren. Her hobbies include tennis, white water rafting, and painting.
Krista Bourne is the president over a twelve state market for Verizon Wireless, the nation’s largest and most reliable wireless carrier. In this role, Bourne leads the team responsible for delivering extraordinary customer service and growing the sales, marketing, operations and financial performance in the market.
Bourne, a 15-year veteran of the wireless business, has held positions of increasing responsibility within Verizon including director – Customer Service in the Northeastern U.S., director – Customer Service for Verizon in the Southeast, director – Retail Sales for Upstate New York and region president for the Houston and Gulf Coast markets. Prior to her current role, Bourne was region president of Verizon’s Carolinas and Tennessee markets where she led sales, service, leadership development and business transformation efforts.
An active community volunteer, Bourne is a director for the Greater Irving Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Greater Houston Partnership’s Executive Women’s Partnership. She has previously served on the Boards of the Houston Area Women’s Center and Houston Technology Center.
Bourne’s leadership has been recognized by MAKERS and by C-STEM, which honored her as its STEMing the Tide recipient. Bourne’s enthusiasm to serve customers, her eagerness to lead change and her natural ability to develop leaders has propelled her through the ranks and helped the company navigate in a time when the industry and Verizon’s product offerings continue to evolve.
Power of the Purse Co-chair
Kathy Webb is the Executive Director of the AR Hunger Relief Alliance and the Vice Mayor of Little Rock. Webb was elected to the Little Rock City Board in 2014, and was elected to serve as Vice Mayor by her colleagues in January, 2017.
Until January, 2013, Webb represented District 37 in the Arkansas House of Representatives, and served as Co-Chair of Joint Budget Committee, the first woman in Arkansas history to hold that position.
In 2007, Webb received the Rising Champion Award from Arkansas Kids Count Coalition, followed by the Champion Award in 2009, 2010 Elected Public Official of the Year from the Arkansas Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers, Imagine Justice Award from the Black Methodists for Social Renewal and the Steel-Millar Award from Hendrix College for Religion and Social Awareness. In 2011, Webb received the First Branch Award from the Arkansas Judicial Council, the Humanitarian of the Year Award from JCA (formerly NCCJ), and the Mental Health Council of Arkansas Legislator of the Year. TALK BUSINESS rated Webb as the most effective member of the Arkansas House in the 88th General Assembly.
In 2013, she received the National Advocate of the Year Leadership Award from Share Our Strength. The competitive award was given to Webb based on her tireless efforts on Share Our Strength’s behalf, in the fight to end childhood hunger. She also received the Brownie Ledbetter Civic Engagement Award from the Women’s Foundation of Arkansas in 2013.
She graduated from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College with a BA in Political Science. In 2007, Webb attended Senior Executives in State and Local Government at the John F Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013, Webb served as Honorary Survivor Chair of the 2015 Arkansas Race for the Cure.
Power of the Purse Co-chair
Carl Vogelpohl currently serves as Chief of Staff to Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge who made history as the first woman elected to be Arkansas’s Attorney General. His prior public service was as the Chief of Staff to former Congressman, and now Lt. Governor, Tim Griffin (AR-2), a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.
Prior to joining the Rutledge administration, he served as President of Split Rail Consulting, an Arkansas-based firm he founded in 2004 that provides political campaign strategy, management, analytics, data modeling, and innovative digital engagement for clients. Split Rail Consulting successfully managed and advised on both Griffin and Rutledge’s successful bids for office, as well as other local and regional races.
A magna cum laude graduate of the University of Arkansas Fulbright College of Arts & Sciences Honors Program, Vogelpohl earned the J. William Fulbright Award as the top history graduate in 1995. While in Fayetteville, he served as President of the Residents Interhall Congress and was selected as a member of Phi Beta Kappa. In addition to political, his professional background includes experience with technology, pharmaceutical, medical, and medical device companies.
Vogelpohl resides in Little Rock with his wife, Sharon Tallach Vogelpohl, and their two children, Carson (9) and Jonathan (5).