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.

History

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.

 

2019 Luncheon Details

Where/when: Little Rock Statehouse Convention Center, Wally Allen Ballroom | September 26, 2018 from 11:30 am – 1:00 pm

2019 Power of the Purse event chairs: Alison Williams & Sarah Catherine Gutierrez

Woman of the Year in Business: Laura Landreaux, Entergy Arkansas

Women of the Year in Philanthropy: Alisha Curtis, Office of the Governor

1st Lady’s Woman in Public Service: Patricia Brown, Arkansas Economic Development Commission

Reservations: $100/person

Learn who we are, what we do, and how you can help women in Arkansas be stronger. When women succeed, Arkansas succeeds.

Sponsorships/ Reservations

Sponsorships are available now! POP_SponsorshipPacket

Please email sponsorship form to rbuttry@womensfoundationarkansas.org or mail form with check to:

400 West Capitol Avenue, Suite 1242, Little Rock, AR 72201

2019 Honorees

Laura Landreaux

2019 Woman in Business 

Laura R. Landreaux serves as president and chief executive officer of Entergy Arkansas, which serves more than 700,000 customers in the state. She is responsible for Entergy Arkansas’ business results, including financial, operational, customer service, safety, resource planning, economic development, employee development and regulatory and governmental affairs.

Landreaux was named to the leadership role on July 1, 2018. Previously she served Entergy Arkansas as finance director from November 2017 to June 2018. She was named vice president of regulatory affairs in May 2014, where she was responsible for interactions between Entergy Arkansas and the Arkansas Public Service Commission.

Joining Entergy in 2007 as senior counsel, Landreaux practiced regulatory law for five years and then became manager of Regulatory Affairs for Entergy Arkansas in 2012.  

Prior to joining Entergy, she was an attorney for Salt River Project, a water and electricity utility in Phoenix, Arizona for four years. She joined Salt River Project after spending four years in private practice at Quarles & Brady, LLP in Phoenix, Arizona.  

An active member of the Arkansas non-profit community, Landreaux currently serves as vice chairman of the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce board of directors. She serves as a board member for the University of Arkansas at Little Rock College of Business and the Arkansas Research Alliance. She is the chairperson of Junior Achievement of Arkansas’ 2019 Legacy Luncheon. She is a founding member of Arkansas Women in Power and a graduate of Arkansas Leadership Class XIII and Leadership Greater Little Rock Class XXX. A native of Little Rock and a 1991 graduate of Mount St. Mary Academy for Girls, Landreaux earned her Juris Doctor from the University of Arkansas School of Law at Fayetteville, where she was on the Arkansas Law Review, and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. She is married with three children and lives in Little Rock.

Alisha Curtis

2019 Woman in Philanthropy 

Alisha Curtis works to enrich the lives of Arkansans every day through her role in the Arkansas Governor’s office. She’s the Executive Assistant to the Governor, Director of Special Projects and Economic Development Liaison. Governor Asa Hutchinson selected Alisha to join his team when he took office in January of 2015. 

Alisha organized Governor Hutchinson’s 2015 inaugural celebration and served on the planning committee for “A New Day in Arkansas” Inaugural Ball. For his second term, she served as the 2019 Inaugural Events Coordinator for the “Together For Success” Inauguration.  

Prior to working in Governor Hutchinson’s administration, Alisha began her career in banking where she worked in marketing and training for Summit Bank. She then worked four years at the Arkansas Republican Party serving as the Finance Director. While there, she oversaw fundraising for the non-profit, managing a $500,000 annual budget and a $1.2M budget on election years. She also contributed to the Party’s major event planning and worked to bring high-profile political leaders to the state. Alisha also helped coordinate the Arkansas delegation as they headed to the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida.

During her tenure with Governor Hutchinson, Alisha has served as Director of Operations and Office Manager where she oversaw the operational budget for the Governor’s office. Currently serving as Director of Special Projects, she coordinates and executes cabinet-level meetings and events, town halls, and special events for the Governor. She is a graduate of the 2018 Leadership Arkansas Class XII through the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce.

Alisha’s work in government isn’t the only way she’s engaged in helping Arkansas residents.  She was the Co-Chair of the 2017 Woman of Inspiration event benefitting the Children’s Advocacy Centers of Arkansas. In 2015 and 2016 she served as the Corporate Co-Chair of Woman of Inspiration and raised funds for the organization. Alisha also serves on the Children Advocacy Center’s Advisory Council.  In August of 2018, she was honored at the Taste Of The Finest event benefitting the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Arkansas and won the Todd Miles Award by raising $33,000 for the charity. She most recently judged Youth Of The Year for the Boys and Girls Club of Arkansas. In September of this year she will compete at local charity event “Dancing With Our Stars” for the Children’s Tumor Foundation of Arkansas.

An Arkansas native, Alisha is proud to have attended the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. She is a graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication with an emphasis in Broadcast Journalism/TV News from the University of Arkansas Little Rock.

Patricia Brown

AR 1st Lady’s Woman in Public Service 

Patricia Nunn Brown, a polished career state government professional with the ability to build, manage and sustain long-term valued customer (internal and external) relationships at all levels.

She is Director of the Minority and Women Business Division of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission.

Brown has spent much of her professional career with AEDC, including positions in administration, research, business development and marketing and managing the AEDC’s Trade Show Program. She presently serves as the Director of the Minority Business Division.

Brown was born and raised in Camden, Arkansas. She is a graduate of Philander Smith College, as well as both the Basic Economic Development Institute at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta and the Economic Development Institute University of Oklahoma at Norman, Okla. She also attended Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and Southern Arkansas Tech in East Camden.

She is a graduate of the LeadAR Program Class 16, a member and past president of the Economic Developers of Arkansas, a graduate of the Greater Little Rock Leadership Class XXII, Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, Past, State and Alternate Director for the Southern Economic Development Council, Arkansas Foodbank Network Board Member, Goodwill Industries of Arkansas Board Member and Beta Pi Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.  In 2011 she received Small Business Administration (SBA) Minority Small Business Champion Award, Arkansas Baptist College Community Beacon Light Award and was named by the Jefferson County Banner as one of Arkansas Top 25 Influential African American Women, Honorary Life member of the Southern Economic Development Council, Maria Haley Lifetime Leadership Award and the Power of the Purse 1st Lady’s Woman of Public Service.  She has served as a volunteer with the American Red Cross and Baptist Hospital. She is an active member of the Longley Baptist Church and her community.

Brown and her husband, Richard Brown Jr., have three children and six grandchildren.  Her hobbies include traveling, reading, shopping and checking out estate sales.

2019 Co-Chairs 

Alison Williams

Power of the Purse Co-chair

Alison Williams is a graduate of Cabot High School and the University of Arkansas. She serves as Governor Hutchinson’s Chief of Staff, managing a team of more than fifty professionals who support the Governor transformational vision for the State of Arkansas.

Before returning home in 2016, Williams worked in the Washington, DC, area for more than a decade in the public and private sectors. As a civil servant, she served in the U.S. Departments of Justice, Homeland Security and Defense, led a federal interagency board responsible for coordinating security programs on the African continent, and managed external affairs portfolios. In the private sector, she has consulted with both start-ups and Fortune 100 companies in the defense and homeland security industries. Early in her career, she worked with former Congressmen Asa Hutchinson and John Boozman.

Williams also holds a Master’s of Business Administration from the University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business. She is married to Bob Kucheravy of Litchfield County, Connecticut.

Sarah Catherine Gutierrez

Power of the Purse Co-chair

Sarah Catherine (SC) Gutierrez is the founder of Aptus Financial. She holds an MPP from Harvard University and the CFP designation. She founded Aptus in 2011 to give clients access to advice that was free of conflicts of interest. The answer? Charge hourly fees for financial planning and to lead clients through a planning process to manage their own money. Aptus advises on retirement plans, also with hourly fees, offering unique financial wellness as part of a bundled advisory offering. Aptus partners have guided hundreds of financial plans for clients around the country. SC speaks and blogs publicly on women engaging in retirement plans and adopting cash management systems through a Ladysplaining Money series.

Sarah Catherine is a permanent trustee for the Donaghey Foundation and a Rotary Club 99 Foundation trustee. Her passion is to solve the retirement crisis for women and to inspire young girls to save money at an early age. She and her husband own Club 27 downtown in the River Market and have three children, Marco (6), Max (4) and Lucia (2). In their spare time, Jorge and Sarah Catherine love to teach and dance salsa together.