2024 Professional Women's Summit

The Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce filled the seats of the Brownwood Lyric Theatre on March 21, 2024, for the 6th Annual Professional Women’s Summit. The event welcomed over 200 women and provided an opportunity to gain wisdom, network, and hear personal success stories. Women of all professional backgrounds represented and collectively supported seven different women owned businesses including Party on Wheels Food Truck and Mel’s Treats Food Truck, not normally stationed in Downtown Brownwood. Conversations about mentoring and fostering growth in other women started the day with our Local Lady Leaders panel discussion. Sally England, Raquel Mata, and Liz Brown all shared pearls of wisdom about being a woman in leadership and the successes and challenges that come along with that role. When asked one word that describes leadership from moderator Dr. Kathy Gruver, they  responded “Acceptance”, “Integrity”, and “Respect”; respectfully. 


Attendees attended breakout sessions at CrisTea’s Nutrition, 10 Mile Tasting Room, Samantha Rodriguez Studios, The Turtle Restaurant, and RB Rodgers House. Ladies were afforded the opportunities to try out menu items and be welcomed by the female owners. The sessions covered topics of funding for small businesses, building strong teams, scheduling, personality testing, steps toward success in small business, maternal mental health, service opportunities as well as headshot photo sessions. 


The keynote address hit on topics of identifying stress, overcoming it, and implementing practices that can keep negative habits and thoughts from overwhelming the process of becoming one’s best self. Dr. Kathy Gruver shared personal stories of traveling the world and being a trapeze artist. In a day, the ladies went from a competitive Rock, Paper, Scissors tournament to learning the fundamentals of meditation under her direction which led to a fun and engaging message. 


All-in-all lots of information was shared, women networked, and this event supported women owned businesses. Additionally, visitors were noted from Abilene, Anson, Albany, Blanket, Crockett, Clyde, Dallas, Lampasas, and Lexington. Many shopped at supporting stores and took a deeper look at the revitalization that our Downtown has been going through and will continue to see with the new Downtown Master Plan, which will be voted on in the next City Council meeting on March 26, 2024 @ 9 AM. 


The day was capped with the presentation of the Bettie Girling Distinguished Woman of the Year Award presented by Texas Clean. Lisa Callihan was presented this award from last year’s winner Jill Evans. Emotions were present as recognition was given to this local servant leader. Acceptance, integrity, and respect remain the overall theme for the day and pushes us to plan for next year’s event. Thank you to our generous sponsors, cheerful volunteers, supporting businesses, and all of the professional women that shared, networked, and made the 2024 Professional Women’s Summit a success.

This year's event would not be possible without the support of our amazing sponsors:

Crown Presenting Sponsor: Visit Brownwood and Brownwood Municipal Development District

Presenting Sponsor: Citizens National Bank

Gold Sponsors: Kohler Co, KANAR RV Sales, Personnel Services

Silver Sponsor: Balancing Act – Small Business Services

Networking Sponsors: Smile Doctors Braces, Bruner Auto Group, Performance Pipe, Chick-fil-A Brownwood, Good Samaritan Ministries, Andy’s Pest Troopers, ASAP Creative Arts, and TexasBank

Contributing Sponsors: 10 Mile Productions, Antlers & Pearls Boutique, Astound Broadband, Balancing Act Small Business Services, Casa de Pate, Chick-fil-A Brownwood, CrisTea’s Nutrition, Davis Floral Co, Elite Ave, The Glamour Shop, Hamilton’s, The Hen House Boutique, Just Right Mattress Gallery, Luna Maya Boutique, The Magnolia on 4th Apartments, Party On Wheels Mobile Bar, Studio K Hair & Beauty/KK Fashion, CrisTea’s Nutrition, and Urban Roots BTX.