The Women’s Business Center (WBC) at Florida Institute of Technology was pleased to host the Seventh Annual National Women’s History Month celebration March 24 at the Crowne Plaza Oceanfront Hotel in beachside Melbourne.
Each year, the WBC recognizes the Space Coast Community Award of Excellence Winner and the Florida Institute of Technology Alumni Association recognizes the Joan Bixby Award Winners. Organizers also select a notable Florida Tech alumna to receive the Florida Tech Award of Distinction.
Lola Mitchell was the recipient of the 2014 Space Coast Community Awar. She was selected based on her involvement with the American Business Women’s Association, American Society of Training & Development, LEAD Brevard, and as a volunteer with the State Attorney’s Sexual Assault Victims Services. Additionally, she has been recognized for her work with Zonta Club of Melbourne and Zonta International, which seeks to advance the status of women worldwide through service and advocacy, supporting projects in over 46 countries.
In addition to volunteering in the community, Lola has also been an instructor for the Career and Family Success Center Eastern Florida State College since 1977.
The 2014 Award of Distinction, given to a prominent Florida Tech alumna who has achieved great accomplishments in her career, went to Judge Catharina Haynes. A circuit judge in U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit since 2008, Haynes was born and raised in Melbourne, where her father was a professor at Florida Tech. Haynes spent 13 years in private practice, primarily at Baker Botts LLP in Dallas, Texas.
The Joan Bixby Award recognizes members of the Florida Tech community who enhance the climate for women’s participation and development on campus and is named in honor of alumna Bixby, a university administrator and Melbourne resident. The 2014 recipients are Monica H. Baloga, Ph.D., VP for Institutional Effectiveness and International Programs; Mary Dyer, Business Manager, External Relations and Economic Development; and Tara Drumm, Undergraduate Student, Interdisciplinary Sciences with a military option.