News Room

November 12, 2018

Girl’s Inc. named the charitable partner of the Ignite Succeed Women’s Leadership Summit

Knoxville, TN – Ignite Succeed is proud to announce that Girls Inc. of TN Valley will be the charitable partner for the 2019 Ignite Women’s Leadership Summit, which will be held on Friday, June 14, 2019. In addition to showcasing Girls Inc. at the Summit, a portion of the event proceeds will go to support Girls Inc. programs.Summit logo

During the summer, the volunteer Women’s Leadership Council who organize the event decided that adding a charitable partner would greatly expand the impact and reach of the event. Girls Inc. was chosen because of the compatibility of the two organization’s mission statements.

Every year, the Ignite Women’s Leadership Council designs an interactive Summit program to educate, empower, and motivate women leaders so that they realize their full potential. Since 1976, Girls Inc. has been working to teach girls how to be strong, smart, and bold. The organization has programs in Anderson, Knox, and Blount counties that provide programming to teach girls how to “advocate for themselves and their communities while building self-confidence, expanding their horizons, and preparing girls of today to become women of tomorrow!”

Girls Inc. will be featured in all marketing materials leading up to the Summit. At the event, attendees will be exposed not only to Girls Inc.’s mission, but also to the results the organization is able to achieve. (Learn more about Girls Inc. at

Early bird registration is open now for the June 2019 Summit at For the first time, the 2019 Summit will be held at The Venue in Lenoir City. The Summit is a full day of speakers, networking, and fun, running from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Ignite Women’s Leadership Summit is an annual event held on the second Friday in June. The event is chaired by Ignite Succeed partner Deb Schmitz and organized by a committee of local women leaders. For more information, visit

October 29, 2018

November Women’s Leadership Salon salutes “The Women Who Have Served”

Local Air Force veteran and Army reservist share leadership experiences and challenges

Knoxville, TN – According to 2017 numbers, there are 1.3 million Americans serving in active-duty status, with another 800,000 reservists. There are more women in the military today than ever before. Women make up 16% of the enlisted personnel and 18% of the officer corps.Photos of Rita Thomas and Angela Sanders

With Veteran’s Day approaching, the November Ignite Women’s Leadership Salon will explore women and military service. The topic for the November 8 luncheon will be “The Women Who Have Served.” On the panel are Angela Sanders, a U.S. Army reservist, and Rita Thomas, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, who will share their experiences in the military, including challenges and leadership lessons.

Angela Sanders, a healthcare services manager with Brookdale Healthcare Services, serves in the U.S. Army Reserves with the 2-398th Cavalry Regiment in Madisonville, Kentucky. As a reservist, she serves as a Company Commander and Officer-In-Charge of the Battalion S1 staff section.

Rita Thomas, an engagement liaison with Functional Pathways and a freelance photographer, is an Air Force veteran. She served nine years as a cryptologic linguist and Czechoslovak language specialist, earning Commander and Inspector General awards during her tenure.

The bimonthly Salon is an opportunity for East Tennessee women to network and develop leadership skills. The Salon meets from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Rothchild Catering and Conference Center, 8807 Kingston Pike in West Knoxville. Check-in and networking begin at 11:30. Tickets are $30, which includes lunch.

Register by Monday, November 5, 2018 at Email for more information about Salons and other women’s leadership programs.

July 19, 2018

Women’s Leadership Boot Camp accepting applications for September session

Knoxville, TN – All too often, women fail to move into leadership positions because they lack self-awareness. They can’t readily identify their individual strengths.  They allow negative self-talk to block their forward momentum. They shy away from conflict and difficult conversations. The Rising Stars Women’s Leadership Boot Camp addresses these challenges so that women can reach their full potential.

During the 32-hours of training, Boot Camp participants learn to lead teams more effectively, grow and develop their employees, and communicate more effectively across the organization. The Camp is broken into four consecutive Fridays, beginning September 7, 2018. The four days of training include:

  • Day 1, Effective Communication: Understand your personal communication style and the driving forces that motivate you. Recognize the styles and motivators of team members and how to adapt to be more effective. These modules include the DISC and Driving Forces assessments.
  • Day 2, Emotional Intelligence: Learn to build self-awareness, self-control, and empathy and to understand how to manage workplace conflicts. These modules include both emotional intelligence and conflict styles assessments.
  • Day 3, Personal Power: Explore key traits and styles of effective leadership and strengthen your understanding of and ability to delegate for growth.
  • Day 4, Employee Management: Learn to build personal and mutual accountability to strengthen your team and to apply a four-step process to engage employees in your team and your organization.

Boot camp participants earn continuing education units through Pellissippi State Community College.

Apply Now

East Tennessee women are encouraged to apply to join the ranks of the 19 program graduates.  Boot camp alumni cross all levels of management, including vice presidents, supervisors, administrative coordinators, non-profit leaders, and entrepreneurs and range in age from their early 20s to their late 50s. The experience and age diversity results in highly valuable peer-to-peer coaching during the sessions.

Applications are being accepted through August 17, 2018 for the 32-hour interactive program that begins September 7, 2018. The full program fee is $1,997, which includes extensive assessment, training materials, breakfast, and lunch. Classes are 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. on the four Fridays in September (7th, 14th, 21st, & 28th). Susanne Dalton Dupes and Deb Schmitz are the boot camp instructors.

To apply for the workshop:


July 2, 2018

Women’s Leadership Salon launches lunchtime series: “The Women Who …”

July Salon focuses on leading change with two organizers of Knoxville Women’s March Coalition

Knoxville, TN – To enable more women to join in the conversation, the Ignite Women’s Leadership Salon is moving to lunch time. In addition to the new time, the Salon is launching a new series of programs called “The Women Who… .” The Women’s Leadership Salon is a bimonthly opportunity for East Tennessee women who are interested in developing leadership skills for life and work.

Our first lunch time Salon focuses on leading change.  A 2015 Forbes article by Mark Murphy noted that 45% of frontline employees prefer the status quo. In other words, they don’t like change. But change is inevitable and effective leaders must be able to lead through it. That’s why our July 12th Women’s Leadership Salon will feature two Knoxville change leaders. Caroline Mann and Kimberly Peterson are two of the organizers of the Knoxville Women’s March Coalition, an organization directly focused on creating change. During the interview-style program, the two will be asked to share what was involved in organizing events like the 2017 and 2018 marches that had thousands of participants, what they have learned, and what they plan to do moving forward.

Caroline Mann has been involved since the beginning, helping to organize both the inaugural March in 2017 and its successor in 2018. She joined with colleagues and fellow-March organizers to form the Women’s March Coalition of East Tennessee. Mann is a Knoxville native who recently earned her MS in Information Sciences from the University of Tennessee. The mother of three works in UT’s Office of Institutional Research.

Kimberly Peterson is the spokesperson for the Women’s March Coalition of East Tennessee. She is a masters-level student in UT’s Cultural Anthropology program and has experience working as a non-profit development director with the United Way, the American Cancer Society, and other organizations. The mother of four grew up in a military household, living throughout the United States and abroad.

The Salon meets from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Rothchild Catering and Conference Center, 8807 Kingston Pike in West Knoxville. Check-in and networking start at 11:30 and the program will begin at noon.  Registration is $30 and includes lunch. To register, go to Email for more information about Salons and other women’s leadership programs.

April 2, 2018

Titanic Museum Co-Owner To Headline 13th Annual Women’s Leadership Summit

Knoxville, TN— The Ignite Women’s Leadership Council announces that Mary Kellogg-Joslyn, co-owner of the Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and Branson, Missouri, will be the keynote speaker for the all-day leadership summit.  She joins a powerful slate of speakers for the summit which will be held June 8 at the Airport Hilton.  Kellogg-Joslyn also has an impressive television network career.   She was Senior Executive Vice President of Production and Programming for Walt Disney Company (and ABC) for 20 years.  Prior to joining Disney, Kellogg-Joslyn was with CBS for 10 years producing and marketing major national and international productions, such as “Who Wants to be a Millionaire.”

Kellogg-Joslyn’s presentation titled: “How One Letter Changed My Life,” will explore her time as a television executive as well as her knowledge of leadership, managing expectations and how to motivate.   With the announcement of such an impressive headliner, the early bird pricing has been extended until mid-April.

Early bird registration is open through April 15 and the $127 cost includes conference materials, breakfast, lunch and networking breaks.  On April 16, the price jumps to $227.

Registration at  Attendees can also register for the Thursday evening speaker’s reception.

The Summit is sponsored by Denso, Pilot Flying J, WATE, and STAR 102.1. Additional information about the Ignite Women’s Leadership Summit, this year’s slate of speakers, can be found at:

March 22, 2018

Partnership with Farragut West Knox Chamber to Provide ​Manager ​Training

Knoxville, TN – People typically become managers because they have superior technical skills. To manage people, you need a set of special skills – people skills – that most companies overlook.

Ignite Succeed is excited to announce a partnership with the Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce to bring our Great Managers Workshop Series to Chamber members. Ignite Succeed’s five-part essential skills series is designed to build on the traits of high-performing managers as identified in Gallup’sState of the American Manager.

The series kicks off May 9th with Communicating Effectively. The workshop helps managers recognize how they and their employees prefer to communicate so that both managers and employees can adapt to each other’s style to be more effective.

These additional workshops complete the series:

June 13, 2018: Understanding What Motivates Employees. Managers explore the six key factors of motivation and the 12 driving forces that will enable you to more effectively motivate each of your employees.

July 11, 2018: Managing Conflict for a Positive Result. Managers look at why conflict arises, what clouds the issue, and how you can create the most value in every conflict situation.

August 8, 2018: Creating Accountability on Your Team. Managers explore what accountability requires, what gets in the way, and how you can do when accountability goes by the wayside.

September 12, 2018: Engaging Employees for High Performance. Managers discover the top three reasons employees disengage and what to do to address each of those issues to re-engage their team.

Susanne Dalton Dupes is the presenter for this workshop series. She is an internationally accredited business communicator and a certified analyst of behaviors, motivators, driving forces, emotional intelligence, and acumen.

The three-hour workshop starts at 9:00 a.m. in the meeting room at the Knox Co. Sheriff’s West Precinct, 11429 Parkside Drive, Knoxville, TN 37934. Register at Individual tickets for each of the three-hour workshops are $99 for Farragut West Knox Chamber members (obtain discount code by contacting the Chamber), $149 for non-members. Registration deadline for the May workshop is April 27th.

To register for the workshop:

Scroll to top