Desoto County News

McNary: Celebrating Remarkable Women For Women’s History Month-Part III

By Loretta McNary

In a triumphant culmination of Women’s History Month celebrations, we proudly unveil our third and final list of Remarkable Women 2024. These extraordinary leaders, business owners, and volunteers stand as beacons of empowerment, embodying the essence of strength, resilience, and unyielding determination. 

Their stories inspire, their actions uplift, and their unwavering commitment to excellence paves the way for generations to come. 

We extend our deepest appreciation to all who participated in nominating these exceptional women, amplifying their voices, and honoring their profound contributions to our collective history. 

Loretta McNary

Together, let us continue to champion the legacy of women all over the world and forge ahead in the pursuit of equality, equity, and empowerment for all.

Join us in celebrating the following Remarkable Women:

Dr. Contessa Metcalf is a pioneering force in medicine, advocating tirelessly for criminal justice reform and health equity, particularly in underserved communities and among veterans. With a mantra of “Food is medicine and prevention is the key to healthy living,” she has revolutionized healthcare by emphasizing proactive approaches to wellness. As a respected physician, author, and influential figure in reality TV, Dr. Contessa’s impact spans far and wide, inspiring change and fostering empowerment wherever she goes. Her dedication to breaking down barriers and championing the well-being of all reflects a profound commitment to creating a healthier, more equitable world for generations to come.

Penny Hensley—SVP of Mortgage Lending for First South Financial. She’s a mortgage expert that puts people and community first! She dedicates significant time to the Southaven Chamber of Commerce as an ambassador and committee member because she knows that relationships are earned through service to others.

Dr. Treva T. Brown PhD is a physical scientist at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory. She is active in outreach and mentorship activities where she advocates for STEM outreach and spearheads initiatives aimed to improve diversity and inclusion within the scientific community. Dr. Brown has been the recipient of many career and civic awards, held several pageant titles and is the creator and producer of the mini-series, “Dr. B.’s Science Adventures”. where she actively engages with youth, doing experiments related to different S.T.E.M principles.

Cristan Engelke, an adept event coordinator at Southaven Chamber of Commerce, excels in organizing successful events, fostering business, and community growth. With keen attention to detail, she manages logistics and vendor relationships, ensuring seamless event execution and enhancing Southaven’s business landscape.

Peggy Linton, a notable figure associated with House of Grace, brings a wealth of experience from her background with the city of Olive Branch, Community Foundation, and her current role at House of Grace. Her exceptional skills were acknowledged when she was honored as Grant Writer of the Year. Peggy’s contributions have had a significant impact, enhancing the organization’s ability to fulfill its mission and support the community.

Veena Crownholm, is the reigning queen of Super Mom hacks and co-founder of The Millennial Mamas. With a crown of achievements including being the only Asian American to claim the title of Miss California and a finalist in the prestigious Miss America pageant, Veena brings her unique blend of grace, innovation, and resilience to empower moms everywhere. From mastering the art of parenting to pioneering new pathways for women of all backgrounds, Veena’s story is one of triumph, inspiration, and unwavering dedication to making the world a better place, one hack at a time.

Bonnie Sisk is a highly esteemed hearing specialist who has dedicated many years to enhancing the lives of individuals with hearing impairments. Her expertise and compassionate approach to patient care have made her a trusted figure in the community. With a deep understanding of the latest hearing technologies, Bonnie has helped countless individuals improve their communication abilities and overall quality of life. As she concludes her active professional journey, her legacy of dedication and excellence in the field of hearing health continues to inspire and resonate within the community.  

April Gross-Armstrong, Catering Director at Chick-fil-A Southaven, is a beacon of kindness and professionalism. Her unwavering commitment to excellence and empathy makes her a valued community partner. April’s advocacy for small business owners shines through her dedication to collaborating with the Southaven Chamber, showcasing her passion for supporting local entrepreneurs.

Evelyn Young is the dedicated director of the Ruth Tate Senior Center in Memphis, where she plays a pivotal role in enhancing the lives of the elderly community. With her compassionate leadership and innovative approach, Evelyn has transformed the center into a vibrant hub of activity and support for seniors. Her commitment to promoting health, wellness, and social engagement has made the Ruth Tate Senior Center a cherished resource for the older population in Memphis. Evelyn’s tireless efforts and dedication to serving seniors continue to make a positive impact on the lives of many.

Dr. Brinders Jones, Owner of Pediatric Partners, is renowned for her exceptional care and dedication as a pediatrician. Known for consistently going above and beyond for her patients, Dr. Jones exemplifies compassion and commitment in her practice.

Jeannie Guiseppe is the dynamic director of the Horn Lake Chamber of Commerce, where she plays a crucial role in fostering business growth and community development. With her strategic vision and strong leadership, Jeannie has been instrumental in creating a vibrant business environment that supports local enterprises. Her commitment to collaboration and innovation has helped strengthen the economic fabric of Horn Lake, making it a thriving hub for businesses and entrepreneurs. Jeannie’s dedication to the Chamber and the community it serves continues to drive positive change and prosperity in the region.  

Carol Smith, the Accounting & Office Manager at the Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi, annually dedicates her efforts to manage the registration for our Nick Linton Memorial Classic Golf Tournament. Additionally, she oversees online donor contributions and endowment funds for CFNM.

Tina Tatum is the founder of Coffee Central. She’s been a huge proponent of her faith, business growth and connections. Her passion for creating space for building relationships has helped both Hernando and Southaven. She continues to do things to make her business and community better.

Linda Feathers, Owner of Feathers & Fields LLC, Linda Feathers is the driving force behind Feathers and Fields, where faith and farm-to-table excellence intersect. With her husband, she tends to a bounty of treasures, from luscious blueberries and blackberries to fragrant basil pesto and exquisite long stem blooms. Their commitment to sustainable practices and handcrafted quality infuses every aspect of their offerings, from the earthy goodness of their produce to the intricate beauty of their handmade farm-garden crafts. Through Feathers and Fields, Linda not only nourishes bodies but also uplifts souls, creating a legacy of faith, stewardship, and flavorful abundance that resonates far beyond their farm gates.

Janice Ousley is a passionate advocate for girls in sports and women entrepreneurs, dedicating her time and efforts to volunteer work. Her commitment to empowering these groups makes her a driving force for positive change in her community.

Tracy Hamlin, is an acclaimed jazz artist and creator of the Sweet Jazz Festival, merges her global success with local love for Northern Virginia. After touring over 58 countries and achieving chart-topping acclaim abroad, Tracy’s dedication to music and community shines through. The festival not only celebrates her passion for jazz but also supports musical scholarships and vital causes like the Young Kings Movement and the Tigerlily Foundation, embodying Tracy’s commitment to both artistry and altruism.

Jan Winterburn is a remarkable woman of faith and a dedicated volunteer known for her ability to forge meaningful connections within her community. Her passion for bringing people together and her unwavering commitment to service make her a true asset to any cause she supports.

Laura Berry McNary is an exceptional educator with over 20 years of experience inspiring kindergartners. Dedicated to providing quality education, Mrs. McNary strives to ensure every student achieves academic and social success, laying the foundation for their lifelong learning journey.

Angela Grider, Co-Owner of Angela’s Delight in Southaven, embodies professionalism, charm, and kindness in every interaction with customers. Beyond managing her business, she generously volunteers her time to support and uplift others in the community, showcasing her commitment to making a positive impact beyond the storefront.

Mia Do, the visionary force behind FlipBelt. As the founder of this game-changing fitness accessory brand, Mia has redefined convenience and comfort for active individuals worldwide. Her journey began with a simple idea: to create a sleek, hands-free solution for carrying essentials during workouts and adventures. With dedication and ingenuity, Mia transformed this vision into FlipBelt, a beloved staple in the fitness community. Mia’s entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to excellence continue to drive FlipBelt’s success, empowering people to stay focused on their goals without missing a beat. Mia Do’s story exemplifies the power of innovation and passion to make a lasting impact on how we approach fitness and everyday life.

Sarah Mitzelfelt, co-founder of Just Bees candles, ignites change one candle at a time. With a passion for sustainability and a dedication to bees’ vital role in our ecosystem, Sarah and her husband (whose great-grandfather was a beekeeper) craft candles that not only illuminate spaces but also advocate for environmental consciousness. Through partnerships with bee conservation initiatives and sustainable sourcing practices, Just Bees candles not only bring warmth and light but also contribute to a brighter, more sustainable future. Sarah’s vision extends beyond the flicker of a flame, leaving a lasting impact on both homes and the planet.

Loretta McNary is our Lifestyles contributor. Catch “The Loretta McNary Show” on her channels, including broadcast TV, YouTube, Facebook, her website, and elsewhere.