Sparrow’s Stella Cash to receive 2012 ATHENA Award from Lansing Chamber of Commerce

LANSING, Mich. - Whether working to keep our region healthy, growing the Dietetics program at Michigan State University, or running a successful business, Stella Cash continues to make a lasting and positive impression on the mid-Michigan region.

The Lansing Chamber of Commerce will honor Stella's work by recognizing her as the 2012 ATHENA Award recipient at a luncheon at 11:30 a.m. today at the Kellogg Center at MSU.

Cash currently serves as Sparrow's Vice President of Development and Strategic Partnerships and directs the Sparrow Foundation. She retired from MSU in 2010 after a 35-year career as Director of Dietetics in the Department of Food Science and as Interim Vice President of Alumni Engagement.

"It's so very humbling to win such a prestigious award," Cash said. "I'm a steel magnolia who was fortunate enough to have many opportunities and work with great people at Sparrow, MSU, and throughout the community."

A native of Arkansas, Cash has held numerous offices for both state and national organizations and has consulted with more than 30 food companies, commodity groups, and government agencies across the globe, including Kellogg.

"Stella truly personifies the meaning of this prestigious award," said Dennis Swan, Sparrow President and CEO. "She is a role model for all of us, an advocate for countless causes, and always leads with dignity, honor, professionalism, and genuine respect for others."

The ATHENA Award presentation celebrates the potential of all women as leaders of the community and honors individuals who strive toward the highest levels of professional accomplishment. The ATHENA award was created by former Lansing Chamber President Martha Mertz in 1982 and has since spread around the world.