Ingrid Hernandez delivers high quality design while building personalized client relationships.
As president and creative director at InGrid Design since 2002, Hernandez leads her business and team, while also providing expertise as a creative director and project manager. InGrid Design is an award-winning graphic design firm offering services from concept to completion, as well as Spanish translation services. The firm helps companies communicate regionally, nationally and globally with a multicultural sensibility.
Hernandez grew up in Puerto Rico and attended the Instituto San Miguel de Allende with a focus on painting. She then went on to the Rhode Island School of Design for her B.F.A. in graphic design.
Hernandez and InGrid Design have won many awards, including the NAWBO Woman Business Owner of the Year and the GLI Emerging Minority Business of the Year. Hernandez was named to Business First magazine’s Fast 50 and Fast Dozen lists, as well as a finalist for Leader of the Year.
Donald M. Vowels is a psychotherapist and spiritual counselor with Body, Mind, Spirit Health and Wellness in Louisville. He has an extensive resume in psychotherapy, theology and social work.
While his professional life was in full swing, a December 2011 routine colonoscopy profoundly and instantly changed Vowel’s personal life when he was diagnosed with anal cancer. A May 2014, recurrence of cancer in his chest area led Vowels to creating his own Caring Bridge Blog for followers of his cancer journey. This is what ultimately led Don, or Donnie as some call him, to our program, not to mention numerous fan requests to make him a featured guest.
Vowels was previously the radio show co-host of “The Art of Healthy Living” on WKJK 1080 AM Radio for two years. He also released a calming guided meditation album, “The Quiet,” in 2007.
Sterling Lapinski is an entrepreneur and angel investor.
In 2012, he co-founded ClipperData, an energy market information service, where he currently serves as CEO. Lapinski is also the co-founder of Genscape, the world’s leading provider of real-time energy information. The technology and intellectual property core of the business were created and managed by Lapinski. In 2006, Lapinski and his partners sold Genscape to the Daily Mail & General Trust for almost $200 million.
Lapinski has invented more than a dozen domestic and foreign patents.
In 2003, Ernst and Young named Lapinski an Entrepreneur of the Year. He is currently an investor in, advisor for, or board member of many companies, including Stonestreet One, CD Funding Group, and SimPak International, to name just a few.
When Nina Moseley talks about her work helping those in poverty, her eyes light up with hope and her enthusiasm fills the room.
Since 1988, Moseley has been the chief operating officer of Wayside Christian Mission. The organization helps Louisville’s homeless population “not with a hand-out, but with a hand up.” The organization has grown from an overnight shelter for the homeless, to a center for hope with education and skills training as well. Along the way, they’ve taken on the city, enlisted HUD and the Louisville community at large.
Moseley traded in a career in finance and collections at local department stores to take the leap into the unknown at Wayside. She met her husband there, and has contributed to many lives turning around.
Moseley earned her J.D. from U of L’s Brandeis School of Law in 1999, and is a member of the Board of the Coalition for the Homeless, a board member and past president of Metrobon Kiwanis Club, and a past board member of the Flaget Alumni Association. She has been a licensed member of the Kentucky Bar, Indiana Bar, and Arkansas Bar. Moseley was also the recipient of the Leadership Award from Mercy Academy, as well as the Spirit of Flaget Award. In 2011, she and her husband were honored with the Blanche B. Ottenheimer Award for going above and beyond to improve life in the Louisville community.
Mitzi Friedlander has spent much of her career bringing stories to life for the blind. After 50 years of recording books, Friedlander holds the record for most talking book titles narrated for the National Library Service.
As a Louisville-native and former singer, Friedlander once performed in the Kentucky Opera Association. She sang and acted in many operas, musicals and plays in the 1950s. Friedlander also holds a master’s degree in theatre arts from the University of Louisville.
She went on to become a celebrity in the narrated books world and recorded more than 2,200 titles. In 1993, Friedlander received the Alexander Scourby Award for her narration of nonfiction books. According to the Courier-Journal, Friedlander said her most favorite book that she ever recorded is the children’s classic, “Charlotte’s Web.”
Rebecca Eaves saves and protects animals suffering from abuse and neglect.
A long-time animal rescuer and activist, Eaves is the founder and president of The Arrow Fund, a Kentucky based non-profit that provides medical treatment to animal victims of torture, abuse, or neglect, and then finds them loving homes. The organization takes legal possession of the animal and holds the abuser responsible by pursuing legal action against them. This selfless mission is truly fueled by love, as all the members of The Arrow Fund Board are volunteers and are not paid for their services.
Eaves says her mission began in 2009, when a labrador mix, later named Aiden, was deliberately shot with an arrow in Pike County. She then became no stranger to the spotlight, spreading the message about animal abuse everywhere she could, drawing attention to this important cause and educating the public.
Eaves has seen the worst in people in the harm inflicted to animals, and the best in those who work tirelessly to save them. The first thing she says to every rescued animal? “You will never be hurt again.”
Barry Denton is passionate about his hometown of Louisville.
In 2003, he began work as a bomb squad commander and police sergeant. Currently, Denton serves in the police force, and in educating the next generation. He works as a patrol officer for Audubon Park Police, and serves as an adjunct professor with the American Military University, the University of Louisville, and Indiana Wesleyan University. Since 2013, he has served as the executive director of the Louisville Metro Police Foundation.
Denton strives to make Louisville the best city in the nation through his work and through volunteerism with such organizations as the Louisville Downtown Rotary and the Kentucky Derby Festival Board.
He is the recipient of many awards including the 1995, 1999, and 2003 Medals of Valor from the Jefferson County Police Department.
Joey Wagner, Owner of the J Wagner Group, has been putting on some of the biggest events in the city of Louisville and the midwest region for the past 10 years. J. Wagner Group, a full-service event planning, marketing, and promotions firm, serves many well-known and high-end clients.
Wagner also owns DerbyVIP.com, a full-service concierge service providing rental houses, car service, fashion, security, and tickets to celebrity and charity events for Kentucky Derby Weekend.
Wagner previously served as the marketing and promotions coordinator for the athletic department at Morehead State University.
He holds many awards and recognitions. He was nominated as a Louisville magazine’s Most Creative Business Person, was named one of the 8 Men Changing Louisville by Today’s Man magazine, and named one of the Most Powerful People at the Kentucky Derby by Velocity Weekly in their Kentucky Derby Power issue. Wagner was also been honored as a distinguished alumnus at Morehead State University.
Gale Lively always felt her job was to help people excel in their jobs.
She brought this view to her leadership position as the executive vice president of the Louisville Apartment Association. She served in this position for over 37 years prior to announcing her retirement in 2014. The non-profit represents apartment owners, vendors, and apartment communities in Louisville and advocates on behalf of the apartment industry through legislative lobbying on the local, state and national levels.
Focused on bringing visibility to the association, Lively has served on several committees of the National Apartment Association. In the past, she was named executive officer of the year and chosen to be president of the association executive council.
The organization also provides education certificates to those in the industry, and advocates on matters as varied as changes in building codes and rules for sprinklers and smoke detectors in apartment units.
Ankur Gopal’s desire to make an impact has fueled his success building a technology application company.
Gopal is the founder and CEO of Interapt LLC, a Google Glass partner.
Interapt is an award-winning company specializing in mobile apps and wearable technology. Interapt partners with businesses in the healthcare and long-term care industries, helping them use technology more effectively to complement their overall business strategy.
Interapt was selected by Google as one of only ten global companies to be a Glass at Work Partner. It has also earned the Gartner Cool Vendor Award, an international award designated by the research giant Gartner Group.
Gopal was named an emerging entrepreneur by the Kentucky Entrepreneur Hall of Fame and one of the 40 Business Leaders Under 40 in Business First magazine. Gopal also serves on the Speed Museum Board, the Kentucky Center for the Arts Board, and the Junior Achievement Board, and is an entrepreneur mentor.
Gopal is married to Dr. Kiran Gill and they are expecting their first child in December 2015.
A competitive spirit drives Chris Morris in his pursuit for excellence as a master distiller.
A Louisville native, Morris is only the seventh master distiller at the Brown-Forman Corporation since 1870, as well as its current spirits historian. He is responsible for maintaining the award-winning taste of the Woodford Reserve family of brands and serves as brand ambassador at trade and consumer functions.
Morris is one of three generations in his family to work at Brown-Forman. He began as a trainee at Brown-Forman in the central lab under the master distiller in 1976. He left to work for Glenmore Distillers in 1988, and then United Distillers when it acquired Glenmore in 1991. He returned to Brown-Forman in 1997. It was at this time that he was chosen to train as a master distiller.
Morris has served on the boards of the Kentucky Distillers Association and the Kentucky Bourbon Festival. He has also had the honor to judge at the International Wine and Spirits Competition and the International Spirits Challenge.
Since Lee W. Robinson was seven years old and constructing scale models, he has had a passion for design and building beautiful homes.
After a 14-year career in banking, Robinson decided to pursue his dream to open a design company that offers drafting, remodeling and design services in one location. The Lee W. Robinson Company, now in St. Matthews, fills two floors with a beautiful collection of furniture and accessories from artisans and design houses. The collection includes Robinson’s three lifestyle lines, each named after his sons Owsley, Thurston and McDowell.
Business First magazine named the Lee W. Robinson Company the #1 Full Service Remodeler in Louisville in 2008, just 9 years after opening its doors. It was also credited as a Fast 50 Top Growing Company. Robinson has been featured in several national magazines. In 2012, his company designed the Evelyn Lauder Holiday House in New York for the Hampton Designer Showcase.
Robinson was born in Lexington and currently lives in Louisville.
Kevin Grangier is driven by his desire to create things that make people happy.
Grangier began his career in marketing and communication locally, before heading to Los Angeles to start his own company. Carry On Communication Inc. is an award winning firm specializing in branding, public relations, and marketing. It expanded to five communication companies and offered services to some of the largest, most significant brands in the U.S. like Yahoo!, Clorox and many others.
In 2010, Grangier returned to Louisville to open The Village Anchor Pub & Roost, an eclectic European “bistropub.” The restaurant received critical acclaim for its unconventional marketing strategies and practices, and he was named Restaurateur of the Year.
Grangier has since opened a second restaurant in Louisville, Le Moo Fine Steakhouse, as well as creating Belle Noble Entertainment Group. He plans to develop new restaurant and entertainment concepts in various cities across the U.S.
Grangier follows guidance he received early in life: listen to others, take the information, and then trust your own instincts to make decisions. This has served him well in the building of his successful communications firm and two restaurants.
Dan McDonnell loves to compete, loves to win, and loves seeing the growth in his players as he coaches the University of Louisville baseball team.
Since McDonnell’s hiring in 2006, the team has accomplished amazing statistics.
In his first year, McDonnell led the team to the College World Series. Then he led the Cardinals to seven more NCAA appearances in eight years, including two more to the College World Series. Louisville is ranked 6th place nationally, with a school record of 51 wins in 2013. The Cardinals also hold six regular-season titles and two tournament championships in their conference.
McDonnell was awarded National Coach of the Year by rivals.com, as well as ACC Coach of the Year. He has had 22 All-American players and 43 players who have signed professional contracts at the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
McDonnell is married to the former Julie Anne Underwood of Charlotte, N.C. The couple has two sons.
Tom Jurich cites his motivation to do things right and see results as he leads athletic programs at the University of Louisville.
Since 1997, Jurich has made a permanent mark at the University of Louisville by leading an athletic department that has enjoyed tremendous athletic and academic accomplishments. In 2003, Jurich began his run as vice president at U of L.
Under Jurich, the Cardinal athletic teams have produced unparalleled success in multiple sports. Louisville’s 2012 – 2013 year marked the first time any university has ever won a BCS level bowl game, placed both its men’s and women’s basketball teams in the NCAA Final 4, and reached the baseball College World Series in the same season.
CBS Sports ranked Cardinals Athletics among the top three nationally for the past three years. Jurich and his wife share U of L’s prestigious Hickman-Camp Award and he was named Louisville magazine’s Person of the Year in 2007.
He resides in Louisville with his wife, Terrilynn. They have four children and several grandchildren.
Jeff Walz has a passion for excellence that drives him as the head coach of the University of Louisville Women’s basketball team.
Walz was hired as the head coach in 2007. Since then, he has helped the Cardinals burst into national prominence as one of the most competitive and successful teams. In his eight seasons with the team, the women Cardinals have gone to the NCAA Sweet 16 six times, had two NCAA Runner Up finishes, two All-Americans, 18 All-Conference selections, and five WNBA draft picks. His team has averaged 26 victories per season with a record 34 victories in the 2008 – 2009 season.
Prior to Louisville, Walz coached in Maryland, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Western Kentucky. As a student, he earned a basketball scholarship to Northern Kentucky University, where he studied secondary education and acquired a master’s degree in education. In 2008, Walz was named the WBCA Maggie Dixon Rookie Coach of the Year.
Walz and his wife, Lauren, reside in Louisville, Ky., with their four children.
Heather Howell’s desire to inspire her children and fear of failure power her in selecting her projects and in growing beverage brands.
As director of innovation for Brown-Forman Corporation, Howell is responsible for developing the global portfolio expansion strategy and acts as brand leader for Collingwood, a premium blended Canadian whiskey. Howell joined Brown-Forman in 2015.
She previously worked for Rooibee Red Tea, where she served as chief tea officer, CEO and, board member, helping take the organic tea brand from the farmers market to the national market.
Howell has been recognized numerous times, including Ernst & Young’s 2013 E.D.G.E. Award, a 2014 Enterprising Woman to Watch Award from Business First, and a 2013 finalist for the Business Leader of the Year Award. She is also president emeritus of the National Association of Women MBAs and serves on the board of Republic Bank.
She resides in Louisville with her husband, Dr. Steven Howell, a pediatric eye surgeon, and their two children: son,Teague, and daughter,Juliana. A favorite quote of Heather’s is “You make time for what is important; I will rest when I am in the grave.”
Driven by conscience and seeing challenges as possibilities drive Jackie Ford as she leads the Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana.
Tennessee-native Ford brings over 25 years of non-profit experience to the Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana. Previously, Ford served as the executive director of Literacy Volunteers of America in Connecticut for 10 years.
In 1988, she began her career with the Girl Scouts as director of membership and marketing in southwest Connecticut and moved on to COO in 2002. A few years later, Ford was named CEO for the Girl Scout Council of Savannah, Ga, and moved on to Girl Scouts services officer in historic Georgia.
Ford was then elected as COO for Girl Scouts of North East Ohio in 2012, where she was responsible for all operations. In 2015, she came to The Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana, where she was named CEO. In this position, Ford helps provide strategic direction and leadership.
Ford has two sons, Sean and Ryan, who live in the metro New York area.
Emily Cleveland has a passion for helping children see past disability through friendship.
Cleveland is the Kentucky state director of Best Buddies International, providing direct support for the state’s school-based programs. These programs create opportunities for youth and adults, with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities and disorders, though friendship pairings.
Best Buddies of Kentucky has seen significant growth since Cleveland has been with the organization. The number of school-based programs has doubled. She helped secure a $100,000 gift from the NASCAR Foundation, and revenue increased by 27% for the annual Friendship Walk. Her goal is to grow to 30 school-based chapters by June 2016 and she aims to increase private revenue and increase operational efficiency and effectiveness for the anticipated growth.
Cleveland was recognized as the 2014 Best Buddies International Program Manager of the Year.
She resides with her husband, Ryan, in Louisville, Ky.
Vickie Yates Brown brings passion to all of her projects – from shaping health care policy to the Nucleus project.
Brown is an experienced health care law and finance attorney. She worked on planning, development, and finance for Nucleus: Kentucky’s Research and Innovation Center alongside the University of Louisville Foundation and U of L President James Ramsey. Brown was named president and CEO of Nucleus in 2008.
Brown also serves as the chair of the Health and Life Sciences Practice Group at Frost Brown Todd LLC. She is the chairwoman of the Health Law Section of the American Bar Association, vice chair of the Health Enterprises Network, and sits on the editorial board of the BNA Health Law Reporter.
Brown served on the advisory council for the Human Genome Project and National Institute of Diabetes, Digestion and Kidney Disease, and has co-authored three publications on health care law and government regulation.
Brown and her husband, Col. Shawn Glisson, M.D. (Ret. USA), reside in Louisville, Ky.
David Nicholson learned the importance of community involvement from his late father, Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge S. Rush Nicholson.
In 1991, Nicholson joined the Metro Criminal Justice Commission and in 1998, became its executive director. During this time, the commission, which helps first responders, received millions in grants. This included a multi-million-dollar grant from the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security, which captured national headlines.
In 2006, and again in 2012, Nicholson was elected and re-elected Jefferson County circuit court clerk. He manages a staff of over 300 employees and operates from eight locations.
Nicholson’s community involvement within the Louisville area has a strong and lengthy history. He has served on the Board of Directors for Kosair Charities, the Kentucky Association of Counties, and the National Association of Counties.
Nicholson and his wife, Debra, have two children: one who is an attorney and the other a student at the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law.
Creativity in food, atmosphere and service fuel John Varanese in his career as chef and restaurant owner.
After an impressive food and restaurant background, Varanese opened Varanese on Frankfort Avenue in 2007. Eight years later, he announced his second restaurant, River House, located on the riverfront. Later that year, Varanese announced another restaurant at the River House location, Levee, which would feature live entertainment and a unique cuisine, a completely separate experience from River House.
Starting at age 14 in Cleveland, Ohio, Varanese credits Dino De Franco as his mentor and teacher for what it takes to be a good chef and business owner. He learned the business side of the restaurant, discipline and from scratch cooking.
His first executive chef position was at Azeala restaurant in Louisville, Ky. Within three years, Varanese began making plans to open his own restaurant. He is passionately committed to sourcing local food for his restaurants.
Varanese has won numerous awards and was invited to cook at the prestigious James Beard House in NYC. He serves on the Kentucky Restaurant Association’s Board of Directors, was named Restaurateur of the Year by KRA, and was honored as one of the country’s top culinary talents in the premier edition of Best Chefs America.
Varanese also stars in and co-produces his own television show, Big World of Food.
The show focuses on educating viewers on the importance of local farms to the food on their tables.
John and his wife, Gina, reside in Louisville.
Love for family drives both Patrick John Hughes and his son, Patrick Henry Hughes, to expand possibilities.
Patrick Henry was born without eyes and without the ability to fully straighten his arms and legs, making him unable to walk. He has overcome these physical issues to excel as a musician and public speaker.
Musician Patrick Henry has flourished with the support of his family. His father, Patrick John, sees his blessings with family as his driving inspiration to serve them each day.
Patrick Henry played in the University of Louisville Marching Band for five seasons with help from his father, who tirelessly maneuvered Patrick Henry’s wheelchair through the formations during practices and games. During this time, his dad spent his days attending classes on campus assisting his son and working the overnight shift. Patrick Henry speaks fluent Spanish, and in 2010 graduated from U of L magna cum laude.
The pair made appearances all across the USA and even shared their story internationally. They were featured on ESPN, “Oprah,” “The Ellen Show,” “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” “The Today Show,” and many others. Their book, “I Am Potential,” was turned into a feature-length film by the same name. Patrick has also recorded two musical CDs.
Patrick Henry resides in Louisville with his father and mother (Patricia), and has two brothers, Cameron and Jesse.
Terri Foster knew from a young age she had musical gifts, and now seeks to use her gifts to help other young people develop theirs.
Since 2007, Foster has been named artistic/executive director of the Louisville Youth Choir. She directs the Chamber and Aria Choirs at LYC, as well as the all-female Adult Alumni Choir. Under her direction, the Louisville Youth Choir performed with the Moscow Ballet in their U.S. touring production of “The Great Russian Nutcracker.”
Conducting since 1993, Foster was formerly the conductor of Bella Voce and the Louisville Children’s Choir, which performed at Carnegie Hall. She also conducted at both public and private schools. She was a voice teacher at Sacred Heart School for the Arts, the Choral Director at Sacred Heart Academy, and has a private voice studio, as well.
Her professional vocal career includes performing with the Kentucky Opera, the Stephen Foster Story, community theatre groups, and solo engagements with churches and at private events.
Foster is a member of the Kentucky Music Educators Association and the Kentucky American Choral Director’s Association.
Michael Blowen’s fear of horses grew into a deep love for horses, and for saving their lives.
Early in his career, Blowen was a writer and movie critic for The Boston Globe. He eventually held the enviable position of movie critic, which gave him contact with film stars and celebrities throughout the 1980’s and 1990’s.
A chance outing in 1997 to Suffolk Downs in Massachusetts proved to be a life-changing event. Wanting to learn more about horses to improve his chances to win at the track, Blowen asked to work the stables for free, and he fell in love with these majestic animals.
In 1999, The Boston Globe offered Blowen and his wife, Diane, also a Globe columnist, a retirement buyout. He took it and joined the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, which rescues horses and provides them with safe homes. A year later, he moved to Kentucky to help the foundation.
Blowen then founded the non-profit organization Old Friends Farm in Georgetown, a retirement and rescue facility for pensioned thoroughbreds. In 2002, Derby winner Ferdinand was slaughtered in Japan, gaining national outrage. This influenced Blowen to focus on at-risk racehorses, giving them a comfortable place to live out their years and also providing the public a chance to meet these formerly famous racehorses. Old Friends is open to the public and attracts nearly 20,000 visitors each year.
Blowen and his wife reside on Old Friends Farm and like the retired thoroughbreds he cares for, he too will be buried on the grounds of the farm, when his great day comes.