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Ignite Succeed selects two new co-chairs for 2020 Women’s Leadership Summit

wendy barrett
Wendy Barrett, Chair
samira abdalla
Samira Abdalla, Co-chair

KNOXVILLE – The partners at Ignite Succeed are pleased to announce that there will be two new faces leading the team responsible for the 2020 Women’s Leadership Summit. Wendy Barrett and Samira Abdalla will serve as chair and co-chair respectively of the June 12th event at The Venue in Lenoir City.

Barrett has taken on the role of Summit chair. With over 20 years of management experience and a BSBA in business management, Barrett has extensive experience in business administration, project management, and strategic leadership. Barrett is a licensed life and health insurance agent with Senior Financial Group focused on Medicare education outreach. She and her family moved to Knoxville from California in 2013 when her husband was transferred here.

Barrett credits her decision to chair the Summit because of her passion for helping others pursue excellence and maximize their potential. “The vision and mission statement of the Summit strongly coincide with my life philosophy … that we receive by giving, and helping women reach their full potential is one of the most rewarding challenges to experience,” Barrett explained. She added, "My biggest accomplishments came as a result of coaching and developing others, because their success is my success".

Abdalla has taken on the co-chair role for this premier event. She has been involved with the Summit for two years and is keenly invested in the work of the Summit. Originally from Rome, Italy, Abdalla and her three children moved to Knoxville in 2013. She recently achieved the SHRM Certified Professional designation and is a doctoral student in business administration. She also serves as Human Resources Coordinator for Brookdale Healthcare Services.

Abdalla brings her perspective as a young professional to the Summit planning. She has a strong understanding of business administration, leadership, divergent thinking and is committed to the Summit’s vision and mission. “I believe that mentorship is an important component of success. The best way to grow is by giving, which can be both mutually beneficial and also life altering,” Abdalla shared.

The Summit is an annual event. The 2019 event was cancelled due to extenuating personal circumstances. The event runs from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Registration will open early fall. To get updated information on the 2020 Summit program and events, visit the website or email

Published July 8, 2019

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