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Friday, December 17, 2021

Melissa Lutz Named 2022 Debbie Simpson Spirit of Achievement Award Honoree

Melissa Lutz has been named the 2022 Debbie Simpson Spirit Achievement Award winner by the NKY Chamber Women's Initiative

The Northern Kentucky Chamber Women’s Initiative (WI) is proud to recognize Melissa Lutz as the recipient of the ninth annual Debbie Simpson Spirit of Achievement Award.

The award will be presented at the 2022 Women’s Initiative Annual Breakfast, sponsored by PNC. Taking place Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022, the event—now in its 13th year—is themed "Celebrate Your Now," encouraging attendees to acknowledge all the challenges they’ve overcome while recognizing their achievements. In doing so, they will be emboldened to "live in the now." 
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"Melissa has been an engaged volunteer with the NKY Chamber for more than 25 years, she’s also been a tireless advocate and active member of the Women’s Initiative since it was founded in 2008," said Catrena Bowman-Thomas, executive director of the Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission, and chair of the WI Annual Breakfast. "A positive light and tireless advocate for the Women's Initiative, Melissa is a critical part of the success of the program and the events she has been involved with. There is no one more deserving of this year’s Debbie Simpson Spirit of Achievement Award."

A principal at Champlin Architecture and member of the firm’s Board of Directors, Lutz is actively involved in several organizations as part of her ongoing commitment to serving her community. She is a member of the NKY Chamber Board of Directors and has served on several WI committees, including both the Annual Breakfast and Regional Summit Committee since the inception of both events. Lutz is a past president of the SMPS Board of Directors, past president of the SMPS Foundation and past president of the Greater Cincinnati chapter.

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In addition, Lutz’s current/past community and professional involvement includes: The Carnegie Arts Center and its Suits That Rock program, CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women) of Greater Cincinnati, the Urban Land Institute, the Advancement Committee of the Children’s Home of Cincinnati and Allied Construction Industries. She is a graduate of Otterbein University, where she earned Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Business.

"I am extremely honored and humbled to receive this great honor; as a supporter and past member of several Women’s Initiative committees, I know the thought that goes into an award like this, which makes it all the more special for me,” Lutz said. “Making a difference in people’s lives is something that drives me; being named this year’s Debbie Simpson Spirit of Achievement Award winner makes me desire to do even more in our community."

The 2022 WI Annual Breakfast takes place from 8:30 to 10 a.m., Thursday, Feb. 3, at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center (1 W. Rivercenter Blvd. in Covington). Bringing women and men together from throughout the Northern Kentucky region, this year’s event will begin with a networking session from 8 to 8:30 a.m. with the program to follow until 10 a.m.

Family Nurturing Center, a nonprofit dedicated to ending the cycle of child abuse by promoting individual well-being and healthy family relationships, has been named the 2022 WI Annual Breakfast Nonprofit Recipient. The organization’s services and programs focus on the education, prevention and treatment of all forms of child abuse and neglect. Attendees are encouraged to support Family Nurturing Center with a donation.

For tickets and table sponsorship information go to

Sponsors include: Title Sponsor: PNC Bank; Debbie Simpson Spirit of Achievement Award Sponsor: C-Forward; Nonprofit Recipient Award Sponsor: Civista Bank; Parking Sponsors: Delta Dental of Ohio and Xavier University; Community Partner: Cincinnati Business Courier; Event Sponsors: BKD CPAs & Advisors, Cincinnati Bell, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, Duke Energy, Humana and Perfetti Van Melle

The NKY Chamber Women’s Initiative, sponsored by PNC, started in 2008 and is the leading organization for women of all career stages to connect, grow and achieve for business and professional success. The Women’s Initiative offers a continuum of growth for women of all ages and stages of their careers.


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