NAWBO 2023 EPIC Award Winners


The National Association of Woman Business Owners (NAWBO) Kentucky Chapter honored high-achieving women business owners and advocates during the EPIC Awards 2023 luncheon on March 30th.

The National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) was founded in 1975 and is the unified voice of over 11 million women-owned businesses in America, representing the fastest growing segment of the economy. NAWBO is the only dues-based organization representing the interests of all women entrepreneurs across all industries with local chapters across the US. NAWBO began its first chapter in the Bluegrass state 31 years ago, and NAWBO Kentucky is now a thriving organization with a vision for statewide growth.

“Anyone considering establishing, buying or assuming a business, would do well to look to NAWBO members for examples of how to succeed. Our members are creative, strong, and innovative,” said NAWBO Kentucky President Basha Roberts, owner of LexTech. “We hold this program annually to help make that point. And, I have to say this year’s EPIC Award winners are especially inspiring and exceptional.”

The Legacy Award: Ann B. Bakhaus

Announced in February, the Legacy Award was presented to Ann B. Bakhaus, Chairman of the Board, Kentucky Eagle Inc. Ann served as President of Kentucky Eagle Inc., a total beverage and spirit distributor based in Lexington, for 20 years before passing the baton to her daughter. The company has been in the Bakhaus family since 1948, and Ann carried on the family legacy by growing the brand and supporting the community.

Woman Business Owner of the Year: Angela Leet

Angela Leet is the owner and CEO of QSR Automations, Inc. located in Louisville. She has co-owned QSR since 2000 and took exclusive ownership in 2021. “Since being here, we have experienced unprecedented growth, including the creation of (new) departments… two of these new departments are led by women,” said Leet.

Public Policy Catalyst of the Year: Kathy Sanders

Kathy Sanders is the President of three companies in Turner Station and Owenton. The companies she runs are focused on agriculture: growing hemp, CBD products, coffee isolate and microgreens. Sanders has been involved in bringing awareness and prevention to elder abuse, conversations on the legalization of medical marijuana, and multiple issues in the health field with the Kentucky Department for Public Health.

Member of the Year: Margaret Jolly

Margaret Jolly has been a member of NAWBO for over 14 years, joining in December of 2008. She is now a retired partner of MCM CPAs & Advisors, LLP in Memphis, IN. In her time as a member, Jolly has served on multiple committees and help Chair positions, including Finance and Treasurer. She loves attending and working annual events, and spreading the word about NAWBO KY.

Corporate Partner of the Year: Go 2 Girl, LLC

Go 2 Girl, LLC is a business development firm in Shelbyville. Vanessa Pennoyer has been a NAWBO Corporate Partner since 2021 and joined to help deliver the mission of NAWBO and provide resources of support to women business owners. Since joining, the company has been actively involved in promoting the chapter, membership, events, partners, and using their own business network to spread the word.

Join the Community!

Entrepreneurship can be a lonely path at times. When you become a NAWBO member, you tap into a community of thousands of leaders, visionaries, innovators and trailblazers–of all sectors, sizes and stages of business development–who understand you and can help you succeed in your business, lifestyle and community in a way like no other. Be part of the NAWBO mission.

NAWBO propels women entrepreneurs–one of the fastest-growing and most dynamic sectors in U.S. business–into economic, social and political spheres of power worldwide by:

STRENGTHENING the wealth-creating capacity of our members and promoting economic development

CREATING innovative and effective changes in the business culture

BUILDING strategic alliances, coalitions and affiliations

TRANSFORMING public policy and influencing opinion

In addition to all the intangible benefits that come simply from “belonging” to NAWBO, our affinity partners are proud to offer our members exclusive discounts and opportunities valued at up to $5,000!

NAWBO is a powerful resource for:

CONNECTING: Building relationships with other women entrepreneurs with businesses of all sizes and front all demographics and business sectors.

LEARNING: Enjoy quality education on today’s most important business topics through e-learning webinars, public policy calls, leadership development trainings and more.

BUILDING YOUR BUSINESS: Access everything you need to grow your business into something bigger, from ideas to connections to resources and more.

ADVOCATING: Learn more about the issues impacting your business and join your voice with NAWBO members nationwide as we advocate for policies at the local, state and federal government levels on behalf of all women business owners.

For details, visit us online at

Questions about membership? Please contact [email protected]