Carrying the torch
The late Satie Broyhill exemplified a philosophy of community involvement, education and giving back. Teresa Johnson, this year’s winner of the 13th Annual Satie Broyhill Lifetime Achievement Award, carries on that legacy.
The award, given annually by the Caldwell County Council for Women, recognizes individuals for contributions to Caldwell County with the philosophy of life that Satie lived by. Johnson has spent a lifetime doing just that. Whether it’s her work with the Wig Bank of Caldwell County, the Caldwell Memorial Hospital Foundation’s annual gala, Appalachian State University's An Appalachian Summer Festival board, or the Foundation of Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute’s annual fund drive, Johnson always inspires others to achieve.
Oh, and she also managed to carve out a 20-year career at Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corp. in the process. Now retired, she has even more time to give back.
“I’m honored and humbled to join a list of women,” she said during a luncheon held Thursday at the J.E. Broyhill Civic Center. “I have been so blessed with friends and a wonderful family in the Wig Bank. I truly appreciate this award.”
Lenoir News-Topic publisher Terese Almquist, the guest speaker, talked about the newspaper’s infancy when, in 1886, women were rarely mentioned in the paper. By the time the Caldwell County Council of Women was formed in 1976, women were making great strides in society. Now, Almquist said, women regularly appear in the pages of the News-Topic, leading non-profits and running small businesses. Almquist issued a challenge to women, to empower and mentor women under 50, to get them excited about what’s going on in the county,
“They will be our community leaders and volunteers,” she said.
Past winners include Carol Simon; Janet Wilson; Lucy Wagner; Eloise Setzer; Caryl Burns; Helen Beam; Joyce Lawing; Sheila Brady; Allene Setvens; Allene Jones, and Francis Delk.