Jennifer Appleby Named 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award Winner

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    Agency News

  • Date:

    February 2, 2023

Jennifer Appleby Named 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award Winner

Agency News

Wray Ward Executive Chair Jennifer Appleby will be honored with the 2023 Women in Business Lifetime Achievement Award for her accomplishments both in business and community leadership. The award is the highest honor to be presented at the Charlotte Business Journal’s 27th annual Women in Business Awards at The Westin Charlotte on Thursday, March 9.

Candidates for the Charlotte Business Journal’s Lifetime Achievement Award are considered based on leadership within their companies and industries as well as their contribution to Charlotte’s strength as a region.

“Much of my success I owe directly to the smart, engaged and passionate people who guided me through every creative and philanthropic opportunity I had as I built my career, and I’m so grateful for each and every person who touched my life in this way,” Appleby said. “However, my work is far from over. I look forward to continuing to step out of my comfort zone, accept new challenges and make an impact in my community.”

Appleby joined Wray Ward in 1993 as senior art director. She was promoted to executive creative director in 1995 and senior vice president in 1998. In early 2001, she was named president and chief creative officer. Appleby exited day-to-day management of Wray Ward at the end of 2022, stepping into an executive chair role through which she will serve as a business consultant and support the agency’s unique workplace culture efforts, including its EmpoWWer service-grant program and Diversity & Inclusion initiative. Throughout her 22 years as president and chief creative officer at Wray Ward, Appleby’s leadership, vision and creativity helped grow the company to the largest advertising agency in Charlotte, while her dedication to countless nonprofit and civic projects continues to leave a lasting impact on the Charlotte Mecklenburg community.

Outside of the agency, Appleby’s contributions of time and leadership have touched virtually every corner of the Charlotte Mecklenburg community. She serves on the Charlotte Executive Leadership Council and Charlotte Mecklenburg Library Foundation, and she has served on numerous boards and committees, including the Charlotte Regional Business Alliance, Charlotte Center City Partners, the Arts & Science Council, Central Piedmont Community College Foundation, Johnson & Wales University, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont and United Way of Greater Charlotte. She also recently co-chaired the Center City 2040 Vision Plan.

“Jennifer has the remarkable gift to inspire others with her natural leadership and creative vision, both in the workplace and in the community. It doesn’t take long to realize she does all things with passion,” said Wray Ward President and Chief Executive Officer Kent Panther. “We are thrilled to celebrate this well-deserved recognition.”

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