Chair’s Corner: Reflecting on “We Rise by Lifting Others”

We Rise by Lifting Others, Liz Townsend's Chair term ends

By Liz Townsend Bird, The Food Bank for Central & Northeast Missouri, Women’s Network Chair

Reflecting on “We Rise by Lifting Others

My year as Chair of Women’s Network has come to the end and it is time to pass the torch to Megan Steen. But before I do, I want you all to know how much I have enjoyed serving as your Chair this year. It truly has been a very fulfilling experience. I have made so many wonderful friends and professional connections, and the best is yet to come! 

This was an amazing year of leadership for our Chamber divisions. I was in stellar company with Michele Batye, Krista Kippenberger and Wende Wagner, the chairs of the Chamber Board of Directors, Ambassadors and EPIC, respectively. This was the first year that all of these divisions were chaired by women!  Michele and Krista are also past chairs of Women’s Network, and Wende was one of the ATHENA Young Professional award finalists this year! Pro tip: Surround yourself with rockstars who make you a better person and leader! Thanks to these amazing women for their leadership!   

“We Rise By Lifting Others” was a culmination of my 10-years with Women’s Network. I joined with the intention to connect with a network of peers beyond the world of higher education, increase my engagement within Columbia, and empower myself with new leadership skills. This organization helped me achieve those goals ten-fold. I have built a strong network of colleagues and friends who have lifted me up and mentored me, and who are always available for guidance. I have had the opportunity to mentor many individuals as well. Through career shifts, professional development, and personal challenges, this is where we find our network, our friends…our tribe. Thank you all for being part of Women’s Network!

I highly recommend volunteering in a leadership capacity with Women’s Network. If this has ever been an aspiration for you or if you have any questions, I encourage you to get involved!


Liz Townsend Bird

Women’s Network Chair, 2022-23

Director of Development

The Food Bank for Central & Northeast Missouri



300 S Providence Rd
PO Box 1016
Columbia, Mo 65205