Florida Crystals’ Evelyn Hopkins Receives ATHENA Leadership Award® from Chamber of Palm Beaches

Florida Crystals is thrilled to announce that our own Evelyn Hopkins was recognized by the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches with the 2021 ATHENA Leadership Award®.

The award honors women who excel in their fields, devote time and energy to their community, and mentor and open doors for other women to follow. The Chamber received nominations from more than 50 individuals and businesses.

“I stand on the shoulders of the women before me who paved the way for female leaders,” Evelyn said in accepting the award at the Sept. 17 ceremony at the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach. She was presented with a hand-cast, bronze sculpture that symbolizes courage, strength and wisdom.

In presenting the award to Evelyn, the Chamber noted her work founding its Executive Mentorship Program to provide guidance to members of the Young Professionals of the Palm Beaches. Evelyn is the Chamber’s immediate past chair and was the Chamber’s first Hispanic chair in its 108-year history. She serves on the Good Samaritan Hospital Board of Directors and was chairwoman of the board in 2020.

Florida Crystals also had the honor of sponsoring the Chamber’s ATHENA Young Professional Leadership Award, which was presented by Dolly Davis to Alexandria Ayala of The Markarian Group.

Before pursuing a career in law, Evelyn led the ultrasound department at Jackson Memorial Hospital and taught anatomy at Miami-Dade Community College.

Evelyn’s parents fled Cuba in 1966, spending three days at sea and risking their lives for the promise of a fresh start in the U.S.

“Because of my parents’ bold move, I have the privilege of being an American citizen and part of this West Palm Beach community,” she said.

After arriving in the U.S., Evelyn’s mother worked in a factory before opening her own flower shop, while her father was a welder in a sugar cane mill – one owned by the company she would go on to work for herself.

“I am the American dream,” Evelyn said. “I am a successful lawyer, happily married to my best friend, mother to a son with the biggest heart, and surrounded by people like each of you who care very deeply about our community.”

But she acknowledged there have been moments of self-doubt along the way. She offered encouragement to those who may be in the same position.

“Feelings of self-doubt are something shared by many professional women, particularly after they’ve accomplished more than they ever could imagine,” Evelyn said. “If you have feelings of self-doubt or question whether you belong, know that vulnerability does not make you weak, it makes you authentic. Your perseverance will get you over any obstacle, whether it is up here or out there.”