We salute all women making great strides in their respective fields and who call Summerlin home. Read on to be inspired!
Irena Sullivan, manager for Moet Hennessey, the wine and spirits division of the prestigious LVMH group, was recently recognized by her company CEO with the “Over and Above” award. Irena, who has called Summerlin home for more than a decade, loves working for a brand that challenges her every day. She manages on-premise accounts for Moet Hennessey’s portfolio of brands, developing activations and experiences that showcase the brands at key hotel and resorts throughout Las Vegas. She and husband, James, are proud parents to two daughters, Gabby and Isla, and the family takes advantage of all the fun events at Downtown Summerlin, City National Arena and Las Vegas Ballpark. Irena’s advice to women everywhere? “Take on new challenges even if you’re not ready. When I started at Moet Hennessey, I knew nothing about the liquor industry. But today, I couldn’t imagine doing anything else!”
Freelance writer and editor Emmy Kasten came to Summerlin in 2016 from California via her husband’s job transfer. She and her family, which includes husband, Todd, and kids, Alix and Ian, consider Summerlin the best move they’ve ever made. As a former editor-in-chief of VEGAS magazine, she had the privilege of shining the spotlight on the coolest people, places and things in town. Today, as a freelance writer and editor, she is still showcasing all that’s hip and hot about our amazing city. She is most proud of her work as the founder of Little Black Dress, a fashion event that she produced in cities around the world to raise funds for charity. The event has been featured in WWD, Elle, New York Post, CNN, BBC and more. Emmy’s advice to women of all ages? “Enjoy the ride, take risks and learn from the haters!”
Melissa Kaiser, CEO of DISCOVERY Children’s Museum, moved to Summerlin in 2017 when her husband, Roy, became Artistic Director of Nevada Ballet Theatre. Both Melissa and Roy held top positions with arts organizations in Philadelphia, so it’s no surprise that today, they are also considered a cultural arts powerhouse in Las Vegas. Since moving here, Melissa has become an avid desert hiker, adventure seeker and landscape photographer, taking advantage of Summerlin’s proximity to unparalleled natural beauty. She is most proud of the work the DISCOVERY Children’s Museum has accomplished around access and inclusivity for all children in our community, becoming the first Museum in Nevada to offer reduced admission to families on public assistance and foster care families through the Museums for All program. Melissa’s advice to women: “Stay true to your passion and know your strengths, even if you are unsure about how these things will translate into your career.”
Kasha Mackelprang, vice president and assistant general manager for Red Rock Resort, has been with the property since 2011 where she first started as director of catering. Fiercely passionate about hospitality, Kasha loves everything about the Station Casinos brand and its amazing team of 2500 employees. She began her career at the Venetian on the Strip, moving 11 years ago to Summerlin where she loves being close to Red Rock Canyon given that hiking is her favorite hobby and pastime. She is most proud of producing incredible, once-in-a-lifetime events that commemorate momentous occasions in life, from weddings and birthdays to anniversaries and more. Kasha’s advice to women? “RBG said it best – ‘women belong in all places where decisions are being made.’ Tirelessly work toward finding a seat at all tables and ensure a women’s perspective is heard and included.”
Mackenzie Warren, attorney and vice president, McDonald Carano, grew up in Green Valley and migrated in 2011 to Summerlin – or “the island” as she lovingly refers to the community – after accepting a job as a TV reporter on News 3 – KSNV. Settling in the Vistas, first in an apartment, and now as first-time homeowner in Stonebridge, she wouldn’t trade her Summerlin locale for anything. She loves the proximity to DTS, her favorite workout spots, Red Rock Country Club, and the killer neighborhood trails where she and fiancé, Rory, walk their spunky chocolate lab, Marvin. After her stint as a news anchor and investigative reporter at KSNV, Mackenzie pivoted to law school, graduating from the William S. Boyd School of Law at UNLV. Mackenzie is a relentless advocate for her legal and government affairs clients and appreciates Las Vegas’ small town connectivity that makes it all happen.
Pat Medeiros, active adult resident at Trilogy by Shea Homes, is living her best life in Summerlin! When Pat moved to Trilogy in 2018 to be closer to children and grandchildren, she had one of those “ah-ha” moments. While she could easily get down on the floor to play with her grandkids, getting up unassisted was another story. So, Pat took matters into her own hands, and with the help of Trilogy’s Wellness Coordinator, Michele Chovan-Taylor, Pat started walking – literally taking the first step toward a new life. Today, Pat is 30 pounds lighter and can easily walk three to four miles at a time at a brisk pace! Pat has even started to go to the gym to take Zumba and strength classes, something she never imagined would be possible. Pat’s advice to women of all ages: “Just do it! Take the first step toward a happier and healthier life!”