The Buncombe County Schools Foundation and the Asheville Chamber's WomanUP program will focus on supporting and inspiring our community's business women. This year, the Chamber and BCSF will present Christine Mann Darden, retired NASA engineer and analyst and one of NASA's "human computers" as portrayed in the recent book Hidden Figures. She will be interviewed by Dr. Darin Waters, assistant professor of history at UNC Asheville.

Our keynote speaker, Troylyn Ball, is the founder and owner of Asheville Distilling Company and the maker of award-winning Troy & Sons Whiskey. She will share her story of overcoming personal and financial hardship and finding success through a strong dose of entrepreneurial spirit and perseverance.

 Join us at Crowne Plaza Resort's Expo Center on Tuesday, November 28, 8:00 a.m. until 11:00 am. Breakfast will be provided by Celine & Company "On Broadway". Breakfast & networking will take place at 8:00 a.m. with the program beginning at 8:30 am.  Awards for woman leaders in Asheville will be presented.


  • Woman Nonprofit Leader of the Year Award, presented by TD Bank

    Woman Executive of the Year Award, presented by Mission Health

  • Women Entrepreneurs, Best in Business Award, presented by Webb Investments, Inc.

About Dr. Christine Darden

After nearly 40 years of service, Dr. Darden retired as a member of The Senior Executive Service in March 20007 from NASA Langley Research Center, where she was hired in 1967 as a Computer/Data Analyst in the Re-Entry Physics Branch. During her NASA career, Darden authored more than 57 technical papers and articles and has been recognized with dozens of awards and honors -- including two NASA medals -- one for her work and leadership of the Sonic Boom Program, and the other for her active involvement in working with and encouraging students to pursue careers in Math and Science. In addition, she received the Black Engineer of the Year Outstanding Achievement in Government Award and the Women in Science & Engineering Lifetime Achievement Award.

About Troylyn Ball

Troylyn Ball is the first woman ever licensed to legally distill hard liquor in North Carolina, and the first woman in America to found a whiskey distillery in modern times. Troy is a wife, mother, author, artist, entrepreneur and more. Her story is captivating the nation in her newly released book, Pure Heart: A Spirited Tale of Grace, Grit, and Whiskey. Her tale of perseverance to save her family from financial ruin while caring for her two developmentally challenged, special needs children is a lesson in faith and ingenuity. This "Moonshine Mama" (as she's called) is as down-home as her whiskey and will capture your heart.

To purchase your tickets,  click on the link below: