13th Annual Awards Gala & Fundraiser

saturday, october 15, 2022


Honorary Chair

Phyllis Newhouse

CEO, ShoulderUp Technology Acquisition Corp.
Founder & CEO, Xtreme Solutions, Inc.
CEO, Athena Technology Acquisition Corp

Gala Emcees

Melissa Burroughs, MD

Noninvasive Cardiologist
Wellstar Health System

Don Calloway

CEO and Founder
Kunye Infrastructure Partners

Diamond Sponsors


platinum Sponsor


Gold Sponsors


Silver Sponsors

walmart logo 2

bronze sponsors

TFKLogo_CircleBW_icon 2


astrazeneca 2
emory school of medicine
2023 NACE logo-regmark_300dpi
national+minority+quality+forum+H+(5) (1)
Regeneron-Logo-Sci to Med Pink tagline
Wellstar logo 2

media partners

black doctor

Phyllis Newhouse

Phyllis Newhouse is a serial entrepreneur and investor, retired military senior officer and mentor. She is CEO and Founder of ShoulderUp Technology Acquisition Corp, Founder and CEO of Xtreme Solutions, Inc. (XSI), CEO of Athena Technology Acquisition Corp. and Founder of ShoulderUp, a 501c3.

In 2021, she founded ShoulderUp Technology Acquisition Corp, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) led by industry veterans to carry out mergers, capital stock exchanges, asset acquisitions, stock purchases and reorganizations with one or more businesses in the technology and cybersecurity space. ShoulderUp Technology Acquisition Corp closed an upsized $300 million IPO in November 2021.

In 2020, she also co-founded Athena Technology Acquisition Corp. Athena closed a $250 million IPO in March 2021, making it the only SPAC listed on the NYSE with an African American female CEO. In July 2021, the company announced it was taking concentrated solar power company, Heliogen, public in a $2 billion merger.

Newhouse is also the Founder of ShoulderUp, a nonprofit she founded alongside Academy Award-winning actress Viola Davis. Dedicated to connecting and supporting women on their entrepreneurial journeys, ShoulderUp introduced ShoulderUp Ventures, the first women-founded and led influencer fund providing impact and exclusive access to a diverse portfolio of media, technology companies and sports entertainment. In 2019 alone its members and affiliates have invested over $10 million in companies like Lime, Rent the Runway and Airbnb

As a pioneer in cybersecurity and business, she is the first woman to win an Ernst & Young (EY) Entrepreneur Of The Year® award in the technology category. She was admitted into the 2013 class of EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women, and in 2019 was inducted into the Enterprising Women Hall of fame. Additionally, XSI received inclusion in the Inc. 5000 list in 2013 and 2014, and has been recognized as one of Women’s Presidents’ Organization’s (WPO) 50 Fastest Growing Women-Owned Companies in the U.S. consecutively for the past seven years.

Passionate about women-led businesses, Newhouse teaches aspiring entrepreneurs to recognize and capitalize on their leadership skills and empowers others to operate in greatness. She has been featured in Today, Entrepreneur, Inc., CNBC, Forbes, Yahoo Finance, Cheddar News, Bloomberg and more. She received her degree from John F. Kennedy University and currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia. For more information, please visit phyllisnewhouse.com.   

Melissa Burroughs, MD

Melissa Burroughs is a noninvasive cardiologist at Wellstar Health System   With a clinical emphasis on heart failure and inherited cardiomyopathies, Melissa also has expertise in global health, health inequality and environmental health.  She currently serves on the board of directors of the Association of Black Cardiologists and the board of Duke University Cooperative Cardiovascular Society.  Melissa is an active member of the American Heart Association, serving on the Scientific Sessions Programming Committee.  She is an advocate for environmental justice for communities of color and is on the Board of Scientific Counselors for the Environmental Protection Agency.  Melissa has conducted clinical research in the United States, Puerto Rico, Peru and Brazil and has co-authored 23 scientific publications.  She is an associate editor at the American Heart Journal.

Melissa has a passion for mentorship.  She has mentored college students, medical students, medical residents and cardiology fellows in clinical research and clinical medicine.  She also is committed to promoting innovation in health care, and has served as a medical advisor to Lantheus, Aeon Global Health Clinical Laboratory and Simple Health Kit.

Melissa was born in St. Louis, MO and raised in Atlanta, GA.  She graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Anthropology and Human Biology from Emory University.  Melissa graduated cum laude from Harvard Medical School.  She trained in internal medicine at the University of California, San Francisco and completed cardiovascular medicine training at Duke University where she also received a Master of Science in Global Health.

Don Calloway

Don Calloway is CEO and founder of Kunye Infrastructure Partners, an alternative investment firm focusing on municipal utility optimization. Don started Kunye Partners after a successful run in corporate America, including time in the C Suite at Enviva, the world’s largest biomass company, where he created and led a novel business unit focused on environmental justice, stakeholder value creation, and comprehensive equity in energy, agriculture, and commodities trading.

Prior to Enviva, In 2016, Don founded Pine Street Strategies, a public affairs firm at which he led the firm’s general congressional advocacy, and political campaign practices. Pine Street advised corporate, non-profit and political clients on congressional, regulatory, and political climates, while also managing political campaigns across the United States, specializing in electing America’s next generation of mayors. After five years of growing Pine Street into Washington’s most prominent lobbying firms, Don exited the firm in 2021. Prior to Pine Street, Don worked at Anheuser Busch InBev, where he led federal congressional and regulatory affairs in Washington D.C., including managing the congressional and public affairs aspects of the company’s 2015-1016 merger with SABMiller. Before leading A-B’s federal team, Don led A-B’s corporate agenda throughout 10 states, focusing on corporate tax reform efforts, labor and employment, and political affairs.

Prior to joining Anheuser Busch, Don was a member of the Missouri House of Representatives, where he represented 50,000 residents of St. Louis County including Ferguson from 2008-2010. During this period he was also a senior associate in the business litigation practice of Thompson Coburn LLP, where he was responsible for assisting in defense verdicts in federal and state matters for multiple corporate clients in products liability, medical malpractice, and commercial disputes.

In 2018, Don founded the National Voter Protection Action Fund, a 501c4 organization dedicated to fighting voter suppression and expanding ballot box access particularly in states with a history of intentional voter suppression activity. NVPAF continues to operate to support voter protection efforts in federal and state elections nationwide, and to promote equitable election policy.

Don continues to regularly advise elected leaders in the White House, United States Congress, and several states, in addition to senior government leaders around the world. Don is a graduate of Alabama A&M University and the Boston University School of Law, and is a frequent contributor to multiple cable news networks, and is available as a speaker on leadership and American politics to civic and corporate groups nationwide.

Virtual Event Bag

Click on the tabs below to download important information for

Virtual Event Bag

Click on the tabs below to download important information for
ABC COVID-19 FAQ Community Watch Collection

Virtual Event Bag

Click on the tabs below to download important information for
ABC COVID-19 FAQ Community Watch Collection