Daughters logoThe “Daughters of Greatness” breakfast series features prominent women engaged in social philanthropy, activism, and pursuits of justice. The stories and reflections they share are motivational to some people, transformative to others, and inspirational to all. The Ali Center periodically invites these local and international icons to share their stories with the Louisville community. The Daughters of Greatness series provides a place for dialogue and discussion on current issues of justice, community engagement, and social movements within the Louisville area and beyond.

Unless otherwise noted, the format includes a hot breakfast served at 8:30 a.m. followed by the program from 9:00-10:00 a.m. Seating is limited. Tickets are $20 for Ali Center Members, $25 for non-Members, $15 for students. Tables of 8 and 10 also available. For reservations or more information, contact Erin Herbert at eherbert@alicenter.org.

If you would like to nominate a Daughter of Greatness, please click here!


The Muhammad Ali Center invites individuals and organizations to support the Daughters of Greatness series by becoming 2019 Daughters of Greatness Breakfast Club members! As Table Sponsors, you will receive the entire 6-event series for the price of 5 events!

Additional benefits include:

  • A table reserved for every Daughters of Greatness event in 2019.
  • Free tickets to the Museum and discounts in the Ali Center retail store.
  • Public recognition of your organization at the event, in the Ali Center lobby, and on related materials.

Finally, your sponsorship of the Daughters of Greatness series will help steward the legacy of Muhammad Ali by providing the Muhammad Ali Center with resources to make a significant impact in education and gender equity issues on a local and national scale. If you are interested in becoming a Table Sponsor, please complete your Breakfast Club enrollment through our online portal by clicking here or by copying the following link in to your browser: 19291.blackbaudhosting.com/19291/Daughters-of-Greatness-2019-Breakfast-Club.

Thank you to our 2019 Daughters of Greatness Breakfast Club Table Sponsors: Dr. Alex Gerassimides, Attica Scott, State Representative, KY House District 41, Bellarmine University, Brown-Forman, Family Scholar House, Hyatt Regency Louisville, Mary Casey – KY Financial Group, Metro United Way, PNC Bank, and The Glenview Trust Company.

For more information, please contact Erin Herbert, eherbert@alicenter.org.


Dr. Neeli Bendapudi
Friday, June 7, 2019

Neeli Bendapudi is the 18th President of the University of Louisville. She received her Ph.D. in Marketing from the University of Kansas and has taught at The Ohio State University and Texas A&M University. She most recently served as Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor at the University of Kansas, where she had previously been Dean and H.D. Price Professor of Business at the KU School of Business. Professor Bendapudi specializes in the study of consumer behavior in service contexts. Her research deals with customers' willingness and ability to maintain long-term relationships with firms and with the brands and employees that represent them. Her research has been published in top tier journals including the Journal of Academic Medicine, Harvard Business Review, and Journal of Marketing, and featured by popular media outlets including the New York Times, CNBC, CNN, MSNBC, WebMD and Fox News Network. She has experience on public and private boards and served as EVP and Chief Customer Officer of Huntington National Bank. Her vision is to ensure that the University of Louisville a great place to learn, a great place to work, and a great place to invest, because it celebrates diversity, fosters equity, and strives to achieve inclusion.

For tickets, please call Morgan Szabo at 502.992.5312.


Captain Brenda Berkman
Friday, September 13, 2019

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Brenda Berkman retired on September 14, 2006 as a Captain in the New York City Fire Department after serving the City for twenty-five years.  She was assigned to firehouses in Manhattan and Brooklyn.  Capt. Berkman began her career in the fire service after winning the federal sex discrimination lawsuit she initiated that resulted in the hiring of New York City's first women firefighters.  The documentary Taking the Heat, which chronicles Berkman’s struggle to integrate women into the FDNY, aired on PBS in 2006. She has also been profiled in several books and numerous articles, such as Women You Should Know and  MAKERS.  In 1996-97, Capt. Berkman served as a White House Fellow, the first professional firefighter to be awarded this prestigious leadership development fellowship in the history of the program.  She has also led both local and national women firefighters’ organizations.

Berkman has a BA summa cum laude from St. Olaf College, an MA in American History from Indiana University, a JD from New York University and a MS in Fire Protection Management from the City University of New York. She is a graduate of the National Fire Academy’s Executive Fire Officer program.

Since retirement from the FDNY, Capt. Berkman’s passions have shifted to printmaking and volunteer work.  She volunteers as a walking tour guide at the Tribute Center in New York City to honor her friends and colleagues who were lost on 9-11, and to help educate visitors.


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