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Lieberman '80 Delivers Message of Empowerment to Athletes and Community Leaders

Former Old Dominion University basketball star Nancy Lieberman '80 delivered a message of empowerment to community leaders, student athletes and staff at the first-ever Women's Empowerment Breakfast Friday, Oct. 22 at the Barry M. Kornblau Alumni Center.

The breakfast, which was co-hosted ODU First Lady Kate Broderick and Dana Allen, assistant vice-president of alumni relations, gave Lieberman the opportunity to discuss her ODU and post-college career as one of the most recognized women's basketball players in history.

Weaving stories from her personal life, she told the group how fortunate she's been, and how people like her friend Muhammad Ali have inspired her never to accept limits. Describing the group's shared connection as a "sisterhood," Lieberman challenged the women at the breakfast to work together for a shared goal.

"We need to empower each other. We must support each other, help each other out and be generous," said Liberman. "We have a story to tell. We have a connection to make. We have a university to promote . . . Greatness is within all of you."

Maeghan Pardy, a sophomore member of the varsity rowing team from Brockville, Ont., said it was inspiring to hear Lieberman speak. "She was absolutely amazing. It makes you think about how you're living your life. I want to be like her someday," she said.

The message resonated with Pardy, who's already taken some of Lieberman's advice to heart, reaching out to the "sisterhood" of teammates on the rowing squad. "I love that on a team like ours, we may not be best friends, but we all have each other's back. I love it here now. I love my classes, I love my school, and I love my teammates."

The gathering also featured local community leaders and offered an opportunity for students to network. Teresa Peters, president of Stanton Partners, a local commercial real estate investment firm, said it was inspiring for her to see so many motivated young women.

Asked to give them some advice, Peters told students to enjoy the work they are doing and to be the best they can be. "Don't think your education finishes when you get your degree. You're always going to be working in some fashion. It's never-ending, but it's totally worth it," she concluded.

This article was posted on: October 22, 2010

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