Holly Smithson has been tapped as the CEO of Athena, a professional development association centered on women in science and technology.

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Holly Smithson. Photo courtesy of Athena.

Smithson previously was the vice president of business strategy at the California Life Sciences Association, the nation’s largest life sciences advocacy organization. Prior to that, she was the president and chief operating officer of Cleantech San Diego.

“The culture and consciousness of professional women in the workforce today is under immense reexamination and Athena members are well poised to lead that national dialogue,” Smithson said.

Founded in 1998, Athena members are executives, entrepreneurs, educators and rising stars from life sciences, healthcare, defense, engineering and related industries, as well as associated service providers.