Amy Billinger | YWCA Women of Excellence
Upon graduation from Washburn University, Amy lived in Russia for a year where she taught English through Rotary International. After returning to the U.S. she attended the University of Michigan School of Information and then worked as a Russian linguist for the U.S. Department of Defense before joining the National Guard where she has served for almost seven years and holds the rank of Staff Sergeant. Amy worked at the Kansas Intelligence Fusion Center as the Lead Cyber Integration Analyst before founding Anneal Initiative,a veteran-owned, woman-owned small business, with her business partners. Amy is Kansas native and an exemplary model of an empowered woman.
TK: What inspires you?
AMY: People who sacrifice and take risks to challenge the status quo and fight injustices.
The outdoors, not only is it just plain fun to be outside, the wilderness reminds me of the frontier America once was, and inspires me to treat all of life like it’s a frontier. It inspires me to keep on working to build, grow, and shape our country as much as if it was still a frontier, be it through ways like venturing out to build a business, effectively leading organizations, or simply always trying to learn new things
TK: What advice do you have for others?
AMY: The value of your ideas is not based on your rank or position.
Don’t assume others know more than you, that can keep good ideas from being shared and problems to go unaddressed and unquestioned.
TK: What is the greatest lesson you have learned on your journey?
AMY: Trust yourself, listen to your gut, and dig deep to find the courage to address problems. Even if you can’t fix everything, you can look yourself in the mirror knowing you did not ignore problems that became bigger issues for other people and you can rest easy knowing you always did the right thing.
The YWCA is on a mission to empower women at all stages in their careers. Diversity in leadership is particularly vital to our vibrant business community in the Greater Topeka Area.
The YWCA is celebrating 31 years of recognizing Women of Excellence in our community with the theme “Dare to be Powerful.” We dare to be powerful, despite whatever obstacles may present themselves along the way.
“When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.”
- Audre Lorde