Each year, our Pleiades Award honors an individual who has shown exceptional support in advancing the leadership role of women in the optical industry. This award is named after the star cluster "The Pleiades" in the constellation of Taurus. "The Pleiades" is also known as the "Seven Sisters" - referring to the seven brightest stars in the cluster.
According to Greek mythology, each star was named after the seven daughters of Atlas who were turned into stars by Zeus. Together these stars create one of the brightest clusters visible in the northern hemisphere, just as by working together, the women of the OWA have created an organization that is bigger and brighter than the sum of their individual efforts.
Ashley Mills leads The Vision Council, the industry's association for optical suppliers, manufacturers and retailers. In this role, she works to elevate awareness of the importance of vision to the public, and is deeply committed to cultivating strong, effective partnerships throughout the optical arena and in adjacent sectors. She brings over 20 years of progressive communications, philanthropy and leadership experience to The Vision Council after working at global agencies including Weber Shandwick and Hill & Knowlton, as well as major trade associations including the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation and the Council on Foundations. After serving as The Vision Council's director of marketing & shows from 2003-2006, Ashley returned to The Vision Council in January 2016 to lead The Vision Council's Vision Expo shows and later assumed the role of chief executive officer.
Ashley co-chairs the Optical Women's Association Digital Marketing Committee. A frequent speaker, Ashley has appeared on Executive Leader Radio and was recognized as one of Vision Monday's "Most Influential Women in Optical" for 2017.