UNF faculty member named woman of influence

Danae Leake

Janet Owen
Janet Owen

The Jacksonville Business Journal is naming a UNF faculty member a “Woman of Influence.” Janet Owen, the Vice President of Governmental Affairs, said she was very surprised to receive the award.

“I’ll be honest–I looked around for any candid cameras. I just didn’t believe it at first and thought it was fantastic. It’s a huge honor,” Owen said.

Owen started her career at UNF as one of the first associates of the General Counsel in 1994, which was run by then-Vice President Karen Stone. “We were two women who came together to work on the legal issues of the university and I was having a blast,” said Owen.

Four years later, she filled in as the lobbyist for the university during a time when Florida was experiencing a trailblazing constitutional amendment. Its passing led to the establishment of UNF’s Board of Trustees, Owen said. Having this layer, according to Owen, better represents the local needs of the University.

Having a degree in law from Stetson University prepped Owen for the work to come in the state legislature.

Since her first day in the position, she has been involved in significant accomplishments for the University.  

In addition to her work within the University, Owen also chairs for Cathedral Arts Project.

 Scenes from the 2015 Jacksonville Business Journal's Women of Influence Event. Photo courtesy of the Jacksonville Business Journal

Scenes from the 2015 Jacksonville Business Journal’s Women of Influence Event. Photo courtesy of the Jacksonville Business Journal

The Jacksonville Business Journal (JBJ) established “Women of Influence” 13-years-ago, as a way to recognize women in Jacksonville community.

“This award is designed to recognize the women who have helped shape Jacksonville’s business community and the region overall through their involvement in businesses, nonprofits and the public sector,” JBJ Editor-in-Chief Timothy Gibbons wrote in an email. “The First Coast has a number of women who have been influential in a myriad of ways, and the Business Journal thought it appropriate to recognize their contributions to our area.”

Owen was selected out of a record number of nominees–over 100 of them, Gibbons said.

“Her work […] has an impact both on the cultural scene in Jacksonville as well as the development of Downtown,” said Gibbons. “She’s been a major player in shaping the future of the University of North Florida as well as the entire Florida university system.”
Owen is one of three women from the UNF community who have been honored for this award. The award ceremony is Aug. 24, at the Renaissance World Golf Village Resort. Order tickets here, if interested in attending.

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