Women of the Year 2023 Honorees Part 5

They are educators, mentors, nurses, physicians, fundraisers, entrepreneurs, and individuals who stand up for others. But most of all they are leaders who help keep our community strong. Orlando magazine is proud to honor the 23 individuals featured on the following pages as Women of the Year.
Heather Hoytink and Chelsea Mendes

Heather Hoytink and Chelsea Mendes

Photo By: Roberto Gonzalez


Heather Hoytink

President | PepsiCo, South Division

As the first female division president at PepsiCo Beverages North America, Heather Hoytink helps create a healthy culture in which her 15,000 employees can thrive while “contributing to the local communities where our consumers, partners and employees work, live and play,” she says.

According to her nomination, the wife and mother of teenage twins “has a passion for building diverse teams, empowering women in the workplace, and fostering community connections.”

Her division helped launch PepsiCo’s national One Smile at a Time community volunteerism initiative. The campaign “has now helped hundreds of local communities by bringing together PepsiCo teams across the company to maximize volunteer efforts,” Hoytink says.

In addition, the 17-year PepsiCo veteran helped create the company’s Returnship program to ease women back into the workforce after years of caregiving.

Hoytink credits her father with teaching her perseverance. “I am passionate about creating equitable working environments, and this position helps me create just that while also showing other women within the organization that with hard work and dedication, they can accomplish great things too.”

Chelsea Mendes

Student and Leader | Dr. Phillips High School

Chelsea Mendes has wasted no time in making a name for herself. The dual-enrolled senior maintains her 4.9 GPA while hosting a mental health podcast, logging more than 1,000 community service hours, being named a Bank of America student leader in 2022, and being chosen by former First Lady Michelle Obama to attend the BLACK GIRLS ROCK! conference. Inspired by her parents with her focus on the future, Mendes lays claim to being the youngest chairwoman of the Ocoee Youth Council as well as the youngest person ever to serve on the Child Neurology Foundation’s Transition Project Advisory Committee. She also raised $1,000 for her school’s Center for International Studies. In addition, she hosts the podcast “A Mental Health Break Down,” which she says “breaks down current events and the stigma surrounding mental illness through a lens of healing and opportunity.” The future international business law major says her greatest moment so far has been “shaking hands with [Supreme Court] Justice Sonia Sotomayor and standing beside [retired judge] the Hon. Ann Claire Williams.”

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