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WDM Janie Clark President - Castle Services of Ithaca LLC (Castle Cleaning Company) February 2016 Victoria Rogers Wedding Venue Events Owner Operator - La Bella Vue Event Center features WDM 4 12 20 38 48 President - Castle Services of Ithaca LLC (Castle Cleaning Company) Ithaca NY Beauty - Salon and Spa President Chief Executive Officer of Changes City Spa Norfolk VA Janie Clark Norma J. Dorey Brenda Oliver Leadership and Performance Management Training Coaching Speaking and Consulting President of Oliver Leadership Inc. Certified Coach Practitioner Author Winnipeg Manitoba Canada Fashion and Apparel Apparel Sewing Machine Operator at Peckham Mount Morris MI Francine Lakeisha Houston Healthcare Education and Training Electronic Medical Records Training Director - Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center Winston-Salem NC Dr. Wakeena S. Nolan Janie Clark President - Castle Services of Ithaca LLC (Castle Cleaning Company) Ithaca NY fter years of experience in various businesses Janie Clark made the decision to open a company that would provide service to a large professional community in Ithaca NY (the home of Cornell University and Ithaca College) in 2003. In the early years Castle Cleaning Company policy and standards were set daily as Janie laid the ground work for what would become a very reputable upscale residential cleaning company in a wealthy resort city near her hometown in the Finger Lakes Region of Upstate New York. Ithaca is a beautiful city with numerous state parks and waterfalls. Settling around Cayuga Lake it is home to more millionaires per capita than New York City. Cornell University alumni return after retirement to live in its comfortable economic environment. A Instead I made a life changing phone call to my brother who s been a business owner now for over 10 years. His words still echo in my ears Just stay with it. This was something that I liked to do so I stayed with it . You should always like what you do. Don t let the bumps in the road along the way steal your passion. She now has a large canvas wall hanging in her office that reads Happ-i-ness (noun) Definition Liking what you do. Liking what I do and the people I do it for has become my personal policy. If I find myself feeling any different I make a change. In her free time Janie enjoys reading gardening and hanging out with her kids and their families. My son David Clark is an amazing musician who plays multiple instruments received free tuition to Ithaca College s summer camps through his high school was accepted to the Berklee College of Music in Boston and is currently a manager for Verizon Diamond Wireless. He and his wife Doreen a loan servicer at Cornell Federal Credit Union have my 3-year-old grandson Keagan Michael Clark. And my daughter Beth Seymour is a first year medical student and looking forward to a career in women s health. She is also planning to marry her sweetheart Kyle Davenport. She also enjoys dinner with her parents each week and has a new love in her life whose job is to travel driving tour buses for music groups. I follow his schedule taking us from coast to coast visiting most major cities. Janie would like to be remembered as a respected qualityminded individual who positively influenced others both personally and professionally. This produces a high demand for professional services to area business owners like me who have raised the bar by maintaining trusted quality service and commitment to our customers. At Castle Cleaning Company we know what it takes to make a house feel like a home with a respected and professional look that you ll feel good about. All functional areas such as the kitchen bathrooms ceilings and floors receive specialized cleaning. We ve tailored cleaning methods for each type of material including wood glass and ceramics. Janie is President of Castle Cleaning Company by title but she still wears many hats while the company grows daily. I am the CEO and marketing executive but I also handle much of the operations management and training as well as the account management for one-on-one meetings with my customers. Her greatest professional inspiration came from her mother having opened an insurance brokerage and real estate agency while Janie was in high school. Growing up in a family owned business taught me skills that could be applied to any business. My brother and I are now successful business owners. However Janie admits that she nearly threw in the towel after her third year to return to a comfy desk job . 5 Women of Distinction Q&A Q Why did you start your own business A I wanted to be able to manage my own income potential and work schedule. Q Why did you choose your industry A Financial planning and budgeting are two of my greatest strengths. I chose an industry where I enjoyed the type of work but also one with high demand and low overhead. Q What advice would you give to someone considering starting a business A Most business owners will share their experience with you to help you along your way so ask them and save yourself time. Victory rests with many advisors says the old Jewish proverb. You ll never know too much about what you need to do and the decisions are yours to make. Q What is your favorite thing about working for yourself A I love the time management and income potential. Q What is your least favorite thing A I don t like taking work home with me. Q How would you define good leadership A Servanthood this is an old term but it still sums up what people will respect and follow. Q Did you choose mentors along the way A Absolutely. Mentors come in all shapes and sizes and will give you keys to success to meet your goals and inspire you to greater things along the way. When you ve outgrown one another will come along that can lead you to the next mile. Q What key advice have you received that helped you A Stay with it. You need a business plan. You need to read the book. Q What makes serving high profile clients different than serving average clients A Extravagant homes and lifestyles can be quite interesting and also quite challenging. I have Olympic athletes on my schedule world-renowned scientists and extraordinary and successful business owners or inventors. The truth is however that the extraordinary are among the ordinary. In most ways they re just like anyone else. Q What are your business goals for the next five years A I want to continue to build my company at a slow steady pace hiring qualified team members and eventually work myself out of a job. 6 Women of Distinction Allyson V. Chryst Hotel Lodging - Bed and Breakfast with Onsite Tearoom Sole Proprietor of The Maid s Quarters Bed Breakfast and Tearoom Pottsville PA 7 Women of Distinction Success is no accident. It is hard work perseverance learning studying sacrifice and most of all love for what you are doing. B). A But since Allyson is a very persistent person she was determined to be a part of these events even if it meant just making a cookie tray to have out at a reception with business cards for people to take. Just getting my name out there was a win in my mind but now that I ve been in business for over four years the downtown associations and chamber of commerce recognize me and associate my name with the business and vice versa. I believe that if it were not for my persistence this would ve been much harder to accomplish. The Maid s Quarters has three rooms for lodging as well as an onsite tearoom which can hold up to 25 people for smaller gatherings. Allyson does everything herself with no employees and is responsible for the overall management of the B & B. She manages the kitchen inventory and household inventory for the rooms as well as the financials marketing and advertising for the business. Allyson also handles all guest reservations check-ins outs and everything in between all while doing all the cooking and baking and maintaining the cleanliness of the rooms and common area. She even hosts a three-course brunch on the second Sunday of each month. In an effort to enhance her business Allyson is on the Board of Directors for the Schuylkill County Visitors Bureau and is a member of The Pottsville Business Association and the Schuylkill County Chamber of Commerce. llyson V. Chryst is a true example of success. At 25-years-old she made her long-time dream come true when she purchased a bed and breakfast (B & Her journey began at Lehigh Carbon Community College where Allyson earned her Associate of Applied Science in Business Management. During her last semester she had to take an internship consisting of 300 service hours (or 20 hours a week). I was persistent on taking this internship at a local bed and breakfast in Bethlehem PA since I had never been in one. My internship was from January 2007 to April 2007 and then the owners hired me as a full-time innkeeper (assistant to the owners). She continued to work at that bed and breakfast until June 2010 before moving on to a smaller bed and breakfast. While the first B & B had 22 rooms the second one had six. I felt that I needed to have the overall experience of an innkeeper who runs the B & B solo if I wanted to have my own. Allyson was with the second B & B until March 2011 when the opportunity to move and take over her own B & B in Pottsville PA arose which she renamed The Maid s Quarters Bed Breakfast and Tearoom in April 2011. However funding was a challenge for Allyson. As a 25-yearold Caucasian female no small business organization would give her funding or assistance. She was completely on her own with the exception of her support system. My family has been my rock from day one. I ve always been a self-disciplined person with goals and have done what I needed to do to accomplish them. When I told my family what I was doing they were literally speechless. I was actually kind of surprised at their reactions when I told them about this exciting new journey I was about to embark on. Later I came to find out they were just nervous and worried for me two things I ve never been. According to my father I m the risk taker of the family. Needless to say they ve all been here for me supporting me all the way. Her location proved to be a major challenge as well. I m located in town but on the south end. The street that intersects with my street is the marker for where the businesses stop and I m on the other side of the intersection. I m left out of a lot of events held in town as I m beyond that marker. While I don t get to attend as many meetings as I d like to I m still able and willing to communicate via e-mail and participate in the numerous events held throughout the year. Pottsville is located in Schuylkill Country which is an outdoor recreation county. The organizations and downtown businesses work together to keep Pottsville looking pretty as well as create and host numerous events throughout the year in hopes to drive more traffic through our city while bringing out the history and culture of the area. Allyson doesn t have much free time as a sole proprietor but spends any free time she has with her family. She also enjoys being active whether at the gym or outside at the beach but a good old rainy day watching a good movie or experimenting in the kitchen works for her as well. She wants to be remembered for being a passionate and caring person the kindness and devotion she puts into life (personally and professionally) and the hospitality and memories she has provided. Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life. Confucius 8 Women of Distinction Q&A Q How do your guests find you A People travel by the internet these days. I am listed on numerous lodging booking sites online so the more places people can find my business the more often my business pops up on an online search. I would say that more than half of all reservations come through the internet. Q This is a bigger city than we expected how big is it A Pottsville is not a huge city (population of roughly 15 000 people with an area of 4.2 miles) however it is the only city in the county it resides in. Schuylkill County has roughly 147 000 people with an area of 778 miles (according to the 2013 census). Q What brings people to Pottsville A Pottsville is part of Schuylkill County which is an outdoor recreation county. There are many state parks and hiking trails as well as nature activities that bring people into town. However I have had guests come in for all sorts of reasons (other than outdoor recreation) like family functions such as reunions funerals weddings graduations birthdays and anniversaries and history genealogy cultural exhibits business leisure or just traveling through. Q What is the most popular attraction A One of the most popular reasons to come to Pottsville is the Yuengling Brewery the oldest American-run brewery. The brewery is located only six blocks (walking distance) from the B & B and offers free tours and a tasting to the public. Q What is the most interesting reason someone has stayed with you A One of the most unique things that has brought guests to Pottsville is fossil hunting. Unique right I did not even know people went fossil hunting. Our area apparently has a very unique fossil the white fern fossil because of it being in the coal region. Q Is there a major industry in Pottsville and what is it A Pottsville used to be a coal mining town but now there is not one industry that provides jobs. It is a little bit of a mixture such as hospitals warehouses local banks and small businesses. Q What is the furthest place you have had a guest from A In four and a half years of operation I have had guests from 40 of the 50 states and 15 different countries with the farthest place being New Zealand. 9 Women of Distinction Nicole Wickens General Contractor in Commercial Construction specializing in Theme Parks Hospitality Restaurant Retail Night Club and Mixed Use Facilities Owner and Chief Executive Officer of Validus Construction Services LLC Orlando FL I I want my story to tell young women that no matter what your circumstances are with hard work and dedication you can chase your dream and create your own destiny. t took years of hard work and dedication but Nicole Wickens is now the owner and CEO of Validus Construction Services LLC. She also enjoys the journey of bringing life to a new or remodeled build and the chronic challenges and opportunities that come with it as well as the ever-changing dynamics of each individual project. I rarely build the same thing twice and I love that. Her biggest supporter has been her husband of eight years Vance. They have three children between them. Taryn is their 26-year-old daughter who lives in Las Vegas and works in digital media. Vance also has two children in Las Vegas Kayla is his 22-year-old daughter and works in the accounting department for a large grocery chain and Quinton is his 18-year-old son and is headed to college soon. Nicole got her start in 1995 building structures in the convention center industry. Her love for construction expanded into the commercial sector building permanent structures for convention center clients all over the country. My career grew by leaps and bounds when I changed from convention center clients to working for a commercial general contractor in Las Vegas. That s when the passion turned into borderline addiction. After constructing my first commercial building I was hooked and never looked back Today as the CEO of her own company Nicole is responsible for business development take-off blueprint estimating for new projects personnel overall company function and welfare as well as project process and financial management. We also have two fur babies (dogs) Porkchop and Applesauce who keep our empty nest full of unexpected moments of laughter. Nicole has conquered an immense amount of adversity in her life but the one thing that has kept her going was that the fear of a challenge was not going to conquer her. I enjoy the relationships I foster with others in the construction community and the mentorship I provide to my employees. I challenge my staff as much as I challenge myself to learn and grow and be the best me that I can be today. Nicole is a trailblazer for female business owners in the construction field fueled by a passion for her clients vision where she thrives on making dreams a reality while looking out for their best interest. 10 I never let fear direct me instead fear gives me personal drive. I have always loved the story of Thomas Edison. Edison never admitted that he had 10 000 failures but instead described that he established 10 000 ways not to make a light bulb. I believe that each one of us as individuals has the ability to rise above adversity and be as successful as we want to be. I want the world to remember who I was as a professional in construction not for how I earn my income but for the strength and perseverance it took me to continually choose it. Q&A Q What makes you different from your competitors A We are the only general contractor in the State of Florida that is certified and backed by OSHA allowing us to pass insurance savings on to our clients due to lower overhead costs. Q What made you choose construction A You might say I love the challenge of building the ultimate Rubix cube. Solving the puzzle results in something beautiful that the world gets to enjoy for decades. Q What marketing tools do you use A Our marketing is all word of mouth. We want people to talk and we want clients to share their personal experience. What better way to market yourself than recommending that new clients get feedback from past clients. It s an honest way to market. Q What is the most important key to success in construction A People Our employees are the front line. They deal with our clients on a daily basis allowing them to be the overall face of the company. It s important to choose people who are likeminded and have a drive for honesty and integrity. Q Do you think minority or women-owned certifications are important A Absolutely. Getting certified put us in a class of our own allowing for opportunities that smaller companies may not have been able to participate in. I m proud to be 100% womenowned and worked hard to have that distinction. Q What does Validus mean A We get this question a lot. Validus is the feminine Latin term for strength and that s exactly what it takes and what we continue to be each day for our clients. Q Why did you decide to open your own company A This is a great question. I worked in the industry for decades and continually saw a side I was never comfortable with. The level of service was lacking and there was an appearance that service was always on the back burner. I disagreed and always made service an important key to helping my clients. I also saw that women as strong as we are were severely underrepresented. I want to be proof that we shouldn t be. Q What motivation do you try to give your employees A I encourage my employees to reach high. I have a saying that s written in our conference room Never think the sky s the limit when there are footprints on the moon. I m always guiding participating and nurturing my team. I want them to have a sense of ownership to know that the impact they have is bigger than them. I encourage honesty and professional integrity explaining to them that s what makes us different. Q What is your annual revenue A Validus currently earns about 15-17 million dollars annually. That number continues to increase exponentially. We had a revenue increase from 2013 to 2014 of over 55%. For a young company we have been very blessed starting our first year with 600 000 in contracts and clearing 10 million our second year. 11 Women of Distinction Norma J. Dorey Beauty - Salon and Spa President Chief Executive Officer of Changes City Spa 12 Norfolk VA Women of Distinction I t took one haircut for Norma J. Dorey to find her career path. The joy and pleasure she could receive from helping others look and feel good inspired her to go into the beauty industry in the mid-1970s. Earning an income doing something she enjoyed was something that Norma couldn t pass up so she enrolled in cosmetology school the next day and changed her life forever. After graduating in 1976 Norma went on to open Changes which started out as a children s salon but evolved into a full-service hair salon serving the needs of the entire family. In 2001 Changes celebrated the addition of City Spa which offers guests an hourly retreat or a daycation . As President CEO Norma oversees all operations of the business stays connected with other business leaders in her community and serves on the boards of local organizations. More importantly aside from ensuring that guests are cared for in a first-class manner Norma also treats her staff to first-class training exploring the strengths in her employees and placing them in the proper position within the company so they can achieve the highest accomplishments for themselves and the company as a whole. Some have trained globally while others have the global experience brought to them. By partnering with manufacturers and distributors Changes provides in-house education and training from the world s best artists including Vidal Sassoon Bumble and bumble Davines Wella and Rhonda Allison. I believe that you re never done getting better. During her 30 year career in the beauty industry Norma has been responsible for the growth and training of a generation of technicians. Through its partnership with the State of Virginia Changes offers an apprenticeship program that includes free instruction and paid training to employees who wish to pursue a career in cosmetology. I love helping others pursue this career path by sharing my knowledge along the way so they grow and become something great. Robin Sharma said Leadership means helping people become more than they would ve become on their own. This has inspired me to become a leader for many individuals. Changes is my vehicle for providing opportunities to others. The strong women in Norma s past have given her guidance direction and the courage to sustain in this very competitive every-changing profession. She has also emulated many successful small business owners and entrepreneurs. I was the president of the local business association for three years. This involvement has allowed me to meet and befriend many different people and empowered me as a business person. It has also made Changes City Spa a cornerstone in the local community. All businesses have to think local not just about their industry. Norma has a son a daughter and a grandson (who she loves to spend time with) and will soon be marrying her high school sweetheart after 40 years. My daughter is employed by Davines an Italian hair care company. And my son and daughter-in-law operate our men s spa. She is proud to be a part of two generations of beauty professionals and has an unwavering commitment to the industry and to the people who work for her. I strive for them to be the most that they can be. That s why it s important that they continue their education in their chosen field. And that s why I only partner with vendors who can bring world-class education and training to my team. The beauty industry is just a beautiful industry. It has so much to offer and you can never stop growing. I grow people for a living. Norma would like to be remembered for enhancing her profession by adding to and giving back through the training and advanced education that she s provided. Love what you do and you ll never have to work another day in your life. I haven t worked for the last 35 years. Q&A Q What was your inspiration to get into the business A I love serving and helping people grow. I have the natural character traits of a leader and with time it has all evolved to three locations and almost 100 employees. Q What have been your most memorable moments in your 32 years of business A My most memorable moments were being awarded the Small Business of the Year award by the City of Norfolk Virginia and serving on my local Towne Bank s Board of Directors. Q What sets your company apart from others in your industry A The guest experience we want each guest to leave feeling like they received more than they came in for. Q How do you decide on the product lines you carry A It s all based on support from the particular manufacturer. I expect manufacturers to provide my staff with product knowledge and technical training. Q What is the key to your success A Persistence breaks resistance. Anything can be accomplished through hard work determination and commitment. Be consistent and never shy away from adversity. I am loyal to my staff community and guests. Q Who have been your mentors and what have they taught you A Margaret Hicks my beauty school owner and instructor taught me Fake it til you make it. And Bob Aston the CEO of Towne Bank reinforced that my people are my biggest asset and taking care of them must be my first priority. Q What advice would you give to an entrepreneur starting a business A Have a solid plan and know your target market. Don t be afraid of change. Surround yourself with positive people and never lower your standards. Q What legacy do you want to leave behind A I was a great mom and Nana. I had a big heart and was committed to my family and industry. I loved growing people. Q What is something that very few people know about you A I am part Native American. I recently discovered that my dad was Monacan Indian. 14 Women of Distinction City Spa - Who we are... From very humble beginnings Changes Hairstyling and City Spa have enjoyed an amazing 30 years thanks to loyal guests and community support. Changes evolved from a children s salon to a full service hair salon serving the needs of the entire family. In 2001 Changes celebrated the addition of City Spa which offers guests an hourly retreat or a daycation. Not only does Changes care for its guests in a first-class manner Changes staff are treated to first-class training. Some have trained globally while others have the global experience brought to them. By partnering with manufacturers and distributors Changes provides in-house education and training from the world s best artists--Vidal Sassoon Bumble bumble Davines Wella and Rhonda Allison. You are never done getting better says Changes owner Norma Dorey. During her 30 -year career in the beauty industry Norma has been responsible for the growth and training of a generation of technicians. Through its partnership with state of Virginia Changes offers an apprenticeship program which includes free instruction and paid training to employees who wish to pursue a cosmetology career. Committed to our local community... Changes commitment to the community has never wavered even during sluggish economic times. Changes is a strong supporter of local school fundraisers the arts community and various local charities. In 2014 we gave over 8 000 to local charities. In addition each year Changes Hairstyling and City Spa partner with local businesses to host fashion shows to benefit Hope House Foundation food drives for The Food Bank and toy drives for Edmarc Hospice for Children. Thanks to loyal guests Changes is a local business that supports the community and reaches out for local causes. (757) 625-5300 info 710 W. 21st St Norfolk 15 Women of Distinction Viyahta Robinson Health and Wellness Owner Holistic Home and Body Care Altamonte Springs FL 16 Women of Distinction E nthusiastic about helping people set goals and take charge of their health Viyahta Robinson a Holistic Life Coach has seen so many people suffer and die because they refused or were unable to make the necessary changes in their lifestyles that were necessary for survival. Working with a holistic life coach enables a person to be held accountable for their goals and receive the encouragement inspiration and wisdom for their journey ahead in order to change and improve their quality of life. Viyahta is now working to help people one client at a time reach their goals by inspiring and motivating them every step of the way. More than 20 years ago Viyahta changed her career and began working as a cashier in a local health food store. Working in this capacity not only educated her in the customer service field but also about the many natural herbs and supplements and what healthy living was really all about. Three years after being hired she was promoted to become a manager at one of their other storefronts. It was a new beginning for her in health and wellness and she was eager to go along for the ride. Viyahta specializes in EFT Tapping or Emotional Freedom Technique which is a therapeutic psychological tool German New Medicine Training basic yoga breathing training and meal and menu planning for clients. When studying holistic health it s important to work in an environment that promotes mind body and spirit awareness Viyahta noted. It s also equally important to read as much as possible about energy medicine and the mind body connection to healing. But first and foremost in order to become an expert in this field means that you must be a good listener. To contribute to such a growing field of understanding the mind body and spiritual connections to health to the masses Viyahta authored her first book in 2013 entitled My Body is Talking to Me. Sharing her passion to wake people up to the power their thoughts feelings and emotions have in the disease process she offers different choices for readers to facilitate healing. It has introduced many to the wisdom of being conscious about the body its environment and how the two are connected and she is happy to be able to share her insight with the public through her publication. It is my hope that I can inspire others to grow in wisdom knowledge and understanding of their bodies Viyahta said about why she does what she does. While my older sister was suffering with breast cancer it also inspired my own journey which was life changing to become more aware of the powerful role emotions play on healing disease. Active in her local community Viyahta loves to participate by promoting farmer s markets and teaching at local health food stores and yoga centers. Helping friends associates relatives and strangers alike on how to improve their diet and lifestyle is more than just work for her it is her passion. Viyahta studied at the University of Wisconsin at Madison earning her Bachelor of Business Administration in 1976. She later became a Certified Coordinator of Holistic Healthcare Service through the BioHealth Network in the mid 1990 s became a Master Herbalist through Trinity College of Natural Health in 2007 received her German New Medicine Certification in Calgary Canada in 2008 became a Licensed EFT Practitioner through The Tapping Solution in 2013 and became a Certified Coach Practitioner through the Certified Coaches Federation in 2014. Viyahta also became an Ordained Minister through the Universal Life Church in 2013. Born in the windy city of Chicago Viyahta grew up with two sisters one of which is now retired. Viyahta married in 1978 two years after completing her bachelor s degree but divorced in 2014. She has two sons who both work and live in the Orlando Florida area just a short distance south of Altamonte Springs where she lives and works. Recently becoming a grandparent for the first time Viyahta has a precious granddaughter who she absolutely adores. I found so much satisfaction and joy meeting hundreds of people every day that were seeking to improve their health Viyahta said. There were always opportunities to learn more and grow in the knowledge of holistic health and so I took advantage of that. Previous to her retail experience Viyahta spent 10 years working in a bank as a consumer loan officer along with various other positions. She also worked as a human resource representative at Addison Wesley Publishing for a short time before her family and she relocated from Redwood City California to central Florida. After leaving the health food business Viyahta began working for a small company called Healthy Home Cleaning as a cleaner and a marketing representative. Ready to go off on her own and explore her own talents Viyahta combined several of her skills to form a very unique business in both home cleaning services and holistic health as a Holistic Life Coach two fields that she knew would work well together. As the sole proprietor of Holistic Home and Body Care a company that offers clients the ability to improve their environment both inside and out Viyahta offers services for the home and the body. Home services typically include full house deep cleanings which include baseboards and hard to reach areas light cleaning (selected rooms only) laundry bed changing appliance cleaning and windows. When it comes to servicing the body as a life coach Viyahta offers a free 15-minute initial consultation which includes an assessment of physical imbalances. The first goal setting session which takes at least one full hour includes recommendations for diet and lifestyle changes that she feels will benefit the client. She also offers a package which consist of five hour-long sessions of life coaching. 17 Women of Distinction 18 Women of Distinction Home Services Full House Deep Cleaning (includes baseboards & hard to reach areas) Light cleaning (Selected Rooms only) Laundry Bed Changing Inside Refrigerator cleaning Inside Outside Window cleaning Total Cost varies with each client as size of house and degree of care or neglect are variables considered. Body Services Full Consultation-1 hour minimum (Includes assessment of physical imbalances and recommendations for herbal formulas) EFT (Tapping) Sessions German New Medicine Training --view training video at Basic Yoga & Breathing Training Meal and menu planning Individual needs and goals are discussed at the initial consultation where a determination is made as to estimated completion of health program. Call 407-701-5494 for an appointment. (407) 701-5494 viyahta Brenda Oliver Leadership and Performance Management Training Coaching Speaking and Consulting President of Oliver Leadership Inc. Certified Coach Practitioner Author Winnipeg Manitoba Canada 20 Women of Distinction I t was a seminar on emotional intelligence in 2002 that inspired Brenda Oliver to earn a certification as an Emotional Intelligence Practitioner and embark on a new career path. Brenda took a leap of faith and left the corporate world with 25 years of business experience and a successful professional career that included a variety of senior management positions such as Director of Sales & Relationship Management at American Express Canada. She launched her own company Oliver Leadership Inc. in 2003 where her experience and enthusiasm enables individuals and organizations to capitalize on their human potential in the most effective manner. Brenda has clearly demonstrated her ability to develop inspire and lead people helping others to succeed and reach their greatest potential. Additionally Brenda authored the book The Freedom Challenge - Mastering Emotions Restoring Honour to Leadership . She considers this to be her greatest contribution to the field. Brenda is a member of CAPS (Canadian Association of Professional Speakers) GSA (Global Speakers Association) e-Speakers (Canadian Speakers) CCF (Certified Coaches Federation) TFE (Top Female Executives) and Stanford Who s Who (Black Book - Who s Who Canada 2012 -2013 Manitoba Executive Women Business Owners of Manitoba LinkedIn and Twitter. She is a woman of faith and believes that with faith comes inner strength. Leaving the corporate world was a challenge because I was leaving a world I was comfortable with. But if I hadn t I wouldn t be a business owner certified coach professional speaker published author and a finalist in the Business Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards in 2013. Aside from making decisions related to the administrative and contractual details of the company and also managing all content and delivery Brenda offers inspirational and business insight to a variety of groups and venues via training facilitation presentation coaching and client interaction. Inner strength makes all things possible. Ultimately Brenda wants to be a positive impact on others and to have lived a significant life. Passing along my experience life lessons and knowledge to those that follow is most important. I am passionate about helping others to succeed and reach their greatest potential. However building a business and remaining active in that business is tremendously challenging. Without the support of family it would be impossible. I owe them a debt of gratitude. Brenda also developed and launched an online interactive coaching and mentoring network for women The Country Club Distinctive Voices Dynamic WomenTM. This was challenging as well because my knowledge of technology the internet and all things connected to it was exceptionally limited in 2002. However perseverance paid off and that business evolved to where it is today a leadership development practice. 21 Women of Distinction Q&A Q What are the most requested topics for professional development workshops or conference breakout sessions A Most companies are not looking for specific topics so much as they are trying to find solutions to their issues dealing with difficult people or customers performance or production issues problem solving and prioritizing. Emotional intelligence and leadership effectiveness establishes the foundation for many of these issues and positions the company for successive addons like customer service experience and time management skills. Q What topic benefits both individuals and organizations in a keynote message A Most people and or organizations are primarily concerned with advancing relationships or connections accelerating personal or business performance and engaging employees and or their family environment. This motivational and inspirational keynote The Freedom Challenge benefits those concerns by helping individuals discover what or who may be blocking their progress. Acknowledgment is essential for change. Q What is the biggest challenge faced by companies today A Employee engagement remains number one. People showing up for work but not really being there presenteeism Unfortunately companies continue to hire additional people rather engage those already employed. Engaging people effectively is an ongoing corporate challenge. Most people would agree that employee engagement and attrition for that matter can be traced back to how people are treated by their leaders. Q What is the most significant challenge faced by people today A Remaining as the most significant challenge faced by people today is increased workloads and responsibilities leaving people feeling more heavily burdened than ever before not only with work expectations but with family demands thus increasing their frustration both at home and at work. Personal effectiveness depends on a leader s ability to effectively manage frustration. Q How are companies selecting candidates to fill positions A Clearly candidates must have a degree to be considered for the interview never mind the actual position itself. Assuming that one has the right credentials then proving positive attitude is the differentiator. Q Why do people hire a certified life business or executive coach A For the same reason that sports professionals do to help them reach their personal professional or business goals. Q Why are companies losing top performers A Today it is mostly attributed to a lack of career development and advancement opportunities. Q What is the concept behind your book The Freedom Challenge Mastering Emotions Restoring Honour to Leadership A The premise of the The Freedom Challenge is that leaders have been given a tremendous responsibility that can preserve or destroy both themselves and others. Leaders are everywhere and are not necessarily just the Presidents or CEOs. They include anyone in a position of influence in business families sports teams and community. This book is for people in leadership positions who want to escalate their personal or professional performance and transform their lives relationships and careers. It is available through Amazon Barnes & Noble and other online and retail distributors or from the publisher directly at bookstore. 22 Women of Distinction Carla Percy M Government Consulting President Chief Operating Officer The Mayvin Consulting Group Inc. Alexandria VA aking a bold career move Carla Percy entered into government contracting in 2002. Originally thinking that she wanted to pursue biotechnology research she ended up changing her mind when she fell into government work by accident. I enjoy the mission aspect of government consulting Carla said who spent four years in the US Air force. When I was serving in the military I was fortunate to have a job that required working with all the services. Having that comradery and team environment had a great impact on many facets of my life and has shaped many of my decisions today. Prior to government contracting Carla was a social scientist business development manager data manager protocol manager program analyst and senior management consultant. In 2008 she and Lisa E. Rosenthal co-founded The Mayvin Consulting Group Inc. As President and Chief Operating Officer Carla handles daily operations interfaces with employees and clients and serves as Mayvin s general manager. A proven leader in her field Carla has proven her abilities across the board. Mayvin brings expert knowledge of program management life cycle management and operational requirements to government organizations. By creating effective strategies for program design execution and sustainment while implementing action plans to speed product delivery into the current and future force they rapidly respond to warfighter needs requires knowledge. They offer project management and operational support services with a vision to be a recognized leader applying innovative techniques in management analysis and operations combatting threats to national security. Mayvin s Chief Executive Officer Lisa E. Rosenthal spent her former years working in the military government environments as a government employee and contractor for various organizations and agencies including the Department of Energy and the Intelligence Community. By 2004 she began supporting a high profile Army organization where she met Carla. Over a glass of wine and a lengthy conversation Lisa and Carla formed Mayvin. Responsible for setting strategic direction and culture Lisa s role as CEO is to make sure that the vision and mission are carried out when it comes to working with the government clients stakeholders and employees. She also calls the shots related to the projects and direction that the firm will pursue. My professional inspirations have included the people and the missions of the organizations of which I was lucky enough to have supported Lisa said about leading her government consulting firm. Working with the military and various aspects of national security meant that my career actions mattered. We care about the mission and understand that people matter. Lisa earned a double BA in Political Science and Environmental Policy at American University in 1997 and her MBA in Management of Global Information Technology and International Finance in 2001. Mayvin participates in various philanthropic activities that support organizations like veteran s charities mentoring students and future leaders and giving back to the community. They have sponsored the Save-a-Limb Fund annual bike ride for the last five years sponsored the Achilles Freedom Team at the San Diego Rock-n-Roll Marathon and is active in various other volunteer and charitable events. Q&A Q How did you find your mentors A Most of our mentors were found while working side by side either as peers or as bosses. The mentors we have today are those who I respect greatly and we know to have unwavering work ethic. You have to make an effort to maintain a relationship with mentors. Q What are some of the management challenges you have encountered running a small business A Staffing This is hands down the hardest thing we do. You would think this would be easy but finding the right skill set along with the right personality and culture fit for Mayvin is never easy especially in what is call a low priced technically acceptable environment. Q How has your company established a corporate culture A This actually hasn t been as hard as one would think. Our culture is definitely a reflection of our personalities which are kind of eccentric at times. We make sure to have regular events that make our employees get to know each other and learn about each other. Every year we have a corporate offsite that involves every person in the company spending the weekend together and talking about what it is to be a Mayvin . Q What innovations technologies have been the most useful for your company A collaborative workspaces - with the trends towards telecommuting and global offices this has become essential. We always prefer in person but have learned to rely on goto meeting sharepoint or other similar programs. Q What is the best advice you would give to young entrepreneurs A Follow the vision and the money will come. Go after what you truly believe and want to do. Do not settle. Don t fall into a job because it was the first thing you got after college change until you find your passion. Q What made you think as women in a male dominated industry you had what it would take to start your own company A We always viewed ourselves as business people executive vs. focusing rather on gender. While we may have been intimidated at times we never would show that and made sure we were fully prepared and always on the top of our game. This is a requirement whether male or female. We are definitely held to a higher standard and not afraid to hit i 24 Women of Distinction Jerree Denise Winn Cosmetology Owner of New Beginnings School of Cosmetology Harrison AR W hile growing up in California Jerree Winn knew that she wanted to be a hairdresser one day and possibly own a school. At age 20 she was a single mother with no family around to help take care of her son in order for her to pursue her dream. So in 2004 Jerree s lifelong dream became a reality when she opened her first cosmetology school Lighthouse Career Academy. She opened a second school in 2005 under the same name in Branson MO. However... I sold the school in 2010 when I went through my divorce and moved away. In 2013 I had to move back to the area because of my son s health. At that time I had the opportunity to get the school back in Harrison so after going through those three rough years of my life with my son a friend helped me decide to rename the school to New Beginnings School of Cosmetology . I thought that the name was appropriate not only for me and my son but also for the students. This was their opportunity for a new beginning in their lives as well. Jerree is a cut and color educator for All Nutrient (a 99.99% certifiably organic hair color and retail product made in the United States) and an American Board Certified Haircolorist. She is also proud to be an Ambassador for the Harrison Chamber of Commerce and a lifetime member of Strathmore s Who s Who. And New Beginnings is involved in many charities in Harrison including Share Your Hair a Day of Caring Share Fest Harrison Health Fair and the Elks Club. Free haircuts are given at their events. Family is a large part of Jerree s life. She is currently single with two sons one grandson three granddaughters and a great-grandson. It was a struggle to get my son to day care and myself to school but with city transportation and the determination to go to cosmetology school I did it on my own and was able to begin my career in 1981 after graduating from Lyles College of Beauty. Jerree s first job was with Claudetts Beauty and Boutique. In 1985 she moved to Texarkana Arkansas to be closer to her family. After another move to Harrison Arkansas she received her GED and successfully got a real estate license and certifications as a surgical technician and medical assistant. With my confidence soaring I knew I could accomplish anything I set my mind on. In 1999 Jerree opened a salon in Harrison. Business was booming and within a year and a half she moved the salon to a larger location and added five more hairdressers to her staff. And with a strong desire to expand her knowledge and career Jerree received instructor s licenses from Arkansas and Missouri in 2003. I knew I had the potential to be a successful school owner and believed I could teach students the professionalism and techniques that are essential in our industry. I would like for people to remember me as an honest and kind person who tried daily to put others before myself and that I always taught and truly believe that YOU CAN DO ANYTHING YOU SET YOUR MIND TO . I live by that example. 25 Women of Distinction Q&A Q What is your favorite part about teaching A I love to see when that light goes on The students have their AH-HA moments. I also love seeing their growth and creativity. Q What made you decide to open a school and teach A After being in this industry for 21 years at that time I had such a passion for our industry and knew that our area needed a good school and that I had a lot to offer to potential hairdressers. Q What do you think success is A Success is when a person is happy and content with what they are doing in life no matter the amount of money or lack thereof. Money is NOT what makes a person successful it s loving what you do and doing what you love. Happiness Content Success Q Where do you think you will be in 5 years from now A I m hoping to add a vocational technical program for high school students and am working on that with our local college and area high schools at this time but those kinds of programs are government funded so we just have to wait and see. I ve had the program before and it was a great success so I don t doubt that we will have it again. Q How do you maintain camaraderie between you and your students A Sometimes it s harder than others but really it s just keeping your boundaries consistent. The students know what is and isn t acceptable right from the beginning. Just having fun and a maintaining a good atmosphere while being very lighthearted and not super strict helps keep the drama down. I like for them to be able to express themselves and feel like there is some freedom here in our school while maintaining necessary structure. Q What career would you have chosen if not the cosmetology industry A Well I can t imagine doing anything else because I love this industry and what I do. But if I had to make that choice I would be in the medical field in some capacity because it is a service profession. Serving people is a passion of mine. Q How diversified is this industry A The possibilities are limitless. Cosmetology does not just consist of standing behind a chair doing hair all day. We are licensed to do make-up as a make-up artist or working for theater magazines or as a platform artist doing cuts colors hair extensions motivational seminars nail techs doing acrylics gels or teaching in any capacity. You name it the sky is the limit in our industry Q Does the economy affect your bottom line A I believe that the economy affects everyone but the advantage that I think I have is that people will always need their hair done in some capacity or another. The fact that our prices (as a school) are always lower than the professionals is a plus for us 26 Women of Distinction Jocelynn Tice Visual Fine Art Art Instruction Artist Owner My Studio LLC Haddon Township NJ fter surrendering her job in the arts to Multiple Sclerosis in 1996 and temporarily losing her eyesight in one eye Jocelynn Tice needed to find employment that would offer her the flexibility she needed to work around her own needs. After her husband had suggested that she offer to teach their daughter and her friend how to draw to stay busy Jocelynn s new found hobby eventually turned into something much greater. When Jocelynn s friends found out that she was teaching the girls art they began bringing their children over to her house and Jocelynn would spend an hour or two each week teaching them how to draw in her dining room. Placing an ad in a local paper one day to offer up her services she received an overwhelming 40 respondents. Soon after she bought the building at 605 White Horse Pike in Haddon Township and it became My Studio LLC. That was in 2002. A For the past 14 years Jocelynn s artwork has been juried into shows and she s won quite often. Studying sculpture under John Gianotti at Rutger s University from 1976-78 drawing and painting under Arthur DeCosta and under Peter Paone at The Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art from 1981-1983 she hopes that her art studio will continue on supplying the fabulous artistic people in her area the opportunity to communicate visually and learn the craft as well as she has. I specialize in teaching people how to draw as opposed to the majority of studios emphasizing painting Jocelynn explained. I d go to art shows and very few of the pieces were well drawn. The majority of instruction was being concentrated on applying paint and not on the accuracy of the image. I fought hard to be an artist and so far so good. But if it hadn t been for my husband standing behind me I never would have challenged myself with buying a building and starting up a business Jocelynn said who has taught many students over the years who have gone on to do big things with their art. Jocelynn believes that practice really does make perfect but those that work in the arts for a living shouldn t expect too much too soon. Wearing many hats every day as a painter teacher mentor and manager of her own business Jocelynn s days are varied so taking the time to learn how to draw and paint and be good at it takes time. There is rarely one money stream in this field. Jocelynn spent time as a mentor and art instructor teaching various art workshops in drawing and pastel painting for Camden County Cultural and Heritage Commission s Teen Arts Program at Rutgers University. She made set props masks and art pieces for the Ritz Theater in Oaklyn New Jersey s main stage and ran art workshops for the Ritz Campers making some the costumes and props for their Summer Camp Theater Shows with the students. She also made set pieces for the Haddon Township school plays with their Parent Teacher Association. Married to her husband Frank for 25 years (he passed away in 2012) they raised their daughter who became an artist and a librarian in Newark Delaware. Jocelynn is a member of The Plastic Club Portrait Society of America and is a signature member of the New Jersey Pastel Painters Society as well. In her downtime Jocelynn creates puppets of all kinds from marionettes to paper puppets just for fun. Q&A Q Why do you feel that your business is pertinent in today s world A For decades our society has placed a preference on academics and has left the arts to rot. I try to elevate the arts and make them accessible to those who cannot function without them. Because there has been a removal of the arts in many schools my business allows these kids the opportunity to expand their educational choices to become full rounded people. Q Can you really support yourself on Art A Yes as long as you wear many hats in a day. Fortunately I can teach something a lot of visual people can t do. I am also lucky that I could afford to buy a building that had highway access. Holding classes a couple of days a week allows me the luxury of having many days a week to get really good at what I do which is painting portraits. Q How long does it take to paint a portrait A A lifetime. Some faces are easier than others. If you learn something every day and I paint every day imagine how much practical knowledge in painting that I can bring to the table. Q Why did you choose to become a visual artist A I don t think that I chose to be a visual artist. The vocation seems to have chosen me Many times in my life I would put down my drawing and try to not do artwork. It never lasted long. Q How do you find your students A Most people find me through word of mouth. When I started teaching it was in my dining room. I had enough room for six kids and their easels. Most of the kids were children of my friends and neighbors hanging with my daughter. When I moved the studio to a building I hung signs ran ads in the local papers and put fliers in local restaurants. I also entered juried art shows and won quite a few. Q How many hours a week do you work A I hold classes for 12 hours week six on Monday four on Tuesday and two on Saturday. The rest of my week (approximately 24 hours) is spent doing my artwork. I also go out a lot in the evenings to see live music and I always take a sketchbook. Q Can you teach anyone to draw realistically A Yes. Anyone can learn to draw. It is like a foreign language and I teach it that way. It s a lot of repetition starting with basic angles and shapes then to values (putting on the lights and darks) then to color and paint. Q How do you market your art A Mostly through word of mouth my students are big supporters. I also use social media I have a Facebook page for the art studio MYSTUDIOLLC. Then there s the fact that I have a store front with people walking and driving by. Lastly I enter a lot of juried shows and often my work gets recognition. People find you. 28 Women of Distinction Melissa Grandt Education 5th Grade Inclusion Teacher and 6th Grade Reading Teacher Big Hollow School District 38 Ingleside IL 29 Women of Distinction M The world would be a very boring place if we all were exactly the same. elissa Grandt has a very unique and different career in education that comes from her own experiences as a student growing up. At a very early age Melissa s parents recognized that she wasn t meeting all of her developmental milestones so they had her evaluated for speech at the Special Education District of Lake County (SEDOL) in Illinois when she was threeyears-old. She was then placed in an early childhood special education classroom for help with her speech. Melissa was later diagnosed with a learning disability and mild cerebral palsy. For various other reasons she was moved back and forth from general and special education classrooms over the years while in school. This made adjusting and making friends rather difficult for her. However despite what she was told by others Melissa overcame it all. Before finishing high school she applied to many state colleges that denied her admission. Lincoln College finally accepted her but she had to start her first semester on academic probation. After that she earned a 3.78 grade point average and graduated with an Associate of Arts degree. Melissa then transferred to Illinois State University and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Special Education and later a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from Concordia University and an advanced Master of Science in Education from Northern Illinois University. Now a teacher herself Melissa helps those going through what she went through growing up by being a positive role model leader advocate for students mentor and volunteer by providing professional development in reading to parent volunteers paraprofessionals and teachers. Because of my experiences I ve taught my students many things that will help them in school. First because I didn t have inclusion I know what my students need academically mentally emotionally and behaviorally to be successful in the general education classroom and I work with them to prepare them to be successful in an inclusion classroom. Second I ve learned to teach my students how to modify schoolwork so they can learn to become more independent both in school and at home. Third I want my students to learn how to study for tests and quizzes. As a student I always struggled when taking tests and quizzes and didn t understand how to study. I always studied but failed most tests and quizzes so I teach my students different ways of studying and then they can choose which way works best for them. Finally I m a very strong advocate for my students. I want them to take ownership for their own learning and learn to advocate for themselves as they grow older. Melissa is part of a mentoring program for 7th and 8th graders with her school s guidance counselor. I have high expectations for my students and teach them so they can have choices that I never had after they leave high school. Even though she struggled in school Melissa learned to persevere through the bullying and ridicule. At the time there was no inclusion for special education students in our public schools and students with disabilities did not go to college. I started having problems with depression around 5th grade and was very shy and quiet. Making girl friends wasn t easy because I didn t have access to a lot of girls. Males are more prone to disabilities. I didn t belong as a kid and that always bothered me. If only I d known that one day my differentness would be an asset then my early life would have been much easier. - Bette Midler In the end it s her experiences that made Melissa Grandt a better person and teacher. Q&A Q What do teachers do over the three months off during the summer A We attend workshops college classes tutor teach summer school or work another job. Q Why do you think our public schools are in debt A I think politicians aren t putting the amount of money into our public schools that s needed. We ve had some politicians in Illinois who are in jail prison because they ve broken laws and misused money. Q Why are many parents not involved in their students education A Some parents are having difficulty paying the bills some are single parents and some feel that it s the school s responsibility to educate their students and do not see the value of getting involved Q Why did you want to become a special education teacher A I wanted to become a special education teacher because I like teaching students who are challenging and I want to make a difference. I also wanted to make my students school experience a positive one and try to affect change so more students with disabilities are included in the general education classroom. Q Why do you want to be a reading specialist A While teaching special education students I ve learned that Response to Intervention students still need interventions to help them become better readers so they won t have to be identified as a student with a disability. Q What do you like about being a teacher A I enjoy watching my students learn as they grow. I also enjoy working with my team and learning something new each day. Q What do you dislike about being a teacher A I dislike all the special education paperwork I have to complete that takes me away from my students. I write Individual Education Plans which are legal documents for students with disabilities but my paperwork has been increasing these past few years. Q What is it like growing up with parents who were teachers A To tell you the truth my siblings and I promised each other that we would never become teachers but two out of three became teachers. It was interesting because most of our conversations during holidays were about students and problems we faced as teachers. Being raised by teachers has made me a better person and teacher today. Q What are ways that you continue to learn and grow so you can become a better teacher A I continue to take classes over the summer read books and magazines attend workshops and provide professional development to other teachers. 31 Women of Distinction Patsy (Felt) Lanclos Middle and High School Education Higher Education Administration Knowledge Architect Educator Consultant Lanclos Technology Consulting Author Houston TX T eaching Junior High Science at Whittier Junior High in San Antonio Texas Patsy (Felt) Lanclos transitioned into a new school system a year later to work at Spring Branch Junior High in Houston. Seven years into her career Patsy started a family. Leaving on maternity leave she wouldn t return to the classroom for another 17 years. During the course of her teaching hiatus Patsy began tutoring students in her home in mathematics to earn extra income. In 1978 in the midst of her childrearing and tutoring sessions Patsy discovered the very first machine that would soon enrich the lives of students everywhere the Apple . She was convinced her family needed to get one right away. Serving as the company s sole proprietor Patsy handles it all. She calls herself the chief cook and bottle washer . She oversees everything from professional development and writing of her books to consulting and doing research. Patsy values the importance of networking volunteering presenting at conferences and teaching in a variety of schools. She also loves to visit vendor areas at conferences to learn about trends and new products. From 2008-2015 Patsy has authored 11 books focusing on the use of technology (http toolsfor patsylanclos). From 1998-2014 she has written nearly a dozen journal technology articles. She has since taken ongoing training courses reading and other opportunities to help her remain current in educational pedagogy science mathematics technology hardware software and life itself. Because technology continually changes I want to keep up Patsy said. This intrigue and my love for teaching has kept me in my profession for over six decades. It s kept me involved with learning and teaching. I love gadgets and have a desire to learn how they can improve life. Having done professional development in 49 of the 50 states in America and in many other parts of the world my excitement to continue travelling teaching and meeting new people has kept me in my career for the long haul. A widow to Charles Lanclos who was a successful architect in Houston Patsy and he share two children and five grandchildren. Their son is a realtor broker financial planner and owner of Preferred Corporate Housing. Their daughter is a former legislative assistant and chief of staff to a state senator and is now a stay-at-home mom who volunteers in community and school organizations. My son and I taught ourselves how to use the computer Patsy remembers. That was the beginning of my new career in technology. Going back to school to earn her Master of Education at the University of Houston in 1983 Patsy took several computer courses as electives. When she graduated in 1985 she began teaching at the high school level again this time in Computer Programming and Algebra and also as an Adjunct Professor of graduate level courses in Instructional Technology at the University of Houston at Clear Lake. All these years later Patsy is a well-known Knowledge Architect Educator Consultant and Owner of Lanclos Technology Consulting. Available to come directly to clients homes business school or district to offer professional development in various forms of technology such as iPads smartphones and other devices she teaches strategies that accelerate the excitement of learning. 32 Women of Distinction Q&A Q Why do you feel that what you do for a living is important A The everyday life in this 21st century society is becoming more and more dependent on technology. Both the hardware and software is continually changing. The age of the wired phone or landline has greatly diminished and the age of the smart phone is here Today s smart phone has most of the characteristics of a computer thus has more features than simply dialing ringing and talking. Smart devices are found in cars security systems and many other devices that control everyday operations. One must be technologically literate in order to communicate be safe drive a car etc. My business strives to provide the most efficient and effective use of both personal and professional technology by providing hands-on training. Q Do you believe that everyone regardless of age can be technologically literate A EVERYONE regardless of age can become technologically literate. If there is a will there is a way. Patience perseverance repetition and a good teacher are assets that enable technological literacy. Q What awards have you won throughout your career A Apple Inc. Apple Distinguished Educator Four ComputerWorld Smithsonian Laureate Awards for Innovation in Technology Washington DC International Society Technology in Education Pink Jacket Award Discovery Star Educator Texas Technology Coordinator of the Year and Spring Branch Independent School District Teacher of the Year. Q Do you have a QR code for your website A http Q Do you have a QR code for your books A http patsy-lanclos Q As we have evolved through technological literacy a diversity of operating systems (software that manages the computer s software and hardware resources and provides services for computer programs) have become available and popular. Do you have a preference and why A My first experience was with an Apple then an Apple e and progressing through the years with both Windows and Macintosh OS . In those early days learning how to insert the variety of boards in the motherboard to enable the computer to do a variety of operations (printing display in color display upper and lower case letters among other things) allowed me to grow up with personal desktop then laptop and handheld computers. Because of the ease of use intuitiveness excellent software and that one company makes both the hardware and software so that the computer is totally integrated I prefer the Apple operating system. I own several Windows computers and have taught others with them therefore I am literate in that operating system but I prefer the Apple OS. Mobile devices also have operating systems and I also prefer the Apple iOS. Because the Apple iOS was invented first the operating systems for the other mobile devises are similar but lacking some of some of the features. 33 Women of Distinction Brandy P. Guidry Oil and Gas Product Management Health and Beauty Bath and Body Product Manager Field Radiography GE Founder Co-Owner 4 Generations Boston MA Missouri City TX G rowing up in Texas Brandy P. Guidry was no stranger to the oil and gas industry. Her father and several other family members who worked in the field led her to also pursue a similar career. In the summer of 1998 she worked as a temporary hire for Phillips Petroleum. Soon after Brandy left for college attending the University of Louisiana in Lafayette to earn her BS in Chemical Engineering which she completed in 2003. Acquiring her first position with the Defense Intelligence Agency she remained with them for almost four-and-a-half years before taking a position with GE Power and Water. By August 2011 she had taken on a new role with GE Oil and Gas as an Engineering Productivity Leader Drilling & Surface before transitioning to Growth Board Liaison-Downstream Technology Solutions. In June 2015 she became a Product Manager-Field Radiography Measurement & Controls for GE. While Brandy plans to continue in her family s legacy and remain in oil and gas she also has other goals she s pursuing. Coming from a long line of business owners on her mother s side of the family Brandy initially thought about going into the health and beauty industry while still in college. Dealing with dry and sensitive skin issues she thought it might be a good fit for her. In 2010 she began research and development on her products officially launching them in 2012 as the founder and co-owner of 4 Generations. Oil and gas is an older industry but an exciting one Brandy said who s biggest responsibility with GE is interfacing with customers and business leaders to provide the most efficient and productive products for customers. It continues to evolve and there are applications across multiple industries. I just started a position where the products and applications we use are based on the healthcare industry but are convertible to the oil and gas and automobile industry. It started as a need for myself and grew into a passion after I realized the impact it could provide on people with skin complications Brandy explained about her handmade bath and body products. I make my products in bulk adding essential oils and scents and customizing products for each customer allowing for a more efficient process. Eager about the future of 4 Generations Brandy credits much of the company s success to her education in chemical engineering and chemistry and proper research and development. Able to significantly help her aunt who suffers from a rare skin disorder by having used her sensitive skin cream Brandy is excited about her product line. Brandy serves as the co-lead for Women and Technology is a member of Women s Network Steering Committee and is a member of National Society of Black Engineers Texas Alliance of Minorities in Engineering Houston Area Urban League Young Professionals and Women Impacting Public Policy. She s also a Society of Women Engineers volunteer and is the founder of STEMulating the Future a non-profit that focuses on STEM Outreach. She s held a GE Six Sigma Certification since 2008 and is currently pursuing her Product Management Certification. 34 Women of Distinction Christina Evette McCoy (Hunter) Excellence Award Recipient Education (Health Science Technology Certification 8-12) and Healthcare (Medical Assisting and Laboratory) Health Science Teacher Medical Assisting Instructor and Medical Technologist Richardson TX I want to inspire others to become competent healthcare professionals and use their knowledge for greatness. ike most college graduates Christina McCoy was looking for her dream job. She began her career as a medical technologist after graduating from ULM (2002) and then furthered her education with a Master of Health Administration from Webster University (2011). However it was Mr. Deshawn Robinson at Webster who inspired Christina to become an instructor and help with the shortage of medical professionals. In order to do this she enrolled in the Dallas ISD certification program in 2012 to become certified in health science technology. Christina is currently a health science teacher by day a medical assisting teacher by night and a medical technologist on weekends. She takes pride in sharing her expertise motivation and passion for delivering important information so that her students are well-versed and knowledgeable when entering the healthcare sector. I m the first interaction with the freshman class into the Health Science Academy. My ability to challenge them and push them to learn and understand the necessary medical terminology and learn about the different medical careers laws and concepts is very important in setting the foundation for the program. As a medical assisting instructor my ability to teach them the theory and skills for waived testing places great precedence in a clinical setting. She attributes all of her accomplishments awards and goals first to God due to her belief and Christian faith. Additionally her mother (the late Inez S. Hunter) and father (Robert E. Hunter) have always encouraged her to strive for excellence (no matter the task). Christina also found a mentor in Sandra K. Williams with her academics and professional experience in the job force. And her spouse (Alfonso McCoy III) has continued to help Christina accomplish her dreams of obtaining a doctorate and becoming a role model for other working mothers who desire to reach similar goals. Christina also helped her students attain training for the Orthopedic Surgery and Biomedical Engineering program through The Perry Initiative Program housed at the UT Southwestern Medical Center helped one student be placed at the Baylor SPEP 12 program for a 600.00 stipend during the summer and helped this same student win 2nd place in the Mary Kay debate contest by providing the idea of providing clean sanitary and drinking water to Africans in deprived areas. She is a member of the Jonelle Baptist Church (Dallas TX) and returns to her Christian roots when visiting LA at St. James Baptist Church 2 and New Bright Star Baptist Church. In addition she is a member of the American Medical Technologists for healthcare professionals Texas Association of Black Educators and a volunteer for HOPE (a domestic violence organization). Christina proudly boasts three beautiful sons Christian Carl (15) Montreal Deshawn (8) and Alfonso McCoy IV (2). L I m able to empathize with many situations and have a love for children and making dreams come true. I smile when I m able to make others smile give a pat on the back or use kindness when needed. 35 Women of Distinction Elizabeth O. Olagunju Life Business Coaching Transformational and Leadership Coaching President SEGMEM Inc. Senior Coach Achieve Success Life Business Coaching Hallandale Beach FL T he secret to Elizabeth O. Olagunju s ability to learn how to focus and concentrate stems from her former years in college. Trained as a scientist she studied botany and zoology something that has benefited her throughout her life and in career. Now as President of SEGMEM Inc. in Hallandale Beach Florida Elizabeth is able to use her talents to pass on her knowledge to others as a life and business coach specifically as a success transformational and leadership coach. Elizabeth is the author of three books Raising High Achieving Kids Seven Ways to Enhance Your Child s Future (selected by Amazon as one of the Top Best Books of 2014) 2014 Love Is It 2013 and Tasha (a novel) 2004. She also coauthored Real Hope for the Unemployed 2014 and Journey to Your Vision 2014. Born in Nigeria Elizabeth first worked with the Federal Government of Nigeria as a Lecturer and as Head of the Biological Sciences Department then with Bank of America as a Senior Credit Analyst for Red Lion Christian Academy as Faculty and Curriculum Committee Chair and with JP Morgan Chase as a Lending Risk Analyst. She s a current Consultant with Midland Info Tech Academy and a Senior Coach with Achieve Success Life Business Coaching. Affiliated with Women Speaker Association Connect GroupFirst Impression Church Program and Women s Program (a church program) Elizabeth holds a BSc in Botany an MSc in Zoology an MEd an MBA and is a Certified Project Manager. I encourage all young people to develop their minds and study science she said. This discipline made it possible for me to go into many different careers and vocations. It gave me the confidence discipline and tenacity to want to succeed. In 1973 Elizabeth began working as a faculty member in a local high school before becoming a college lecturer. After 20 years of teaching at various levels and another 20 years working with major fortune 500 companies as a leader coach mentor and lending risk analyst she s now able to impart her knowledge to others. Offering individual coaching to clients which can take place online or over the telephone Elizabeth offers threemonth six-month and one-year packages. She also offers as-needed sessions to fit into clients busy schedules. Additionally Elizabeth does group coaching sessions which take place by telephone conference call on a weekly basis and last for 50 minutes each. Consisting of all age groups group sessions are designed for those with similar career goals and serve as a dynamic support system. As president of SEGMEM Inc. Elizabeth works hard to seek out clients and develop strong lasting relationships while inspiring her current clients to achieve their personal and business goals by determining the correct tools and methodologies to build their careers. I am a woman who believes that everyone has a unique and special gift that he or she can give to the world Elizabeth noted. Everyone should strive to reach their potential. Married to a wonderful and supportive husband she has four children a graphic artist medical doctor business leadership administrator and attorney. She is blessed with three grandchildren. 36 Women of Distinction Fay Sweeney Restaurant and Event Catering Catering Director at Pazzo s 311 Chicago IL F ay Sweeney s affection for working with people and the service industry started while working for her family s restaurant as a teenager. It has since evolved into a passion for working and creating unforgettable memories for countless brides and grooms. She has been a Catering Director for Pazzo s in Chicago since 2001 where she books all events give tours and handles tastings once a couple books their wedding or the company has a special event. Fay also works on creating events within the budget of her clients. Part of this involves creating floor plans renting special equipment creating the contract and other details (like timelines and coordinating with vendors). Her greatest joy is seeing the bliss and satisfaction of a couple as they walk into the venue. She loves planning weddings (which can sometimes take a year or longer) and then seeing it all come together for a couple on the most important day of their lives. On a more personal level Fay believes that the most precious gift a human being can ever experience or be a part of is donating an organ. She donated a kidney to her brother with kidney failure and saved his life. The reason I m sharing this is because so many are on a waiting list and people don t realize that the surgery isn t really as bad as they think. Recovery was easier than I ever expected and I was back to work in three weeks. Regardless the gift of life is still very precious and the deep feelings I have from saving my brother s life lives with me each and every day. Helping someone get another chance is truly the best feeling. Fay also believes that one should always follow their aspirations dreams goals and ambitions. Even if things don t work out at least you tried. She tries to set an example by showing compassion and respect for others no matter their religion race and nationality. Always show love and understanding even if you don t always agree. What if we all turned our hate prejudice and misunderstanding to love care kindness and understanding How beautiful would our world be Their gratitude inspires me to try just as hard for the next couple. I can t tell you the happiness I feel when a couple comes back and has their anniversary dinner or stops in to have me meet their children years later. Fay has been on the TLC show Four Weddings where the couple she was working with won. It was a very proud moment for my chef and wait staff. Having a staff with dedication and good work ethics is important. She has even been awarded Couple s Choice from Wedding Wire of Chicago and Best of Midwest Weddings from the Knot Wedding Magazine. When she s not busy with weddings or other events Fay s free time is spent with her family going to the movies or dinner with her husband or any of her three sons who also live in Chicago. 37 Women of Distinction Francine Lakeisha Houston Fashion and Apparel Apparel Sewing Machine Operator at Peckham Mount Morris MI W hile she originally earned a Bachelor in Communication Design from the College for Creative Studies working as a graphics intern at a fashion design company transformed Francine Lakeisha Houston into a fashion designer by 2006. This led to her going back to school to study fashion design at the International Academy of Design and Technology (IADT) - Troy. (She later earned a certificate in programming in 2014 from Sisters Code where she learned HTML CSS and JavaScript.) During this time Francine volunteered to help behind the scenes at fashion shows as a dresser and stylist. By 2012 she became a part of Styles in the City s fashion show as a designer for her own clothing line FH Designs designing and sewing modest women s business casual and is soon branching out to menswear and possibly baby clothing. Enjoying what I do has kept me in this career. Francine s advice for people starting out in the fashion industry is to network and meet people who want to see you succeed then learn from them by volunteering and always learn from your mistakes. Her sister Tina Brooks (a hair stylist) helps her on photo shoots fashion shows etc. Her other siblings include younger brother Ramos Ball who is going to the University of Michigan for a degree in business management and Tammy Houston a nail stylist. And Francine s mother Katie Brooks was her caregiver while she dealt with a serious lupus flareup this year that has now taken a turn for the better. Francine spends her free time designing reading watching movies and working on her garden. And as someone who is creative and thinks outside the box she is currently working on publishing a book called Lupus Journey that talks about her life experiences dealing with lupus. She has also written other books of poetry short stories science fiction Christian plays and more which are inspired by God and imagination. Modesty does not have to look like someone s grandma. It can be stylish and classy. She is also an entry level sewer at Peckham where she enjoys sewing jackets for the U.S. Army and clothing for commercial lines like New Balance and Patagonia. Francine is responsible for the accurate alignment of fabric garments and materials under needles using marks on machines clamps templates cloth and notches as guides. This position guides garments or garment parts under machine needles and presser foot pedals to proficiently sew cloth parts together using several types of sewing machines. 38 Women of Distinction Lori Lin Newcomb Healthcare Clinical Applications Specialist for NeuroLogica Corporation (a subsidiary of Samsung Electronics) Danvers MA fter 23 years as a registered diagnostic ultrasound technician (also known as a sonographer) Lori Lin Newcomb was approached by a recruiter for Medison Ultrasound in 2008. She had been thinking about furthering her career so she pursued the job opportunity. Her experience in different settings (including outpatient imaging centers hospitals and mobile ultrasound) provided Lori with great exposure to the medical imaging field and made her the perfect candidate to join Medison as a Clinical Applications Specialist with NeuroLogica after Samsung acquired both companies. A Today Lori provides support in demonstrating Samsung s full line of ultrasound products to meet the needs of physician offices clinics or hospitals. Lori was greatly inspired by her grandfather who also worked in the medical field. Once they ve made the decision to purchase our system I provide applications support by working with them to set everything up so they have confidence when using the system in their daily routine. I truly believe that the products we sell are the best in image quality and resolution offered in industry. This provides diagnostic support in the healthcare industry. I always liked hearing about what he did when I visited him. I had known I wanted to work in the medical field since I was in high school and had great support from my family to pursue my career as a sonographer. I believe this a great opportunity for women who have an interest in the medical field. 39 Women of Distinction Excellence Award Recipient Jennifer Kliewer Telepchak Fitness Auto Repair Professional Fitness Model Manager - KC Auto Body & Towing Inc. Reading PA 40 Women of Distinction B etween working as a Manager for KC Auto Body & Towing Inc. and finding success as a professional fitness model Jennifer Kliewer Telepchak is focused on her goals of continuing a family legacy and following her dreams. Jennifer has been working for KC Auto Body & Towing Inc. a business that was started by her grandfather in 1960 since 2008 and has since become a sort of Renaissance woman for the company handling a number of responsibilities including human resources and payroll duties. Soon after her first child was born in 2009 Jennifer took her passion for fitness to the next level and began participating in fitness competitions which eventually led to a career in fitness modeling. A highlight of Jennifer s fitness career was when she received third place in the Ms. Figure America Pageant in Las Vegas NV in 2013. Through her fitness endeavors she would also like to show women that you can always find time to get healthy no matter how old you may be. As a single mother of two children Jennifer wants to inspire other single mothers in the world to follow their dreams while maintaining a proper balance with their family life. Aside from her work in management and fitness modeling she is also currently working on earning a Masters of Business Administration degree from California University of Pennsylvania. Be the change you wish to see in the world. Treat others as you would like to be treated it s something that always goes a long way. You must also always remember that everything you want to do starts with you. Give yourself the love you deserve and have faith. Living as a single mom does not need to hold you back from doing what you love. You can still make life work. It has helped me become an independent woman who has her own house her own career and takes care of all of her responsibilities on her own. I want to encourage other single mothers out there to achieve their dreams and remember that they re not alone. Her main role model throughout her life has been her mother Kim Bauer who took over the family business in recent years and has always earned respect from her peers through her dedication and hard work. Jennifer would like to follow her mother s example by continuing her work in the family business so she can eventually pass it on to the next generation in the future. I love to give what I can to those in need even if it s the shirt off of my own back. I want to be known as a loving mother daughter and sister as well as a true athlete and a beautiful soul. I m a caring friend and I m always available to those who need me. In her free time Jennifer enjoys doing outdoor activities with her children working out dance and listening to music. She also likes reading and gardening. 41 Women of Distinction 42 Women of Distinction Victoria Rogers Wedding Venue Events Owner Operator - La Bella Vue Event Center Bonners Ferry ID W here does one begin I have had several successful small businesses throughout my life and each one has had a profound impact on where I am today with each acting as a stepping stone to my next venture. The journey has been filled with heights of immense joy to depths of despair and everything in between. But such is life -- we cannot have one without the other as they are intertwined. Since my childhood I have always known that I wanted to have a business of my own I believe it is just part of my genetic makeup. I was always watching and observing others trying to glean what they had already endeavored. Why recreate the wheel Instead I would take bits and pieces from others accomplishments and add a flare of my own creating my own masterpieces in the process. I have always followed the beat of a different drum so to speak and have thought outside the box. Growing up my family had a hard time trying to understand my logic because I was not wired like they were. It was difficult at times to keep moving forward as no one believed that I could achieve above the status quo. It seemed I was always trying to defend my stance of where I was going and what I wanted to do. I did a lot of praying crying and reaching out for some kind of moral support of my endeavors but a lot of the time it landed on deaf ears. At times I wanted to quit but alas my sweet Lord would always send some encounter to bring me encouragement. My first business endeavor was a California State Licensed Family Daycare. I was a single mom who wanted to be able to raise my son and still work so it was a perfect fit. I was blessed through a lot of hard work and sacrifice and it turned out to be a success. Simultaneously the real estate market was booming. I bought a fixer-upper remodeled it and ran my daycare from it. After running the daycare for about seven years I decided to sell it and managed to make a profit. During this time I also got into buying vacant land owner carrying then flipping and selling it while it was still a seller s market. As far back as I can remember I had always wanted to live in the mountains and had prayed about it for a long time. After deciding to take a leap of faith I moved to the great northwest from California. I was a single mom with a small child a savings in hand and no family friends or job waiting in that part of the country but I had a game plan. I ended up buying a house in this new area but I was tenacious in spirit. With God at the helm how could I not venture out and try to live my dream of giving my son and I a better quality of life Once I arrived I started another daycare but it was hard to break into that market due to the fact that I was a newcomer on the scene. I began networking and started attending our local Seventh Day Adventist church which gave us a support group to turn to and eventually a new family to have by our side. About a year after moving to the northwest I also started a Certified Home for the Mentally Delayed. I did that for about three and a half years and while it was tough having clients 24 7 it was a very rewarding experience. There soon came a time when I knew I needed a change and I prayed about it. About a week later a couple of the facilities that my clients attended on a regular basis asked me if I d consider doing transportation for them. After some research on the proposal I decided to close down the certified home and start working in transporting. However breaking into that market would prove to be a difficult venture as well. There was a lot of competition and at times we were barely making it. Other companies even went to great lengths to try and put me out of business but through much prayer perseverance hard work and sacrifice everything worked out for me and paid off in the end. Seven years later we are still going strong. Now I am trying to set up a new business adventure -- a small intimate event center called the La Bella Vue which will feature weddings holiday parties and much more. Evolving is the key. The journey of life can be so adventuresome with all the twists and turns that we re bound to experience. It is all about having a game plan taking a leap of faith hanging in there through the storms embracing the joys persevering hard work sacrifice and being patient. As the old saying goes we all must pay our dues but in the end if we do not give up and remain diligent it will pay off. I only wish the best for all of the dreamers out there. You can do it 44 Women of Distinction Mary T. Peter PhD Education Special Education Teacher Hale A. Woodruff Elementary School Brooklyn NY I mmigrating to the US from the island of St. Lucia in 1983 with her three sons Mary T. Peter PhD wanted to do whatever means necessary to be able to provide for her children. Growing up Mary lost her father at the age of 15 and as a result it became very difficult for her mother to care for her and her three siblings. Getting a good education a reliable career and never finding herself in a similar situation as her mother once became a priority for her. Accepting an elementary teaching position in St. Lucia in 1971 after completing school Mary caught a lucky break because her mother happened to know the principal very well. Moving to the US 12 years later she accepted her first teaching position in New York as a second grade teacher at a parochial school for four years before moving to Pennsylvania in 1990. There she attended Temple University and earned a BA in Social Work Delivery followed by a MA in Psychoeducation Process. Venturing back to New York in 2000 Mary settled down in Brooklyn and began working at Winthrop Intermediate School as a sixth grade special education teacher for five years while simutaneously working toward her MS in Special Education at Touro College. In 2006 Mary began her career at Hale A. Woodruff Elementary School also in Brooklyn and shortly thereafter completed her Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership with Specializations in School Administration and Special Education at Capella University. Beginning her career at Hale A. Woodruff Elementary School as an Individualized Education (IEP) Teacher in 2006 by 2008 she also began working in Special Education Teacher Support Services for the school. I teach not for the money the recognition nor anything else except for the kids Mary added. It s worth the poor pay long hours and sometimes difficult parents and administrators. Finding ways to reach our students despite the difficulties is what teachers do best. Recently Mary developed an application called The Last Minute Study Guide for Grades 3-5 designed to assist students through tutorials to improve their reading writing and math skills. She recently published a juvenile fiction novel entitled Short Stories for Teens by Teens which is now sold in many bookstores across the US and abroad. She s also written many articles about concerns and issues facing the current state of education. In Mary s down time she mentors college students through the New York City iMentor Program. She s also involved in cultural activities that help promote and preserve Caribbean cultures and is active in the St. Lucia Cultural Organization as their Public Relations Officer. All grown up Mary s sons live in Pennsylvania Delaware and Maryland with their families. Spending quality time with them is a blessing. My satisfaction comes when I see struggling students make academic and social progress Mary said about her 20 year-long career in education. But you have to love children. It takes patience endurance vision and the willingness to learn new strategies in teaching. Interpersonal and intrapersonal skills are the keys to effective communication with you and your peers. 45 Women of Distinction Orphialasertrella Adams-Taylor DDiv Wholesale Baking President Chief Executive Officer Aunt Orphia s Delicious Homemade Pound Cake Company Philadelphia PA I n the spring of 2006 Orphialasertrella Adams-Taylor s decision to become her own boss doing what she does best came to fruition. Known for her exquisite talents in the kitchen when it came to replicating her mother s favorite recipe she formed Aunt Orphia s Delicious Homemade Pound Cake with her two daughters. Now they are in more than 50 locations including several cafes convenient stores supermarket chains and bookstores and they are also sold to catering companies all across the Delaware Valley. While sales continue to grow Orphialasertrella bakes her pound cakes as needed relying solely on supply and demand to make sure that all of her pound cakes are always fresh. Her cakes have a buttery rich flavor with a light texture that is sure to please. In addition to selling them in retail stores she also sells them online for individual sale. Selling anywhere from five to 35 slices or whole cakes they can be gift wrapped and are shipped directly to customers worldwide. Orphialasertrella is also known by many in Philadelphia and the surrounding areas as a pastor of Scriptures of Evangelistic Ministries Inc. as a public speaker anointed author writer gospel poetess community prayer service leader and director of the Ten Commandments Campaign for Children. She holds a Doctorate of Divinity Bachelor of Arts Degree in Biblical Pastoral Studies and is a graduate of Temple University s School of Social Administration. She volunteers her free time as the pastor of Kids For Christ doing weekly bible study and supplying free cake to the group on a weekly basis. She is a charter member of HE IS MINE a prayer gathering group is a poet writer and author of seven inspirational books to date including most recently Sister What Are You Talking Too a book that offers anointed advice for women of all ages. I live by a slogan that I wrote many years ago and I still live by it today Orphialasertrella said which says Believe in God for everything and you will conquer anything . This slogan goes on every pound cake label I produce. Aunt Orphia s Delicious Homemade Pound Cake is a family owned and operated business. In honor of her late mother Orphia Davis-Adams Orphialasertrella works alongside her daughters both of which are Temple University graduates to create this secret pound cake recipe that was passed down to them so long ago. Wearing many hats including including handling the financial marketing and public relations aspects as well as remaining the company s favorite baker each pound cake is made with love in health-certified professional kitchens. Orphialasertrella s mother Orphia would bake these delicious homemade pound cakes for family and friends especially during the holidays and for special occasions. When Orphialasertrella decided to make a business out of her mother s recipe she first introduced and sold them on lunch carts at Temple University s main campus in Philadelphia. 46 Women of Distinction Sabina Leyla Jules Food Founder Chief Executive Officer Motherland Spices Hermitage TN F ood is all about flavor and Sabina Leyla Jules will tell you just how important it is that the foods you eat should not only be delicious but healthy too. After authoring her first book entitled The Motherland Cookbook 105 African Recipes and More...Easy Tasty Healthy But Not Fast... it was time for her to put her money where her mouth was literally. Becoming the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Motherland Spices Sabina began creating foods that were not only tasty but good for you too. It started in 2009. Sabina began blending and bottling organic Motherland seasonings. By 2014 sales were increasing and she began outsourcing production and bottling to a certified company in Nashville Tennessee. Although she still makes her seasoning recipes herself she is able to concentrate on other aspects of the business which is now six years in the making. With Sabina s spices on shelves in three dozen grocery stores across the country her spices are also available online for individual sale. Motherland Spices also known as Mammydoro Seasonings are exotic herbs from the rainforests of Africa and are blended with other herbs from around the world. They contain no additives MSG preservatives salt and all natural and organic. Their motto is Eat Right. Feel Good. Live Well. Sabina dedicates most of her time educating the public about the benefits of using herbs as opposed to additives and excess salt to bring out flavor in food. While most people don t want to be told what to eat and what not to eat Sabina has stayed the course and kept her message simple. People are too quick to purchase something simply because they found it at their corner store or because it was cheap as opposed to mindfully making a healthy choice. More recently in 2009 Sabina founded The Motherland Kitchen a restaurant that served food from the continent of Africa. Her goal was to serve healthy tasty food. Sabina has a BSc in Computer Science is certified in OCP Oracle Database Administration and is also certified in Food Nutrition and Wellness. She is a member of National Association of Business Women and her alma mater Lourdes Ex-Students Association which has been in existence for more than 40 years. She enjoys spending time with her grandchildren. Sabina has one daughter a son-in-law and two grandsons who live in North Carolina who she loves spending time with. If the saying you are what you eat is anything to go by then we must be conscience of what we eat and how we cook our food. It may not be the food itself that is the problem but additives and the MSG added to it Sabina explained whose background as a former chef and knowledge of the medicinal aspects of herbs has greatly benefited her in the quest to put together herbs that are suitable for various types of dishes. Food is our bodies medicine therefore whatever is presented to the public should be something that will heal not hurt. 47 Women of Distinction Dr. Wakeena S. Nolan Healthcare Education and Training Electronic Medical Records Training Director - Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center 48 Winston-Salem NC Women of Distinction fter serving as a Transportation Captain with the United States Army Dr. Wakeena S. Nolan moved on to a career in healthcare in 2004. She had studied biology and medicine in college and earned a Master of Science in Healthcare Administration while in the Army and would later earn a Doctor of Management in Organizational Leadership (specializing in Information Systems and Technology in 2011). A I realized how the shift in healthcare and patient safety is impacted by the implementation of electronic medical record systems. There are plenty of opportunities for process improvement within this industry and the priority of patient care and safety is what I keep in the forefront of my mind as the training delivered to our clinicians is the knowledge needed for them to work at their highest efficiency. Dr. Nolan is currently the Training Director for a team of 23 training healthcare system experts and reports to Chief Nursing Officer Cathleen Wheatley at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. I create partnerships with our business operational stakeholders to discuss and coordinate customized training programs for our end users. In 2011 Dr. Nolan published a phenomenological study of nurse computerized provider order entry knowledge integration in a patient care setting which can be found at http gradworks. 37 08 3708590.html. Throughout her 13-year career Dr. Nolan s leadership has been inspired by the leaders she s had. Among them are her former leaders Mr. Layne Reading and Ms. Terri Stockton. Additionally her academic and personal mentor advisors are Dr. Herman Franklin and his wife Mrs. Franklin. When away from Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center Dr. Nolan serves as the Public Relations Officer for the Mercury Toastmasters in Winston Salem NC. She also enjoys spending time with family and loved ones working out volunteering with community organizations and fellowshipping with her sorority sisters of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. Additionally Dr. Nolan simultaneously fulfills her business and fashion passions through promoting her Traci Lynn jewelry business (http www. wakeenanolan). Her initial love for service was born over 20 years ago where she developed and led a community-service group of young women under direction of her advisor and mentor Dr. Gwendolyn Allen. Dr. Nolan has a heart to serve and inspire young women. She encourages them to never lose sight of their dreams develop a plan of action for attaining goals persevere through challenges and apply lessons learned as opportunities arise. Dr. Nolan has never quit or given up on her dreams. Once I birth an idea I write it down meditate pray about it and then I make it happen. She would like to make an impact on the world by creating a model for young women who have lost hope and lack selfconfidence by touching their lives with her stories of overcoming challenges and encouraging them with her community and professional work. I always wanted to work in the healthcare industry and after realizing that I wouldn t have the opportunity to serve in that capacity in the military I made the decision to take a leap of faith and enter the healthcare industry as a civilian. Dr. Nolan was promoted quickly after plunging into several healthcare administration roles such as Admission Disposition Clerk Home Healthcare Medical Records System Administrator Patient Administration Specialist and HIPAA Compliance Manager. In 2005 she became a consultant which exposed her to Electronic Medical Record systems training. Dr. Nolan trained to become an expert in Health Information Management Systems trainer for three years and obtained her certification in two of the clinical systems for Epic (Epic Ambulatory and Epic ASAP). 49 Women of Distinction WDM Women of Distinction Team Marissa Bacchi EDITOR-IN-CHIEF DIRECTOR OF CLIENT RELATIONS LAYOUT GRAPHIC DESIGN EDITORIAL COORDINATOR SELECTION COMMITTEE SELECTION COMMITTEE SELECTION COMMITTEE SELECTION COMMITTEE SELECTION COMMITTEE SELECTION COMMITTEE SELECTION COMMITTEE Anne Silar Helene K. Jennifer Hardy Jill Mongonia Donna Davis Simone Goodall EDITOR Kimberly Diehl Roni Gates Holli M. Narvaez HEAD WRITER Rebecca Valuch Steven Prescott Felix Pons WRITER Cyndi Murray Women of Distinction 560 Broadhollow Road Ste. 310 Melville NY 11747 Phone (631) 465-9024 Fax (631) 465-9035 Norma J. Dorey Beauty - Salon and Spa President Chief Executive Officer of Changes City Spa Dr. Wakeena S. Nolan Healthcare Education and Training Electronic Medical Records 52 Training Director - Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center Women of Distinction