C4W Member Profile: Robin Giangrande

What is your profession? I am a Medical Billing Advocate, helping individuals and business control the cost of health care with specialized services and results-oriented strategies.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? We have 3 dogs, 3 cats and 3 sugar gliders, so our pets keep us busy and smiling. I love to read (mainly fiction) and sew (inspired by Project Runway) and confess to watching way too much television.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? I have been an individual member for a couple of years and joined as a business member last year.

What inspired you to become a member? I saw the organization mentioned in the Post & Courier and looked up the website. The array of resources and programs made membership a “no-brainer.”

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? Where do I begin? It has had a tremendous impact, both personally and professionally. I have learned how to effectively network and have met interesting and inspiring women. The most profound outcome was after attending a Center for Women event on “Women and Philanthropy.” I asked a question about how a woman goes about becoming a member of a Board of Directors. Jennet Alterman answered simply, “…just ask.” Well, about two weeks later, at a Chamber of Commerce event, I met a woman on the board of Carolina Canines for Service, Inc., asked, and now am on the Board of Directors of this wonderful organization that trains service dogs for placement with disabled veterans and civilians. Lessons. Friends. Relationships.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you? I have been interested in women’s issues since the early 70’s. It has been a challenge to become my authentic self in the face of all the obstacles to success and equality that persevere in our society and culture. However, 40 years later, I think I’m finally “getting it.”

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? Be true to yourself. Be authentic. Don’t let economic, cultural or political issues or messages dissuade you from being true to your core. Be open to new ideas but do not be swayed by propaganda.  Success will follow you in your sure and certain footsteps. Don’t check your common sense at the door.

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