Archive for June, 2011

C4W Member Profile: Megan Epting

June 29, 2011

What is your profession?  Hairstylist/ salon owner at Fix Salon Studio.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career?  I love to watch movies, read, be creative, and I enjoy great food.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? I believe 2 years.

What inspired you to become a member? I wanted to get involved in the community and also meet new and interesting people.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? The Center for Women has helped me grow my business, from the Women in Business Conference to networking opportunities and classes on marketing.  It is a great organization for any woman to join.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you?  Being a woman in today’s modern world is tough because we have to strive to be successful and innovative, but we still want a home life as well.  It’s all about balance.  You can have it all, but not always at the same time.

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? Stay positive, when one door closes another one opens.  When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.  Also find a mentor.

C4W Member Profile: Kerri Papajohn

June 24, 2011

What is your profession? Marketing Director for a sealant wholesaler that supplies products to over 300 Distribution Centers that service over 40,000 retail stores nationwide.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? I was invited to join the expert panel of women of AskPatty.com.  I enjoy answering questions nationwide from women who trust a female opinion on their cars.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? Under a year.

What inspired you to become a member? The idea was initiated by a friend.  Though, I was “inspired” by the rewarding experience of helping women through Ask Patty.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? Being affiliated with programs that support ongoing efforts to help others, in return, impacts me.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you?  I work day-to-day as the only woman in an averaged size US company.  If you have an open mind to learn about those un-girly fields (like auto) then you may find a new dream job.

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? Women wouldn’t say, “there is a light at the end of the tunnel” if no one ever made it to the end 🙂

C4W Member Profile: Jessica Shields Flowers, M.Ed.

June 22, 2011

What is your profession? Early Childhood Education specialist / www.RippleEffect.us

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? I share my love of history and travel with my seven year old grandson. I also enjoy being a part of the Folly
Beach Turtle Team. Biking is a love! Living in the low country is a joy!

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? Since 2008

What inspired you to become a member? The opportunity to connect with women with different careers believing that we are all making a difference.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? It has allowed me to stayed connected to what is happening across Charleston.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you? Just learning how to live my life has been a true gift. Acceptance, breathing and gratitude are at the core of who I am.

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? I believe that focusing on what you want instead of focusing on what you don’t want is critical. Living in the present moment encourages me to stay present when I am working with teachers and parents.

C4W Member Profile: Terry Haas

June 17, 2011

What is your profession? Real Estate Expert/Television Host

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? Being a mom to my 2 boys, traveling with my husband and playing SCRABBLE

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? Almost 4 years

What inspired you to become a member?  I was new to the area and looking for a philanthropic networking group that would challenge me to be a better woman, business owner and support the community.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you?  Continues to show me the power that women have in the community as individuals and when we join forces, we are unstoppable! I have met some of the most amazing people who have hearts of gold and are making a true difference in the lives of women.
What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? The balancing act that women do is truly mind blowing. We wear so many hats, wife, mother, teacher, daughter, business professional and the list goes on and on. Find your passion in life, whatever it is, and RUN WITH IT!!! Take the idea, brainstorm with smart people that you trust and go for it. If you talk to enough people, are honest and have FUN with it—it will happen.

C4W Member Profile: Claire Gibbons

June 15, 2011

What is your profession? Director of Marketing Communications for the Charleston Regional Development Alliance.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? I’m a voracious reader and a big supporter of the Public Library. I love great storytelling in movies, books and of course, from people – I want to be transported. How to charm me? Tell me a great story. I have serious Wanderlust … I want to see and experience places across the world like: Egypt, an African safari, go Mach 2 through Sydney Harbor, zip line in Costa Rica, and laze in the Seychelles. I love college basketball, GO TAR HEELS! And next to the Oscars, March Madness is my favorite TV time.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? Six years – since I moved to Charleston in 2005.

What inspired you to become a member? The C4W is THE central resource for women in business in Charleston. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, an executive or just starting your career – the C4W has the resources and information you need.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? Profound – I’ve made many friends, formed alliances and business relationships, and navigated the changes in my career all thanks to the Center for Women.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you? Sore feet from cute heels?… I see the need for women to cultivate, mentor and support younger women to grow into leadership roles. Conversely, I have little patience for women who aren’t thoughtful about their place in this world and who aren’t seeking opportunities to make a difference and share their voices.

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? I turn to wiser sages. I keep this Aristotle quote on my desk: “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” “Do all you can with what you have, in the time you have, in the place you are. – Nkosi Johnson. And from Jedi Master Yoda, “Do or do not. There is no try.”

May the force be with you, ladies!

C4W Member Profile: Sharon Becker, LISW, ACSW

June 10, 2011

What is your profession? I am a clinical social worker in private practice in Mt. Pleasant specializing in individual, couples, family therapy and groups for women. My specific areas of expertise are in Substance Abuse, Family Systems and Women’s Groups.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? I love spending time with my husband and sons whenever I can now that my children are grown. Enjoy being outdoors, running, riding my bicycle and hiking, cooking (though I am a novice so it is more like Chemistry 101 Cooking), reading and, all of the above, when we are at our cabin in N.C.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? Fifteen years

What inspired you to become a member? I joined immediately after learning about the Center for Women. It was an organization that provided excellent training, workshops, etc at affordable cost.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? Every program and workshop has always been a great learning opportunity, inspirational and energizing. Connecting with other women, professionally and socially, provided the support and forum for my moving forward professionally. Jennet Robinson Alterman is an amazing woman, leader and organizer who has provided personal support, guidance and networking suggestions throughout my career. She respects the individual and, at the same time, understands the bigger picture. My work with the Center providing a women’s group reinforced for me my passion for working with women.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you?  It has taught me to prioritize and, at the same time, multi task, to bring my heart and values into day to day living and to learn from the past and not sweat the small stuff.

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? Never give up or live with regrets. Follow your passions and define success for yourself. Keep remembering it is the process not the outcome that matters in the end.

* Celebrating the Journey: Women in Transition — Support Group Special for CENTER FOR WOMEN MEMBERS: $95! Celebrating the Journey is a 6-week support group designed for women in transition. Whether you are in the midst of a life stage change, familial or professional change, relocation, relationship transition etc., the group goal is to help participants find new ways to make the process of transition into one of transformation. Contact Sharon Becker at 843-884-0887 for more information and to register for the Journey.

C4W Board President Profile: Shari Stauch

June 8, 2011

What is your profession? CEO of Shark Marketing Co., a PR/Marketing/Social Media team that specializes in working with writers to increase their platforms and create bigger audiences for their words.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? Spending time with fantastic family, movies, reading, writing, traveling, learning.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? Since 2005 and will be for life!

What inspired you to become a member? I was involved as a mentor in a book project (You Can Do It, conceived of by United Flight 93 heroine Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolas). Chronicle Books wanted to do book-signing events using mentors from the book and C4W stepped up to host an amazing event! I was humbled… and hooked; I wanted to be part of this group’s infectious enthusiasm and started attending programs, and soon after became a proud board member.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? I’ve made great friends and empowering connections and have been consistently inspired by fellow C4W members and the amazing staff behind the scenes. The attitude and atmosphere of members and at every event is positive, powerful, passionate and FUN!

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you? Being female wasn’t much of a factor growing up in a big Chicago family – we were judged more based on whether we were productive people. Now, being a woman among so many awesome women rocks! I’ve been fortunate to encounter very little gender bias in my life/career, and what little I did encounter was easy to overcome (being underestimated can be a tool, too, you know!)

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? 

1. Self Reliance: YOU are your best untapped resource — know it and own it (and give yourself credit for every little milestone!)

2. Set big goals: Have an end-game in your sights at all times, but then enjoy the process. It’s not all about the destination — we need to have just as much fun getting there. When I look back now on building our business, it’s the quirky stuff that happened in between that truly is most memorable.

3. Laugh: On those days when you want to pull out all your hair or curl up in the fetal position (we’ve all had plenty) take a time out, shut off the phone/email, watch a funny movie and gain your perspective back. It really does always get better if we let it.

C4W Member Profile: Cheryl Smithem

June 3, 2011

What is your profession? Marketing, public relations, communications consultant to small businesses and entrepreneurs with Charleston PR and Design, LLC.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? Bird watching, singing along with my husband Bill when he plays his guitar, reading novels authored by Southern women, cooking for family and friends, drinking good wine and visiting with friends, and the occasional paddle when I can wrangle a canoe.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? I’ve been a member for a total of 3 years, with a bit of interruption in there…

What inspired you to become a member? The C4W has been on my radar since it first opened on Mary Street. I’ve observed the growth and celebrated the organization’s maturity and feel it’s important to our community at large to have an organization that assists women in every area of life.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? The C4W has helped me grow my business. And The Center for Women has provided a place for many of my close friends to demonstrate their leadership; and it has provided me with opportunities to share my knowledge with other women through being a presenter at Brown Bag Lunches.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you? I’ve lived through the times when women were not considered capable to be business leaders to today when no one blinks to meet a woman CEO. I’ve experienced sexual harassment in the workplace as a teen, I’ve been asked to make coffee by a man (who was perfectly capable of making his own coffee).  I’ve been mentored, befriended and taught by some of the most talented, brilliant women and feel an honor-bound sense to pay-it-forward. I celebrate being a woman, because despite some lingering glass ceilings, I love being female!

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? My personal philosophy is “Show up and do the work.” Success comes to those who are courageous, curious, supportive and determined. If you combine that with these three qualities, you’ll prosper. However, realize that what prosper and success are to you may be different from how others define those states. Share your connections. Be comfortable in your own skin. Be grateful, and show it! Tell people what their assistance, leadership or care means to you everyday.

C4W Member Profile: Marie-Louise Moreto

June 1, 2011

What is your profession? I am a certified fashion/image consultant and Owner/President MLM Personal Development, an image consulting  company specializing  in non-verbal and interpersonal communication skills.  My goal is to  combine sociological theory, communication theory and theatre techniques to help individuals become better communicators.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? Outside of my career I enjoy designing masques and collages and attending classical concerts.  I also enjoy donning an elegant hat and having lunch with my sister HatLadies.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? I’ve been a member about  3 or 4 years.

What inspired you to become a member? What inspired me to become a member and retain my membership are the programs and events.  I also enjoy meeting other professional women in a non-competitive, sharing  environment.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? The women I have met at the Center for Women have made me realize how far we have come from the old stereotypes.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you? I grew up with two older brothers and went to an all girl’s school from kindergarten to the 10th grade, so I didn’t learn the feminine communication skills most adolescence girls learn.  When I transferred to a co-ed public high school in the 11th grade, I was consistently told by other girls “you think like a guy”.  I was never sure if that was a compliment or an insult.  Before becoming an image coach, I worked in male dominated fields of lighting design and audio/visual.  I never found communicating with male co-workers a challenge.  The challenge was to be better than my male co-workers in order to be respected and advance.  I believe that too much is made of the differences between male and female communication styles; to the point that it has become a self-fulfilling prophecy.  Communication styles are based on many things, socioeconomic conditions, geographic area, level of education, conditioning and perceived expectations, but not on biology.

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy? I would advise making career decisions based on a realistic assessment of your skills and abilities, but do not be afraid to push the envelope.  Listen to your heart.  Too many individuals have risen up the career ladder only to discover they don’t like that career or the work environment that they have worked so hard to succeed in.  The largest portion of our adult lives will be spent in the workplace and we will be working longer than previous generations.  If you enjoy the work you do, you will be successful.


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