Page 1

Don’t miss the Women of Excellence Reunion and supplement inside! See page 23.

Making Your Workplace



Ramp Up

That Job Search with these helpful tips

Leave the Office Behind Tips to help you unwind

Do You Know How to


Don’t Like Your Boss?

Tips From the Top can help

Sandra Fox VP of Technology Operations, CHA

Private Rooms and Baths…Comfortable Surroundings…

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Publisher George Hearst III Editorial Janet Reynolds, Executive Editor Brianna Snyder, Associate Editor Rebecca Haynes, Contributing Editor Genevieve Scarano, Editorial Intern Design Tony Pallone, Design Director Colleen Ingerto, Emily Jahn, Designers Contributing Writers Kristi Barlette, Melissa Fiorenza, Anna Zernone Giorgi, Silvia Meder Lilly, Stacey Morris, Traci Neal, Anne Saile, Cari Scribner Contributing Photographers Colleen Ingerto, Emily Jahn, Suzanne Kawola, Tyler Murphy Sales Kurt Vantosky, Sr. Vice President, Sales & Marketing Kathleen Hallion, Vice President, Advertising Tom Eason, Manager, Display Advertising Michael-Anne Piccolo, Retail Sales Manager Jeff Kiley, Magazine Sales Manager Circulation Todd Peterson, Vice President, Circulation Dan Denault, Home Delivery Manager Business Ray Koupal, Chief Financial Officer Paul Block, Executive Producer Women@Work Advisory Board: Anne Saile†, chair; Marri Aviza†, Kristen Berdar†, Debra Best†, Nancy Carey-Cassidy†, Andrea Crisafulli-Russo†, Kathleen Godfrey†, Ann Hughes†, Theresa Marangas†, Frances O’Rourke, Lydia Rollins†, Curran Streett†, Joella Viscusi, Karen Webley, Kirsten Wynn †

Advisory Board founding members

Capital Region Women@Work is published six times per year. If you are interested in receiving home delivery of Capital Region Women@Work magazine, please call (518) 454-5768 or visit capregionwomenatwork. com. For advertising information, please call (518) 454-5358. Capital Region Women@Work is published by Capital Newspapers and Times Union 645 Albany Shaker Road, Albany, NY 12212 518.454.5694 The entire contents of this magazine are copyright 2013 by Capital Newspapers. No portion may be reproduced in any means without written permission of the publisher. Capital Newspapers is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Hearst Corporation.




Providing legal counsel for the life and work issues of professional women throughout the Capital District

April M. Dalbec: Matrimonial, Personal Injury & Criminal Law

Amy S. O’Connor: Trusts, Estates & Elder Law

Michelle L. Haskin: Matrimonial & Family Law

An experienced litigation attorney focusing on matrimonial and family court matters, plaintiff’s personal injury cases, and criminal defense including misdemeanors and felonies. Call (518) 447-3373.

Practices in all aspects of Trusts and Estates Law and Elder Law, including probate and administration of estates and trusts, irrevocable trusts, Wills, Health Care Proxies, Livings Wills, and Powers of Attorney. Call (518) 447-3335.

Practices exclusively in matrimonial and family law, concentrating on negotiating and litigating divorce, separation, premarital agreements, property divisions, child support, spousal support, custody, and adoption. Call (518) 447-3383.

McNamee, Lochner, Titus & Williams, P.C. is a full service law firm. We are dedicated to providing effective and creative solutions to the legal issues of working women through multiple practice areas that serve the full spectrum of legal needs. For the professional woman who may be encountering the complexities of life decisions, from buying a home, planning estates and establishing trusts, to matrimonial, custody and elder law issues, our attorneys provide thoughtful and experienced counsel. For all Women-owned businesses, large and small, we provide legal counsel in transactional, contractual, regulatory compliance, and planning matters. From forming a business entity and addressing employment and labor issues to succession planning and exit strategies, McNamee, Lochner, Titus & Williams provides the legal services professional women require. A Tradition of Legal Excellence With more than thirty attorneys and a large support staff, we possess the depth and diversity to deliver proficient advice, support business decisions, and formulate resourceful and innovative solutions to the legal issues of professional women.

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Main Office: 677 Broadway, Albany, NY (518) 447-3200 Saratoga County Office: 646 Plank Rd., Suite 206 • Clifton Park, NY • (518) 383-9200 •

Contents November/December 2013


@ WORK 10 Bitstream Business tidbits for all

15 Tips from the Top Learning to get along

16 Lady of Tech Sandra Fox wants to recruit more women into IT

19 I Did It Susan Novotny on her life selling books

23 Women of Excellence Reunion Read about their top career moments

53 Ramp Up Your Job Search Give your job search a boost with these smart strategies from the pros

56 True Colors The importance of accepting all kinds of people in the workplace

60 Global Initiatives Saving the world, one potluck at a time

74 The Last Word How do you respond when you don’t get that big promotion?

@ HOME 63 Moms@Work You can’t always get what you want

64 Meals on the Go Rob Gavel brings Provençal flavor to his cooking

68 How to Unwind Tips for making sure what happens at the office stays at the office

70 Getting Away Escaping to Key West, Fla.

58 Don’t Wait! Delegate! Savvy managers know when — and how — to let go

Is your company in this issue? Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber................23 Athos Restaurant...........................................64 The Book House of Stuyvesant.......................19 Buzz Media Solutions.....................................56 Capital Region Theological Center.................74 Career Choice.................................................52 Career Development Center at Skidmore College.......................................52 Clough Harbour & Associates ........................16 Delaney Vero, PLLC.........................................74 Dining for Women..........................................60 Integrated Management and Sales Consulting..................................58 Linium Staffing ..............................................52 The Little Book House....................................19 Market Block Books.........................................19 Outspoken Media...........................................74 Pinnacle Human Resources, LLC.....................74 Pride Center of the Capital Region.................56 Saile Group, LLC.............................................58 Sargent and Blais Personnel Services,Inc........52 Some Girls Boutique�������������������������������������68 St. Peter’s Health Partners�����������������������������68 The Troy Book Makers....................................19 Walrath Recruiting Inc. ..................................52

I knew my experience and my drive would take me to a whole new level.

  ON THE COVER: Sandra Fox, VP of technology operations, CHA. Photo by Suzanne Kawola.

6 | women@work



Thursday, November 7, 2013 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Hilton Garden Inn, Troy

Honoring Corey Jamison as the Woman of the Year and other outstanding women in the Capital Region

The Resourceful Women Awards were established in 2000 to recognize and honor those whose community and professional pursuits advance the empowerment of women, a core element of the YWCA mission.

Honorary Committee and General Tickets are still available.

Contact Malissa Pilette-McClenon at or call 518.274.7100.

The YWCA of the Greater Capital Region, Inc. is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all. | 21 First Street, Troy, NY 12180 | Phone: (518) 274-7100 | Fax: (518) 274-2572


Delegate? You Bet! I

’m a fairly driven person, so for much of my younger life I was often the person who volunteered to lead a project in school or work. My theory? I wanted it to go well and the only person I could trust to really make sure that happened was me. I needed to control the process. Not surprisingly, what happened quickly is that I was the go-to leader of projects. The people who were more than happy to sit by as I did the lion’s share of work — and get credit for a job well done that they had little part in — had it easy, and the people I reported to didn’t care how the job got done; they just knew if I was in charge, all would be fine. It didn’t take long before I was pretty tired and very overworked.

And then I had an epiphany, one that liberated me. I can — and should — delegate. Doing this not only gives me more time for thinking and strategizing about larger, potentially more creative and revenue-producing, ideas; it also empowers my staff to learn from doing. It is a form of mentoring, and that is something I believe firmly is an important part of my job. Delegating can be scary for someone who likes to be in control. (If my children are reading this right now, they are undoubtedly making a snarky comment.) It means allowing people to fail sometimes so that they can learn from their mistake, and it means allowing people to do a task their way rather than the way I would necessarily do it. But what I’ve found over the years since my epiphany is that most workers are thrilled to have the autonomy, that they want to succeed and show me they can do whatever the task is, and that they are grateful for the chance to grow. It has the potential to be that proverbial win-win we all dream about. We’ve got a story about this on page 58 that might help you take the leap to becoming a super delegator.

 Check out our Delegating story on page 58.

8 | women@work

Janet Reynolds Executive Editor


his issue also marks a first for Women@Work: We are joining the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce in celebrating the first Women of Excellence Reunion. The soirée is on Nov. 13 at the Desmond, and we certainly hope to see you there. But in the meantime, please be sure to check out our reunion supplement on page 23. There you can read summaries from many of the women who have won Women of Excellence Awards over the years. Those who responded share a career moment of which they’re most proud. The stories are impressive and inspirational, and I’m fairly sure many of these women are good delegators too. Just another reason to dole out duties so you can take on bigger tasks. We hope you’ll join us at the celebration Nov. 13. If you haven’t registered yet, visit, or you can call 518-431-1400.  W 


for these upcoming WID programs in 2013-14 n More Than a Mission Statement: Crafting Compelling Fundraising Messages Presented by Diane Cameron, Published Author and Director of Development, Unity House December 11 – Lunch Program 12:30 – 2:00 PM, Century House, Latham Members $30/Non-members $40

n Tips & Tricks for Engaging Corporate Sponsors February 11 – Brown Bag Lunch 12:30 – 2:00 PM, Addictions Care Center of Albany Exclusive for WID Members, $5

n Special Event: Being Donor-Centered in Changing Times: How to Use Donor Trends and New Technologies to Raise More Profit Presented by Penelope Burk, Nationally-Renowned Author March 13 – Networking Program & Cocktail Hour 3:00 – 6:00 PM, Century House, Latham Members $30/Non-members $40

n WID-Tini Ladies Night Out: Member Appreciation and Welcome to New and Future Members

May 8 – Membership/Networking Event & Cocktail Hour 5:30 – 7:30 PM, Glennpeter Jewelers Diamond Centre, Albany Free event!

n Circuit Training for Development Professionals June 10 – Breakfast Program Century House, Latham, 8:00 – 10:00 AM Members $20/Non-members $35

Women in Development of Northeastern New York (WIDNENY) is an association of women in the fields of development, advancement, and related professions. Our members are committed to helping women, both professional and volunteer, advance within the field through educational programs, networking, and mentoring opportunities. Annual membership is $60.

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Programs that will spark creativity, passion, and new ideas for what we bring to our development careers

BITSTREAM Compiled by Brianna Snyder and Genevieve Scarano


Controls A

source: ww13fbprivacy

Pitch Perfect N

o matter what you’re pitching — or whom you’re pitching it to — presenting an idea can be intimidating. ForbesWoman offers these helpful tips for the perfect pitch: Feel the room. “Women are perceptive, listen and have emotional intelligence,” writes ForbesWoman’s Geri Stengel. They know how to change things up on the fly. Use that to skim over parts of your presentation that seem less interesting to your listeners. Don’t fall into the uptalk trap. “When women are nervous, they make statements sound like questions,” Stengel writes. Be on guard for this. Be fearless. Thoughtfulness is good, but aggression can be even better. Don’t

10 | women@work

be apologetic when presenting. The person you’re pitching to is lucky to have your creative genius. Own your numbers. Know everything about the topic you’re speaking on. De-personalize. Don’t add personal anecdotes and stay away from “me” and “I” pronouns. Answer questions. Don’t be defensive. Be very informative. ASK questions. Show that you’re interested not just in feedback but in idea development in general. Connect with the people you’re talking to. Build a relationship. source: ww13presentation

Photos: GettyImages. Facebook Controls, Jamie Grill; Pitch Perfect, Robert Daly; On the Fence, Katrina Wittkamp.

ccording to the New York Times, Facebook’s privacy issues just got more complicated. The company now has broadened its settings to give permission to corporations to use personal profiles for advertisement purposes. Your profile can now also be found by almost anyone (but what they see is up to you). When working, remember to keep all Facebook content with a fair balance of professional and personal. (You never know who may have access to your profile.)

On the Fence E

verybody’s situation is different. And some moms aren’t sure if they’re ready or willing to go back into the workforce after they’ve had children. If you’re one of the women on the fence, offers these reasons to get back out there: happier marriages and financial independence. You’ll also secure future earnings and create more independent kids. The career and lifestyle blog quotes expert Michele Borba: “If we keep hovering, we will rob our kids of self-reliance.” source:

If a woman never lets herself go, how will she ever know how far she might have got?

9 to 5


By Jeanne A. Benas | 11

BITSTREAM continued from page 11

The Sound of Music M

any of us have heard of the Mozart effect. That’s the theory that certain kinds of music — especially works by Mozart — boost the listener’s ability to reason, solve problems, focus and be productive. In a study of this theory, the University of Illinois found that listening to music increased work output by 6.3 percent. However, another study found that many of its subjects were more productive when not listening to anything. So it turns out that, like

everything, it depends on how your brain works. If you’re a believer in the Mozart effect, suggests these sounds for various tasks: Classical: Baroque classical music is said to have “mind-boosting effects.” Ambient/techno/”chillout”: This genre keeps your brain “engaged at a lower, subconscious level,” Lifehacker reports. Ambient and chillout music is designed

to relax the mind and allow it to roam, “while providing just enough stimulation to register as inspiration.” Noise: Not a music person, but annoyed by chatty coworkers? Try a noise generator that lets you choose ongoing tracks of white, pink, brown or red noise. This is called “sound masking,” and second-best to nothing if you’re easily distracted by music. source:

Women-owned firms over the past 16 years

 Over 8.6 million businesses are women-owned in the U.S. Those businesses generate over $1.3 trillion in revenue, as of 2013  Women-owned businesses employ nearly 7.8 million people

27% Ohio 23% Iowa

84% Nevada 27% Kansas

 The number of businesses owned by women has increased by 59 percent since 1997. source: ww13WBO

12 | women@work

Lowest growth

Fastest growth

91% North Carolina Up 112% Georgia

93% Texas 12% Alaska

23% West Virginia

94% Louisiana

Photos: GettyImages. Sound of Music, Tuan Tran; Wellness for Everyone, Jordan Siemens.

Did You Know?


One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.


— MALALA YOUSAFZAI, women’s-rights activist


for Everyone P

resident of Kinema Fitness and New York Times writer Joshua Love reports in Forbes that corporate wellness is good for employees and business. It’s important, he writes, that companies work together to achieve their goals and improve employee wellness. Here are a few of his insights: A higher level of awareness is essential to success. Because of “higher stress, longer work days and constant multitasking, it is more difficult to find the time to act on wellness goals,� Love writes. “Creating an on-site wellness program is important because the majority of an employee’s time is spent at the workplace.� Many chronic diseases are preventable. “The only way to prevent disease is with actionable steps to halt progression. When old habits are years in the making, you cannot expect behavior to change to happen overnight. However, when a person is able to commit mentally, emotionally and socially and on a conscience level, progress is possible.� Be creative. “Corporate wellness shouldn’t be boring.� Corporate wellness is a complex, long-term play. “A successful program takes time and constantly evolves so it can be integrated into the fabric of the company’s culture. Corporate wellness is not just one solution. It is the culmination of many solutions that work together under one strategy.� source:


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TIPS FROM THE TOP Anne Saile is an award winning CEO, entrepreneur, executive coach, author and owner of the Saile Group LLC, a leadership and business consulting company. For more information, visit Photo by Andrea Uvanni.

Learning to

Get Along By Anne Saile


ave you ever found yourself in a job that you knew you could be great at if it weren’t for your boss? Becoming too consumed with all of the shortcomings of an ineffective boss can sometimes take someone from being a very talented, creative employee to someone who has mentally checked out of her job and is simply showing up to collect a paycheck. So what should we do when we find ourselves working for a boss who is difficult? Start by assessing whether or not his behavior is a passing thing or if it has been a problem from the day you started working for him. If he has been consistently at odds with what you think is effective management, chances are he’s not going to change. As someone said to me recently, you can’t change the spots on a leopard. Accept the fact that, in all likelihood, he won’t change. I know this can be a hard thing to come to grips with – but it’s almost always true. Next, determine what you can do to control your environment. Can you change supervisors by asking to work in a different department? Is it possible to alter your work hours so that you are not constantly interacting with the difficult person? This certainly won’t solve the problem but it will give you some space and relieve a little of the stress. If you can’t control your environment, remember the one thing that you have

complete control over is yourself and how you react to situations. Maybe some of these tips will work for you:

phrases such as “I think” or “I feel,” and instead say “I’m sure” or “I believe.”

1· Describe the situation to a trusted

your company, or your work situation to anyone but a trusted mentor or adviser. As appealing as it might be, don’t talk about how bad your boss is to his supervisor or to your coworkers. It might make you feel better in the short term, but it can backfire quickly and make you look like a troublemaker.

adviser (be certain it’s not another employee in the same company). Ask for honest feedback and suggestions about how your approach or attitude might be making the situation worse. For example, does the boss want only the bottom line but you feel it’s important to provide detailed explanations? Could the boss be getting stressed because the two of you have completely different communication styles?

2· See if you can identify the warning

signs for when your boss begins to act the most difficult. Is there a pattern to the behavior? If so, work to find a solution that will help you avoid your boss’s triggers. I used to have a boss who was consistently unpleasant on Mondays. I learned to never schedule a meeting with him at the beginning of the week.

3· Think about what your boss would

say if he described the challenges he has. Sometimes taking a serious look at how the other person might be feeling can give us an entirely new way of looking at the situation.

4· Stay confident. Don’t become

discouraged. Allowing someone else’s bad behavior to derail your career is giving up on yourself. Watch your language and stay strong and positive. When meeting with your boss avoid

5· Avoid speaking badly about your boss,

6· Be sure you keep a list of the projects

you’ve done well and update it at least twice a month. This will help you keep your skills and abilities in the top of your mind, and keep you focused on continuing to hone them. While you may not be able to control the ineffective boss, you are responsible for your future and for presenting yourself as successful.

7· Be a model employee. Work to meet

all of the requirements of your job description and focus on understanding the principles and protocols for your company. Not only will it keep your mind on the tasks at hand, but it will also help you avoid giving your boss any reason to find fault with your work.

8· Finally, keep your eye on the skills

you have and work towards bringing your vision of a perfect job to reality. Life is too short to spend it being unhappy at work. If you really feel your situation can’t be changed, spend your energy looking for a new position where you’ll be appreciated.  W | 15


Lady of


There’s a shortage of women in STEM, and Sandra Fox wants to change that By Brianna Snyder  |  Photo by Suzanne Kawola


t’s particularly hard these days for women in science, technology, engineering and math, the workforce commonly referred to as STEM. Fewer than 25 percent of STEM positions are held by women, even though women comprise half the U.S. workforce. Sandra Fox can tell you all about that. Fox, who’s vice president of technology operations at the international engineering firm CHA, got into STEM early. She studied computer science at Russell Sage College and was hired as an IT intern at CHA in 1990. That’s before most of us even had an e-mail account. “My family really didn’t have the means to send me to college,” Fox says, “and they were very old-school in their thinking. I remember my dad saying, “Well, you really don’t have to go to college. … Get married and your husband will be the breadwinner and take care of you.” But Fox, who describes herself as “strong-willed,” finished high school knowing she wanted to do something — she just didn’t know what that something was. “I wanted to be in charge of my own fate,” she says. She started a job with the state as a temporary secretary, giving 16 | women@work

herself a year to figure out her goals. She found she loved working with computers — but failed the typing test that would have landed her a permanent job with the state. That’s when she went to school. “I found an interest in computers,” Fox says. “It came to me naturally and I knew

it was a field where I could make money. I knew there’d be opportunities.” Though she’s been with CHA almost her entire career, Fox says her job has changed in many ways. “It was in the computer arena that I could get in at ground level and really grow,” she says,

Top Tips for Success

The Download on

Sandra Fox Title: Vice President of Technology Operations, CHA

• Set GOALS! • Start every day with intention • Know your strengths, but also acknowledge the areas where you are not an expert and fill in those gaps by surrounding yourself with people whose expertise you respect in those areas. • Work hard (make every minute count) • Balance – Time out for enjoyment and rejuvenation • Health – believe if you don’t make time now to take care of yourself now you will have to take time later to deal with illness

Rhinebeck NY 6406 Montgomery St. 845.516.4150

• Knowing how to work with different personalities and what makes people tick • Team building • Collaborative Leadership • Creating a vision together and working toward it • Making sure they always know their value to the organization and how they contribute to the overall success of the firm

People are surprised because I am seen frequently at social and charitable events. I love down time at home.”

Surprising fact about you? “I am a nester/homebody. Especially in fall and winter.

Biggest challenge? Maintaining a healthy work/life balance.

Family: mom, sister, two brothers, one nephew and three nieces

Albany NY Stuyvesant Plaza 1475 Western Ave. 518.512.5240

• Choose positive people for your team — “can do” and willing to learn/diverse interests

Guilty pleasure? “Wine and cheese. I am a big-time foodie with passion for wine and cheese. Love to cook, love dining out and trying out new independently owned restaurants.”

Lives in: Saratoga Springs

Secrets to managing a successful team

What’s your favorite thing about your job? “I think my role has allowed me to have an impact on elevating the role of women in nontraditional careers and encouraging girls in STEM. Including: Making a difference, through mentoring and my community involvement and I’m particularly proud of my work with Girls Inc., SUNY’s Center for Women in Government, and the CNSE Children’s Museum of Science and Technology.”

Age: 44

easy chic

Fab5 photography for Evoke Style by Joann Hoose

“and I knew my experience and my drive would take me to a whole new level. … I’ve been with the company now 23 years, and my position has changed every year and a half, drastically.” At the age of 29, she was asked to join the company’s partnership. She also founded CHA’s technology business, Technology Solutions, which provides everything from IT support to Web and app development. Fox has gone from IT intern working with one other person in a tiny department to VP of tech operations, overseeing a staff of 40. She’s participated in CHA’s massive growth into an international firm with 1,400 employees and 50 offices all over the world. It’s been a fruitful career. “I love tech,” Fox says, but it’s not even her favorite thing about her job. “At the end of the day my favorite part of the job is that I’m in a position to really help others reach their goals. I’ve been able to help women at CHA and in the industry to really elevate their roles within this industry. … I’m very focused on getting young girls and young women interested in STEM. I feel like what I’ve done on those fronts has made a difference.”  W 

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Hooked on Books Susan Novotny on her life selling books By Cari Scribner  |  Photos by Colleen Ingerto


he Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza has everything a great bookstore should have: row upon row of books based on genre (with written recommendations), carpeting, perfect lighting and comfy chairs — the perfect atmosphere for opening a new book and discovering it’s exactly what you want to read. In the back office/storage space, at an unassuming desk in a corner workspace, sits owner Susan Novotny, the driving force behind the independent bookstore. Determined, smart, and appreciative of all the support she’s been given, Novotny

SUSAN NOVOTNY, owner of The Book House and The Little Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza.

is a formidable force keeping bricks and mortar bookstores alive in the face of overwhelming competition by big box stores and the online ordering site that’s stealthily stealing the lion’s share of business. Novotny’s career began when she earned a degree in classical studies/art history from SUNY Albany in the mid-1970s. After graduating, she spent two years working in the college’s bookstore. She then landed

a job as a traveling book salesperson for Simon & Schuster publishers, followed by Putnam/Penguin, peddling upcoming titles directly to booksellers, jobs she held for a total of 10 years. In 1986, two years after her son Alex was born, she left the New York publishing scene and went to work computerizing the inventory at The Book House, buying into the business and finally buying out the business in 1991 after taking out a small | 19


ness loan. The store grew considerably before settling in its larger space in Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany. “I got to know the business from the ground up,” Novotny says. “The trick to a bookstore is having a handle on inventory; profit is always elusive for bookstores.” In the 1990s, Barnes & Noble and Borders swept into town, sweeping 11 other independent bookstores under in its wake. “That started a long, vigorous journey,” Novotny says. “After four or five years it stabilized, but those were tough, combative years.” Lawsuits were lodged against the big box bookstores for antitrust violations stemming from soliciting and receiving books through questionable deals, something that allowed the large stores to deeply discount books from publishers. Novotny was part of the lawsuit, a harbinger of things to come that would once again rock the foundations of the brick and mortar bookstores. Amazon roared into the business of bookselling in 1995, challenging the big box stores and the independent bookstores. “Suddenly, we were in the same boat,” Novotny says. “I firmly believe there’s a place in this world for [independent bookstores]. We are very savvy fighters and not daunted by Internet bloggers who call us ‘dinosaurs.’ We may need to diversify; our bookstore is a place where people can buy a book and half dozen cookies made locally from scratch. We’ll do whatever we need to do to stay viable.” Today, while there are intriguing legal proceedings that Novotny cannot discuss publicly, The Book House, The Little Book House and Market Block Books in Troy, opened in 2004, are alive and well. Novotny launched The Troy Book Makers in Troy seven years ago, her digital book-ondemand business and recently started her own publishing imprint called “Staff Picks Press.” Novotny now employs a staff of 22. Novotny says the strength of her staff is recommending the perfect book for every customer who comes through 20 | women@work

their doors. “Customers tell us the last book they read, and we’re on it in a minute recommending a new one,” Novotny says. “Or a husband comes in and tells us what his wife likes and we find the right book. We’re blessed with a staff of voracious readers who will share their love of books with everyone.” What does the future hold? For Novotny, staying in the business. “I have no plans to sell the business; people don’t go into bookselling for profit,” Novotny says. “I’ll work hard to keep it afloat and keep it going. The joke is they’ll carry me out of here in my coffin.” As for being a woman in business, Novotny has a strong stance on that issue as well. “Don’t think of yourself as a woman launching a business; think of yourself as a human being launching a business,” Novotny says. “I never wake up in the morning wondering how my femininity is going to compromise my success. I’m a feminist, yes! But I’m a human being first.”  W 


Girl Scout

Susan Novotny’s 10 Tips for Success:


On my HONOR , I will try: To serve God and my country,

• Do not lose sight of the ultimate objective; do not let temporary setbacks divert your attention from the end goal.

To HELP PEOPLE at all times, And to live by the Girl Scout Law.


Girl Scout Law

• Trust but verify. • Don’t dwell on the past.

• Treat your staff as if they are your family. Work hard alongside them. • Pray — often. • Thank husband, Keith Roland, often for paying the mortgage and more so I can sell books.

courageous and strong, and

responsible for what I say and do, and to respect myself and others, Respect authority, Use resources wisely,

Make the word a better place, and Be a sister to every Girl Scout. DONATE TODAY

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while, considering pitfalls, drawbacks and alternatives; and if there is no reason to contradict your first instinct, go with it.


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• You can’t afford the luxury of a negative thought.

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• When declining to accept another’s input or suggestion, don’t condemn it harshly. Simply indicate you see the issue or facts from a different perspective or in a different light, and that you disagree. If possible, say something nice about the input. In short, shut up and listen.





Get the Facts on Eating Disorders Eating disorders are disruptive, complex and potentially life-threatening conditions that impact millions of women, men, and children. Yet, despite the prevalence of eating disorders like bulimia, anorexia, and binge eating, only one in 10 people seek and receive treatment. Unfortunately, this can have serious medical consequences. But help is available. Join Albany Med experts, Dr. Sharon Alger-Mayer and Tammy Colley-Ogden for an informative seminar as they discuss the different types of eating disorders, their symptoms and the newer treatments and support available to people suffering with eating disorders today.


COME TO THE FREE SEMINAR TUESDAY, NOV. 12, 2013 | 5–7 PM THE DESMOND, 660 Albany Shaker Rd., Albany

6–7 PM EXPERT SPEAKERS: Sharon Alger-Mayer, MD Associate Professor of Medicine and Medical Director of the Northeast Comprehensive Care Center for Eating Disorders ALBANY MEDICAL CENTER

Tammy Colley-Ogden, Sr. CTRS Senior Recreation Therapist Maudsley Coach Department of Psychiatry, Eating Disorder Team ALBANY MEDICAL CENTER

5-6 PM Networking/Informational Session: Get up-to-date health information by visiting a variety of Albany Medical Center’s informational booths. Light refreshments served.



Must be present to win (value $700)

Get a preview ew of the seminar nar on NewsChannel el 13 with Benita Zahn hn 5 PM on Nov. 8

Seating is limited. Register at Questions, call 518-454-5583

The 2013

Women of Excellence


story begins on page 24

continued from page 23

From the Chamber

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013


he Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber works to be a catalyst for growth and prosperity for its members and the Capital Region by providing leadership, advocacy and services. The regional chamber is made up of 2,200 member businesses and organizations of all types and sizes and from throughout the region who employ 110,000 area residents. The chamber is committed to the economic vitality of the region and actively works with other business organizations, development groups, and federal, state and local governments to ensure the continued growth and viability of our Tech Valley Region. One of the largest and most active business groups the regional chamber has is the Women’s Business Council (WBC). It promotes the full participation

and leadership of women at all levels in the workplace in Tech Valley’s economic development, community and government. Founded in 1986, the WBC develops programs that provide opportunities for women to network and share their expertise with each other and all chamber members and to address the unique challenges and issues of women in business. In addition to monthly meetings featuring various business and educational topics, the WBC hosts annual signature events, including the Women of Excellence Awards Luncheon. For more than 20 years, the Women’s Business Council has recognized women for progression in their careers, involvement in their communities, and accomplishments in their personal and professional lives. The recipients are honored annually at the Women of

Excellence Luncheon. Since the inception of the awards ceremony, our community has had the opportunity to meet and learn about more than 200 women. This truly dynamic group has taken on challenges with purpose and passion. They have achieved success in their professional careers and have dedicated themselves to our community. We have caught up with many of the Women of Excellence we met through the years for an update. We invite you to come and meet many of recipients in person at the Women of Excellence Reunion. Celebrate the Capital Region’s abundance of excellence! This evening of Excellence and networking takes place on November 13th from 5:30-7:00pm at the Desmond Hotel and Conference Center. To register, visit or call 518.431.1400.

Celebrating Past Women of Excellence Winners Dr. Dawn Abbuhl

Year won: 2005 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Director of Psychology, Kids Care Pediatric Services Proudest career moment: I own a technology company and am also a child psychologist. I worked with a child who had a disorder called Selective Mutism. She hadn’t spoken a word outside of her home to anyone ever, didn’t smile or laugh at school. I began working with her when she was in second grade. After intensive therapy, she finally began speaking to her friends and teachers, and eventually to everyone.

Kathryn Allen

Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: President, HMO Conference of New York Proudest career moment: After a career in health care and development, I took two years off and went back to graduate school, this time for an MFA in writing and literature. That combined with my master’s in public health provided me an opportunity to volunteer as a public information officer with Project Hope on a Navy hospital ship. During two tours, I wrote about and photographed medical clinics in Peru, Jamaica and Indonesia. 24 | women@work

Marri Aviza

Year won: 2006 Category won: Excellence in Business (10+ yrs) Position when won: President and CEO, Rumors Day Spa and Hair Salon Proudest career moment: When looking back on my career, it is hard to choose a single moment that defines it all; many have been so meaningful to me. Perhaps none have been as rewarding as the completion of our brand new salon and spa. This venture has allowed us to enhance our guests’ experience and give back to the community in ways we could have never imagined.

Eileen Bagnoli

Year won: 2008 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: Executive Vice President, Pioneer Bank in Troy Proudest career moment: My proudest career moment was bittersweet as well. Upon the death of my predecessor, John Scarchilli, in 2010, I was elected by the Pioneer Bank Board as president and CEO. At the time of my election, I agreed to serve for three years to lead Pioneer as we healed as an organization and during the process of transitioning to Pioneer’s wonderful new leader, Tom Amell. continued on page 26

continued from page 24

Anne Barba

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Year won: 2010 Category won: Emerging Professional Position when won: Associate Professor, Dept. of Neurology, Albany Medical Center Proudest career moment: I’m not sure that I have a “proudest moment.” I’m lucky that I love my work. I work with wonderful, smart, and dedicated people, and I’m part of an amazing team. I’m proud that those wonderful people think that my opinions are important and that I’m worthy to help their patients in difficult times.

Maude Baum

Year won: 2003 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: Artistic Director, eba Dance Theater Proudest career moment: Performing Isadora Duncan Dances for people in Russia. They had not seen their beloved Isadora’s work in 70 years. Also, organizing our Living Circle Ensemble, a community group of people 3-65 years old, both abled and disabled, who love to create and perform in dance and drama.

Kathy Beam

Year won: 1997 Category won: Emerging Executive Position when won: Local Sales Manager, WTEN TV Proudest career moment: My proudest career moment actually occurred over this past fiscal year at WMHT. In my current position as director of corporate support, I am responsible for managing our underwriting department in addition to maintaining and growing a full account list. As a team we finished our fiscal year 12 percent over the prior fiscal year and personally I achieved 127 percent of 2011-12 fiscal year’s list performance.

Amy Bellcourt

Year won: 2001 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: VP of Marketing/Chief Marketing Officer, MVP Health Plan Proudest career moment: I work at SCA, a global consumer goods company based in Sweden. Here, I have many opportunities to travel the world and work with people from many cultures. Often I’m in virtual meetings working collaboratively with colleagues from Germany, Sweden, China and Brazil. I’m most proud that coming from the local area, I have found success in the global business arena.

Roberta Berkowitz

Year won: 2009 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-99 employees) Position when won: President, NAWLEE, Prendo Forensics, LLC, NABA Proudest career moment: I had a dream and now I am living it! I am the proud owner and president of Prendo Forensics, LLC – Certified Woman Owned Forensics Supply and Equipment Company. Prendo Forensics provides training facilities nationwide with the products that they need. We also design hands-on student labs, and speak with business students about their goals, aspirations and career opportunities.

Mary C. Bintz

Year won: 2003 Category won: Emerging Executive/ Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Senior Vice President, Business Financial Services Commercial Division, Fleet Bank Proudest career moment: I have had many proud moments in my 20-year career with Bank of America. The most special ones have occurred when I have been part of a team reaching a collective goal and then celebrating those successes. Working with so many talented and diverse teammates continues to be the best part of my job.

Elizabeth Bishop

Year won: 1996 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: News Anchor, CBS6-WRGB — SBGNET Proudest career moment: I received a special NYS Associated Press Broadcasting Award for my anchoring/reporting on the first anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center. The judges wrote that “Liz Bishop must have been the hardest-working journalist in New York City that day.” It was such an important occasion that I felt honored to have my work acknowledged.

Linda Blumenstock

Year won: 1996 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: Stratton VA Medical Center Proudest career moment: Being able to organize a team of employees to provide emergency housing within our facility for the children living in the Equinox Homeless Shelter when it was flooded and could not be occupied. Many employees poured out their hearts to make our facility meet their needs. It was a proud moment for many. Equinox now has a beautiful new shelter thanks to community support. continued on page 28

26 | women@work

The University at Albany family proudly celebrates the achievements of these past Women of Excellence honorees. Katharine Briar-Lawson Judy Genshaft Karen Hitchcock Linda Krzykowski Nancy Liddle

continued from page 26

Teri Bordenave

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Year won: 2003 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector, 11-74 employees) Position when won: President/ CEO, Girls Incorporated of the Greater Capital Region Proudest career moment: During the 20-plus years I was CEO at Girls Incorporated, each year I witnessed the metamorphosis of the young women graduating and moving on from our programs — a moment of pride for us all!

Bettyjo Bouchey

Year won: 2004 Category won: Emerging Executive/ Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Vericast Director, VersaTrans Solutions, Inc. Proudest career moment: It took a surprising layoff last summer for me to realize I have an identity outside of my employment. It was a difficult time, but now with my current role, knowing who I truly am, regardless of my title, where I live, who I’m with, has not only made me feel more powerful and effective, {but] it changed my relationship with my family dramatically, for the better.

Jill BravermanPanza, MD

Year won: 1999 Category won: Excellence in Business (2-9 yrs.) Position when won: CEO/Owner, Primary Care Internal Medicine Practice Proudest career moment: I have been blessed with several. The first was opening my private medical practice, and I was thrilled when my father gave me my first $20 bill to put on the wall, where it remains today. Being chosen as a Best Doctor in Capital Region Magazine for many years makes me feel appreciated by my peers and patients. And of course being chosen as a Woman of Excellence in Business!

Sara Brenner

Year won: 2012 Category won: Emerging Professional Position when won: Asst. VP, Nanohealth Initiatives, College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering of the University at Albany Proudest career moment: There is a different kind of proud moment in the backdrop of extraordinary events like the WOE award, ones that are rarely seen or talked about, ones that happen discreetly at unexpected times. Those are the moments when students, colleagues and friends tell you how inspirational you are to them, and how much you’ve meant to them along their journey. 28 | women@work

Katharine Briar-Lawson

Year won: 2008 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Dean, School of Social Welfare, University at Albany Proudest career moment: My appointment as Assistant Secretary for Children Youth and Families in Washington State. Leaving my academic post to assume this state role, I oversaw state programs involving child welfare, juvenile justice and parent and child health. This role reshaped my career and my commitment to building new university-agency-community partnerships to address vulnerable individuals, families and communities.

Mary Brizzell

Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: Supervisor, Town of Colonie Proudest career moment: I am proud to have been the first woman to become Supervisor of the Town of Colonie. My greatest pleasure in this position was to meet and work closely with so many residents and businesses in our town. I am most proud of The Crossings, a large passive park where thousands of people walk, run and play every day.

Pamela Sawchuk Brown

Year won: 1995 Category won: Excellence in Business (10 or more yrs.) Position when won: Sawchuk Brown Associates Proudest career moment: When I realized I had founded a successful communications agency at a time when women were an anomaly among business owners. The largest PR agency outside of Manhattan whose work was highly respected for three decades, whose outstanding team of professionals set the standard, and whose culture made community a priority.

Suzanne Brownrigg

Year won: 1992 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: Coordinator of Corporate Programs, Hudson Valley Community College Proudest career moment: In 2012, I received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. This award honors SUNY academic and administrative employees by recognizing consistently superior professional achievement, and encourages their ongoing pursuit of excellence. continued on page 30



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Patricia Bucklin

Year won: 2006 Category won: Excellence in Management (75+ employees) Position when won: Executive Director, New York State Bar Association Proudest career moment: Each time that I have been able to help promote legal reforms, enhance the justice system or assist people with law-related needs, whether through my work with the court system, in the Governor’s office, or in my current role at the State Bar Association.

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Nancy Burton

Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: Comptroller, City of Albany Proudest career moment: Sponsoring the first Common Council resolution (1986) to make discrimination illegal against members of the LGBTQ community in Albany housing and employment. The legislation failed, but provoked public debate on gay rights in Albany, and set the stage for passing a bill in 1991. Becoming the first female City Comptroller in 1994, earning the highest vote total of any candidate in the 1993 citywide races.

JulieAnn Calareso

Year won: 2009 Category won: Emerging Professional Position when won: Associate Attorney, Burke & Casserly, PC Proudest career moment: After winning the Emerging Professional Award in 2009 as a result of transitioning to a career in the law after time in the entertainment industry, I became partner (and the first female partner) in my law firm in 2011. I guess I truly did emerge!

Karen Carpenter-Palumbo

Year won: 2010 Category won: Excellence in Management (100+ employees) Position when won: Commissioner, NYS Office of Alcoholism & Substance Abuse Services Proudest career moment: When I arrived at Vanderheyden 16 months ago, there had been years of financial difficulties, staff layoffs and talk of closing. Now Vanderheyden is celebrating its 180th anniversary and imagines MORE for the future for our children, adults and families. After months of reorganizing, Vanderheyden obtained a better than breakeven financial report for the first time in over seven years!

Gina Castelli

Year won: 2010 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Head Women’s Basketball Coach, Siena College Proudest career moment: My proudest career moment is being recognized as a Woman of Excellence in the Profession. The award encompasses all that really matters to me in coaching and life: giving back!

Lisa Clifford

Year won: 2007 Category won: Excellence in Sales and Marketing Position when won: Senior Vice President, Curan Investment Management Proudest career moment: The opportunity to join Key Private Bank [where I currently work] came unexpectedly and in the depths of the worst financial crisis. I thought carefully about the risk of leaving a successful and fulfilling career with my previous firm. I called a few mentors for advice and just went with my gut instinct that this was the right step. I’ve reaped more success, personally and professionally, than I could’ve imagined in this role.

Sue Commanda

Year won: 2012 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-99 employees) Position when won: CEO, Hudson River Community Credit Union Proudest career moment: In my six years as HRCCU CEO, we’ve doubled in size. My greatest accomplishment must be the 2013 completion of our Corinth Operations Center. As one of HRCCU’s most significant investments in its future growth, I was involved in the decision-making every step of the way. I realized the positive implication of every decision I made, and am proud of the result.

Lissa D’Aquanni

Year won: 2002 Category won: Excellence in Business (2-9 yrs.) Position when won: Owner/ Chocolatier, The Chocolate Gecko Proudest career moment: The moments all involve leading team projects. Whether renovating an abandoned building, rebranding an organization, submitting a major grant or organizing a large event, when we successfully navigate through the energizing, yet sometimes frustrating, process of teamwork and get to the synergistic result that makes teamwork so valuable, that is my proudest moment. continued on page 32

30 | women@work

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continued from page 30

Valerie DeLaCruz

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Year won: 1992 Category won: Excellence in Business (5-9 yrs.) Position when won: Owner, DeLaCruz Design Group Proudest career moment: Celebrating 30 successful years in business, and, of course, being one of the inaugural recipients of the Women of Excellence Awards in 1992.

Ann DiSarro

Year won: 1993 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Senior Service Centers of the Albany Area, Inc. Proudest career moment: While I was the Executive of Senior Services, I assembled a special team of employees that helped transform the organization from a small Albany-based organization for services to the elderly to being recognized throughout NYS and the country. We created a number of innovative servicedelivery models that won Senior Services three large federal grants and national recognition as a leader in the aging field.

Sandra Fox

Year won: 2010 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-99 employees) Position when won: Vice President and Director of Technology Operations, CHA, Inc. Proudest career moment: I’ve been blessed with many opportunities to make a difference through mentoring and other community involvement. I’m most proud of the moments that have helped elevate the role of women in nontraditional careers and inspire girls to explore STEM options. I’m particularly proud of my work with Girls Inc., SUNY’s Center for Women in Government, and the CNSE Children’s Museum of Science and Technology.

E. Kristen Frederick

Year won: 2006 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-10 employees) Position when won: President/ CEO, The Community Foundation for the Capital Region Proudest career moment: While release of the region’s first nonprofit Charitable Barometer and publication of “Wealth Transfer in Northeastern New York” were wonderful moments of personal achievement, signing the agreement with the regional United Ways to form the Women’s Fund of the Greater Capital Region was a crowning moment. 32 | women@work

Jeannine Garab

Year won: 1999 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Executive Director, Epilepsy Foundation of Northeastern New York, Inc. Proudest career moment: In 2012, the Epilepsy Foundation of NENY honored me for 25 years of dedicated and compassionate service. I received recognition from the president of the Epilepsy Foundation national office. ... I reflected on the number of people with epilepsy we have assisted over the past 25 years and how fortunate I am to work for such a great organization.

Maryellen Gilroy

Year won: 2013 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-99) Position when won: Vice President for Student Affairs, Siena College Proudest career moment: Being selected among my peers nationally to Chair the Board for the Association of Student Affairs at Catholic Colleges and Universities. The opportunity to work with a group of fine professionals across the country has allowed me to make invaluable professional connections.

Cheryl GnadeMcGrattan

Year won: 1998 Category won: Emerging Executive/ Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Assistant Director of Marketing, Northeast Career Planning Proudest career moment: The Woman of Excellence Award, even 16 years later, remains one of my proudest moments as it marked a pivotal time for me personally and professionally. And now, although corny, one of my proudest moments was receiving my new name tag from Nathan Littauer Hospital with the title “Vice President” appearing under my name.

Kathleen Godfrey

Year won: 2007 Category won: Excellence in Business Position when won: President, Godfrey Financial Associates, Inc. Proudest career moment: Serving as National President of WIFS (Women in Insurance & Financial Services) during 2009-10 and knowing that my leadership helped hundreds of women advance their financial services careers. continued on page 34

thank you to the thousands of Northeastern New Yorkers who trust us with their health.

As part of an organization that insures nearly one in three Americans*, we promise to continue to work hard for you each and every day. That means you can count on us to provide the security, stability, and quality of care you deserve. Because the longer we can keep you healthy, the longer you can keep doing the things you love. A division of HealthNow New York Inc., an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. *Based on total combined membership of all licensees of the BlueCross BlueShield Association per enrollment data 3/31/2012 and the population of the United States per U.S. Census Bureau data 5/2012.

continued from page 32

Jane N. Golub

Catherine Hedgeman

Laura Hagen

Carrie Hillenbrandt

Catherine Halakan

Karen Hitchcock

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Year won: 2011 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: Director of In-Store Marketing, Price Chopper Supermarkets Proudest career moment: When I learned that the Anti-Defamation League approved adjusting the A World of Difference Curriculum from a strictly high school level to encompass kindergarten to 12th grade. I fought hard to make this change. I believe strongly 5-year-olds need to be prevented from becoming prejudiced and filled with stereotypes; you cannot wait until they are in high school. It was a wonderful victory!

Year won: 1999 Category won: Emerging Executive/ Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Executive Director, Capital District Center for Independence Proudest career moment: In 2010, I began a master’s degree in Recorder & Early Music at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music and coordinated its Pre-College Recorder Program. My proudest moments are watching my young students as they stood up — all alone onstage — and performed their recital music. Their dedication, fearlessness and determination assures the future of vibrant, heartfelt live music-making in our communities.

Year won: 2007 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Senior Vice President for Human Resources, Albany Medical Center Proudest career moment: My 2007 Albany Chamber Women of Excellence Award for Excellence in the Professions was my proudest career moment and an honor I will always treasure. To be so distinguished by members of our community continues to renew and inspire me. I am truly grateful.

Joan Hayner

Year won: 2013 Category won: Excellence in Management (100+) Position when won: CEO, CapitalCare Medical Group Proudest career moment: May 1, 2012, when the cumulative efforts of our providers, staff and administrative team came together meaningfully for the activation of our electronic medical record. This was a tremendous endeavor, years in the making, and was accomplished with grace, humility and humor. It was an outstanding accomplishment and I’m grateful to have been part of it! 34 | women@work

Year won: 2005 Category won: Emerging Executive/ Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Associate, Hiscock & Barclay LLP Proudest career moment: Admission to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Year won: 2012 Category won: Excellence in Sales or Marketing Position when won: Corporate Director of Sales and Marketing, BBL Hospitality Proudest career moment: Being named a Woman of Excellence, of course!

Year won: 1995, 2001 Category won: Lifetime Achievement, 2001; Excellence in Management (public sector), 1995 Position when won: President, University of Albany Proudest career moment: As a scientist working at Tufts Medical School, my research focused on the different factors that affected lung development. We discovered that thyroid hormone, coupled with steroids, accelerated the development of the lung significantly, a discovery which had the potential to help treat and prevent respiratory distress syndrome, at that time the leading cause of death in premature newborns.

Nancy Hodes

Year won: 2002 Category won: Excellence in Business (10+ yrs.) Position when won: President, Hodes & Landy Proudest career moment: My proudest career moment was founding and leading the growth of Hodes Associates (now Hodes & Landy) into a highly successful government affairs consulting firm with a track record of accomplishment and exceptional client service. I have built an organization, not just for the present, but for the future. continued on page 37

onratuations C TO THE


Thank you for helping to make the Capital Region the place where peoplee get better at life Congratulations ions to All of the W Women omen off Ex E Excellence xcellence cellence Award Recipients ients including Donna Lamkin, the Center’s Chieff Pr P Program roogr graam mO Officer Officer, fficerr, r, 2013 Distinguished guished C Car Career areer reer Award r rd

Congratulations to Key’s own Ruth Mahoney and Lisa Clifford along with all of the Women of Excellence award recipients.


To past & present

Our guiding financial principle.

Women of Excellence

Helping you build wealth begins with earning your trust. Our team of Relationship Managers offers expertise in banking, investments, and trust, as well as the personal service you’re looking for.

Including our own

Barbara J. McDonald

For an integrated and objective approach to managing wealth, turn to Key Private Bank.

On your well deserved honor

More than a pharmacy. We’re family. Downtown Cohoes • 237-2110

go to call Fran O’Rourke at 518-257-8733

Bank and trust products from KeyBank National Association, Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender. Investment products are: NOT FDIC INSURED • NOT BANK GUARANTEED • MAY LOSE VALUE • NOT A DEPOSIT NOT INSURED BY ANY FEDERAL OR STATE GOVERNMENT AGENCY ©2013 KeyCorp ADL1551

Community’s Women of Ex r u O celle oring nce n o ~ ~H

Girls Incorporated of the Greater Capital Region

Board Member Joanne Kugler

Past Board Member Georgia Kelly

Karen Carpenter-Palumbo

Board Member

Board Member Sandra Fox

Board Member Katharine Briar-Lawson

Past CEO Teri Bordenave

Board Chair Ann DiSarro

2012 Management (100+ Staff)

2011 Sales / Marketing

2010 Management (100+ Emp)

2010 Management (1-99 Emp)

2008 Professions

2003 Management-Nonprofit

1993 Management-Nonprofit

Girls Inc. of the Greater Capital Region • 962 Albany St., Schenectady, NY 12307 • 374-9800 •

continued from page 34

Elaine Houston

Year won: 2001 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: News Anchor/ Reporter, WNYT/News Channel 13 Proudest career moment: In 2000, in Havana, Cuba, covering a demonstration by 15,000 moms upset that the U.S. was holding their native son, Elian Gonzales, in an international custody battle. I got the story and headed to Cuban TV. I went to the engineer and in my best H.S. Spanish got him to see I was on deadline. At 6:15 on a Cuban monitor, I listened to former anchor Ed Dague read my intro and saw my story pop up. I did it: went live from Cuba!

Year won: 2011 Category won: Excellence in Sales or Marketing Position when won: Assistant VP, Senior Financial Adviser, Merrill Lynch Proudest career moment: I may sound cliché but my proudest career moment was receiving Mark Eagan’s call to say I was selected as a 2011 Women of Excellence in Sales or Marketing. What an honor to be included in an accomplished group of women professionals who have made their mark on their communities, businesses and families. I felt like I finally arrived!

Linda Krzykowski

Year won: 2006 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Assistant Dean, Campus MBA Programs, University at Albany-School of Business Proudest career moment: I am still with the University at Albany. My proudest moment was when I earned my Ph.D. In 2008, I was honored with the President’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. I am now the Assistant Vice Provost for Student Engagement and work with all our Schools and Departments to develop programs to connect our undergraduates to our faculty, classes, majors and the campus.

Joanne Kugler

Year won: 2012 Category won: Excellence in Management (100+ employees) Position when won: Chief Information Officer, GE Energy Proudest career moment: My proudest career moments happen when someone I have had the opportunity to work with experiences an event in their career, such as a promotion or recognition, and they reflect back and share that I made a difference. Knowing that you played a role in someone else’s success and accomplishments is extremely rewarding. That’s what it is all about for me.

Year won: 2013 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: Chief Program Officer, Center for Disability Services Proudest career moment: Because people with disabilities are so often marginalized, I was very proud to receive the WOE Distinguished Career award validating the worth of the work at the Center for Disability Services and of the people we represent. It was a great moment to be able to thank the business community for supporting people with disabilities as full participating members of our community.

Heather LaVine

Year won: 2010 Category won: Emerging Professional Position when won: Director of Fan Development, Tri-City ValleyCats Proudest career moment: The opening of Lucas Confectionery. My husband and I took many risks when deciding to open our own business. We face challenges every day, but I cannot imagine doing anything else, anywhere else. I am incredibly proud to be a business owner in the city of Troy.

Gail Leonardo-Sundling

Year won: 1994 Category won: Excellence in Business (10+ yrs.) Position when won: President/ Owner, The Delmar Bootery Inc. Proudest career moment: My proudest moment was starting the Stuyvesant Plaza store in 1988 because I maxed out sales in the original 400-square-foot Delmar store location.

Noel Liberty

Year won: 2010 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: Founder and Director, The Music Studio Proudest career moment: The moment when a student takes a step forward. It could be a timid 4-year-old confidently pointing out middle C, or a teenager performing a Chopin étude with skill and passion. Watching them shine, knowing that I helped make that possible: that’s my proudest moment, and I am deeply fortunate to get to experience it over and over again. continued on page 39 | 37

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Georgia Kelly

Donna Lamkin




Innovative professional development. Creative association management. Strategic planning for a bright future. Worry-free conferences and events.

Graphic and web design with purpose. Effective marketing and e-communications. Video production that captivates. Social media with strategy. Accessible database solutions.

Kathleen A. Van De Loo, President ph: 518.465.7085

Michele Wyse, Art Director ph: 518.694.5512

continued from page 37

Kara Conway Love

Year won: 2009 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Principal, Conway Love, PLLC Proudest career moment: After practicing law for 23 years, I am proud to celebrate over 12 years of owning a successful law firm, and becoming a NYS Certified WBE.

Year won: 2009 Category won: Excellence in Sales or Marketing Position when won: Charter and Special Event Coordinator/Owner, Albany Aqua Ducks and Trolleys, Inc. Proudest career moment: Winning a Woman of Excellence Award, which I acknowledge is not mine alone but earned because of the support and hard work of coworkers. Also, achievements like coaching and watching my co-workers grow; learning that a failure is not a mistake, but a learning tool; being congratulated for a job well done; and working on projects that come to satisfactory conclusions.

Ruth Mahoney

Year won: 2004 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-10 employees) Position when won: Senior VP and Market Leader, Fleet Private Clients Group, Fleet Boston Financial Proudest career moment: Being honored as a Woman of Excellence was definitely one of the proudest moments of my career! To join such a distinguished group of women was amazing! Only second to being a WOE was the day I was named president for Keybank for the Hudson Valley/Metro NY area [where I work now].

Lucille Marion

Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: Vice President/Executive Director, Capital District Educational Opportunity Center (a division of Hudson Valley Community College) Proudest career moment: Bringing a 10-year search for a new facility to house the Troy center to a successful conclusion. The center moves in December 2013 to its wonderful new location at 431 River St., Troy.

Year won: 2013 Category won: Emerging Professional Position when won: Director of Programs and Services, Colonie Senior Service Centers, Inc. Proudest career moment: Every year, when writing our annual report, we reflect upon how our programs help keep thousands of Seniors healthy, safe and independent, how our fundraisers continue to grow and attract friends, and our community partners faithfully support our efforts. All this is possible only because our team is fiercely committed to our mission. That’s something of which I am continually proud.

Clare Mertz, MBA

Year won: 2003 Category won: Excellence in Sales Position when won: Financial Consultant, Janney Montgomery Scott LLC Proudest career moment: I won a radio station contest and developed a “Smile Bus” to enable people who had a difficult year due to illness, bereavement or economic struggles to park their troubles at the curb and board the bus to NYC to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. This has become a very special annual tradition at Capital Financial Planning.

Tracy Metzger

Year won: 2003 Category won: Excellence in Management, For Profit (11-74 employees) Position when won: President, TL Metzger and Associates Proudest career moment: When my company, TL Metzger & Associates, was named the 2008 Small Business of the Year by the AlbanyColonie Chamber of Commerce. What an honor and accomplishment for me and my entire team.

Christine Miles

Year won: 1996 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Director, Albany Institute of History & Art Proudest career moment: We transformed the Albany Institute into a 21st-century facility that could express our region’s unique history and rich culture as embodied in the museum’s collections. Working collaboratively, we raised $20 million to restore historic structures, install technology and environmental controls, add a collections storage wing, and connect it all with a glass atrium, now a favorite spot. continued on page 41 | 39

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Maureen Lundberg

Kelly Mateja



“Helping excellent women have excellent futures.”

1999 Women Of Excellence Award Recipient

Saluting Clare Mertz, Executive VP, 2003 Woman of Excellence, and all of our women financial advisors, associates, and clients.

Executive Director From YOUR STAFF and BOARD MEMBERS

6 Tower Place Albany, NY (518) 867-4000 www.capitalfinancial 3 Washington Square, Albany, NY 12205 (518) 456-7501 (800) 894-3223

“Challenge your children and they will exceed your expectations. They want to learn, they want to achieve, and they want to make music.” Noel Liberty Founder and Director of The Music Studio Women of Excellence Distinguished Career Award (2010) and One of 100 Women of Excellence (2000)

Visit to learn about our comprehensive music program, without equal in the Capital Region. You will be amazed at what your child can achieve.


1237 Central Avenue Albany, NY / themusicstudiotms

Securities and investment advisory services offered through ING Financial Partners, Member SIPC. Capital Financial Planning is not a subsidiary of nor controlled by ING Financial Partners.

The music school of choice for more than

35 years

continued from page 39

Rose Miller

Year won: 2007 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-10 employees) Position when won: Shareholder and Managing Director, DR Human Resources, LLC Proudest career moment: Awarded the 2013 HR Leader of the Year award from the Capital Region HR Association, the local chapter of the Society of Human Resources Management.

Year won: 2006 Category won: Excellence in Sales Position when won: Director of Sales, Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau Proudest career moment: Recently witnessing the MAAC Basketball Championships Press Conference about their return to Albany for the 2015-2017 championships. My role is to handle the athlete housing in conjunction with the Times Union Center as hosts of the event. This is great business for the Times Union Center, Albany hotels and hospitality partners, and our community.

Alma Mitchell

Year won: 1992 Category won: Excellence in Business (2-4 yrs.) Position when won: Managing Partner, Mitchell Management Associates Proudest career moment: I was honored to be named a member of the U.S. Health Delegation, People to People Ambassador to the former USSR. This was a 3-week educational exchange program consisting of 35 health care ambassadors of varying positions/roles from across the USA. My role was to provide information regarding marketing, outreach and business development for health care practices.

Carole Montepare

Year won: 1995 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: Sr. Vice President, Sales, Community Health Plan Proudest career moment: As Senior Vice President of Sales my success is measured by how well my staff performs as a team to meet the enrollment goals for CDPHP. I am proud to say that they have exceeded the enrollment targets year after year. My greatest success has been to hire and mentor my managers to reach their career objectives.

Year won: 2013 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Administrative Director/Medical Oncology Samaritan Hospital Cancer Center & Women’s Health Center, St. Peter’s Health Partners Proudest career moment: Realization that my peers, colleagues and community members recognized me as an expert in my field of oncology care and business, both locally and nationally. It was great to know that others also believe that we just need to do what is right for the patient.

Nan Mossey

Year won: 2001 Category won: Emerging Executive/ Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Publications Manager, Times Union Proudest career moment: I’ve been given many opportunities to contribute to the success and growth of the companies for which I have worked. My proudest contributions have been in mentoring young women and men to find their own successes. As Director of Digital Marketing for Potratz, I am able to recognize talent in at the apprentice level, and coach individuals along chosen career paths.

Lisa Norgrove

Year won: 2009 Category won: Excellence in Business Position when won: Business Partner, Rumors Day Spa and Hair Salon Proudest career moment: Opening our new salon and spa location. It is a dream come true to be able to provide our guests and team members with a beautiful atmosphere and work environment.

Susan Novotny

Year won: 2001 Category won: Excellence in Business (10+ yrs.) Position when won: President, The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza Proudest career moment: Every morning when I open the door for another day selling real books to all the loyal readers of the Capital Region who have kept us alive and kicking. Also, the day The Book House and other independent booksellers filed suit against Amazon. continued on page 43 | 41

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Gina Mintzer, CMP, MHA

Sabrina Mosseau

Congratulations to the Women of Excellence!

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JulieAnn Calareso, Esq. 2009 Emerging Professional Recipient Congratulates All of Her Fellow Women of Excellence

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Women of Excellence 2009 Excellence in Business

Marri Aviza –

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Since opening the doors to Rumors Salon & Spa in 1986, Marri Aviza and Lisa Norgrove have given women what they want— a gorgeous hair do, and the confidence to show it off. 27 years later-they’re still at it. Built, from the ground up, they are proud owners of a brand new building, and a team that has grown from 4, to 104. Just as Rumors has continued to grow, so too has their ability to generously give back to the community that has defined them. The salon has

donated nearly $1 million dollars in funds, services & products to health related causes and charitable organizations. Throughout it all - their philosophy has remained the same:

“We believe every woman has the right to look, feel and be beautiful.”

continued from page 41

Lauren Payne

Year won: 2012 Category won: Excellence in Business Position when won: Principal, Spiral Design Studio Proudest career moment: When Spiral Design Studio won the national Gold ADDY Award in 2003 for SelfPromotion/Direct Marketing. The project was a total team effort. We all flew out to California to receive the award!

Bernadette Pedlow

Marilyn Pendergast

Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Shareholder, Urbach Kahn & Werlin PC, Certified Public Accountants Proudest career moment: Becoming a partner in Urbach Kahn & Werlin, a predecessor firm to UHY, in 1974, provided me with a career in public accounting, working with clients and other professionals throughout the Capital Region. This continues to be both rewarding and challenging. Recognition of my efforts to contribute to the profession at a state, national and international level has been the icing on the cake.

Mary Ellen Plass

Year won: 2009 Category won: Excellence in Management (100+ employees) Position when won: Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer, Albany Medical Center Proudest career moment: I received comments from a seasoned nurse manager regarding recent remarks I made that validated her pride and love for the professional practice of nursing. It made me realize that the hard decisions we make daily do end up making a difference. Leadership, advocacy and dedication have served me well in my career, and a simple “thank you” was clearly a reinforcement.

Year won: 1993 Category won: Emerging Executive/ Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Shearson Lehman Brothers Proudest career moment: My proudest career moment was becoming a mom and a Vice President in the same year! My family has always been a top priority, so to get my VP title at the same time was very special to me personally.

Milinda Reed

Year won: 2012 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Director, Domestic Violence Services, Unity House of Troy, Inc. Proudest career moment: My proudest career moment is simple: it’s my job, every day. I am so proud to be part of the fabric of a successful domestic violence service delivery model that allows me to help people, develop innovative programming, and dream big about the end of domestic and dating violence in our communities.

Dorothy H. Reynolds

Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Manager of Marketing and Leasing, Rensselaer Technology Park Proudest career moment: The work I have accomplished as Department Chairperson of Fine Arts, Theatre Arts, Broadcast Communications, Gallery Management and Digital Media at HVCC. During the last 10 years, I created and built the department which involved developing five major academic degree programs, essentially 10 academic degree programs, 850 students, 30 faculty and 70 courses.

Cheryl Richardson

Year won: 2005 Category won: Excellence in Sales Position when won: Independent Sales Director, Mary Kay Cosmetics Proudest career moment: Without question becoming an Independent Sales Director with Mary Kay Cosmetics, a position only 2 percent of our company enjoys and being named a Woman of Excellence that year. Next to that, two moments come to mind: achieving the No. 4 team-building position in 2011 for our MK Sapphire Division, and watching our daughter graduate from Cornell University this past May. continued on page 45 | 43

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Year won: 1998 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer, Seton Health System Proudest career moment: Over a period of several years, I mentored a young professional in health care management. This person was ultimately hired into a prestigious position. One should never pass up an opportunity to mentor when talent and promise are evident. Being mentored is the how and why successful people accomplish their career goals.

Alissa Quinn

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continued from page 43

Kathy Rowe

Year won: 2002 Category won: Excellence in Sales Position when won: Vice President, ThinkOne Proudest career moment: My experience taught me you can never make assumptions about peers or employees. In my current role as Regional Manager for the Mayo Clinic, I respect colleagues and clients and like to seek input from all levels. You never know what someone might have done before or what role each might move to next (become your boss or your next influential client!).

Year won: 1995 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: RCCA: The Arts Center of the Capital Region Proudest career moment: I have two: The first was the grand opening of The Arts Center of the Capital Region in our new home in the heart of downtown Troy – the culmination of four years of hard work by board and staff. The second was watching the pioneering students of the first graduating class of Tech Valley High School receive their diplomas.

Margo Rudzinski

Year won: 2007 Category won: Excellence in Management (75+ employees) Position when won: Principal and Resource Manager, CHA, Inc. Proudest career moment: Becoming an Associate, then Shareholder, of CHA. I had worked very hard to continue being promoted and felt rewarded for that hard work. I was one of the first females at CHA to reach this goal as well.

Kimberly Russell

Year won: 2005 Category won: Excellence in Business (2-9 yrs.) Position when won: President and COO, Frank Adams Jewelers Proudest career moment: The celebration of the 90th anniversary of Frank Adams Jewelers. It is inspiring to know our thirdgeneration family business has both endured AND flourished for nearly a century. Through challenging historical and economic periods, Frank Adams Jewelers has evolved with the times, and I am blessed to have been a part of this success. I look forward to preserving our family’s legacy for future generations.

Year won: 2009 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: Executive Director, Center for Women in Govt. & Civil Society, University at Albany Proudest career moment: Under conditions of fierce competition for a Kellogg Foundation Building Bridges grant, the Center for Women in Government & Civil Society won a transformative four-year grant to launch the Nonprofit Education Initiative at Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy. The grant established the college as a significant player in higher education in the field of nonprofit management and policy education.

Anne Saile

Year won: 2002 Category won: Excellence in Management (institution) Position when won: President and Chief Executive Officer, Bellevue Women’s Hospital Proudest career moment: When my friends and co-workers gathered to wish me well as I was moving on to another job and my daughters stood together at the podium to talk about how proud they were of what I had accomplished. Hearing them talk about how my career impacted their vision for their future was deeply gratifying.

Susan Scrimshaw

Year won: 2012 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: President, The Sage Colleges Proudest career moment: Being elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Science in 1993 for my work in improving pregnancy outcomes, and joining my father as a member to become the first father/daughter pair elected to the IOM.

Shadi ShahedipourSandvik

Year won: 2007 Category won: Emerging Professional Position when won: Assistant Professor and Scientist, College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering of the University at Albany Proudest career moment: Five of my students received their Ph.D.s within the last 10 years. I am so proud when I see them defending their Ph.D.s. All five joined high-tech industry as thought leaders and innovators. Also, when one of my former students became a collaborator, and funded a project with my lab. continued on page 46 | 45

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Raona Roy

Judith Saidel

continued from page 45

Jan Smith

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Year won: 2004 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: Manager, Global Communications & Public Affairs, GE Energy Proudest career moment: Having the opportunity to lead a worldwide team of amazing professionals from Australia to China through the Middle East, Europe and the United States. Together we built, promoted and protected the reputation of GE Energy and its employees 24 hours a day. We dealt with governments, business leaders, communities. We made both a professional and a personal contribution.

Teresa Spadafora

Year won: 2013 Category won: Excellence in Sales or Marketing Position when won: Branch Manager, VP, First Niagara Bank Proudest career moment: Securing thousands of dollars’ worth of school-supply donations, including computer systems for a school for special-needs children in Zimbabwe. Also, every time one of my staff gets a promotion.

Paula Stopera

Year won: 2008 Category won: Excellence in Management (75+ employees) Position when won: President & Chief Executive Officer, CAP COM Federal Credit Union Proudest career moment: Receiving the Arthur Kapner Award from the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce. I was able to share that evening with so many of my colleagues, friends, co-workers and both of my children. Being able to show my children that hard work, community spirit and giving can be rewarding was awesome!

Faith Takes

Year won: 2013 Category won: Excellence in Business Position when won: President, Empire Education Corporation Proudest career moment: My proudest career moment is every graduation when I see students whose lives we’ve changed cross the stage. Some are the first in their families to graduate. Others have returned to school to advance their careers. All of them have worked hard to achieve this milestone. It is priceless to see how their lives are changed forever through a quality education!

46 | women@work

Pamela Tobin

Year won: 2005 Category won: Excellence in Management (under 75 employees) Position when won: Executive Director, Downtown Albany Business Improvement District Proudest career moment: Leading in the creation and launch of the award-winning downtown Albany brand identity campaign – “Downtown Albany: Worth Discovering Since 1609.” I engineered the creation of the Capital Region’s first prixfixe Restaurant Week resulting in a $2.4 million economic impact driving 100,000-plus into downtown. Both programs resulted in the 2005 and 2007 AMA Mark of Excellence Award respectively.

Joella Viscusi

Year won: 2011 Category won: Excellence in Business Position when won: President, Ambient Environmental, Inc. Proudest career moment: I started my career as an administrative assistant. I worked for several prominent members of the industry through the years, always in a support role. I paid my dues at these companies, taking on more and more technical assignments and managing projects, but was never promoted. So I started my own firm and promoted myself. Now I do business owner-to-owner with some of my former bosses.

Helen Volk

Year won: 1994 Category won: Excellence in Business (2-9 yrs.) Position when won: President, Beyond Clutter Proudest career moment: I was asked to speak to the national conference of the National Association of Professional Organizers on a topic near and dear to my heart -- helping clients live a clutter-free life.

Kelly Waters

Year won: 2006 Category won: Excellence in Management (11-74 employees) Position when won: President/ CEO, Center for Economic Growth Proudest career moment: Being part of the team that led efforts to secure the Global Foundries project for the region. The transformational economic impact of the project is now being realized. The level of collaboration, cooperation and sheer determination to see this project to fruition was staggering. I feel privileged to have been a part of it and to have worked with a tireless and courageous team of colleagues.

Marcia White

Year won: 2011 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-99 employees) Position when won: President & Executive Director, Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Inc. Proudest career moment: When I recognized the connection between my oldest daughter dancing on SPAC’s stage under the watchful eyes of George Balanchine, my four daughters’ passion leading to their professions in the arts, and my position at SPAC. That experience enhanced and transformed our lives; it’s our turn to give it to others.




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Patsy Whitney

Year won: 1998 Category won: Excellence in Sales Position when won: Broker, Coldwell Banker Prime Properties, Inc. Proudest career moment: As a sales person in a National Real Estate Company, I have had the opportunity to meet, learn and share ideas with the best in the industry at meetings both regionally and nationally. I was always impressed by the knowledge and depth of experience of the panelists at these meetings. And one year I was invited to be one of those panelists.

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Benita Zahn

Year won: 1999 Category won: Excellence in Professions Position when won: Health Reporter and News Anchor, WNYT-TV/Channel 13 Proudest career moment: I have covered the inauguration of President Obama, a host of national political conventions, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, 9/11, Superstorm Sandy, the Unibomber trial, and the world gathering of Holocaust survivors, but I am most proud of the stories I do that help empower people.

Karen Zalewski-Wildzunas

Year won: 2007 Category won: Excellence in Management (11-74 employees) Position when won: Senior Vice President, KeyBank Proudest career moment: Building a successful team that exceeded all goals and expectations, and becoming the #1 team. Coaching the team to their strengths, challenging the team to be the very best; that’s what makes me proud.

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Additional Winners Eleanor Bartlett Year won: 1998 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: Deputy Superintendent, Albany City Schools

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Charleen Bloom

Position when won: President, Beaux Visages, Inc.

Carol Desmond Year won: 1999 Category won: Excellence in Sales Position when won: Account Executive, Times Union

Year won: 2011 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Professor of Communication Sciences & Disorders, The College of Saint Rose

Mary Ann DiChristopher

Constance Casey

Year won: 2003 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-10 employees) Position when won: Partner, Mercury Web Solutions

Year won: 2006 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: President/CEO, Academy of the Holy Names

Pamela Cassick Year won: 2010 Category won: Excellence in Business Position when won: CEO, The MailWorks

Rhonda Childs Year won: 1994 Category won: Lifetime Achievement Position when won: Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield

Lauretta Chrys Year won: 1999 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: Senior VP of Retail Banking, KeyBank

Mae D’Agostino Year won: 1995 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Maynard, O’Connor, Smith, Catalinotto & D’Agostino

Mary Darian Year won: 1993 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: New York State Department of Labor

Barbara Dennis Year won: 1996 Category won: Excellence in Business (10 or more yrs.)

48 | women@work

Year won: 1994 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Executive Director, Hope House

Erika Dietz

Regina DuBois Year won: 1994 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: Director of Operations, Office of the Albany County Executive

Patricia Ellis Year won: 2004 Category won: Excellence in Management (75+ employees) Position when won: Vice President, Quality & Regulatory Affairs, Albany Molecular Research Inc.

R’Lou Ellson Year won: 1992 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Executive Director, American Red Cross, Albany Area Chapter

Stacy Fitch Year won: 2008 Category won: Excellence in Management (11-74 employees) Position when won: GM, Paradies Shops, Albany International Airport

Maureen Fitzgerald Year won: 1995 Category won: Emerging Executive/Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Capital District YMCA

Lorraine Flaherty

Grace Jorgensen

Year won: 1998 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Research Scientist and Director of Molecular Genetic Program, Wadsworth Center, NYS Department of Health

Year won: 1992 Category won: Excellence in Business (10+ yrs.) Position when won: Board President, Bellevue Hospital

Kate Langdon Forham Year won: 1999 Category won: Excellence in Professions Position when won: Professor of Political Science, Siena College

Judy Genshaft Year won: 1999 Category won: Excellence in Management (public) Position when won: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, University at Albany

Rose Golden Year won: 1992 Category won: Emerging Executive/Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Executive Director, Senior Care Connection

Audrey Hoffman Year won: 1993 Category won: Excellence in Business (10+ yrs.) Position when won: President, Audrey Hoffman Enterprises, Inc.

Clara Hunt Year won: 1997 Category won: Lifetime Achievement Position when won: Vice President-Facilities Management, Samaritan Hospital

Shirley Ann Jackson Year won: 2001 Category won: Special Recognition Position when won: President, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Linda Jackson-Chalmers Year won: 2003 Category won: Excellence in Management (75+ employees) Position when won: Asst. Superintendent for HR & Community Relations, City School District of Albany

Marjorie Karowe Year won: 1994 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Marjorie E. Karowe, Esq.

Michel Kimball Year won: 2002 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Executive Director, ClearView Center, Inc.

Anne LaRoche Year won: 2008 Category won: Excellence in Management (1-10 employees) Position when won: Manager of Technology & Information Systems, KAPL Inc.

Ellen Lawlor † Year won: 1993 Category won: Lifetime Achievement Position when won: CEO, St. Peter’s Hospital MercyCare Corporation

Susan Lehrman Year won: 2004 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: President and Dean, The Graduate College of Union University

Dorothy Loftus Year won: 1993 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: Standard Copy

Patricia Martinelli Year won: 2001 Category won: Excellence in Management (public sector) Position when won: Assistant Deputy Attorney General, NYS Office of the Attorney General

Additional Winners Denise Mason Year won: 1994 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: Fleet Bank of NY

Susan Matthews Year won: 1995; 1998 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector); Excellence in Business (10+ yrs.); Position when won: President, Corporate Health Dimensions, Inc.

in Business (2-9 yrs.) Position when won: Owner, Center for Hearing

Katherine Pelham Year won: 2011 Category won: Excellence in Management (100+ employees and volunteers) Position when won: CEO, United Way of the Greater Capital Region

Maria Piccione

Lillian Moy

Sue Rosander

Barbara McDonald

Year won: 2004 Category won: Excellence in Management (11-74 employees) Position when won: Executive Director, Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York

Year won: 2002 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: Senior VP and District Sales Manager, Eastern NY KeyBank

Kathleen Murray

Sue Ellen Rose

Year won: 1998 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: Co-owner, The Shipyard Restaurant

Barbara Nagler

Year won: 2001 Category won: Excellence in Management (nonprofit sector) Position when won: Director of Supported Employment and Vocational Services, Wildwood

Year won: 2005 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: District Superintendent and CEO, Capital Region BOCES

Virginia Rossuck

Sandra Nardoci

Jane Rothfield

Year won: 1998 Category won: Lifetime Achievement Position when won: Executive Director, Wildwood

Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: Dean of Business, Siena College

Mary Scanlan Year won: 1993 Category won: Excellence in Business (2-9 yrs.) Position when won: Scanlan Public Relations

Missy Shorey Year won: 2008 Category won: Excellence in Business Position when won: CEO, Shorey Public Relations

Leslie Stein Year won: 2002 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won: Supreme Court Justice, NYS Unified Court System

Gail Sundling Year won: 1994 Category won: Excellence in Business (10+ yrs.) Position when won: Owner, The Delmar Bootery Inc.

Nancy Tarabochia-Hart Year won: 2010 Category won: Excellence in Sales or Marketing Position when won: VP and Relationship Manager, KeyBank National Association

Karen Tassey

Year won: 2008 Category won: Excellence in Sales or Marketing Position when won: Associate Broker/Relocation Specialist, Prudential Manor Homes

Year won: 2001 Category won: Excellence in Sales Position when won: Advertising Account Executive, WRGB/Channel 6

Year won: 2001 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: Vice President, Patient Care Services NE Health, Albany Memorial Hospital/Samaritan Hospital

Mary Lou Saetta-Gilman

Donna Nowak-Hughs

Year won: 1999 Category won: Lifetime Achievement Position when won: Executive Artistic Director, Capitol Chamber Artists, Inc.

Susan Tatro

Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in Business (2-9 yrs.) Position when won: Executive Vice President, Nowak Associates, Inc.

Margaret O’Neill Year won: 1996 Category won: Excellence

Year won: 1993 Category won: Excellence in Profession Position when won: Albany County Executive’s Office

Partner, Whiteman Osterman & Hanna LLP

Judith Torel Year won: 1997 Category won: Excellence in Business (10 or more yrs.) Position when won: President, The Sweat Shop of Albany, Inc.

Joan Townley † Year won: 1992 Category won: Lifetime Achievement Position when won: Albany and Colonie Chambers of Commerce; Business Environments by Ras

Nina Tyzik Year won: 2005 Category won: Excellence in Management (75+ employees) Position when won: Executive VP and Regional President, HSBC Bank USA

Gemma Vigliotti † Year won: 1996 Category won: Lifetime Achievement Position when won: Bellevue Woman’s Hospital

Jaruloch Whitehead Year won: 1996 Category won: Excellence in Management (private sector) Position when won: KeyCorp

Margery Whiteman Year won: 2002 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: Director of Advancement Services, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rachel Zimolka † Year won: 2008 Category won: Emerging Professional Position when won: Senior Business Development Executive, Sunmark Federal Credit Union

† Deceased

Lorraine Tharp Year won: 2003 Category won: Excellence in the Professions Position when won:

continued on page 51 | 49

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Year won: 2007 Category won: Distinguished Career Position when won: President, Marra’s Pharmacy Inc.

Year won: 1994 Category won: Emerging Executive/Professional Businesswoman Position when won: Manager of Business Development, Mallin, Mendel & Associates Architects P.C.

Patricia Sanders

Colonie Senior Service Centers

Once again congratulates Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber’s

2013 Women of Excellence

For their achievements & success in their professional careers & their dedication to community service. 2013 Emerging Professional


Director of Programs and Services Colonie Senior Service Centers, Inc.

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continued from page 49

2000’s 100 Women of Excellence These 100 Capital Region women, who’ve worked in various fields, including business, social activism and religion, were honored in 2000. Jodye Holmes, community volunteer † Stefanie Isser, social activist and teacher of the Holocaust Ω Shirley Ann Jackson, Ph.D., Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Chris Jansing, NBC/MSNBC Karen Johnson, former mayor of Schenectady Carolyn Jones, Capital District Business Review Ω Grace Jorgensen, M.D., Bellevue Woman’s Hospital Sr. Maureen Joyce, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Albany Mary Kahl, Ph.D., Albany Medical Center Foundation Hon. Judith Kaye, NYS Judiciary † Eliza Kellas, pioneer in education † Alice Kenney, historian and author Ruth Klepper, Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood Margaret Krause, The Eddy Rachel Kretser, NYS Office of the Attorney General Mary Anne Krupsak, former NYS lieutenant governor ◊ Gloria Lamere, Proctor’s Theatre Ω† Sr. Ellen Lawlor, former president and CEO, St. Peter’s Hospital and founder, MercyCare Corporation Martha Lepow, M.D., Albany Medical Center Hospital Marya Levenson, Ph.D., North Colonie Central Schools Ω Noel Liberty, The Music Studio ◊ Nancy Liddle, University Art Gallery, University at Albany Judith Lyons, The Community Foundation for the Capital Region Margaret Mancinelli-Cahill, Capital Repertory Theatre Maria Markovics, United Tenants of Albany Inc. Ω Susan Mathews, Ph.D., DigiComm, LLC Hedi McKinley, pioneer in broadcasting Susan Meineker, Capital District Center for Independence † Edythe Meserand, pioneer in broadcasting Ω Christine Miles, Albany Institute of History & Art Malinda Myers, community volunteer Jeanne Neff, Ph.D., The Sage Colleges Mary Nolan, R.N., Albany Medical Center Hospital Antonia Coello Novello, M.D., NYS Department of Health

Ω Katherine Pelham, United Way of

Northeastern New York Inc. Ruth Pelham, The Music Mobile, Inc. Ω Marilyn Pendergast, Urbach Kahn & Werlin PC † Anna Eloise Pierce, crusader for better housing conditions for women college students Anne Pope, Albany Branch NAACP Libby Post, Communication Services Ersa Poston, NYS Department of Civil Service Vera Rappazzo, Rappazzo Electric Co., Inc. Joan Roberts, The Egg † Sr. Blanche Rooney, founder, The College of St. Rose † Olivia Rorie, civil rights and community activist Ω Virginia Pitkin Rossuck, Wildwood Programs, Inc. Ω Raona Roy, The Arts Center of the Capital Region † Margaret Olivia Slocum Sage, founder, Russell Sage College and philanthropist Josephine Sano, Albany Central Federation of Labor (AFL-CIO) Shelly Shapiro, United Jewish Federation of Northeastern New York Ellen Sinopoli, Ellen Sinopoli Dance Company Marion Roach Smith, author and community activist Mary Jane Smith, Unity House of Troy, Inc. Sr. Anne Bryan Smollin, Ph.D., Counseling for Laity Alethea (Thea) Snyder, 1 Data Way/1Call4All LLC Jamienne Studley, Skidmore College Madeline (Lyn) Taylor, Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce Ω◊ Joan Townley, businesswoman, first chair of merged Albany and Colonie Chambers of Commerce † Harriet Van Vranken, pioneer in public education Michele Vennard, Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau † Frances Vosburgh, M.D., pioneer in women’s health care and family planning Dolores Wharton, community leader and volunteer Ω Benita Zahn, WNYT-NewsChannel 13 Ω Women of Excellence winner † Posthumously honored ◊ Deceased | 51

Women of Excellence Reunion 2013

Rezsin Adams, community activist Jane Altes, Ph.D., SUNY Empire State College Judith Avner, Brain Injury Association of New York State Judith Barnes, Ph.D., J.A. Barnes & Company Betty Barnette, City of Albany Ω  Eleanor Powell Bartlett, University of the State of New York Marlene Belfort, Ph.D., Wadsworth Center, NYS Department of Health Phoebe Powell Bender, community leader and volunteer Ω Elizabeth Bishop, WRGB ◊ Sr. Serena Branson, Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany Ω Mary Brizzell, Town of Colonie Ω Pamela Sawchuk Brown, Sawchuk, Brown Associates Charlotte Buchanan, community leader Ω Nancy Burton, City of Albany Deborah Campbell, New York State Police Nancy Carey Cassidy, Picotte Companies † Blanche Stover Clum, suffragette and political activist Elizabeth Coco, MicroKnowledge, Inc. † Elizabeth Corning, former first lady of Albany and expert horticulturist Jo-Ann Costantino, The Eddy Joann Crupi, Times Union Matilda Cuomo, Mentoring U.S.A. Helen Desfosses, Ph.D., Albany Common Council Georgetta Dix, Refreshing Spring Church Lt. Governor Mary Donohue, State of New York Denise Farnan, LPGA Professional Lucia Fischer, Capital Region Software Alliance Ω Lorraine Flaherty, Ph.D., Wadsworth Center, NYS Department of Health Sheila Fuller, Town of Bethlehem † Harriet Gibbons, pioneer in education † Elizabeth Gillette, M.D., suffragette and first upstate woman elected to the NYS Assembly Mara Ginsberg, To Life! † Winifred Goldring, pioneer in NYS paleontology Ω Jane Golub, Golub Corporation Hon. Victoria Graffeo, NYS Judiciary Alice Green, Ph.D., Center for Law & Justice, Inc. Ω Karen Hitchcock, Ph.D., University at Albany

The Times Union congratulates all of the past winners of the

Albany-Colonie Chamber of Commerce

Women of Excellence Award especially

Joann Crupi, Carol Desmond and Nan Mossey who won the award while employees of the Times Union.

Ramp Up

Your Job Search Give your job search a boost with these smart strategies from the pros. By Anna Zernone Giorgi

Photo: Robert Daly/GettyImages.

story begins on page 54 | 53

continued from page 53


hether you’re ready for advancement, bouncing back from a layoff, or simply looking for something new, you’ll give yourself the best shot at a successful job search if you start out at full speed. Before you sit down for that first interview, make sure you’re ready to hit the ground running with the right preparation, updated information, and useful resources.

Set Realistic Goals. Before you start actively searching, be sure you know exactly what you want to find. No matter what your motivation, you need to have a specific goal or objective. “You definitely have to know what you’re looking for. You have to know what your focus is,” says Renee Walrath, president of Walrath Recruiting, Inc., in Albany and Saratoga Springs. Finding that focus may require selfexamination, and perhaps some input from professionals such as life coaches, career counselors, and recruiters. “They can help you know what your true talents are and what avenue to go down,” Walrath says. “They can help you in trying to understand what are my attributes; what are my skills; and what, as far as work environment, am I comfortable in? And, based on those three, what positions am I best suited for?” Reassessing your strengths and needs can help you set goals that are attainable with your specific background and experience, even if those goals involve change. “Someone who wants to make a career change might want to do a little research on what changes they’re looking to make. What are the job opportunities available? What type of background typically finds those type of jobs?” says Miriam Dushane, branch manager of Linium Staffing in Albany. “You have to make sure that you do the appropriate research so that you know that your expectations are actually something that can be fulfilled in the current job market 54 | women@work

in the current marketplace in the region that you’re looking at.” Input from human resource professionals also can give your search a source of objectivity. “It is always beneficial to have someone else’s perspective. Candidates often limit themselves to the types of work they can do, when in fact, often their work experience and life experiences give them transferrable skills that can be useful in any industry. A life coach or career counselor can help an individual tap into those skills and help a candidate learn to articulate that information in an interview,” says Christina Lillpopp, branch manager at Sargent and Blais Personnel Services, Inc., in Albany. Even though your goals may be grounded in reality, be prepared to be patient, while also maintaining your enthusiasm and focus for the long haul. “You need to go into it with the idea that it will likely take you longer than you want or expect, and that you will not get the feedback along the way that you are hoping for. Employers utilize many resources in their candidate searches and it is not unusual to not hear back on a resume submission for many months,” Lillpopp says.

Review and Revise If you’ve haven’t looked for a job recently, take the time to revise your resume to reflect your most recent accomplishments. Also, read it through top to bottom to ensure every entry is still relevant. “Having an effective resume and cover letter is the number one step to getting an interview. Be sure to have your resume reviewed by several people you trust before you begin sending it out to employers,” says Penny Loretto, associate director of the Career Development Center at Skidmore College, who also maintains a private career counseling practice, Career Choice, in Queensbury and Saratoga Springs, to assist adults in career transition. In addition to updating your resume,

be prepared to sell yourself on the spot, if necessary. “I suggest preparing a brief ‘elevator speech’ which you can spew out in the event you get a call from a potential employer. So many employers conduct phone interviews as a first line of screening that you need to be prepared in case you get an unexpected phone call,” Lillpopp says. Depending on your goals, consider having different resumes or speeches for different positions so that you can highlight the skills that are most appropriate for each situation. “One resume doesn’t fit all, especially for people with a significant background or who may have been one of those individuals where they worked for a company and did a lot of different things,” Dushane says. “If they want to focus on a specific area, it’s very easy to have too much on your resume. A prospective employer cannot be expected to try and figure out where your focus is.” While you’re bringing everything up to date, it’s also important to review and revise your references. “Be sure you secure solid, professional and personal references. Be sure that you have the most up-to-date contact information for these individuals and that you’ve received their permission to be contacted as a reference on your behalf,” Lillpopp says. You’ll get the most from your references if you alert them that you’re involved in a job search. “Make sure you actually have a good personal relationship and working relationship with that person. You’d be surprised how many people don’t do that and then when people are called for references, they give little or no information or it’s not good information that’s actually given,” Dushane says. The last thing you want is to have your job search become a burden on your reference’s time. You can counteract this by having a list of references from which you rotate names. You also can ask for written references as an alternative, Dushane suggests. Though written references may

THINKING ABOUT MAKING A CHANGE? Watch for these 10 signs you should quit your job at

require validation, they can minimize the infringement on your reference’s workday.

Photos: GettyImages. Woman, GlobalStock; Illustrations, Alex Belomlinsky.

Check Out Your Online Image If you participate on any social media website, it’s wise to take a look at how you’re presenting yourself. “Anything that you have on social media should be something that you would be comfortable with your prospective new employer seeing or viewing. If you have photos, make them private. Make sure that anything that you have public is professional,” Walrath says. Also, take the time to do a search on yourself. Google your name and look at the results. “Like it or not, there’s a lot of employers out there who will Google your name — either during the interview, before the interview, or after the interview to see what they can find out about you,” Dushane says. It’s also important to look at your entries on professional sites and ensure that they line up with the information that you’re providing to a prospective employer. “Some employers will see if your resume actually matches what’s on LinkedIn. It’s very important for somebody to make sure that their LinkedIn profiles

are updated. A lot of times, people forget about their LinkedIn profiles and they may only show an employment from three years ago,” Dushane says. Be sure to convey a professional image on any piece of information that represents you, especially if it’s symbolizing you before you’ve had the chance to meet a prospective employer in person. “Make sure that your e-mail address sounds professional. You don’t want to have a name or use a site that is not a professional email address,” Walrath says.

Diversify Your Strategies You can prevent your search from stalling by using more than one strategy. “There are basically three strategies job seekers can use when looking to find a job — networking, looking for online job listings, and prospecting for jobs. Using all three strategies as part of your daily plan can make your search more successful and will help keep you from burning out as you continue your search on a daily basis,” Loretto says. Tapping into your professional and personal networks can give you leads to opportunities that may be unattainable on your own. “Networking is extremely

important, whether you are an entry level, looking-for-that-first-job candidate or a seasoned professional. The problem is that most people are reluctant to ask for help, but the irony is, that most people want to help. Job seekers need to tap into their friends, neighbors, church groups, workout buddies, volunteer groups as well as utilize the traditional social networking sites,” Lillpopp says. “Don’t forget to reach out to your college/university career center, even if you’ve been out of school for many years.” Job sites such as Monster, CareerBuilder, TheLadders, Dice, and CapitalAreaHelpWanted are all worthwhile sources for jobs in the Capital Region, according to Dushane. “The strategy for job sites that I recommend is: if you’re going to be looking for a job, you should have your resume on the job sites,” she says. “If necessary, you can make your resume confidential; just make sure you’re doing it correctly. Or, It might be better to set up your own search engine and have those individual sites e-mail you with the job that matches your search criteria.” Take time to research any options that come your way. Scan the Internet for reviews and any other information you can find about the corporate culture or the organization’s image. “Once you find a job that you’re interested in, research the company, especially if you get an interview, because you may not even have the same mission. Look at the company and see if you think it would be a match,” Walrath says. As you begin to see progress, don’t stop short of your ultimate goal. “Once you find a job you are extremely interested in and the employer has contacted you to set up an interview, don’t stop your job search to put all of your efforts on just one job,” Loretto says. “Many successful job seekers often end up with several interviews occurring at the same time; and, with any luck, will get more than one offer in which they will be able to choose from.”  W | 55

True Colors The importance of making your workplace inclusive


arah Belawski and her colleagues gathered in the conference room for their standing, weekly meeting. People took their usual seats around the table, some playing with their cellphones while they waited for the meeting to start; others were reading over their notes. On the surface, the meeting looked typical, but something was different. Belawski had an announcement. She was transgender and wanted to let her colleagues know before proceeding in her transition from male to female. She’d already spoken with her boss, but that was the easy part. She knew her supervisors and managers were more concerned with her ability than her personal life. But would her coworkers react in the same supportive manner? Despite hold56 | women@work

ing her job with the state for about one year, she wasn’t sure. One thing she did know, though, was that this news was going to come from her, not from a supervisor, not from HR and not via the gossip mill that exists in just about every workplace. “I told my boss, ‘I’d like the opportunity to come out at the meeting to everyone at once so I can control the flow of information,’” says Belawski, a 20-something who lives in Albany. “I wanted to be able to answer any questions someone may have.” The numbers vary, but the general estimates are that 2 to 5 percent of the population is transgender (experience some degree of gender dysphoria), according to a study out of UCLA. Far fewer undergo gender reassignment surgery. Many more identify as gay, lesbian or bisexual.

Combine this with working in a traditional office environment and challenges are inevitable. “People fear rejection or being treated differently,” says Curran Streett, the executive director at the Pride Center of the Capital Region talking about men or women coming out at work. “They feel their family or their identity won’t be respected.” But, she adds, coming out in the workplace has become easier, in part, due to the Sexual Orientation Non-Discrimination Act passed in 2002. “A lot more people have the confidence to come out [about] who their families are,” Streett says. “Up until [the law was passed] they could have been fired from their job because they were gay.” This comfort level is imperative. We spend about one-third of our day with our coworkers. People talk about their

Photo: Tom Ackerman/GettyImages.

By Kristi Barlette

Coming Out work family freely, says Streett. Imagine going into work and ignoring the fact you’ve been partnered 20 years and have three kids. You can change the pronouns of your partner or not talk about your home life, but that segmentation can be stressful and really damaging to relationships. “You aren’t authentically presenting yourself in the workplace,” Streett says. The Pride Center executive director has seen an influx of people coming out at work in the last 10 years and, while her point of context is anecdotal, she says more of the people she interacts with through the Pride Center are out at work, rather than keeping their private life to themselves. To help companies ensure that their workplaces are inclusive, the Pride Center offers training programs — and the requests for such programs are steady. Because being open about sexual orientation and identity is still fairly new, some managers are unfamiliar or uncertain about how to best work with their staff when they’re coming out, say experts.


As a manager, you need to handle these situations very delicately.

— SUSAN STOREY BARDACK, co-founder/ CEO Buzz Media Solutions

“As a manager you need to handle these situations very delicately,” says Susan Storey Bardack, co-founder/CEO, Buzz Media Solutions in Clifton Park. “When you accept your role as manager, you may want to talk with human resources about how to best handle situations along these lines.” The employee also plays a critical part. Someone who is transgender should start by talking with HR about changing the use of the bathroom. It’s the kind of thing a person who is not transgender wouldn’t consider, Streett says. “Some people do it without skipping a beat and without asking permission, but that can cause problems,” Streett says. “Talking with HR is the best step to give them awareness of the transition.” Unfortunately, often the onus continues to be on the person transitioning, she adds. At this point, Streett says, talking with HR or the person’s boss seems to be the norm — and has been effective. That approach worked well for Belawski. While she faced some resistance, confusion and negativity from colleagues, the majority were accepting and supportive. Plus, she recently received a promotion. “It’s one thing if you’ve obtained a job and then come out as trans, but if you’ve obtained a new job after you came out as trans, that feels really good,” she says. “One has to always be better than one who doesn’t have minority status.”  W 

Tips for employees and managers

FOR EMPLOYEES It’s important to think through how you want to communicate your new status to colleagues. A few tips to help guide you through this process: WHY: Spend some time thinking through why you are going to let your co-workers know. Since sexual preference isn’t connected with job performance, you may decide you don’t need to directly talk about it at work. However, there are definitely some cases where you may want to bring it up, such as if you are going to bring your partner to the holiday party or if you are getting married. If you are transgender and plan to go through gender reassignment, you will want to let your colleagues know. HOW: How you tell your work colleagues is based on your personality and comfort level. If you are someone who has a few close colleagues, you may want to broach the subject over lunch. Be aware that telling a few colleagues is the same as telling your entire workplace: The news will probably spread. If you want to make sure everyone has your story accurate, you may want to tell them as a group, right after a meeting ends. It can still be done in an informal way, but in this case you can see individual reactions by being present. WHEN: Think through when you plan to share the news. You might want to think about sharing it during a time when others are talking about personal matters. WHAT: Think through what you are going to share. When you tell co-workers personal information, many times they have questions. Anticipate what those questions could be and how to answer them. For example, they may ask you who your partner is and if your partner isn’t out yet, you will probably want to have a discussion ahead of time.

FOR MANAGERS • When an employee wants to share this type of news, ask how you can best support them. Let them know you are there for them. • Let them know you will keep this information confidential, if they would like you to do that. Trust is very important between managers and employees. • Try to put yourself in their shoes. Think about how you would want a boss to treat you if you came to them with a personal matter. • Have examples of support groups ready to give them if they need it. While not everyone will need a support group, some may find it very helpful if they’ve been struggling to share their news. Sources: Susan Storey Bardack, co-founder/CEO, Buzz Media Solutions in Clifton Park; Curran Streett, the executive director at the Pride Center of the Capital Region | 57

Don’t Wait!

Delegate! Savvy managers know when — and how — to let go

By Traci Neal


ood managers know that one of the keys to a successful career is the ability to delegate — to surround themselves with smart, capable people and give them the freedom to do their jobs. Delegation leaves managers open to strategize, plan and, well, manage. “It moves everybody forward,” says Anne Saile, an Albany-based business consultant and management expert who is also a Women@Work columnist. “A company’s mission hangs on how well people delegate.” Yet many managers have a hard time handing work over to someone else, whether out of hesitation, haste or habit. “Failing to delegate is usually a sign that someone doesn’t have faith in their staff to carry out the details of a project,” 58 | women@work

says Saile, whose company, Saile Group, has been certified by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. “When someone feels like they’re the only one in an organization that can get a job done the right way, that’s a sign they need to do an evaluation of their own job and their own skills as a manager.” For some managers, it’s a matter of control, she says; a boss feels she needs to micromanage every aspect of a project rather than putting her faith in the people around her. These managers “will inevitably find themselves with their heads under water at some point,” says Saile, “and when a crisis does occur, they won’t have time to give thought and energy to it.” Others pride themselves on being the first ones in and the last ones to leave,

adds Saile. “They think if they’re always busy and keeping their noses in the paperwork or behind their desk that they somehow are more productive. They don’t lift their head up long enough to see that the people around them can probably do more work.” Still others, says Saratoga entrepreneur Christel MacLean, believe doing more makes them indispensable. Not true. “Companies value managers who know how to manage well,” says MacLean, who owns and oversees four busy downtown restaurants and a real estate firm. “If you’re a perfectionist — and many of us are — you can err on the side of thinking that only you can do a particular job the way you want it done or that it’s easier to do the job yourself.” But a failure to delegate — which

Illustrations: GettyImages. Outsourcing, Elly Walton; puzzle pieces, Adam Gault.

becomes wildly apparent when order in a restaurant kitchen goes awry — can lead to similar chaos in any organization. “From an organizational perspective, delegation is giving people empowerment and letting them contribute to the success of the business,” says MacLean. “That’s very important. And as a result, we have little turnover comparatively.” People want to learn new things, agrees Denise Horan, a Clifton Parkbased business consultant. “They want to be responsible in the workplace and they find it very rewarding to learn something new, get trained properly and be given the responsibility to get the job done. “I think there’s a lot of admiration for someone who’s a good manager,” she says, “for someone who trains their people, who delegates, and who is always looking above and beyond for what’s next. You can’t do that as a manager if you’re always involved in the day-to-day or small tasks.” Good managers delegate so they can spend their time focusing on the bigger picture, says Horan, whose company, Integrated Management and Sales Consulting, works with sales managers, business owners, entrepreneurs and high-level managers on all aspects of growing revenues. Otherwise, she says, “you’re never looking beyond your own desk.” But part of that delegation for managers, she says, is the time investment that comes with properly training a team. “Once they commit to the training,” she says, “managers will be surprised by how much time they have to focus on other things.” Horan says she often needs to remind the managers she works with that “there’s a reason you have that team in place and you need to give these people time to learn and grow.” If not, she says, “the company will just stagnate.”

If your name shows up next to too many projects, ask yourself why. Why are you the only one who can get this done? Be specific, says Saile, but don’t tell people how to get the job done. Rather, “encourage them to use their own creativity and their own best strategy. When you give people every last detail, you’re not bringing out the creativity and genius of the staff that could benefit the whole organization.” Saile says she also makes lists and puts a name next to each task. This way, she says, “I’m better at thinking about who can do what because I realize my name doesn’t need to be next to every single thing that needs to be done.” If you’re having trouble filling in those blanks, Saile says, “if your name shows up next to too many projects, ask yourself why. Why are you the only one who can get this done? Why can’t someone else do that? When you’re saying to yourself, ‘I can’t delegate this to Jane because … you have to remember that people are at work to do a good job and to get the job done.” Failing to delegate, Saile says, “often results in a manager who’s spending 12 to 15 hours a day behind a desk while the

— Anne Saile

staff is feeling undervalued and underutilized. It’s well worth the time spent making a list or thinking about the projects you have on your plate, how you might be able to get the team to help you, and how to best delegate tasks.” MacLean agrees, outlining a three-step process for better delegation. First, she says, “be careful to communicate to each person what is expected, and be clear that this is their area of responsibility. Second, give them the proper training so they are comfortable and confident in what they’re doing; and third, check in. Circle back and make sure everything is going along as expected.” Identifying your team members’ strengths and allowing them to use them, MacLean says, “empowers them and, hence, the organization, and really you’re creating layers in the organization that are going to assist with making the business run as efficiently as possible.” The bottom line, says Horan, is that “you’re not going to grow revenues if you continue doing everything yourself.”  W 


he first step to good delegation, says Saile, is for managers to think strategically about the results of a project and “make it clear to their team what they hope the outcome will be.” | 59


Global Initiatives Saving the world, one potluck at a time

By Brianna Snyder  |  Photos by Emily Jahn


ife may be stabilizing for women here in the U.S., but in many places around the world, conditions for women and girls are bleak. Girls are persecuted for trying to go to school, or can’t make it to the classroom because they don’t have access to sanitary pads during their periods. Women face acid attacks, rape, HIV, child marriage, sex trafficking and worse. Readers of Nicholas Kristof, you know all about this. Being aware of these atrocities can stir up anxiety, fear, empathy, sympathy and, more than anything, an overwhelming feeling of helplessness. No one person can save the world, right? Dining for Women aims to alleviate the feeling that nothing can be done to help. A grassroots organization, DFW has chapters across the country — 420 to be exact, with 9,000 members (and counting) — raising money via monthly potluck 60 | women@work

dinners and small donations. All contributions go to NGOs — non-governmental organization, or nonprofits without political or governmental affiliation — whose mission is to help women and girls in developing countries. Rosemary Revoir co-founded the Albany chapter of DFW with her friend Sara Combes about two years ago. Revoir heard about it from her sister-in-law,

The DFW Mission • Support women and/or girls who face extreme challenges in developing countries • Promote self-sufficiency, economic independence and/ or good health for women and girls being supported • Tie funding to direct impact on individuals’ lives • Provide evidence of longterm sustainability and

who’s a member of the Skaneateles chapter. “I was just fascinated by it,” Revoir says, “and I said, ‘I think I’m going to join the Albany chapter,’ and I came back and followed up on it and there was no Albany chapter!” So Revoir got some people together and began hosting DFW meetings in Albany, which began at first at her and other members’ homes but have now settled at the Women’s Club of Albany,

program success • Provide prompt and specific reporting about DFW-funded program • Effectively manage a variable DFW grant that could range from $20,000 - $50,000 and be distributed over a twoyear period, if requested. • Direct a minimum of 75 percent of expenses to programs • Be a public charity 501(c) (3) US nonprofit organiza-

tion or foreign organization operating with a US nonprofit sponsor • Operate independent of religious or political affiliation • Provide informative organization web site in English • Provide relevant educational resources; includes providing and sending an educational DVD to all DFW-registered chapter leaders (source:

 Dining for Women co-leaders Rosemary Revoir, left, and Sara Combes, right.

The Download on Rosemary Revoir Title: Albany chapter coleader, Dining for Women Family: “One son, who’s married, and I have a granddaughter. They live in NYC.” Hometown: Syracuse Current home: Albany

Guilty pleasure: “Reading a mystery and eating chocolate.” A DFW cause you’ve contributed to that’s extra special to you: “Donating sanitary napkins to girls [in Kenya] so they could go to school.” (In some underdeveloped countries, girls don’t have access to pads or aspirin and so aren’t able to go to school during their periods. “One of the reasons this touched

which lends its space to the organization. DFW itself was started about 10 years ago by a nurse in South Carolina named Marsha Wallace. Wallace was inspired by a story she heard about women who got together for potluck dinners to raise money for needy families. The whole idea was to donate the money you would’ve spent at a restaurant, usually about $20 or $30. And that’s about the average amount donated by the Albany DFW members, Revoir says. Each month, DFW headquarters picks one cause — a “Featured Program” — and all 420 chapters’ donations go to that one nonprofit. I attended a recent dinner at the Women’s Club to chat with members and learn about the organization. We ate fingerfoods the 20 or so members had prepared that night — a particularly special meeting because DFW founder Wallace was in attendance. She says she makes the rounds at chapters all over the country to chat with members and encourage support. After food, wine and socializing, all of us headed upstairs to

me wasn’t just the impact of our pop culture on our youth [compared with what Kenyan girls face in their childhoods], but also where I was in my own head and heart at this age. I probably would have preferred an excuse to miss school because my education and well being and care was very much taken for granted. That certainly is not the case with these girls from Kenya.”

watch a short, 10-minute video about the Featured Program we were there to support. And that program was a nonprofit providing counseling and support to women who were raped (and impregnated) in the Rwandan genocide in the 1990s. These women were ostracized from their families and communities because of their rape, and many of their children don’t know that they’re products of sexual abuse. Devastating as these cases are, the women say they come because they feel like they’re both making a real contribution and learning about important world realities. “I’m learning about geography and other cultures and traditions,” Revoir says. Fonda Lloyd, who’s been a member for about a year, says she’s careful with the money she gives away and that she trusts the DFW to do the right thing with her donation. “It means a lot that they vet the charities” they donate to, Lloyd says.  A POTLUCK DINNER matches the cause of the evening. Another member, Diane Reiner, says she does work of her own in Uganda, where she helps operate a home for street children there. “Having the founder and regional director of Dining for Women with us was extra special,” Reiner says of our recent dinner. “That

— plus the gripping story of the Rwandan women and children who are the lasting victims of genocide — made for a very memorable evening for me.” Regional director Jeannette Artini, who oversees all 50 Northeast DFW chapters, says their goal is to establish the organization so that any woman anywhere is only 30 minutes from a dinner. Fifty is a lot of groups for one region, but Artini acknowledges some gaps: Boston, for instance, doesn’t have a group. (She feels confident that’ll change soon.) And while one of DFW’s principal goals it to raise money, Revoir says nobody should feel pressured to donate or reluctant to attend if they can’t contribute. “We say come anyway! You don’t need to contribute,” she says. “The whole thing is we don’t want anyone to feel financially pressured, particularly if they’re interested in the program. Because the educational component is just as important. Just understanding what’s going on around the world with women and children and the challenges that they face. That’s the important thing.”  W 

GET INVOLVED: Visit, or e-mail Rosemary Revoir for details, at DFW meets once a month — typically on first Thursdays — at the Women’s Club of Albany. | 61

Capital Region Women@Work is the in-print component of an innovative network of local women in managerial and executive positions. HealthyLife magazine brings you stories and advice geared at living a balanced life, and nourishment of your mind, body, and spirit. Life@Home is packed with inspiration to help you make your house a home. VOW: Your Wedding. Your Way. is the secret to creating your fairytale wedding using local resources. If you are interested in receiving free home delivery of any of our magazines, please (518) 454-5768 or email

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Silvia Meder Lilly, an Albany resident, enjoys the challenges of dual careers in the education and restaurant fields and is the mother of three boys. Other passions include friends, food, travel, books, writing and running.

You Can’t Always Get What You Want By Silvia Meder Lilly


ne of my favorite memories of parenting is of a car ride with all three of my boys and the iPod set on Shuffle. “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” by the Rolling Stones came on and we (harmonized) sang at the top of our lungs: “ can’t always get what you want but if you try sometimes you get what you need...” What made the moment gloriously ironic, though, was our destination — the mall. As the holiday season approaches and we are inundated with commercials and advertisements, how do we find the balance between what we want and what we need? And how do we know the difference? When we were children, we learned there are three essential needs: shelter, food and water, and clothing. How is it that from these three simple necessities we allow ourselves to be persuaded that the house must be grandiose, the food and water gourmet, and the clothing exclusively name brand? More importantly, how can we get to a place where we, and our children, understand that there can be as much joy to be found in helping others meet their needs as can ever be achieved by fulfilling our own wants? The holiday season can, with some effort, be the ideal time of year to emphasize the importance of a budget and the prioritizing of needs and wants. Here are some tips to help you and your family shift the focus from getting everything they want, to having all that they need.

• Share some information about how you make financial decisions. Talk about the choices you make on a daily basis to meet your responsibilities and obligations. I like to offer my children a chance to become involved with choices that they can directly relate to, such as buying new clothes or sneakers within a specified budget. They can better understand the concept of budgeting when they have to decide between the $100 running shoes and the $60 pair that can be had along with a new hoodie. • Don’t feel obligated to spend equal dollar amounts on each of your children. What pleases an 8-year-old may not require the same financial investment for a gift that satisfies a teenager. And it’s not about the money, right? • Share some of your own experiences relating to good and bad decisions from your own past. Remember that suede jacket you just had to own, yet only wore once? Is there a regret about opting for the bargain item when what you really required was something better made, but priceier? Tell them.

• Seek out opportunities to become involved in activities that highlight giving rather than receiving. Does your place of employment “adopt” a family for the holidays? Commit to providing gifts for the less fortunate and ask your children to assist with the shopping, wrapping, etc. • Involve your children with activities that don’t require trips to the mall. Bake some cookies or a loaf of bread and ask young family members to deliver the goods to a favorite neighbor. Better yet, accompany your child to the new neighbor’s house to share the spirit of the holidays.  W 

Websites to Get You Started How to budget • • Adopt a family • Bake a loaf of bread •

Working can be challenging for any woman. Add children into the mix, though, and the formula changes again. In Moms@Work, Silvia Meder Lilly shares her insights on working and raising a family. You can find her in between issues blogging at | 63


Travelin’ Man Rob Gavel brings Provençal flavor to his cooking By Brianna Snyder  |  Photos by Tyler Murphy


’ve always liked to cook,” says Rob Gavel, personal chef and general manager at Athos Restaurant in Guilderland. But it wasn’t until recently that Gavel made his living from cooking. He’d established himself as an executive in the travel industry before enrolling in the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park. After graduating, “I interned at Fine Cooking magazine in Newtown, Conn., where I ended up working as a food stylist, recipe developer and a contributing editor,” he says. From there, Gavel went on to work as a food stylist for Paula’s Home Cooking on the Food Network, as well as other prestigious publications. In the mid-aughts, Gavel opened Cafe 1795 in Schenectady. He describes what he did there as “simple, light fare” that was “really cutting edge.” “We baked our own bread all day long,” he says. In other words, when you ordered a sandwich it came out on piping-hot and super-freshly baked bread. Town and Country and Fodor’s both

Top Tip for Healthy Cooking “If you’re looking to do anything light, the key is you still have to have lots of flavor. Depending on what you’re cooking, use lots of lemon zest and lots of fresh herbs and that will really give something a kick. And don’t douse food in oil.” 64 | women@work

Kathleen Godfrey President &CEO

wrote positive reviews of Cafe 1795 in their pages. After about four years of running the cafe, Gavel began dabbling in personal-chef work, which is one of his principal focuses now, along with managing Athos, catering and teaching cooking classes in his own home or at the homes of others. He’s also taking about 15 people on a culinary tour to Ireland — thanks to his experience in travel, he’s well-equipped for such a trip — in the spring of 2014. (The cruise will also head to Rome, Tuscany and Florence. If you’re interested, he says, spots are still open.) Though he’ll cook anything — and even gave this writer a tip on how to make an improvised tandoor oven in her kitchen using foil — Gavel’s real passion is Italian food, he says. “I always say my schtick is Tuscan. Provençal cuisine. Real food,” he says. “I don’t like to overdo it. I like to take a few ingredients and let them shine, versus adding one layer on top of another on top of another.” see recipe on page 67

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Enjoy the Times Union magazine experience. Online. Flip through the virtual pages of our Times Union magazine titles, accessible from anywhere online. The same award-winning layouts. More photos. Links that take you where you want to go. All from the comfort and convenience of your own device. body. mind. spirit.


continued from page 65

Dinner in 30 minutes Mediterranean-Style Chicken Sauté Serves 4-6 as a side dish, or 3-4 as a vegetarian main dish Ingredients 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 2 tablespoons butter 2 tablespoons pine nuts (optional garnish) ½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour 1 ½ pound package chicken tenderloins 1 Small sweet onion, peeled, small dice 4 garlic cloves, peeled, minced 1 tablespoon Better Then Bouillon All Natural Reduced Sodium Chicken Base 1 tablespoon tap water 8-ounce jar sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil, drained, halved, oil reserved Zest of one lemon 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes Fresh spinach bunch, rinsed,

dried, stems removed (or 5 oz package baby spinach) 8 ounces of feta in water, rinsed, dried, rough crumble 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, minced 8-ounce package fresh tagliatelle, linguini, or fettuccini Sea salt, to taste 2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley leaves, chopped (optional garnish) Method Fill a stockpot with enough salted water to cook pasta and place over high heat. Place flour in medium bowl, add tenderloins, tossing to coat, shake off excess flour and set aside. In a large skillet over medium heat add 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil and the butter, heat for one minute, then add the pine nuts, stirring constantly until golden brown. Remove with slotted

spoon to towel covered plate until use. Add the floured tenderloins, and cook, turning once, until golden on both sides. Remove from skillet and set aside. Turn heat to low, add the remaining tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil and diced onion, and sauté, stirring frequently, until soft, but not browned. Add the garlic and sauté one minute, add the chicken base and water, stirring to evenly incorporate into the onion and garlic mixture. Add the sundried tomatoes and their reserved oil, lemon zest, and pepper flakes. Adjust seasoning to taste, remembering that feta is salty. Turn heat off, and gently toss in the spinach leaves, cooked tenderloins, feta and thyme leaves. Boil pasta according to package directions or preferred doneness. Drain, and place into a large serving bowl. Top with chicken mixture, garnish with pine nuts and parsley, and serve immediately.  W | 67

Down Time

Tips for making sure what happens at the office stays at the office


o matter how much we love what we do for a living, slipping off our heels in favor of slippers, changing into comfy clothes and removing all our jewelry when we get home from the office may be the most welcome part of the day. It’s time to unwind, relax and decompress — a practice good for our psyche and our body. “You won’t want to bring the office home for family and marital well-being,” says Dr. Daniel Silverman, the chief medical officer for the acute care division at St. Peter’s Health Partners in Troy. “The other piece is from a physiological point of view.” Essentially, when we’re letting work (or anything) make us anxious, our bodies release catecholamines, an adrenalinelike substance. That can make it hard to calm down and relax. “These are circulating in our blood, and they do come down, but it takes a while to come down and get into that other frame of mind,” Silverman says. That it’s hard to let go of work isn’t that surprising. Our jobs are a huge part of who we are. It’s how many of us identify ourselves (how often have you asked — or been asked — “so what do you do?”). But that doesn’t mean it has to become all-consuming. “We live in a culture where people are taught to identify with a job they’re doing and there’s sort of this general addiction to busyness,” says Joelle Lydon,

68 | women@work

an Altamont-based life coach. “The idea of just being, spending time to be, is not something that is valued in this country.” This is an especially big problem for women, says Elaine Serafini, a licensed clinical social worker with the Employee Assistance Program within St. Peter’s Health Partners in Troy. “It tends to be the women who are managing multiple responsibilities that don’t end after work,” Serafini says. She lists driving the kids to after-school activities, cooking dinner, doing dishes, making sure bath time is taken care of and lunch is made as common out-of-office tasks her clients discuss. “So, yes, work responsibilities end, but there are so many responsibilities after work it’s hard to relax.” Women are also typically emotional caretakers and tend to go to one another when distressed, so relaxation doesn’t come till they (finally) slip into bed and close their eyes. But running on high up until that point isn’t good, say medical experts. It can cause insomnia, which can lead to a series of health complications. So, what can a working woman to do? Start by scheduling “you time,” says Lydon. But, wait, you say. Shouldn’t relaxing be about giving up the schedule? Not necessarily. Working in time to read a book or magazine, take a bath or go for a walk with the dog is paramount to your mental well-being. Even exercise can be an excel-

lent wind-down activity, say the experts. “Think of it like a doctor’s appointment,” says Lydon. “Then pay yourself if you don’t go.” Margaret Partyka knows what it’s like to get a little stressed at work. She’s the CEO and owner of Some Girls Boutique in Troy. And, well, while owning your own business is liberating and empowering, few will say it’s stress-free. It took some practice, but Partyka has refined the art of winding down. She’ll play “dress-up,” trying out a variety of clothing and accessory combinations, or she journals. “Chronicling the day to gain some perspective, which also allows for reflection, which further allows you to move on and forward,” Partyka says. The boutique owner also has a sketchbook, another creative and relaxing outlet, where she puts down her designs and fashion elements she would like to see come to life. Her other tip is one the life coach, the social worker and the doctor all say is essential: She’s present, and finds time to enjoy what’s going on in her life at that moment, rather than worrying about what happened during the day or what may happen tomorrow or next week or next month. “I take a break from technology — phones, TV, radio, computer, Facebook,” Partyka says, “and enjoy the quiet.”  W 

Photo: Henglein and Steets/GettyImages.

By Kristi Barlette

How Do You Unwind? We asked local women on the Times Union’s On the Edge blog for tips on unwinding after work. Here’s what they had to say. Mar: Glass of white wine and FACEBOOK! Just Me: Making a cup of tea and watching the first 15 mins (20 if I’m lucky) of Ellen before the husband and kids get home. julie: I change clothes and take my dog for a walk or play in the backyard with him. CohoesMom5: I am on-the-go from the time I get home to when the kids are in bed. Between dinner, clean-up, homework help, and sports, we don’t stop until 8:00 when the younger kids get to bed. Then I unwind with knitting/crocheting and Netflix.

Jules: I started taking CDTA to and from work. (Love it!) I use my commute time to read, do puzzles, or make my lists. Sometimes I even take a power nap.

during the time of year when there is enough daylight time after I get home for a 20-miler. Otherwise, I like to watch TV or web-surf for a bit before making dinner.

Susan: Three things come off: shoes, socks, bra!

Saratoga Pixie: Unwinding starts on the ride home with me listening to an audiobook, which gets me to stop focusing on what I left behind at the office. Once home, I will putter around in the yard pulling weeds, watering flowers, or throwing the ball to my dog. In the winter, a walk with the dog while listening to an audiobook will do the trick.

Hayley: I go to the gym. VS: Can’t really “unwind,” per se, after work, since dinnertime prep starts as soon as I walk in the door. But I like to enjoy a glass of Riesling and maybe some cheese and a DVR’d episode of Chopped while I’m cooking. Karin: I like to go for a bike ride

Megan: I almost always come home and get directly into my PJs. From there my night is a breeze! Michelle Hines Abram: Scotch. Macallan 18 neat with two ice cubes. | 69

Getting Away

Key West, Fla. By Stacy Morris


AERIAL VIEW of Smathers Beach in Key West. — Photo by Andy Newman/Florida Keys News Bureau 70 | women@work

o say Key West is a part of Florida is a little like saying Manhattan is a part of the Empire State. The most famous of Florida’s keys may be official territory in the Sunshine State, but it’s a small strip of real estate so renowned for its own brand of culture, it almost seems as if you should need to brandish a passport in order to gain entry. At approximately five square miles, the southernmost point on the U.S. map may still retain its reputation as an inspiring writers’ hideaway for the likes of Hemingway, or the perfect escape from worldly concerns as it was for President Harry S. Truman, but it has also become known as an all-inclusive paradise, whether you’re a single Parrot Head or a family of four on winter break. Part of Key West’s appeal lies in the fact that it defies a singular definition. Aside from its balmy climate and ocean breezes, charm factors include historic architecture, Bahamian and Cuban culture (evidenced in the cigar shops, food, and music), and a laid-back attitude that makes it a magnet for free spirits and artists of every stripe. It’s not unusual to see clubs and restaurants filled with every conceivable demographic, from drifters and drag queens to tourists visiting from the Midwest or Great Britain. Key West also possesses an intriguing mix of subtropical allure and history.

An afternoon can include touring President Truman’s Little White House, snorkeling the U.S.’s only living coral barrier reef, and ending the day with a frothy daiquiri at the famous Sloppy Joe’s bar. Or you can charter a sailboat tour, angle bull fish beyond the reef, browse the Duval Street galleries, kayak through the shallowwatered “back country,” and tour historic fort ruins. The island is accessible via Key West International Airport, which is serviced by AirTran, American Eagle, Delta Connection, United Airlines, U.S. Airways, Cape Air and others. Key West also can be reached by flying into Miami VISITORS in Key West ride the Conch Tour Train as it passes in front of Sloppy Joe’s Bar, International Airport and driving former watering hole of author Ernest Hemingway. approximately three-and-a-half — Photo by Bob Krist/Florida Keys News Bureau hours down the Overseas Highway — designated an All-American Road under the National prepared to stand in line to snap a of alligators, jellyfish, tropical fish, and Scenic Byways program — or by ferry photo at this magnet of a landmark. a living mangrove ecosystem. There from points on Florida’s west coast. are also guided tours, a touch tank, Sunsets at Mallory Square and daily turtle and shark feedings. In Key West, sunsets aren’t merely Conch Tour Train viewed; they’re celebrated carnival303 Front St. The Ernest Hemingway style at Mallory Square, a sprawling (305) 294-5161 Home & Museum concrete pier in the center of town that 907 Whitehead St. overlooks Key West Harbor and the Gulf Not in the mood to wander? Hop (305) 294-1136 of Mexico. It’s here you’ll mingle with aboard this guided and townies, on-leave cruise ship passengers, loaded tour of the Key on wheels The iconic author’s home and secondand street performers hawking their that departs every half-hour. story writing studio offers a glimpse tricks and talents. You’ll have a tough Key West Butterfly and Nainto American literary history. It was time deciding whether to check out the ture Conservatory here that Hemingway wrote some joke-telling unicyclist, the Calypso singer, 1316 Duval St. of his most notable works includthe knife-throwing magician, or the real (305) 296-2988 ing For Whom the Bell Tolls, The Snows star of the show — the giant red ball on of Kilimanjaro, and To Have and Have the horizon, also known as the sun. One of only three major butterfly faciliNot, which was set in Key West. ties in Florida, the conservatory features The Southernmost Point a 5,000-square-foot glass-domed tropical Whitehead and South streets butterfly habitat. Visitors can observe (305) 294-2587 Key West Aquarium hundreds of butterflies from 50 to 60 1 Whitehead St. species and numerous species of colA massive concrete buoy marks the (305) 296-2051 orful exotic birds in the habitat — as southernmost spot in the continental well as two flamingos that recently United States — only 90 miles from You’ll get an up-close look at dozens of became conservatory residents. Cuba. It’s one of the most soughtmarine species inhabiting the waters continued on page 72 after photo-ops on the Key, so be of the Florida Keys, including exhibits


Best Family Attractions | 71

continued from page 71

Outdoor Activities Key West Tropical Forest and Botanical Garden 5210 College Road (305) 296-1504 This shrouded, 15-acre garden is the only “frost-free” botanical garden in the continental U.S. and features more than 6,000 plants and trees. The gardens also provide habitat for 35 butterfly species and more than 270 migratory bird species. It’s a splendor that’s meant to be explored on the walking trails, boardwalk trails, the one-acre butterfly habitat, freshwater lake, and wetland habitat. Fort Zachary Taylor 601 Howard England Way (305) 292-6713 Both a state historic site and recreational park, Fort Taylor is best known for its centerpiece of a Civil War-era fort, built to defend the country’s southeastern coastline. Every October, the edifice morphs into a Civil War-themed haunted fort. But most people flock to this scenic park for its beaches and picnic areas, as well as a host of recreational activities that include fishing, cycling, hiking, swimming and snorkeling.

Best Places for Couples Upper Duval Street Galleries A portion of Key West’s famed (and mostly honky-tonk) Duval Street is known for its eclectic galleries, boutiques, fine dining, and wine bars. Art and artisan emporiums include SoDu Gallery, displaying the vibrant painted tableware of Janis Childs, and fine jewelry by Lainie Davia; the Frangipani Gallery featuring the colorful paintings of founder Fran Decker; Cocco and Salem Imagine Art with works by more than a dozen artists, including the renowned Jim Salem and his nature paintings; and Gingerbread Square Gallery offering the lush rain forest canvases of Sal Salinero. 72 | women@work

THE SOUTHERNMOST HOUSE is both a historic inn and a museum in Key West. — Photo by Rob O’Neal/Florida Keys News Bureau Pisces 1007 Simonton St. (305) 294-7100 You won’t find a more European or romantic setting for a candlelit dinner. This Wine Spectator-award-winning, French-flared restaurant is the former Cafe Des Artistes. The new incarnation features an impressive selection of fresh seafood, and the artistic presentation still remains. Witness the paper-thin beef carpaccio, elegantly arranged like a mandala on the plate and dotted with colored sauces and reductions to resemble an artist’s palette. Also try the sweet and tangy Lobster Mango Tango and the Raspberry-Glazed Roast Duckling.

Lodging Southernmost House 1400 Duval St. 305-296-3141 Built in 1896 overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, this tropical Victorian building is a much-photographed landmark that epitomizes the grandeur of the city’s historic heyday. With only 18 rooms and suites, it’s a Shangri-La

on a smaller scale featuring a pool bar only steps from the ocean. Hyatt Key West Resort 601 Front St. (305) 809-4004 Overlooking Key West Bay, this elegant chain features 118 rooms, a spa, pool lounge, and water-sport activities. The hotel also takes the concept of the usual gurgling fountains and waterfalls a step further. Their outdoor rivulets also serve as a permanent home and sanctuary for dozens of rescue turtles, most of which are content to bathe in the Florida sun, oblivious to the crowds who stop and stare. And then there’s Odie, the orange-and-teal-colored squawking parrot who’s been the resident mascot for the past 18 years.

Dining Two Friends Restaurant 512 Front St. (305) 296-3124 Established in 1967, this open-air restaurant is one of the last remaining dining establishments in Old Town Key West. The menu does what a Key West menu

should: let you know in no uncertain terms you’re in seafood paradise with selections such as Crab Cakes Benedict, Fried Yellowtail Sandwich, Seafood Fettuccine, and Conch Fritters. Blue Heaven 729 Thomas St. (305) 296-8666 To-die-for key lime pie can be found at just about any eatery in Key West that offers forks, but Blue Heaven’s version is as legendary as it is towering. Opened in 1992 by an artist and a writer, the menu has expanded from a few lunch selections to full dinner and catering menus, but tourists still flock to the Bohemian venue just to dig into a sky-high slice of pie while sitting at a backyard table under the ancient almond tree. Louie’s Backyard 700 Waddell Ave. (305) 294-1061 One of Key West’s best-known gourmet

restaurants is a restored Victorian house with dining both indoors and on tiered decks leading down to the Afterdeck Bar on the water. It’s at the upscale bar you may find yourself mingling with some of the Key West literary legends or vacationing celebrities.

Upcoming Events The 2014 Key West Literary Seminar This year’s theme is The Dark Side, which explores mystery, crime and thriller genres. The Jan. 9-12 portion is sold out but spaces for Jan. 16-19 are still available. Panelists include Joyce Carol Oates and Scott Turow. The Key West Food & Wine Festival Jan. 21-26 Featuring a grand tasting; a beach party with wine, food, and dancing; wine seminars; a Key West Kitchen Tour of downtown restaurants; a coco-

nut recipe contest; and a Let Them Eat Cake French dance masquerade party. Best Time of Year to Visit The answer to this lies in your personal preference. Visit during the off-season of September and October and be regaled with impressive discounts (sometimes as high as 50 percent) from the businessstarved hotels and restaurants. Or escape the arctic confines of upstate New York when it’s peak snowbird season. Chances are you’ll be so elated not to have to scrape ice off your windshield, you won’t mind the crowds. Try To Avoid Summer’s never a great time to visit Florida, with hurricane season beginning around July. The weather is humid and sweltering but as far as Florida summer climate goes, the breeze-heavy keys are your best bet.  W  For more information on Key West and the Florida Keys, visit

BUSKER WILL SOTO juggles on a tightrope at the sunset celebration in Key West. The sunset celebration at Mallory Square is a daily ritual for visitors to this subtropical island. — Photo by Bob Krist/Florida Keys News Bureau | 73


Compiled by Genevieve Scarano

What’s the best way to respond if you didn’t get the promotion you wanted?

“Be thankful for the opportunity no matter what happened. Next, you don’t want to burn bridges, but I would try to inquire about the reasoning. You don’t want to feel stagnant or unappreciated, but there may be a perfectly good reason for not receiving the promotion. Did your manager know that you were interested in the position? Had you discussed this position prior to the promotion? Did you have the skills and performance needed to acquire it? If you felt like you genuinely deserved that promotion, politely ask for feedback on what you can do to ensure that you’re considered more heavily for it in the future.“

“I would advise to never take being passed on promotion lying down! You should gather information about how your knowledge, skills and abilities would have been perfect for the new job. Also jot down a ‘brag list’ of accomplishments in the current role that exhibit the attributes needed in the new role. Schedule an appointment with the hiring manager. You may need to be persistent. In the meeting, give one copy of your information to the hiring manager and say, ‘I had applied to the opening for a __________. I was disappointment that I was not considered. I wanted to bring to your attention some of the ways I would have brought value to this position.’ If the response is that the person selected was more of a match, end with the message that your intention is to build a career with the company. Clearly say you are interested in finding out what is needed or desired to be considered for promotion in the future. If you don’t ask, you don’t get. Keep it positive, businesslike and friendly. Keep your emotions at bay. Realize that a promotion is just like applying for a new job and perhaps knowing this fact may help you get the next available promotion.”

— Rhea Drysdale, chief executive officer, Outspoken Media

— Rose Miller, president, Pinnacle Human Resources, LLC


nowing what to do in sticky situations is one of the hardest parts of being a manager. In each issue of W@W we’ll feature a questions with answers from area HR professionals, managers and business owners. If you have a question you’d like answered, drop us a line on Facebook,, or send an e-mail to Your question will be kept confidential.

“You have to be gracious and recognize that although you may be disappointed, this may not be the right job for you. If you don’t receive a job promotion, don’t take it personally. Everyone brings different skill sets to the job. Take it as a learning experience to catapult you to the next opportunity.” — Sarah Delaney Vero, Esq., owner, Delaney Vero, PLLC

“The first step would be to request feedback as to your areas where you can improve and your supervisor’s view of your future with the organization, so you can evaluate if you have homework to do and your potential growth in the organization.” — Cheryl Lasher, grants associate, Capital Region Theological Center

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— Anne Saile, president, The Saile Group

Illustration: ©


“A mentor of mine used to say, ‘People never remember what happened — they just remember how you handled it.’ While being disappointed is normal, it is never OK to threaten to quit, stomp out of the office or complain about how unfair the decision was. Rather look at it as an opportunity to show how strong you are. Your employer will want to know that even though you didn’t get the job you are still committed to the company. Work hard to make sure your actions match your words. Don’t say you will be supportive of the person who did get the job and then say demeaning things about them to coworkers. I have often seen someone passed over for a promotion only to get an even better position just a few months down the road because they didn’t let their ego and hurt feelings get in the way.

Join Price Chopper at these festive holiday events! Saturday, November 23 17th Annual Capital Holiday Lights in the Park November 29, 2013– January 3, 2014 Sunday, December 8 Tickets available 24/7 at any Price Chopper register through Tickets to Go! starting November 3. Enjoy the finest chocolates, desserts, specialty foods and holiday gifts the region has to offer!

Tickets available 24/7 at any Price Chopper register through Tickets to Go! starting November 3. A drive–thru spectacular with more than 125 light displays and scenes in Albany’s Washington Park!

Don’t miss the Price Chopper float in the 46th annual holiday parade in downtown Schenectady... the largest nighttime parade in the northeast!

December 6–8

Thursday – Saturday, December 12–14 • 7pm Sunday, December 15 • 3pm Proctors Theatre, Schenectady

Celebrate the holiday season in our Adirondack winter wonderland featuring holiday shopping, festive family fun, arts and entertainment!

Featuring the Empire State Youth Orchestra and Chorale. Funds raised support the Melodies Center for Childhood Cancer & Blood Disorders at the Children’s Hospital at Albany Medical Center. Tickets available at the Proctors Theatre Box Office and

We ’r e not just in your neighborhood, we ’r e your neighbor.

Tuesday, December 31•$15 Advance Sale Buttons Available at Price Chopper Starting December 1! A New Year’s Celebration of the Arts and Community, showcasing diverse local talent!

Women@Work Nov/Dec 2013  
Women@Work Nov/Dec 2013  

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