Women2Women Winter 2015

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‘Pessimism’ is the Key to a Healthy Heart

Helping Hands Local Agencies Helping Women Overcome Tragedy

vegan recipes inside!


Leading Ladies



Winter 2015

Karen Marsdale, Senior Editor • Melissa Varone, Editor Dawn Maurer Derr, Associate Editor 201 Penn Street • Suite 501 • Reading, PA 19601 berkswomen2women.com • 610.376.6766

Women2Women Advisory Council Alexa S. Antanavage Margarita M. Caicedo Vicki O. Ebner Kim Hippert-Eversgerd Nancy Hoban Karen Marsdale

Julia Nickey Mary Jean Noon Michele Richards Matilde Rodriguez Sotomayor, MD Carolyn Shultz-Spano Connie Skipper

Women2Women, managed by the Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce & Industry, encourages women to create connections, gain knowledge, open doors and build strategic alliances, and much more. Our goal is to create more women leaders in Berks County by providing a forum where women from diverse backgrounds can learn, share ideas and mentor each other. Membership is free and open to all women of Berks County. Women2Women Magazine is a publication of the Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce & Industry.

Women2Know   6 11

Helping Hands Makeovers…One Person, One Room at a Time

Growth2Go 13

Reading Recreation Commission Girls Leadership Program—Leading Ladies


15 G-Squared:

The Next Generation of Helpers & Community Leaders

Helping Hands

To join: W2W@GreaterReadingChamber.org


Stay connected: BerksWomen2Women.com Facebook.com/BerksWomen2Women LinkedIn: Berks Women2Women Title Sponsors St. Joseph Regional Health Network Wells Fargo Platinum Sponsors Alvernia University Penske Truck Leasing Reading Eagle Company Reading Health System Santander Bank Savage Dodge, Inc. Susquehanna Bank VF Outlet Center Gold Sponsors BCTV Baker Tilly Berks County Bar Association Berks County Living Bell Tower Salon, Medi-Spa & Store Bellco Federal Credit Union Boscov’s Department Store, Inc. Carpenter Technology Corporation First Priority Bank Fulton Bank—Great Valley Division Herbein + Company, Inc. Leisawitz Heller Lords & Ladies Salon & Medical Spa M & T Bank National Penn Bank RKL LLP Riverfront Federal Credit Union Sweet Street Desserts, Inc. Tompkins VIST Bank Wyomissing Hair Studio The opinions expressed in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.

For Advertising Opportunities: call 610.685.0914 Ext. 1 Read W2W Magazine Online at BerksWomen2Women.com



Top 10 Careers for Women in the Next Ten Years


Negotiating Skills for Success:

Getting Things Done in the Workplace

19 20

Tax Planning Tips for 2015

When I Grow Up, I Want to Be…


Networking in a Bar?

Mastering the Art


Peacefully Not Perfect

Health2Wellness 28

‘Pessimism’ is the Key to a Healthy Heart

30 34

Can Habits Change?

Life is One Big VEGAN Food Adventure!


Vegan Recipes

Like us at Facebook.com/ BerksWomen2Women

Work to Life—Life to Work

Tips On Successfully Maintaining a Healthy Balance

In Every Issue   4 12

Editor’s Desk W2W Events

38 40

Book Club


More Women2Know

Idea Exchange

© 2015 All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reproduced electronically or in print without the expressed written permission of the publisher. Women2Women Magazine is published quarterly by Hoffmann Publishing Group, Reading, PA HoffmannPublishing.com • 610.685.0914 Cover: Photographed at The Inn at Centre Park, A Historic Bed & Breakfast and Events Venue in the heart of the Centre Park Historic District in Reading. The Inn at Centre Park, affordable elegance at its finest. Photo By: Kelly Armour Photography

Editor’s Desk

Welcome 2015!

Kelly Armour Photography


Melissa Varone, Editor, Women2Women Magazine Assistant VP, Marketing, Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce & Industry

Women2Women Magazine


Julia Klein C. H. Briggs Company

Paula Barron Tompkins VIST Bank

Karen Marsdale Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce & Industry

Phoebe Canakis Phoebe’s Pure Foods Dawn Maurer Derr Sunrise Communication Tracy Hoffmann Hoffmann Publishing Group

Julia Nickey St. Joseph Regional Health Network Connie Skipper Berks County Intermediate Unit Melissa Varone Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce & Industry

ersonally, I was anxious to say goodbye to 2014. Last year was an especially challenging year…my father suffered a severe stroke in April and since then he has had a very long road to recovery. Being the youngest child of four, and not having any children of my own, it’s natural to appoint myself as the primary caretaker of our family. But I must confess, there were many moments when I didn’t act strong or handle my own emotions well. With the great fortune of a supportive husband, sisters, some close friends and an understanding place of employment, I was able to manage my emotions and be a support service for my parents during this sad and often frustrating journey. Though trying, my story pales in comparison with the story of the three remarkable women we feature in this issue. Janice Rodriguez, Kelly Gage Mocey and Esteffani Alcantara each share personal accounts of overcoming adversity while utilizing the social services and support of Bridge of Hope, Berks Women in Crisis and Family Promise, respectively. I am honored to know these three ladies and be able to share their stories with our readers as their stories are examples of what inner strength can achieve. In a related topic Women2Women took a look at our future leaders and what they will need in order to succeed. Be sure to read about Daphne Klahr who is making sure that young women in urban environments are being educated and empowered to be leaders. I had the pleasure of volunteering with Daphne’s Leading Ladies, and I was inspired by the great work she has accomplished with these fine young women. In the spring of 2015, the Chamber will host a Young Leaders conference that will cultivate mentoring from the local business community, career exploration panels and personal finance activities. And, don’t miss the story about how the Junior League of Reading is helping to improve the self-esteem of young women by empowering them to be community leaders with their G-squared (Great Girls) Service Learning Group. So even though I got a little teary-eyed reading stories in this issue, I was inspired by the resources, the women and the future of the young women in our community. What potential we have for success! And what potential my father has for recovery. He has my mother, a supportive family and a great speech therapist. My hope for 2015 is that we are all blessed with the good fortune of a supportive network of family, friends and social services. Wishing you all the best in 2015. Happy Reading!

Melissa Varone 4 Women2Women Winter 2015

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Community & Business Profiles, Insights & Highlights

Helping Hands Susan Shelly Freelance Writer


ften, life does not proceed as planned. Janice and her then four-year-old son moved Illness, a broken relationship, an to Reading from Puerto Rico in 2009 in order accident, abuse, job loss or other to escape an abusive relationship with her unanticipated events can shatter even sta- ex-husband. She had one friend here, and, ble lives, resulting in circumstances never with an undergraduate and master’s degree, imagined possible. she thought she would be able to find work Women2Women talked to three ladies and make a life for herself and her child. who confronted serious difficulties in their Soon after her move, she discovered that lives. With help from local agencies, each of her husband had followed her and was in these women has survived and is working New York City. Fearing for her safety, she to give back to the people and community sought the services of Berks Women in that supported them during dark periods Crisis and remained in its safe house for two of their lives. months, after which time she transitioned to the YMCA of Reading and Berks County’s Building Family Through Y-Haven program. Caring Staff & Volunteers Janice Rodriguez experienced her share of Continued on page 8 hopelessness before connecting in 2009 with Bridge of Hope of Berks County, an agency that works to end and prevent homelessness for single mothers and their children. Today, she works full time at a mental health agency, cares for her son in their townhome and serves as a board member for the agency that cared for her when no one else would.

“Bridge of Hope let me know that I wasn’t alone, and the people in it became family for my son and I. It’s not just a housing program, it’s a family program.” - Janice Rodriguez 6 Women2Women Winter 2015

berkswomen2women.com 7

Women2Know When she felt that the threat from her husband had passed, she began looking for work and another place to live, but was unable to find a job that would support herself and her son. And, she learned that she didn’t qualify for services. “The city has a lot of resources, but I didn’t qualify for any of them,” Janice said. When she learned of Bridge of Hope, she called and got an application. “I held onto that application for two weeks before I submitted it because I was afraid I would be turned away again,” Janice said. When she learned she was accepted into the program, she felt her life begin to turn around. “I was just full of hope,” Janice said. “I was so happy they accepted me because everyone else had said no.” Working with a mentoring group from a local church, Janice and her son were provided with housing and other services. The greatest benefit though, was the relationships that formed between Janice and her son and the mentors. Jody Widing is the community relations coordinator for Bridge of Hope, who also served as a mentor for Janice. Getting to know Janice and her son, she said, was a gift for all the mentors. “Janice was a perfect candidate for Bridge of Hope because she was willing to work really hard to address the issues that brought her to homelessness,” Jody said. “Being a mentor to her was a wonderful experience for my husband and me.” Janice and her son, now 10, remain extremely grateful to Bridge of Hope and the people in their mentoring group, and do what they can to support others in the program. “Janice and her son both have hearts for helping others,” Jody said. “No matter how difficult her situation was, Janice was always looking to give back.” Bridge of Hope: www.berks.bridgeofhopeinc.org

8 Women2Women Winter 2015

A Mother & Daughter Heal Together Kelly Gage Mocey was just 17 when she was physically abused by her 18-year-old boyfriend. While she has little memory of that day, she maintains enormous gratitude for Berks Women in Crisis (BWIC), an agency that provides services for victims of abuse and which helped Kelly, now 32, and her mother, Gwen, heal from that horrific experience. Kelly, who grew up in Berks County, now recognizes that the relationship with her boyfriend was fraught with warning signs. At age 17, however, she never thought that he would hurt her. After enduring a rollercoaster relationship and emotional abuse for some time, Kelly knew she would be better off if she ended things. When she tried to do so, however, he would not accept that the relationship was over. So, Kelly visited him at his college one day to resolve the matter once and for all. Kelly ended up in the hospital that day, bruised and battered, with no memory of the events that occurred in her boyfriend’s dorm room. She was found by campus police, who heard her calls for help. She could not get out

of the room on her own because her attacker had removed the doorknob from the inside. Once her physical wounds had healed and she tried to move on with her life, Kelly discovered she was stuck. She was unable to fully understand what had happened to her, and could not comprehend that the person she had cared for would physically harm her. Her mother insisted that Kelly have no contact with the person who had hurt her, which Kelly resisted. Her relationship with her mother became badly strained. “I just wanted to get some answers and for my mom to let me figure it out on my own,” Kelly said. “Then, one day a friend of my mother’s told her about Berks Women in Crisis’ counseling services.” Kelly wanted nothing to do with counseling, but her mother insisted and she finally agreed to go to a session. “I remember driving into the city that day with my mom, so annoyed that we were going somewhere where I would be expected to talk about my feelings,” Kelly said. Once at BWIC, however, Kelly immediately felt welcomed and understood. “BWIC was the first place that made me

realize what had happened wasn’t my fault, and to help me understand the cycles of abuse,” Kelly said. “What I felt, they knew and understood. They helped me build my confidence back, and also repaired my relationship with my mother.” Mary Kay Bernosky, executive director of BWIC, said that Kelly’s willingness to share her story is a service to other abused women, who also can benefit from the agency’s counseling and other services. Gwen now is a member of the board of BWIC, which serves about 4,000 clients a year in its safe house and through its legal and counseling services. Kelly went on to graduate from Gettysburg College and pursue a master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania. She lives in Montgomery County with her husband and two children, and is expecting her third child. A recruiter for a global consulting company, she is pleased to be able to give back to the agency that helped her so much. “I wouldn’t be the strong, confident and healed woman that I am today without Berks Women in Crisis,” Kelly said. Berks Women in Crisis:


Rebuilding a Life & Rediscovering Hope Esteffani Alcantara had a good job in a hospital in New York City before she and her young daughter moved to Reading in 2013, hoping to find the quality of life Esteffani, 27, envisioned for them. Her plans, however, did not go as planned, and eight months after moving they found themselves without a home. Continued on page 10

“The confident young woman I had been earlier in my life had vanished. But, Family Promise gave me a renewal of my faith. The clock had stopped for me, but I was able to reboot and find my faith again.” -Esteffani Alcantara

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Esteffani approached Family Promise of Berks County, an agency that provides temporary housing, assistance in finding housing and employment, and other services. She applied and was accepted into the program. After several weeks of adjusting to her new situation, Esteffani began allowing herself to hope. “The confident young woman I had been earlier in my life had vanished. But, Family Promise gave me a renewal of my faith. The clock had stopped for me, but I was able to reboot and find my faith again.” Gwen Didden, executive director of Family Promise, said that spiritual guidance is a unique part of the program, and is extremely beneficial for clients. “We provide support on every level, but the spiritual component of Family Promise is often the thing that families really need,” Didden said. “Yes, they need housing and meals and help finding work, but they also need spiritual renewal and hope that can seem very far away when you’re in such difficult circumstances.” During the three months that she and her seven-year-old were in the program, Esteffani found a job and started working full time. Three weeks before Christmas, they moved into their own apartment in Reading. She recently started a new, full-time job, and also works part-time on weekends. And, she’s started taking classes toward a bachelor’s degree in technical leadership. “I’m working on being a better person and being the best mom I can for my child,” Esteffani said. Esteffani also speaks on behalf of Family Promise, and is a frequent participant in Women2Women meetings and events. She is constantly inspired by the women she encounters. “I see other women who have faced obstacles and have gone on to achieve great things,” she said. “That’s very empowering for me. It lets me know that there’s light at the end of the tunnel.” Family Promise: www.familypromiseofberks.com

We thank The Inn at Centre Park for allowing us to use their beautiful facilities for our photo location. Article photography by Kelly Armour Photography.



One Person, One Room at a Time Cynthia Jackson Founder & Executive Director, Room 2 Room of Berks County


oom 2 Room of Berks County began I took my idea to the boss; however, he did as an idea in the summer of 2004 not go for it. So I decided I would do it myself! when an employer of mine asked all With the help of fellow real estate agents of us on his team to come up with an idea and friends we launched this new project, to give back to Berks County. I suggested we Room 2 Room. It was not long before we do something for Berks Women in Crisis. A were planning our first “makeover” that we few years earlier, BWIC helped me when I figured out how to secure items and identify a was going through a messy situation (in all recipient to refresh and revamp their place of fairness, which I partially created myself!) shelter. Our first “makeover” was in the City and I vowed that I would think of a way to of Reading in April 2005. It was a tremendous repay them. When I met with Linda Patton, success! The Reading Eagle documented our the Executive Director of BWIC at the time, accomplishment, publishing before/after I learned that they had a transitional housing photos of the project in the Sunday Reading program where the chosen recipients, after Eagle and we were off and running. meeting certain requirements and guidelines, Over the years, we have had the privilege were often provided with Section 8 housing of working with Berks Women in Crisis as or some other type of housing to help them well as Family Promise, Bridge of Hope, the get a fresh start in life. These people were in Reading Housing Authority and Mary’s Shelter. need of all household furnishings, appliances, We have conducted many fundraising events, kitchenware, bedding, etc. including BonTon and Boscov’s semi-annual As a Mortgage Consultant with Liberty community promotions. We also received, at Home Mortgages, I had daily contact with that time, assistance from St. Ignatius Loyola Realtors from all over the county. Often in real with the collection of Redner’s receipts, which estate transactions when folks are moving up, we turned in for cash reimbursements. Soon they elect to get rid of their old furnishings we were seeking storage space and Storage and replace them with new pieces. I witnessed World came to our rescue by allowing us to use this over and over when I sold real estate space in one of their facilities in Womelsdorf. in the early ’80s. What happens to the old Currently, Mary’s Shelter allows us to use stuff? Back then, we did not have a “Trash to their facility for storage. Treasure” mentality as we do now. Nor did Many times after we met with the selected we have junk removal companies. People candidates to learn their likes/dislikes, we either gave it away or destroyed it. This was would construct a “wish list” and email it a perfect answer to solve the problem—the out to our entire group of volunteers. It purging of old stuff when people were ready truly was a “GOD thing” as items would just to make settlement on their new homes show up and they were exactly what we were matched with the needs of people going looking for. This has continued to amaze me, through Berks Women in Crisis who often but when an organization’s intent is for the barely made it out of domestic situations right purposes, well, is it any wonder how it with the shirt on their backs! all just seems to happen magically?

In September 2011, I had to step away from Room 2 Room to take care of some personal family issues. There have been many obstacles in my personal life that have forced me to take a good, long look in the mirror and to stand accountable for my actions. I cannot say that I have always been proud of my past; often we reap what we sow. All of us have our own stories to tell. However, I now believe you can compensate the trajectory of the path you are on by taking the focus off one’s self and seek out ways to service others. The organization, under the direction of Lisa Gantner, continued to move forward during these last few years, but I feel now is the time to take the reins once again and lead the crew into 2015! We have been blessed to be able to attract the type of volunteers who choose to give back their time and talents to their community so unselfishly, enabling us to assist well over 20 makeovers over the past decade. Our volunteers have selflessly given a hand to those in need of a hand. This “pay-it-forward” mentality has been an inspiration to me and the lifeblood of Room 2 Room of Berks County! One person can truly make a difference, and a group of like-minded people can rock the world!

berkswomen2women.com 11

W2W Events


GROWTH2GO— For Education and Preparation

Development Overcoming the Fear of Public Speaking

Time Management for Women Who Do Too Much

Presenter: Jo Painter January 14, 2015 • 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. Center of Business Excellence • Free

Surveys have shown that the number one fear in the world is the fear of public speaking. Can you relate? You don’t have to be a professional speaker to be interested in the benefits of public speaking. Reason being that public speaking takes place daily even during those things we perceive as ‘ordinary’ activities of life…It’s simply a part of life! Come learn tips that will help you overcome your fear and set you up for success!

Development Do’s and Don’ts of Effective Networking

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Presenter: Deana Barcz

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January 20, 2015 • 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. The Highlands at Wyomissing • $20 Unfortunately, most people believe being busy means they are getting things done, but this is often not the case. If you prioritize properly, however, there will be no need to multi-task. Don’t be fooled into thinking that you have been productive just because you are busy! Do you want to stop being a woman who does too much, and start being a woman who knows what she wants, gets the “right” things done, and achieves her goals? This session is for you!

Negotiation Skill for Success Presenters:

- Joanne M. Judge, Esq., CPA

Co-Chair of the Health Law Department—Stevens & Lee

- Donna Vareha-Walsh

Director Global Procurement—Carpenter Technology

March 17, 2015 • 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. The Highlands at Wyomissing • $20 Every day, women face situations that require using negotiation skills as a way to get things done in the workplace. Negotiation can be for your business or for yourself. This session will help you to improve your skills to get what you want out of negotiations. This session offers a practical approach to deal with both the issues and to manage the interpersonal dynamics that can prevent people from getting to “yes!”

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Finance, Mentoring & Education

Reading Recreation Commission Girls Leadership Program—

Daphne Klahr Executive Director, Reading Recreation Commission


n fall of 2013, the Reading Recreation Commission (RRC) implemented an urban-focused Girl’s Leadership Program at 3rd and Spruce Recreation Center. This unique program empowers young women in urban environments to be leaders and visionaries, and gives them the tools to be healthy, successful, and contributing members of society. The custom curriculum, developed by Judie Thompson, PCC, of Myndsight Consulting Group, is relationship-centered, strengths-based, and solutions-focused. The

their careers, education paths, and more. In December, the girls were paired with women mentors for a special night of shopping for Angel Tree gifts for kids in need, along with an appropriate outfit for themselves. The success of the program can be measured in very real terms. One girl from the program attended college this past fall—the first in her family. Another girl went from being a discipline problem with poor grades and school attendance to being accepted into a college-preparation program with the ultimate goal of attending a four-year college. One of our girls decided to run for class office after being in our program because she felt she had the ability to “be a leader.” The girls, as a group, decided to perform a community service project for senior citizens in lieu of having a party for themselves to celebrate the end of the program. Finally, a comparison of the participants’ self-assessments from the beginning of the program to the end of the program saw a marked improvement in self-esteem, community awareness, and a better development of future education and career goals. program was made possible with the In March of 2013, the Girls generous support of the St. Joseph Leadership Program was recRegional Health Network and the ognized by the Pennsylvania Youth and Philanthropy Fund of Recreation and Park Society the Berks County Community for Excellence in Recreation Foundation, along with support and Parks. One of only 10 profrom local businesses and organigramming awards statewide, it was zations, namely AMA Photography, an extraordinary honor for the RRC and Auntie Anne’s, Berks County Intermediate the City of Reading. The award helped to Unit, Berks Women in Crisis, Boscov’s, D&D showcase, on a state level, the great things Screen Printing, Reading Hospital School of that the program is accomplishing in Reading. Nursing and Sheetz. Kimberly Helton, Director of Workforce The Girls Leadership Program met weekDevelopment for the Commonwealth of ly from October 2013 to May 2014, and Pennsylvania and a graduate of Albright focused on positive identity, self-expression, College, believes that the RRC’s Girls life skills, career development, and life choices. In addition to weekly meetings, the girls Leadership Program will become a national visited St. Joseph Hospital, Reading Hospital, model for other urban communities across Kutztown University, Hawk Mountain, the country. As she succinctly stated: “You are Reading Symphony, and New York City to standing in the gap” [for these young women]. In fall of 2014, the program not only consee Cinderella on Broadway. One of the most successful nights of the program involved a tinued at 3rd and Spruce Recreation Center, roundtable discussion with local women leaders who the girls were able to question about Continued on page 14 berkswomen2women.com 13

Growth  2Go About the Name: The girls in the leadership program divided up into five groups and each developed a name and logo that they felt best represented them as a group. After each group presented their idea to the rest of the girls, everyone was given a chance to vote on the best name and logo. The result was the name “Leading Ladies” and Raycell Diaz, a student at Southern Middle School, explained to all of the girls why her group chose the name and logo design.

but expanded to include a second club at Southern Middle School as a pilot program with the support of the Reading School District. It is hoped that the program will be able to expand in 2015 to all four middle schools, impacting more than 120 Reading girls a year.

“The logo has a small flower and a large flower because we are small now but will grow into beautiful women. The name is in cursive because we are girls and are curvy. And we chose the name ‘Leading Ladies’ because we ARE the future leaders of Reading.” Amen, Raycell.

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G-SQUARED: The Next Generation of Helpers & Community Leaders Dawn Maurer Derr, Sunrise Communication


t’s been a long time since the world has experienced the slower pace, carefree spirit, and neighborhood philanthropy seen in the days of Mayberry. Kids today are known to be over scheduled, have their eyes glued to their cell phones, and appear ungrateful and self-centered, complain many of their elders. While that behavior may be noticeable in some corners of the world, here in Berks County exists a group of girls whose giving hearts speak through their actions just like the characters in the infamous Andy Griffith Show.

of the project, resulting in a true learning experience for those who participate. The positive implications for service learning (increased self-esteem, improved academic achievement, improved critical thinking skills, etc.) all fit the Junior League mission perfectly, said Kuhn. So far, the G-squared girls group has initiated three projects: 1. ANIMAL WELFARE. The girls worked closely with the Humane Society by creating “Adopt Me” scarves for the pets to wear and baked healthy treats to encourage anxious animals to eat. The girls then visited the Humane Society and took photographs of the adoptable pets, created a Facebook page and invited the public to “like” their page. The end result was 8 adopted pets! 2. HOMELESSNESS. The girls created “hope chests” for children who arrive daily at Berks Women in Crisis. Each box was wrapped and decorated by the girls and filled with items such as soap, toothpaste, crayons, small toys, bottles and pacifiers. The girls delivered the hope chests to BWIC and had a chance to see the facility where these children live. 3. HUNGER. As a continuation of their interest in the topic of homelessness, the girls decided to participate in the JLR Holiday Kitchen Tour held in December. They created brightly colored flyers and attached them to paper bags to hand out to attendees. The girls explained to tour stoppers that hunger was a significant issue for the homeless and encouraged people to fill the bags with items to donate to the local food bank.

G-squared (Great Girls) Service Learning Group consists of six girls in fifth and sixth grade who have been doing good deeds since last winter as part of the Junior League Of Reading’s Youth Empowered Initiative. “The focus of this initiative is to improve the self-esteem of the youth in our community and empower them to be community leaders,” said Rachel Kuhn, Junior League President. “When JLR met with this group of girls, we already had completed our 3rd Annual Young Women's Summit and found that we needed a way to stay connected with the girls we work with and also encourage their interest in community work. After much research and discussion, we decided to create Service Learning clubs in our community.” Service Learning is a type of volunteering that includes an education piece prior to the project and a reflection piece at the completion

“The girls were thrilled with what they had accomplished and took time to talk about the impact they created all by themselves,” said Kuhn. Utilizing materials from generationOn (a division of the Points of Light Foundation that supports volunteerism among our youth), the girls worked through choosing a topic, researching the topic, determining the scope of the project and planning the project. “Each one of the girls and all of the JLR participants have learned so much about our community and ourselves through the club—in addition to having a lot of fun,” said Kuhn. Plans are in place to establish service learning clubs at the four middle schools in the Reading School District, the Clinton Street Olivets Club, and two schools in the Wyomissing Area School District. The community can keep abreast of G-squared’s latest projects by following them on Facebook at G-squared Great Girls. berkswomen2women.com 15

Growth 2Go

CAREERS FOR WOMEN in the Next Ten Years

Tracy Hoffmann, Hoffmann Publishing Group


hat began as an assignment to find a list of top up-and-coming careers for women ended as a lesson in gender equity. My The Atlantic identified the jobs research led me to at least a dozen sites, each promoting expected to add the largest numtheir pundit’s top careers projections for the next five or ten years. ber of new positions and selected Now I just needed to narrow my search to find the top projected those with the highest median careers for women. Lo and behold, I found no list developed annual income—at least $60,000. exclusively for women, or men for that matter, unless you count These reflect the best-paying jobs professional baseball, hockey and football. Of course, I doubt these with the highest demand for new choices make anyone’s list due to the very finite number of positions workers in the future. available. Hence, the epiphany, and proud moment; my discovery http://goo.gl/xUmBbW that gender equity is indeed moving in the right direction as there were no lists to be found offering a distinction between careers for (Best paying by %) men and women. Accountants/Auditors................ 21% The next step in this process really surprised me. I reviewed many Civil Engineer............................ 24% different websites from heavyweights such as The Atlantic, Business Computer Applications/ Insider, Kiplinger, US News and the US government, and there were Software Engineers................... 34% no more than four career choices listed consistently among the sites. Computer Systems Analyst........ 20% Some sites exploded the career choices into micro-options while Dental Hygienist........................ 36% others provided a broad brush, and all chose to anchor their picks Financial Advisor....................... 31% to their own set of preferences. In the end, when searching for the Management Analyst................ 24% best career choices within the next decade, you’ll need to identify whether you want a career with the largest number of open positions, Market Research Analyst........... 28% Physicians/Surgeons................. 21% a career with the greatest percentage of well-paying, higher-quality job openings, a career within the fastest growing categories of jobs, Registered Nurse....................... 22% a position within flourishing industries, or a career that matches your social values and life status choice.

16 Women2Women Winter 2015

Business Insider compiled a ranking of the best jobs for the future based on how well they pay and how much they are projected to grow, focusing on higher-quality jobs and the number of jobs projected versus percentage of growth as some jobs have high percentages but few openings due to need for occupations. http://goo.gl/cL4PS0

(Real jobs by 2022) Accountants/Auditors...............166K Carpenters................................218K Computer Systems Analysts.....127K Elementary School Teachers.....168K General/Operations Managers.................................244K Lawyers.......................................75K Management Analysts................33K Registered Nurses....................526K Software Applications Developers...............................140K Specialist Physicians/Surgeons....65K

Boston.com identified the fastest growing jobs regardless of education or income attainment levels. http://goo.gl/GmuK51

(Fastest growing by %) Computer Applications/ Software Engineers................... 44% Home Health Aides................... 48% Medical Assistants..................... 35% Network Systems/Data Communications Analysts......... 53% Personal Financial Advisors....... 41% Personal/Home Care Aides........ 50% Substance Abuse/Behavioral Disorder Counselors.................. 34% Theatrical/Performance Make-up Artists......................... 40% Veterinarians............................. 27% Veterinary Technologist/ Technicians................................ 41%

Kiplinger has developed a list of careers based on likelihood of sustaining a middle-class income, socially redeeming values, quality of life and social status.

US News has developed the information from a compilation of data sources to determine those careers that are prime to flourish by 2020.



Cognitive-Behavioral Therapist Federal Government Manager Genetic Counselor Global Business Development Executive Health-Informatics Specialist Higher-Education Administrator Immigration Expert Optometrist Program Evaluator Science-based Researcher

US Bureau of Labor predicts job opportunities by the highest percentage of change in employment between 2012 and 2022. http://goo.gl/T5VH27

(Job opportunites by % of change) (Booming in 2020) Computer Engineering Counseling & Therapy Data Crunching Entrepreneurship Environmental/Conservation Science Finance Healthcare Management Scientific Research Veterinarians

Construction Helpers (Brick, block, stone, tile & marble).................. 43% Diagnostic Medical Sonographers............................ 46% Genetic Counselors................... 41% Health Aides.............................. 48% Industrial-Organizational Psychologists............................. 53% Insulations Workers, Mechanical................................ 47% Interpreters/Translators............. 46% Occupational Therapy Assistants.................................. 43% Personal Care Aides................... 49% Physical Therapist Assistants...... 41%

berkswomen2women.com 17

Growth 2Go

Negotiating Skills for Success:

Getting Things Done in the Workplace Danielle Antos Program Coordinator, Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce & Industry


ships. At home, family situations require daily negotiating skills: deciding how to spend your weekend, how to budget and save money, choosing a vacation spot. Being a good negotiator enables you to get what you want more often without resorting to adapting an aggressive personality. Negotiating with others is more effective than simply demanding what you want or just caving in. Chances are you will be more successful in the workplace if you know how to better egotiating skills can help you manage negotiate. These skills enable you to stand up an array of life situations, both at for yourself and get what you want without work and in your personal relation- jeopardizing relationships. Having these


Certified Public Accountants

Beth A. Shurr, CPA, MT, CSEP

ph: 610.678.1220 // fx: 610.743.8440 // cell: 610.587.7042 email: beth@shurrcpa.com // web: ShurrCPA.com 1020 James Dr., Ste. 103, Leesport, PA 19533

Navigation. Direction. Success. 18 Women2Women Winter 2015

skills increases your personal effectiveness and lessens the chances that others will take advantage of you. As part of our Women2Women Growth2Go Leadership Series, Joanne M. Judge, Esq., CPA, Co-Chair of the Health Law Department, Stevens & Lee, and Donna Vareha-Walsh, Director, Global Procurement, Carpenter Technology, will present ways to improve your skills to get what you want out of negotiations. “I use negotiating skills on a daily basis to influence others to support a common goal or by trying to understand what motivates others and use that to drive an end result where everyone feel that they win,” said Donna. Understanding preparation and having a strategy when going into a negotiation will significantly enhance your chances for success. This session offers a practical approach to manage the interpersonal dynamics that can prevent people from getting to “yes!” Be sure to join us for this informative event on Tuesday, March 17th, from 11:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m., at Highlands in Wyomissing.

Growth 2Go

Tax Planning Tips

We Asked Our Investors to Share Their Tax Planning Tips for 2015.


t’s important to know the difference between current and capital expenses to help you understand what can be deducted from your business’s total income and when. Current expenses can be deducted in the year you make a purchase, and include expenses such as office supplies and utilities. Capital expenses are expenditures for things that will help you generate future revenue such as a desk or a car, and may require tax deductions to be spread out over a period of years (with the exception of Section 179.)

Know the Breaks

Knowing what business credits and deductions are applicable to your business is key. Federal and state business tax laws are constantly evolving, so do your research or better yet, hire a tax professional who specializes in serving small businesses.



Laurie M. Peer, CPA, CFP® Partner, RKL Tax Services Group Vice President, Sterling Financial Advisors, LLC

Stacy A. Weller, CPA—Tax Manager Herbein+Company, Inc.

orkers who are saving for their retirement could be saving taxes now and in the future through a tax-advantaged employer plan, such as a regular or Roth 401k or 403b plan, or by contributing to an IRA or Roth IRA. For 2015, maximum contributions have increased to $18,000 for 401k and 403b plans, with the option for workers over the age of 50 to contribute an additional $6,000. The IRA and Roth IRA contribution limits remain unchanged at $5,500, with an extra $1,000 available to contribute for those 50 years and older. To ensure you reach your savings goals, you should consider having automatic investments taken out of your paycheck or setting up withdrawals from your bank account.

f you plan to make a significant gift to charity this year, consider gifting appreciated stocks or mutual fund shares that you’ve owned for more than one year. This will boost your tax savings on your tax return. Your charitable contribution is the fair-market value on the date of the gift, and you never have to pay tax on the appreciation of that stock. If your favorite charity can’t accept donations of appreciated securities, consider opening a donor-advised fund instead. The fund administrator will sell the securities and add the proceeds to your account. You can deduct the fair-market value of the securities on your tax return, and decide later to which charity you want to donate the money.

Additional tax strategies are posted on wellsfargoworks.com.

Mary Jean Noon VP/Senior Relationship Manager, Central PA Business Banking berkswomen2women.com 19


When I Grow Up, I Want to Be… FINANCIAL LITERACY OF TEENS Achieving economic prosperity is a definite obstacle for teens, and it’s especially hard for young people who’ve never learned how to manage money. Only 35% of teens know how to balance a checking account or manage credit cards. During the past several years, a decline in overall financial knowledge is especially pronounced among 18-year-olds, and 13% fewer teens have bank accounts. SOURCE: 2011 Teens & Money Survey, Charles Schwab

20 Women2Women Winter 2015

Trish Shermot Visions Federal Credit Union Co-Chair,Women2Women Education Committee


hen I grow up, I want to be… Do you remember taking on that question with robust responses like, “I want to be a doctor,” or, “I want to be an accountant, like my mom.” Maybe you were the one who said, “I want to be an astronaut, like Sally Ride.” I am curious what our young women of tomorrow are answering now? With media and technology bombarding our youth, what influence does this have on career mapping for the


Extraordinary! When Buying or Selling Your Next Home

next generation? How do we embrace and champion the dreams of our next cycle of leaders in our schools and communities? Our Berks community comes together on many platforms to achieve great results for a cause. The challenges facing the future of our youth is yet another example of an issue that our community can positively impact by sharing our wealth of skills, knowledge and talents with the young men and women of our community; opening students’ minds to their full potential. The Women2Women Girls2Leaders Education Committee is ideally positioned to respond because we believe in the power of education and real-world experiences for students. We’re here to launch initiatives and create partnerships to motivate young people across the county toward financial independence, while also offering leadership and mentoring experiences. Here’s how: In March of 2015, your Greater Reading Chamber and the Women2Women Girls2Leaders Education Committee will host a Young Leaders Conference in Berks County. The event will be hosted on Penn State Berks campus, exposing 10th and 11th grade students to life on a college campus. A one-day event, young men and young women will be separated into two tracks, each featuring mentoring from the local business community, career exploration panels, personal finance activities sponsored by Visions Federal Credit Union, a keynote speaker, and much, much more!

Fine Homes & Estates are my specialty, & Extraordinary homes deserve Extraordinary attention. As the premier Realtor in Berks County, I have used my professional eye, marketing savvy, enthusiasm for the business, and my understanding of the process to quickly match buyers and sellers. My sales and marketing skills have made me the most successful agent in Berks County, and I would like to share that success with you. When you are ready to sell or to buy, pick someone who can give you Extraordinary results!

Lisa Tiger

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Good communities start with MISSION OF THE YOUNG LEADERS CONFERENCE A day of mentoring, inspiring, empowering and committing for the future leaders of Berks County. How can you get involved? VOLUNTEER. For starters, volunteer to serve as a volunteer, a panelist or a lunch mentor for the Young Leaders Conference. The calendar for 2015 is out, and we have room for your talents. SHARE. Spread your excitement for these upcoming programs and share the call to action for volunteers with your work colleagues, friends and family. COACH. Get involved and help us mentor each and every student we reach to encourage them to ask questions, request assistance and make a difference. And, help our youth of today to become the financially independent leaders of tomorrow. This will give you an opportunity to improve students’ skills, and help them work through challenges—such as finding a great career, calculating the total monthly cost of owning a car, or sticking to a budget for back-to-school or holiday spending! For more information, contact: Ellen Albright, Communications Coordinator at 610.898.7776.

How will you fill in the blank? /uwberks /uwberks Please support United Way.

uwberks.org berkswomen2women.com 21

Work2Life /

Balancing Life, Work & Family

Work to Life…Life to Work— Tips On Successfully Maintaining a Healthy Balance


ow do you balance life to work in the morning and work to life in the evening? Whether you work from home, in an office, or in the field, transitioning from one mindset to another can either set you up for success or failure. How you handle changing hats determines the course of your morning and evening. Women2Women posed this question to our Facebook followers and this is what our readers shared:

“A good way to start the day is “I do freezer cooking so we can with a prioritized list of must do’s… eat at home but I don’t have to not too long. spend hours prepping dinner after a long day. We don’t have kids, but my father-in-law with Alzheimer’s lives with us and our schedules are quite busy and a bit complicated.” – Diana Cover Porter “I try to prep meals ahead of time, balance the week with doing laundry one day, cleaning another day, family night, etc. That way I don’t feel so overwhelmed with cramming household chores in a day or two.” – Patricia Solis

And at the end of the day the dedication we have to celebrating (even if just in our minds) the completion of that list…and committing to bring family/kids/dinner together…is life saving. In order to be your most pro- “To bed on time and everything ductive during the day it helps to ready the night before. Routine, set a time on a task and let our routine, routine!” – Amy Bullitt Ciervo brains know of that intention. So say it’s 11 am…I’m working on X from 11–11:30…and will not “Getting as much ready the night be interrupted. That mind talk helps get our brains into Alpha before: clothes, breakfast, lunch, etc. AND only hitting snooze twice!” productive mode.” – Kate Gudelunas Flowers – Dena Breslin 22 Women2Women Winter 2015

“Begin with a reflection, spiritual or meditative. When you start from a grateful place, all tasks seem less daunting.” – Diane Repoley Hafer “After I drop the kids off at school in the morning, I listen to Preston & Steve or Howard Stern on the radio. This gets my mind out of family mode and into the neutral zone. When I pull up into the parking lot, it switches into work mode. When I get home from work, the first thing I do is take off my work clothes and put on “lounging” clothes. That gets me out of work mode and into family mode.” – Julia Price Nickey

“Either hitting the gym early or listening to the perfect blend of relaxing/motivational/get-moving music in the morning while getting ready.” – Kelsey Elizabeth “My good friend, Coffee!” – Teresa Hoffman

“Pack the kids’ lunches and backpacks the night before!” – Sara A. Stump “I find the key is planning and routine. I use paper lists and Outlook tasks as reminders.” – Natalie Redd

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“Commit Yourself to Lifelong Learning. The Most Valuable Asset You’ll Ever Have is Your Mind and What You Put Into It.” – Brian Tracy Our residents agree. That’s why we’re proud to announce that The Highlands has started an exciting new partnership with Alvernia that allows our residents to attend free Seniors College courses at the University. And for those who don’t want to travel, select courses are offered on The Highlands’ campus!

Lifelong Learning . . . It’s just one more way The Highlands is redefining retirement living! Call today to learn more! 610-775-2300 • www.thehighlands.org • 2000 Cambridge Ave • Wyomissing, PA A member of Reading Health System berkswomen2women.com 23


? r a B a n i g n i Network

. t r A e h t g n i r e t Mas Julia Nickey Director of Patient & Organization Engagement, St. Joseph Regional Health Network


hether it’s the relaxed setting of a high barstool and dim lights or courage from the filled glass of pinot noir, networking in a bar setting just seems easier, more effective and fun! Take a look around the next time you are out on the town. You’ll start to notice that the conversations people are having, the body language they are projecting, and the clothes they are wearing could be mistaken for an office-only environment. In a world where the most sought after jobs and careers are ones where employees or entrepreneurs can tailor their workday experience, it only makes sense that business and networking continues once you’re out of the office. And, this can result in a high return on investment! However, there is an art to networking in a bar. And who could be more qualified to paint the picture than those who are there to see it all—our local bartenders! To start, you’ll need to select a bar with the ideal environment for what you’re setting out to do. Try to avoid places that are too loud; you don’t want to have to shout at someone. On the other hand, avoid places that are so quiet everyone can hear your conversation.

24 Women2Women Winter 2015

Seek out places that will attract the type of those you have in the work setting. A friendly connection you are looking for, whether it’s smile, a joke to break the ice, ease in with a teachers starting off Friday Happy Hour short conversation on a different subject and earlier than the office workers or accountants finally addressing the conversation you set out stopping in for a late night burger and beer. to have is the best method. Kate sums it up Your networking shouldn’t be confused with nicely: “The target always wants to feel like romantic connections, so stay away from you’re interested in them, or helping them in some way. If you can make them feel like “pickup” bars and rowdy establishments. you care about them in 5 minutes, you’ve Brianna Reifsnyder, manager of Winedown got it in the bag!” Café and Wine Bar, explains that women who Sounds easy, right? Well, there are some come to a social setting like a bar to network things to avoid. Kate believes the top three still have a sense of professionalism. They are are: not to approach someone who refuses to dressed in business casual attire, and are very make eye contact, not to butt into people’s conscious of the alcohol consumed, if any. conversations just because they said someKate Kirkland, Assistant General Manager thing you could use as an opener, and not at Willoughby’s Bar and Grill, has 11 years under her belt bartending and believes the key to continue to talk if someone doesn’t show is reading your audience. For the people who interest. “If you can’t convince them in the want to be left to socializing, you’ll make an first 5 minutes, you won’t.” And remember, enemy and lose a potential customer quickly be friendly and let your conversation flow by trying to push something on them. Kate naturally. Since you’re there to market yourself, and Brianna both stress the importance of Brianna advises networkers to keep it to a not being pushy in the bar’s casual setting. 1–2 drink minimum. Kate and Brianna have Eye contact is the best way to read your seen many successful networking connections audience, explains Kate. If someone makes made in bar settings and by following their eye contact with you, they’ll likely be open advice, you can make great connections, too! to what you have to say. Once you’ve locked in your contact, the conversation is similar to

The Circles Are Here! Karen Marsdale

If you haven’t heard about Lean In Circles by now, you probably were vacationing somewhere with no access to most of human kind…particularly W2W! We’ve been waving the Lean In Circle banner for several months in our marketing efforts, hosting information sessions, and calling many of you personally about this exciting new initiative. Joining a Lean In Circle means the opportunity to develop your leadership skills, grow personally, professionally, and build great new connections with women in our community. A Circle is comprised of 14–16 women coming together to learn, grow and support each other in a confidential atmosphere. The objectives will help you increase your confidence, manage conflict resolution, enhance your decision-making skills, improve communication and more! All the time and effort has resulted in an amazing start to what promises to be another Women2Women success…drum roll please. Three Circles started last fall, with more than 50 women participating, and there is a waiting list for more. What a major milestone! Most importantly, the outcome will be the women who are being impacted by this experience. We’ve heard valuable feedback from participants and anticipate more glowing reports. We look forward to being an integral part of growing more woman leaders in our community. If you didn’t have a chance to fill out an application for a Circle, we want to hear from you as there is a chance that we might start another Circle after the New Year. For more information on start date and pricing, simply call or email W2W@ GreaterReadingChamber.org. It’s never too late to begin the journey!

berkswomen2women.com 25



Not Perfect Amy Ciervo, M.Ed First Grade Teacher, Upper Merion School District Tracy Beaky Learning & Development Business Partner, Tompkins VIST Bank; Certified Life Coach


my and I have known each other since the 10th grade when we were in Madame Sheetz’ French class. Seems like a long time ago (not telling just how long), and as is the case with many friendships, also seems like yesterday. Vanity in numbers aside, the reality is that we have seen each other through some of the best (and notso-best) transitions that have made us the fabulous women we are today. High school to college, boyfriend to boyfriend, home to independence, job to job, love to marriage, marriage to parenting, and more. Of course, being friends for so long and independently amazing in our own right we’ve pretty much ‘perfected’, well, everything. So ‘perfect’ in fact that we were featured on PBS’s Explore PA a couple of years ago. Check it out if you want to see perfection in action. Perfectly perfect. Just kidding! But you knew that, right? That there’s no such thing as perfect? We all know that…well, depending on where you are in life, maybe that’s a hard truth to swallow. But it’s the truth—there’s no such thing as perfect, and there are a bunch of different ways to come to peace with that notion. We’d like to share our discoveries with you:

26 Women2Women Winter 2015



Trust your hearing needs to Board Certified Doctors of Audiology

PREVIOUS LIFE: Perfection = Everything in its place, beds made, pillows fluffed, no dust bunnies, no wire hangers! CURRENT LIFE: Perfection = Things are mostly put away, sheets are at least clean if not set nicely, pillows are pillows, dust bunnies have names, hangers look pretty when clothes aren’t on them (still no wire hangers, though, of course). And, as the children grow older it dawns on you, “Hey that’s why I had children, to do all of these chores I hate doing!” Seriously, they need to know that helping out with the daily life of a household is something we all do and don’t get paid for. And you can’t stress out that it isn’t done the same way you do it!



PREVIOUS LIFE: Perfection = Late nights, worry over incomplete projects, bolstering confidence, pioneering the best “thing,” do my coworkers like me?



PREVIOUS LIFE: Perfection = Doing the best you can every day, learning from your own experience—and the experience of others (as in, you can’t be the pioneer for everything—what does Pinterest/ Teachers Pay Teachers/Google say?), and yes it’s nice to be liked but you’re not there to make friends, you’re there to do your job. If a friendship happens it’s a bonus.

321 N. Furnace St., Suite 90, Birdsboro 1 Greenwood Mall, Wyomissing Spark-W2W.pdf 2 12/18/14 9:43 PM 610.404.8025 610.750.6107

Gain Become Insight Inspired


PREVIOUS LIFE: Perfection = I know my child’s every need at every moment, I’ve read all the books, I’ll only use cloth diapers and make my own baby food, I will make every birthday cake from scratch and sew their Halloween costume, and I will love every minute of it. CURRENT LIFE: Perfection = There is no one book that can sum it all up. Look to your friends and family for support and guidance. Dinner time? A bowl of cereal or bag of popcorn will do just fine, they’ll survive. You will not love every minute of it and that’s ok. If anyone says differently they’re lying to you and themselves.










To sound like a cliché and say life is too short would be appropriate. It can’t be said or stressed enough. It’s taken us some time and lots of yoga to come to this conclusion because you can get so caught up in the moment. But, remember those little moments are what make up your life, so enjoy them instead of worrying or stressing about them. If you’re reading this, chances are you have running water, a roof over your head and some kind of income. A lot of women in this world do not have those things. I try to remember that when there’s a deadline at work or the house is a mess or my child needs whatever by tomorrow. Take a deep breath, exhale, and smile!

Share your Influence New Impact Circles starting February 24th Join like-minded individuals who want to make the most out of their personal and professional lives! What is an Impact Circle? - Best of a book club meets the best of a group coaching session - Lasts 5 weeks - Sessons of 1.5 hours per week Become the “you” that YOU want to be! Contact: Sharon Mast Sharon@sparkss.com Phone: 610.781.1888 sparkss.com

berkswomen2women.com 27

Health2 Wellness

Mental, Spiritual, Physical Health & Wellness

‘Pessimism’is the Key to a Healthy Heart Lisa Lesko, BSN, RN Heart Failure & Chest Pain Coordinator, St. Joseph Regional Health Network’s Heart Institute


m I having chest pain? Could it be a heart attack? Should I call my husband? We have all shared these thoughts and fears. Many of us push on, relating our symptoms to stress…but what if it’s not? According to the American Heart Association, every minute in the United States, someone’s wife, mother, daughter or sister dies from heart disease, stroke or another form of cardiovascular disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women, yet women are more likely than men to dismiss their pain or symptoms and delay seeking medical help. According to a new research study from Harvard School of Public Health, women may exhibit “optimism bias”—a bias causing them to believe they are less at risk for negative outcomes than they actually are. The research conducted proved consistently that woman with heart disease arrive at the hospital with more advanced stages of heart disease, supporting the denial factor.

Researchers identified 6 characteristic stages from the first cardiac symptom to seeking medical help:

A period of uncertainty {attributes their symptoms to another health condition}

Denial or dismissal of symptoms

Seeking help or guidance from a third party such as a friend or family member

Recognition of severity of symptoms with feelings of defeat

Seeking medical attention

Acceptance of situation 28 Women2Women Winter 2015

Signs & Symptoms

of a Heart Attack

Women need to take action! We are the Women were found to spend longer in the primary caregiver and, becoming more comdenial phase than men; and women were mon, the primary breadwinner in our family. one and a half times more likely than men We must move ourselves to the top of the list. to wait for symptoms to become severe and Living smoke-free, being physically active, more frequent before seeking medical help. following a healthy diet, and controlling Furthermore, when women experienced a small blood pressure and cholesterol levels are improvement of symptoms, they dismissed key to preventing heart disease. And if you the problem for a longer period of time. experience any of the heart attack sympResearchers explained that women may toms or think you are having a heart attack, prioritize their concern for others over their own concern and well-being. Women juggle call 911 immediately. MAKE THE CALL. kids, work, family and homes. Women put DON’T MISS A BEAT. Time lost is heart themselves last on the list of priorities and the muscle lost!! resulting stress and tension can be dangerous; even fatal. Heart disease is as much a women’s disease as it is a men’s disease. Not convinced FEBRUARY IS HEART MONTH! yet? The facts are that women tend to fare Scheduling routine visits with your worse after a heart attack than men, stay family physician is recommended longer in the hospital, and have a higher risk for heart and overall health. Don’t of dying while in the hospital. Unfortunately, have a physician? Find one in St. when women come to the hospital with more Joseph Regional Health Network advanced stages of heart disease, there are at the FutureofHealthcare.org. fewer treatment options available.

• Shortness of breath. May occur with or without chest discomfort • Nausea • Lightheadedness or dizziness • Flu-like symptoms, including chills and cold sweats • Heart palpitations • Chest discomfort: pain, tightness or pressure in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away then returns • Discomfort in other areas: including pain or discomfort in one or both arms (especially the left arm), the back, between the shoulder blades, neck, jaw, teeth, or stomach • Heartburn or indigestion • Extreme fatigue

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berkswomen2women.com 29

Health 2Wellness

Can Habits Change? Henriette Alban, ND Naturopathic Doctor


hen it comes to change, changing the way we take care of ourselves, the way we eat or how we handle our relationships, for instance, we first feel a sense of resistance. We are used to how we do things, even when we know they don’t all work or are even good for us. We have an attachment to our way of doing things, and today’s full schedules add to the burden of making change inviting and possible. But, it isn’t healthy to stress about things that are meant to be good for us. Most of us change only when we’re ready, whether convinced of the benefits or really having no choice, for whatever the reason. The

30 Women2Women Winter 2015

latter creates a sense of urgency in itself that can steal our energy and leave us breathless. Just think of those who are given sudden bad news. Such impact turns things upside down and what appeared important before now gives way to a sense of desperate urgency to adapt to the new situation. We suddenly have no choice, we feel stressed but perhaps also feel a clear direction. Most of us have experienced this at some time during our lives. We resist change as long as possible until we can’t. So how can we invite change without fear? How do we approach change in ways that actually make a positive difference in our

lives and those around us? We could take ourselves by the hand and learn to listen to our bodies and our hearts. Mentally we may already know what to do, and now perhaps we’re resolved to follow through. Did you know that the stressful ups and downs of change actually benefit us? That it wakes up our resourcefulness and commitment to ourselves? (See research by Stanford University Professor, Kelli MgGonigal, see her TED talk). Sometimes we can sneak up on our resistance to change and begin something new because a close friend recommends it and we commit to doing it together. There is great power in group learning; lots of change is possible through the mutual encouragement and shared processes we experience when we embrace change. And of course, to celebrate all steps and results, however small they may be, is an important part to keep our willingness alive. There is the little child within that wants to make sure she’s heard and valued for her commitment. For ultimately, all resistance comes from the past when things appeared unsafe. So stand tall, take a deep breath, and begin your journey to taking the necessary steps for positive change. The suggestions offered here are easy to follow. You don’t need extra equipment, training or to shop for something expensive; what you need can be found at local stores. Use these oral care tips to avoid colds, reduce mucous build-up in sinuses and throat, eliminate bad breath, heal receding gums, and alleviate allergic postnasal drips.

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Tongue & Gum Brushing

When rising in the morning, brush the surface of your tongue and the roof of your mouth with a clean toothbrush that you dedicate to this practice. Rinse mouth and gargle at the end to remove accumulated bacteria that forms during sleep, when the body cleanses. You want your tongue to look pink and healthy. Next gently brush the roof of your mouth from back to front in easy strokes and always clean the brush under running water when you’re done. Doing this daily helps prevent colds, the flu and throat infections. Next take your toothbrush (ideally soft or medium, never hard bristles) and gently brush gums in a circular motion. No paste is needed for this. This practice encourages blood flow to gums and teeth to clear away debris and bacteria. Do this a few times a week and especially when you have a sore tooth or inflammation in the area. If your gums bleed during this practice, gently persist with brushing and rinse frequently with cold water until the bleeding stops. It is a healthy reaction for sore or

inflamed tissue to heal by ridding itself of bacteria through bleeding it out. If you wish it, you could rinse the area with a swig of Silver Hydrosol.

This ancient practice promotes a clean mouth and speeds up healing of any head colds, assists with the effects of postnasal drip, mucous build up and bad breath. You can also use a stainless steel tongue scraper sold in health food stores and online.

Sinus & Larynx Cleanse Practice

Prevent sinus infections, clear mucous build-up and help prevent ear infections. During your shower, tilt your head back and let the spray of the water reach deep into your throat; gargle under that stream with a strong vocal rrrrrrr sound, thus keeping the water milling around the throat and tonsils. Step back and spit out the excess water. Often mucus remains will come up with this practice, helping to keep the area clear. Step back under the water and gently breathe in some of the water through your nose—no, it’s not like drowning but it may take a bit to get used to it—and blow your nose out into your hands (not gross, you’re in the middle of running water which easily carries away debris and mucous). Use your fingers to clear your nose of any residual and repeat. The sinuses can now breathe easier again. You may also get a Neti Pot and follow those directions if that seems easier. Personally, I prefer the first way. Do this anytime you take a shower and watch how much stronger you are against seasonal challenges. Continued on page 32 berkswomen2women.com 31

Health 2Wellness Support for the Elusive Lymphatic System & Spleen

The lymph system is a whole body network of small nodes that require movement to empty old blood cells, waste and toxins into the blood stream for elimination. This system is responsible for keeping us in fighting shape against serious life-altering diseases. Therefore exercise, walking and stretching all assist in supporting the lymphatic system. At home, twice a week before you shower, take a loofah, a body mitten or a medium bristled skin brush and dry massage your skin all over your body. For the face and around your nipples use a gentler, circular stroke. Work from the extremities back to your heart, use a firm touch and watch your skin turn a gentle red. Areas where there is no response, where the skin remains whitish, you may have to brush repeatedly till a nice pink color comes up. Use a circular motion and be patient. You may not get this everywhere

the first time around. Eventually, we want all areas of our bodies to light up pinkish red; it signals a healthy blood flow and with that the knowing that debris, waste and toxins are sent to be eliminated from the body. This is a tried and true therapy that assists to keep your immune system in good shape and your skin glowing.

Nourishing Your Beautiful Body Through Small, Daily Changes

This is a list of suggestions that focus on digestive aspects, which is where our health is centered. We choose daily what and how much we eat and know if it’s supporting our body or not. Of these, use as many of these tips as make sense to you. Avoid pushing yourself to the extent that failure is a given, since that would simply repeat old patterns that no longer serve us. We pretty much know where these patterns are; if we’re honest with ourselves, we can spot them a mile away. Watch your body talk to you when you consider something new—is it open or curious, fearful? Is it closing down in protest? Therefore, choose the path of least resistance until you are ready to devote more conscious time to any resistance you encounter. Once you have the experience of the benefits of these suggestions, everything becomes easier.

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Alicia Lee 32 Women2Women Winter 2015

vegan recipes inside!


Leading Ladies


Eating with others is enjoyable when: • Meals are not meetings. • Meals are not interrogating the children about schoolwork or each other about business events. • Meals are not occasions to talk about problems.

Why do I need a Comprehensive Eye Exam? Changes in vision are often slow and subtle and completely natural as we age. But there are some eye diseases that can permanently rob your vision if not detected and treated early. In a Comprehensive Eye Exam, we use a variety of tests that allow us to check your vision and to look closely at the tiny structures inside your eyes. It’s a painless procedure designed to protect your vision and reduce your risk for serious eye disease in the future. As a rule, have a Comprehensive Eye Exam every two years, unless your doctor recommends more frequent tests. In fact, make an appointment today. — Y. KATHERINE HU, MD | LAWRENCE E. KENNEY, MD MICHAEL A. MALSTROM, MD | THOMAS L. MANZO, MD COMPREHENSIVE EYE CARE SPECIALISTS EYE CONSULTANTS OF PENNSYLVANIA

• Meals are enjoyed in companionable appreciation of the food and those who prepared it with uplifting conversation. • Food is honored and eaten mindfully—creating a dome shape with your hands over your plate before eating has shown that food assumes your own energy, even when no prayers are said. • Food is appreciated and thanked for—being grateful for what enters our bodies is a smart way to ascertain it gets a friendly welcome.


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• Greedy hasty eating is avoided—you could elect not to eat until you have more peace. • The meal is a celebration.

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“Put a little love in your food”: When you prepare food for the family, a potluck or have guests, during preparation infuse the meal with love and gratitude for people who come to join you. This is a direct blessing you offer all those who share a meal with you. Equally, you can bless food that is prepared by others and infuse it with the love that benefits proper enjoyment and absorption.

To download a complete list of suggestions, go to: http://www.henriettealban.com/images/1Healthy%20eating.pdf

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berkswomen2women.com 33

Health 2Wellness

g i B e n Life is O Susan Edelman Writer/Blogger, Watch Hatch Fly


t age 49, my husband Pete maintained a normal weight, blood pressure and cholesterol level. He never smoked, and he exercised regularly, swimming during his lunch hour at the YMCA. He wasn’t at high risk for a heart attack. Or so we thought. On Christmas Eve 2011, Pete suffered a heart attack, which he survived, thanks to a prompt emergency room visit, a fast-moving medical team and two stents. Upon discharge from the hospital, we had questions. Why did this happen and how could we prevent it from happening again? I began researching, and I was surprised to learn the following (from Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven Nutrition-Based Cure by Caldwell B. Esselstyn, MD and The China Study: Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-Term Health by T. Colin Campbell, PhD):


Current total cholesterol targets could be stricter. The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends 180 mg/dL or lower. Population studies show parts of the world where total cholesterol numbers are consistently below 150 mg/dL, such as rural China where cardiovascular disease is nearly nonexistent. In populations where cholesterol levels exceed 150 mg/dL, heart disease rate climbs.

2. AHA advises people to limit fat consumption to between 25 and 35 percent of total daily calorie intake. However, some say that number should be

34 Women2Women Winter 2015

closer to 10 percent or less, adding that fat should come from plant-based sources (unsaturated fats), not animal sources (trans and saturated fats).

3. Consuming a lower fat, vegan diet makes it easier to

maintain the lower fat consumption and cholesterol benchmarks. A vegan diet is purely plant-based, meaning no meat, no fish, no cheese, and no dairy. Research indicates plant-based nutrition not only helps prevent heart disease, it reverses existing heart disease.

Far from being upset by this information, my husband and I feel empowered, although we understand others do not. Food is an important part of our culture and our traditions. Our comfort, though, comes from knowing we have control over our health. As a woman, I know changes to my husband’s diet benefit me too. One in four women die of heart disease, and it remains the number one killer of both men and women in the United States. In 2011, Pete and I were about to enter the empty-nest stage of our lives, and we were eager to enjoy it in good health. As we began our journey into a vegan diet, we learned more about the myths surrounding it (from The Engine 2 Diet by Rip Esselstyn):

1. Myth: I will not get enough protein.

Plants contain more protein than you might think. For

Food A d example, spinach is 51 percent; mushrooms 35 percent; beans 26 percent; oatmeal 16 percent; whole-wheat pasta 15 percent; corn 12 percent, and potatoes 11 percent. The World Health Organization recommends, on average, 4.5 percent of daily calories should come from protein. Most Americans take in 20 percent or more each day.

2. Myth: I will not get enough calcium.

Dairy is not the only source of calcium. A diverse, plant-based diet is one of the best available sources of calcium. Good plant-based calcium sources include green leafy vegetables, nuts, oranges, kidney beans, lima beans, whole grains, Swiss chard, lentils, raisins, broccoli, celery, tofu and more.

3. Myth: I will be hungry and tired.

High-fiber, nutrient-heavy food found in fruits, vegetables, beans and grains actually allow a body to maintain consistent energy levels throughout the day. Meat and dairy are low-fiber, nutrient-light foods causing energy peaks and valleys.

Still, there are hurdles to beginning a vegan diet. Here are a few ways I overcame them:

1. Swap it.

I began by cooking my favorite meals, recipes I already knew, but I swapped out meat for meat substitutes. Tofu,


mushrooms, eggplant, and beans all make delicious meat substitutions. This is a good tip I keep in mind whenever I think there is no time to cook and learn new recipes.

2. Leave it to the experts.

Increasingly, restaurant chefs are turning their attention and talent to vegetarian and vegan entrèes. From lentils and grains to seasonings, sauces and unusual local vegetables, the professionals know how to prepare interesting, beautiful and satisfying vegetable main dishes. I visit my local restaurants for ideas to enhance my cooking.

3. Roast vegetables instead of boiling them.

Preparation makes a big difference. For example, boiled Brussels sprouts are bland. Coated with cooking spray, seasoned with salt and pepper, and roasted in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes makes all the difference. The same goes for almost any other vegetable.

We began slowly. We didn’t think of our diet in terms of eliminating meat, we thought of it in terms of adding vegetables. Before long we realized we enjoyed our new meatless meals better than our traditional meals. Now, life is one big food adventure! *See page 36 for a few of Susan’s favorite vegan recipes!

berkswomen2women.com 35

Health 2Wellness Vegan Sloppy Joes Yield: 4 servings

This classic Sloppy Joe recipe simply swaps white beans for ground meat. Served alongside roasted fingerling potatoes and a green salad, this makes an excellent and easy weeknight meal. INSTRUCTIONS:

INGREDIENTS: 1 white or sweet onion, chopped 1 green pepper, seeded & chopped 2 tablespoons water 2-15 oz. cans Great Northern (White) Beans, drained & rinsed 1 cup ketchup 2 Tbsp. brown sugar 2 Tbsp. white vinegar 2 Tbsp. yellow mustard 2 tsp. vegan Worcestershire sauce ½ tsp. cracked pepper 4 Kaiser rolls, split & toasted

1. Sauté the onion and the green pepper in the water in a frying pan over medium-high heat for 10 minutes until water cooks away and vegetables are tender. Add more water if the vegetables need additional cooking. 2. Combine the ketchup, sugar, vinegar, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, pepper and rinsed, drained beans together in a small bowl. 3. Add the mix to the pan with the onions and green pepper. Cook until everything is thickened and heated through. 4. Serve immediately on toasted Kaiser rolls.

TIP: Canned beans are notorious for high sodium content. Low-sodium and “no salt added” brands are often found

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Vegan Lasagna Yield: 10 to 12 servings

This recipe is adapted from an entry in The Engine 2 Diet book by Texas firefighter and world-class athlete, Rip Esselstyn. Vegan lasagna is good for entertaining, because it feeds a crowd. It has the feel of a traditional Italian meal while also being a healthy low-fat vegan offering. Serve it alongside a crusty bread, green salad and bottle of red wine.

INGREDIENTS: 1 large white onion, chopped 6 garlic cloves, peeled & minced 2 Tbsp. water 8 oz. mushrooms, sliced I head broccoli, stems removed & chopped 2 carrots, peeled & chopped 1 red pepper & 1 green pepper, seeded & chopped 1-15 oz. can corn, drained 1-14 oz. package firm tofu, drained 2 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped ½ tsp. cayenne pepper 1 tsp. dried oregano 1 tsp. dried rosemary 2-25.5 oz. jars plain, prepared tomato sauce 1-12 oz. box whole-grain lasagna noodles 16 oz. of fresh baby kale, washed and dried 2 medium-sized eggplant, thinly cut crosswise & lightly salted 6 plum tomatoes, sliced thin 1/2 cup raw cashews, ground

INSTRUCTIONS: 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place salted eggplant slices on a lightly greased baking sheet and cook in the preheated oven for 10 minutes until softened. Remove the eggplant from the oven and set aside, but keep the oven set at 400 degrees. 2. Sauté the onion and garlic in 2 tablespoons of water in a frying pan over medium-high heat for 5 to 7 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook until soft. Transfer cooked onions, garlic and mushrooms to a large bowl using a slotted spoon. Reserve the mushroom liquid in the pan. 3. Sauté the broccoli and carrots in the liquid for 5 minutes (adding more water if necessary). Add the broccoli and carrots to the bowl with the other cooked vegetables. 4. Sautè the peppers and corn in the remaining liquid (adding more water if necessary) until they begin to soften. Add them to the vegetable bowl. 5. Drain the tofu block, wrapping it in paper towels until dried. Crumble the tofu directly into the bowl with the cooked vegetables. Add spices to the bowl and combine everything.

ASSEMBLY: 1. Cover the bottom of a 9 x 13 lasagna pan with a layer of sauce. Add a layer of uncooked noodles. Cover the noodles completely with sauce. Spread vegetable mixture over the sauced noodles. Cover with another layer of noodles and another dressing of sauce. Add kale to the top of the second layer of sauced noodles. Cover the kale with a layer of eggplant slices, overlapping if necessary. Add another layer of sauce, a final layer of noodles, and a last topping of sauce. Cover the lasagna with thinly sliced tomatoes. 2. Cover the pan with foil and bake in the oven for 45 minutes. 3. Remove the foil, sprinkle with the cashews, and return to the oven for 15 minutes. Let sit for 15 minutes before serving. TIP: Lasagna may be assembled in advance and frozen unbaked for up to three months. To freeze, cover the casserole in plastic wrap, then foil, then freezer wrap. To reheat, thaw the lasagna overnight in the refrigerator. Remove the plastic wrap and cover again with foil. Reheat in a 400 degree oven for 40 minutes, removing foil for the last ten minutes.

Recipes contributed by local vegan food blogger, Susan Edelman. Her blog is called Watch Hatch Fly and it may be found at www.watchhatchfly.com. Photos by Susan Edelman

berkswomen2women.com 37

BookClub Local Author Travels to Book Clubs Joelle Benedict shares her experience of having a local author participant in her book club.


id you ever wish you could talk to the author of the book you are reading? Just to be able to ask him or her—why? Our book club had that opportunity when local author Amy Impellizzeri joined us to talk about her new book, Lemongrass Hope. Amy blended in beautifully with the group of 40-something women who have been meeting monthly for 10 years. Over a creative and delicious menu inspired by the book—lemongrass chicken, New Zealand Sauvignon, rice pudding and various lemon desserts—the group quickly got to work fielding questions to Amy about her book. (Recipes compliments of book club hostess Lisa Banco)

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What followed was a lively discussion that went way beyond traditional book club questions like “Did you like it?” Soon questions and answers pertaining to writing techniques were flying across the kitchen island of Banco’s Wyomissing home. The author and club members discussed plot mapping, character creation and the task of publishing. Talking to Amy was as easy as it was to breeze through her sweet and thought-provoking book which delves into a modern girl’s journey into motherhood and the intangible concept of destiny. Book club members freely questioned Amy’s characters’ decisions and the directions they took. It was enlightening to be given inside information and the reasons behind her characters’ choices and the story’s path. We liked the book and we liked it even more once we had the great fortune of Amy’s personal connection. Thanks to Amy, “why?” was answered in great detail.

An Interesting Approach to Book Clubs

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38 Women2Women Winter 2015

Amy Impellizzeri, Author, Lemongrass Hope From the beginning, I knew that getting book clubs to embrace Lemongrass Hope would be both a challenge and a privilege. I know from my own experience that the books chosen by a Book Club provide the framework for discussing other issues going on at the time—the books essentially become mile markers in the members’ lives. Along with my publisher, I created an exclusive Book Club packet for those Book Clubs that reach out to me (lemongrasshopebookclub@ gmail.com) to tell me that they have chosen Lemongrass Hope. And because I am absolutely honored that so many Book Clubs—both here in Berks County and all over the country—have invited me personally into their groups—I try to accept as many invitations as my schedule will permit (live and via Skype). I have to say that the way Lemongrass Hope has been received by Book Club readers in particular has been truly humbling and rewarding—and almost certainly, a key factor in its success to date.

Menu for Lemongrass Hope Book Club Dinner Provided by the author, Amy Impellizzeri.


4 chicken thighs or breasts 1 lemongrass stalk 2 tsp. finely grated ginger 2 tsp. fresh lime juice 3 Tbsp. chopped green onion, green parts only 3 Tbsp. chopped cilantro leaves ½ tsp. ground turmeric ½ tsp. paprika ½ tsp. salt 1 cup coconut milk pinch crushed red pepper (optional) coconut oil or ghee, for greasing dish Garnish: diced red bell pepper & fresh cilantro leaves


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• Remove any tough exterior layers from the lemongrass stalk and then roughly chop into small pieces. • Grate the ginger and chop green onion and cilantro. • Add the lemongrass, ginger, green onion, cilantro, lime, turmeric, paprika, and salt to a food processor. • Pulse until well-mixed. • Add coconut milk. Blend until smooth and creamy. • For a slight kick, add a pinch of red pepper. • Pour the sauce over chicken thighs. Cover and refrigerate over night. DIRECTIONS: DAY OF

• On Book Club day, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and let sit for about 30 minutes to come to room temp before cooking. • Preheat oven to 450 degrees. • Using coconut oil or ghee, lightly grease the bottom of a baking dish. • Shake off excess marinade and remove pieces of lemongrass from marinade. • Place the chicken in the oven, uncovered, for about 12 minutes, then broil for about 3–5 minutes to lightly brown it. • Once the chicken is done, let it rest for 5–10 minutes before slicing. • Serve over rice or noodles. • Dice bell pepper and prep some cilantro leaves for garnishing.

All About Women is an all-female obstetrics and gynecology practice that provides primary and specialty healthcare to women of all ages. With an emphasis on preventive medicine, we provide personalized, compassionate, comprehensive, and state-of-the-art obstetric and gynecological care that meets all of our patients’ individual needs. Accepting new patients! Reading Health Physician Network, All About Women

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vodka 5 stalks of lemongrass 1 lime 1 cup of sugar

Christina DeAngelis, MD Melissa DuBois, MD Jaylaine Ghoubrial, MD Kristine Leaman, MD Holly Metzgar, DO Jaime Baver, PA-C Jaime Heisey, PA-C Allison Stapler, PA-C 1040 Reed Avenue, Suite 4 Wyomissing, PA 19610 610-898-7560 allaboutwomen-obgyn.com


• Infuse a 750 ml bottle of vodka with 3 stalks of lemongrass, coarsely chopped, for at least 24 hours. • Prepare “lemongrass” flavored simple syrup by boiling 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of water, zest from one lime, and 1 stalk of lemongrass, coarsely chopped, until sugar dissolves. • On Book Club night, fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add two parts of infused vodka, one part simple syrup, plus juice from the zested lime. • Shake and serve! (Garnish with a lemongrass stalk.)

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berkswomen2women.com 39


Idea Exchange

More Book Club Reviews of Local Authors

What is Yik Yak? The Cookie Doctor—

An American Physician’s Memoir of Life’s Obstacles and Miracles By Dr. Peter Pugliese

The real treasure of this book is the storyteller. Step back in time with a young physician as he navigates life in rural Pennsylvania Dutch country. This compilation of his actual patient cases takes us on a path full of crises, obstacles, and miracles. As we travel along with Dr. Pugliese we gain a deep appreciation for the trials and triumphs he faced in his personal life and practice, yet we also see the sacrifices and sheer determination he had to make adjusting to a community in which he was an outsider. Working tirelessly and on call around the clock the small town country folks came to love and respect their family doctor. The most amazing part of these true stories is the profound way that God was always at work in this man’s life and the patients he had the privilege to treat as well. This inspiring book is a must read!

A new social media app is shaking things up at college campuses (and even a few high schools) across the United States. Yik Yak, an anonymous messaging app that connects users within a certain geographical radius, was created for college students by college students. The app, which is the brainchild of two Furman University alums, has thus far been used to post everything from meaningless gossip to content with a more sinister twist, like sex tapes without consent and plots for various acts of violence. Source: Huffington Post Read more at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/03/ yik-yak-on-campus_n_6095356.html

–Susan Doherty Walmer, WOWW (women of words & wine) book club

Lessons from the Hoghouse—

A Woman’s Guide to Following Her Country Dream in a World of Manure, Metal Men, and Groundhog Hunters By Elizabeth Clark

A community bank. Funding community projects.

Want to laugh out loud? I did. Then hurry out and buy Elizabeth Clark’s book, Lessons From The Hoghouse. It is the hilarious story of her trials in renovating an old farm house on a country lane in rural Berks County. You will make friends with her unusual animals, falling windows, screaming pigs, groundhog boys and even a few resident ghosts. Do yourself a favor, run out and buy it and let the fun begin.

Sounds like a good formula to us.

–Pat DeCoux, Bethel, PA

The Martian—A Novel By Andy Weir

When my daughter recommended this book I thought ‘Oh no, I don’t like science fiction’ but she loved it and has great taste in books so I gave it a read. The story actually is not science fiction, just fiction, but it seemed like it could be real. A team of scientists go on an expedition to Mars and once they land something goes wrong and one of the members is left on Mars. The Martian is the story of his survival and how the resourcefulness of one person along with a positive attitude allows him to survive and be rescued. It is humorous at times but also interesting because of the ways he rises to the challenges.

–Celeste Houllion, Wine, Women & Words book club

40 Women2Women Winter 2015

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Wednesday, April 8, 2015 Crowne Plaza Reading 5:30 p.m. Take the Lead recognizes amazing women leaders making a difference in Berks County. They provide our girls the opportunity to find their voices, and a shared passion in understanding what it really means to be a leader. Take the Lead is that moment in time when you realize girls can do anything!

HEATHER CHANDLER, ESQ. President Sealstrip Corporation

KAREN MARSDALE Senior Vice President Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce & Industry

TONI MILLER Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer & Chief Financial Officer Boscov’s, Inc.

TAMMY WHITE President United Way of Berks County

To sponsor Take the Lead or purchase tickets, please visit gsep.org/takethelead or call 888.564.4657.

berkswomen2women.com 41




More Women2Know looks behind the scenes at outstanding women who have successfully contributed to an organization’s successes, inspire and motivate others to achieve, and personify the mission and objectives of Women2Women.

Q: How have you led other women in their career paths?

Dr. Natalie Parisi Orthodontist, Reading Orthodontics Group

A: As more women dentists have started to practice here in Berks County, I have tried to lend a helping hand to ease their transition and give them a warm welcome. I have also embraced the local women in dental community and have become a resource to these amazing women for their practice management questions. I also teach in the orthodontic department at Temple University. I think it’s inspiring to the women residents to see a woman who runs a full-time practice as opposed to one who works for other orthodontists as an associate. Q: Would you wish to acknowledge a mentor or friend who helped you aspire to this point in your life’s journey, and why?

A: My parents have always been there to guide me in this fantastic journey. My father, Dr. Vince Parisi, offered me the opportunity to buy into his practice with my current partner, Dr. Bob Doleva. A: When I moved home to Wyomissing to practice orthodontics, I was the only female dental specialist in Berks County. It was My mother has always been a huge proponent of education and being self-sufficient. eye-opening to realize the dental community here was so dominantly male and that maybe they were not quite sure what to expect from a female specialist. I was never offended if treated Q: What words of wisdom would you offer to other women? differently, and just became part of the club. A: You can’t do it all and do it all well so don’t put that pressure on yourself. Prioritize! If it’s best for you to stay at home to raise Q: What has led you to your current career path? your children, do that and do it well, with no regrets. If it’s best A: My father is an orthodontist and offered summer jobs to us when for your family for you to work outside the home, do that and in high school/early college. Just before my 2ⁿd summer, they do it without guilt. Carefully decide what is best for you and were “computerizing the office” and although computers were your family and go for it! in their infancy, I was familiar with them and really enjoyed working on them. My dad asked if I would be interested in Q: What is the most valuable way women can support inputting all the patient data from charts to the computer each other? (obviously before computer conversions were software based). I agreed to the job and quickly became intrigued in how very A: Be mindful that everyone makes choices based on their particular different and unique each patient’s diagnosis & treatment plans circumstances and it is best to be a guiding friend rather than were. I began to question the reasons for this and, when my judgmental. My husband always says “you never know what’s dad shared with me how orthodontics is a complicated blend really going on in someone else’s house.” We can never know what of physics, anatomy and biology, I was hooked. pressures someone else is dealing with at any particular moment. Q: Why is your position unique to women in our community?

42 Women2Women Winter 2015

Q: Is there a philosophy that you live by? A: “Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass but about learning how to dance in the rain!” Q: What is your favorite mantra, favorite saying or words that keep you grounded?

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A: My very first day of practice at Reading Orthodontic Group, my dad left an envelope on my desk. Inside was a note that said “Nat, I couldn’t be more proud of you today. I know that we are family, but we make money the old fashion way—we earn it! Love, Dad” I didn’t think this was a very nice way to welcome me into the practice. I felt that I had worked hard in school to get where I was; but I simply put the note in my drawer and I never mentioned it to my dad. About 2 years later, I was cleaning out my desk and came across the note. When I reread it, I smiled! I had a totally different perspective of my dad’s message and I thanked him for the note. He wasn’t only talking about working hard. He was talking about earning people’s respect. He was talking about how we should treat people. He was talking about setting an example. He was talking about earning a lot more than money but he used a familiar phrase for his message. I’m not sure that I could ever thank him enough for that note.

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A: Good often gets in the way of great. When we are good at something, maybe we don’t put as much effort in and then we never get to “great.” I like to think that we can all be better tomorrow than we are today—and if we can, we should! Q: What’s your mission? A: Doing the right thing and doing it right! Q: What do you do to set work & play boundaries? A: For me, work is fun!! I’ve always been known to work hard and play hard. In the office and out of the office. Realistically though, life is about choices and it’s important to prioritize. I love my job and the 8 to 5 portion of it is spent seeing patients. There are many hours outside of patient hours to be working up cases and managing the business of the office. So, for me, I prioritize how to fit in God, family, friends, exercise, golf and cycling. Fortunately, I can combine these activities as I have family and friends with whom I workout, golf and ride bikes. I truly believe that being fit allows you to give your best in every situation so it becomes a priority out of necessity. Q: What do you consider women’s main asset? A: I think women have an innate gift to relate to people. Maybe that’s where women’s intuition is initiated. Continued on page 44 berkswomen2women.com 43

Women2Know Dr. Natalie Parisi continued… Q: What do you consider women’s main threat? A: Getting in their own way. I’ve seen many women dental and medical professionals who worry about being treated differently than their male colleagues and focus on this rather than focus on moving past it. We are all minorities in some way. Don’t focus on it and use it to your advantage wherever possible. Q: What 3 things do you recommend to assure success? A: Stay positive, work hard, focus on the right things and success and happiness will follow. Q: How do you want to be perceived/remembered?

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A: I would like to be remembered as someone who gave back…to my profession, my community, my schools; to my family and friends. I’m not necessarily talking about money. Money is a piece of it but I’m talking about service. I believe that being able to maximize one’s talents to help others is part of living a good life and it’s part of my definition of “living the good life.” Q: What is the best advice you have received? A: It’s probably a repeat of the answer to the “aha moment” question above. In addition to that though, I can also remember a time early in my career that a staff member was complaining about something happening in another professional’s office. This staff member came into an office that my dad & I shared and wanted to rant about how rude they were. My dad simply said “we should take this as an example of how we don’t want to be.” He didn’t allow the negative conversation to continue and tried to make it a positive. I’ve tried to imitate this when any conversation starts to bend toward the negative. I think about how I don’t want to act that way and try to turn the negatives into positives. Life is a lot more pleasant when we focus on the positives!! VISIT ’S BERKS COUNTY


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been valuable mentors. They have been extremely supportive with their advice and time, and I know that I can always turn to either when I need a sounding board or an honest opinion. Personally, my parents have always been wonderful role models for me. They have encouraged me to take chances, pursue educational opportunities, and work hard. My dad was always a considerate and fair boss to his staff, and developed lifelong loyalty from them as a result. I have always tried to follow his lead on how to treat staff and co-workers.

Q: What words of wisdom would you offer to other women? A: Be honest with yourself about your strengths, your weaknesses, and constantly work on improving both. Q: What is the most valuable way women can support each other?

Daphne Klahr, CPSI Executive Director Reading Recreation Commission

Q: Why is your position unique to women in our community? A: In my position as Executive Director for the Reading Recreation Commission (a partnership of the City of Reading and the Reading School District to provide recreation services and programs to the residents of Reading), I am able to improve the quality of life for city residents and help our youth develop the skillsets needed to be successful. Working for the Commission has positioned me both in the community and on a state-level to make a real, quantifiable and positive difference in the city. Q: What has led you to your current career path? A: My career path has been rather varied having grown up in a family-owned produce company and then working in the hospitality industry for most of my 20s. I worked for 10 years in West Reading running their recreation department before I was hired in 2012 as a state circuit-rider for the Reading Recreation Commission. A person I caught up with recently at a national conference wrote me a note saying “The excitement in your voice about Reading should be bottled and sold.” I truly feel that I am in the position that I was always meant to be in. Q: Would you wish to acknowledge a mentor or friend who helped you aspire to this point in your life’s journey, and why? A: Professionally, Diane Kripas, Division Chief for Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and Sue Landes, Executive Director for the Lancaster Recreation Commission, have both

A: Be a cheerleader for each other! It’s amazing what an encouraging word or a compliment can do to make someone’s day a little more special. Q: Is there an “aha” moment or experience that defines who you are? A: Honestly, there have been many “aha” moments in my life that define who I am. But most recently, having our Girls Leadership program participants “Leading Ladies” opt to perform a community service project in lieu of having a party for themselves really clarified my reasons for doing what I do. Making a difference in a young person’s life is truly life-altering in a most positive way. Q: What is your favorite mantra, favorite saying or words that keep you grounded? A: Mother Teresa wrote the following words which I keep taped to my computer monitor:

“People are often unreasonable and self-centered. Forgive them anyway. If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives. Be kind anyway. If you are honest, people may cheat you. Be honest anyway. If you find happiness, people may be jealous. Be happy anyway. The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway. Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough. Give your best anyway. For you see, in the end, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.”

Q: What’s your mission? A: To empower youth with the skills needed to be successful, contributing members of our community. Q: What do you consider women’s main asset? A: I think that women are natural-born leaders who have innate problem-solving abilities. Continued on page 46 berkswomen2women.com 45

Women2Know Daphne Klahr continued… Q: What do you consider women’s main threat? A: Being too hard on themselves. I love the saying “There are 3 billion woman who don’t look like supermodels and only 8 who do.” I think that all of the women in my life are fabulous, and every woman should think of themselves in terms of being “a total package.”

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Q: What 3 things do you recommend to assure success? A: Be passionate about your cause, stay focused on the issues that you have control over, and be a good listener. Q: How do you want to be perceived/remembered? A: I hope that I’ll be remembered as a women who made a difference in the community by helping others to be successful, who gave of her time to those in need, and who was kind. Q: What is the best advice you have received? A: Take time for yourself and have at least one thing in your life that gives you pleasure and makes your life easier.

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