Women2Women Magazine Winter 2023

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A Program of the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance
MEN2WOMEN 2 winter2023 themagazine Baronial Designs Photography pg. 14 The Vote pg. 28 The Adalyn Rose Foundation pg. 32 Women: Seen, Heard, Leading the Way
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Kirsten P. Haas, Managing Editor Rachael Romig, Editor-in-Chief 606 Court Street • Reading, PA 19601 berkswomen2women.com • 610.376.6766

Women2Women Council: Alison Snyder, Chairwoman Rosa Arroyo, Kelly Beaver, Michelle Conway, Heather Evans, Carissa Johnson, Katie Johnsen, Sarah McDaniel, Tracy Parmer, Jes Prutzman, Alyssa Redding, Donna Reed, Regina Rinehimer, Rachael Romig, Brenda Rosado, Erika Ruelas, Adelle Schade, Trish Shermot, Emma Rose Strohl

Women2Women is Greater Reading Chamber Alliance’s catalyst for developing women leaders and connecting women from diverse backgrounds to learn, share ideas, and mentor each other. W2W offers a forum for women to create connections, gain knowledge, and build strategic alliances to foster their personal potential and career advancement. Joining the network is open to all who support women and Women2Women Magazine is a publication of the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance.

To join: W2W@greaterreading.org Stay connected: BerksWomen2Women.com

BerksWomen2Women berks_w2w

Berks Women2Women


Title Investors

Penn State Health St. Joseph UGI Energy Services, LLC UGI Utilities, Inc.

Wells Fargo Platinum Investors Alvernia University East Penn Manufacturing Company, Inc. First National Bank Penske Truck Leasing Gold Investors Berks Community Television Berks County Living Customers Bank


Ethosource Fulton Bank Herbein + Company, Inc.

Masano Bradley Palo Magazine RKL LLP

Tompkins VIST Bank

VISIONS Federal Credit Union

Women In Business

GAGE Personnel

Iron Roots Salon

MJ Reider Associates

Sweet Street VA Productions

De Mujer a Mujer HGSK Lawyers Giant Food Stores Truist

The opinions expressed in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.

Creating Space for Acceptance in Berks County – An interview with Danielle Laws

Knowing + Doing: The Winning Combo for Goals 21 Work Skills vs Work History: Key to a Second Career 22 How to Develop Your P-BOD: Personal Board of Directors 24 The Power of Public Speaking 27 Overcoming Fear of Public Speaking: A Personal Experience 28 The Vote: Women Taking the Lead 30 Dani King Hair Salon: Home – Grown Artisan & Talent 32 Lightening Loss: The Adalyn Rose Foundation-Honoring Pregnancy & Infant Loss Loudly!

34 Beyond Berks: Tower Health Employees in Ukraine 44 Manifesting with Mimosas – Vision Boarding Your Goals! Women2Know 7 Women2Know 12 Volunteer Committees Overview – 2022 W2W 2023 Upcoming Event Schedule 38 January, Febuary, March and April Events 41 Program Speaker Profiles

On the cover: Baronial Designs Photo courtesy of Danielle Laws

© 2023 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, Inc. • Reading, PA HoffmannPublishing.com • 610.685.0914


In Every Issue 05 Reflections & Inspiration 31 Asked & Answered 33 Community Call Out 36 W2W Around Town 46 You Can Do It!
Contents 22
Features 06 Meet the W2Writers!
berkswomen2women.com 3
Winter 2023
4 Women2Women | Winter 2023
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have a need for
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401 Penn Street Reading PA c/o Alvernia University


How crazy is it that in 2022, girls and women are still told (if not expressly, then implicitly):

• Be seen, not heard

• Stay in your lane

• Assertive = Bossy

And I could go on and on.

In my work, we teach girls skills that equip them to understand that they possess unique qualities and deserve to be seen; they have a voice and it deserves to be heard; they can run in any lane they choose; and they can be leaders that impact their communities for the benefit of all.

Which brings me to this issue in which we highlight the variety of ways in which the women of our community are SEEN, are HEARD and are LEADING THE WAY. Starting with the powerful cover photo from Danielle Laws of Baronial Designs

Photography, we bring you stories about:

• Fall’s Evening of Empowerment with Marissa Orr

• The women behind the W2W organization, our Winter 2023 Women2Know

• How to be a powerful public speaker (and how to get over the fear of it)

• The Vote, featuring our own local women political leaders

• Chloe Ciferri and The Adalyn Rose Foundation

• and so much more!

All of these articles are by women and about women who will not sit on the sidelines, but who exert and exemplify leadership in ways small and large for the benefit of us all. Be SEEN, be HEARD, pick whichever lane you want and hey, be BOSSY.

Most of all, LEAD THE WAY!

Kirsten P. Haas

The opinions expressed here by are solely the opinion of the author. They have not been read by nor approved by Girls on the Run® and do not necessarily represent the views nor opinions of Girls on the Run®.


Since childhood, when we think of leaders, we tend to look upwards and to name as leaders the individuals in charge. Our teachers, our scout troop leaders or even among other kids, the captain of the kickball team. And certainly, many of the people who fill these roles are leaders. In fact, many of them are good, even great leaders.

However, as the opening quote states, leadership cannot be reduced to simply a role or a title.

Leaders put themselves at the disposal of others, putting their experience and knowledge out there to be shared as well as being open to learning. Leaders do not aspire to position or title for the sake of it but rather as a way to empower others, mobilize resources and problem-solve. Leaders are authentic, humble and willing to learn from failure. Leaders are willing to be held accountable and to take responsibility.

The women leaders who inspire me are colleagues, industry peers, girlfriends and family members, all who serve in a variety of roles. I learn not from their accolades nor the length of their experience but rather from the breadth of their experience and on how their experience is different from mine. By taking in the view from eye-level, I found leadership that runs the gamut, all of which enrichens and inspires me.

So, the next time you are pressed to name a leader, resist the temptation to only look up and instead, cast your gaze at the leaders who surround you, day in and day out. You will find that leaders are ALL AROUND US!

*Joanne Ciulla, Director of the Institute for Ethical Leadership at Rutgers Business School

berkswomen2women.com 5
“Leadership is not a person or a position. It is a complex moral relationship between people based on trust, obligation, commitment, emotion, and a shared vision of the good.”*

Meet the W2Writers!

In This Issue:

ELLEN ALBRIGHT, Director of Strategic Partnerships with the Science Research Institute, Albright College, W2W Magazine Contributing Writer

JESSICA BEZLER, Public Relations, Tower Health, W2W Magazine Editorial Committee

JENNIFER GOLDSMITH CERRA, Director of Communications with Herbein + Company, W2W Magazine

Editorial Committee

I am a proud North American! Born in Canada, I’ve spent the past 22 plus years in the U.S. Married to Reading High teacher Frank Cerra and mom of Exeter High Class of 2023 member Luke, I love writing and editing almost as much as I love Canadian food classics like Swiss Chalet chicken and Tim Horton donuts. When I’m not busy trying to stay fit as a result, I’m the Director of Communications at Herbein + Company, Inc.

SARA FRASSINELLI, Digital Marketing & Social Media, Spherion Staffing, W2W Magazine Editorial Committee

My name is Sara Frassinelli and I pretend to do it all. I don’t actually do, but I’m trying! I’m a marketer, social media-ier, mother and many other things.

I was born and raised in Reading, but now live in Allentown with my husband and son, who are both named Phil. I am part of my family business, Spherion, which is a staffing agency. We have five locations in Pennsylvania. In my free time (what’s that now?), I love traveling, reading, listening to podcasts, trying new restaurants and watching garbage television.

VALI HEIST, Owner, The Clutter Crew, W2W Magazine Contributing Writer

TERRI HILL, Owner, Two Hills Consulting, W2W Magazine Contributing Writer

KERSCHNER, Retiree, Living My Best Life, W2W Magazine Contributing Writer

KATHERINE KETTER, AVP Customer Experience, Health Partners Plans, W2W Magazine Contributing Writer

I’m a customer experience innovator, a career coach and I’ve loved writing for as long as I can remember. My first job was working as an intern for the Voices publication of the Reading Eagle, where I honed my writing skills and dreamed of living in NYC. Fast forward to the present day, I’ve now lived in Berks County for more than 40 years, have an established career as the head of customer experience for a health plan and love raising my family here in West Reading. In my free time, I enjoy weight training, joining my girlfriends for brunch at B2, and am a new dog-mom to our rescue Freyja.

SARAH MCDANIEL, COO, EthoSource, W2W Magazine Contributing Writer

I proudly hold the honor of Berks County’s Longest Drive with a 3 Wood, from the reds, on a hole that hooks left. While running, I can down a football sized burrito and still manage to hold a respectable pace. Long ago, at the largest furniture trade show in the country, I gleefully had my picture taken with Bono…who turned out to be a hired impersonator. Years later, while in a parking garage on Broadway in New York, I stood next to Kiefer Sutherland and audibly remarked, “There’s no way that’s him. That guy is too tall and scrawny.” Moments later, the man walked to a Rolls Royce and the parking attendant said, “That was Kiefer Sutherland.” My foot fits nicely in my mouth, and my favorite food is rice.

PHYLLIS J. MCLAUGHLIN, Freelance Writer, W2W Magazine Contributing Writer

6 Women2Women | Winter 2023
RACHAEL ROMIG, Senior Director of Events & Special Programs, Greater Reading Chamber Alliance, W2W Magazine Editor-In-Chief
Meet the W2W Magazine Editorial Committee and Contributing Writers who volunteer their time and talent to bring the W2W Community articles that educate, entertain, inform and inspire. The W2W Editorial Committee members not only lend their writing talents to the magazine but also develop and direct the creation of each W2W Magazine issue.

Women 2Know

In the W2W Magazine issue for 2023, we want to recognize the women from across the community who lend their experience, ideas and time to the Women2Women/De Mujer a Mujer organization as volunteers.

These women serve on a variety of committees who guide the direction of the organizations, provide content for W2W Magazine and bring relevant, topical programming to our community. Together, these women work to lift up the women of Berks County and beyond. Together, these women are the Winter 2023 Women2Know!

We asked the women of the W2W/De Mujer a Mujer committees a few questions to find out more about their “why”:

• How long have you been involved with W2W/ De Mujer a Mujer?

• How long have you served on a W2W Council and/or committee?

• What called you/inspired you to serve?

• Why do you feel W2W/De Mujer a Mujer is important to the community?

• Is there anything else W2W Magazine readers should know about you?

We hope you enjoy getting to know these incredible women who provide inspiration and support to the W2W and De Mujer a Mujer!

a Mujer Committee

I recently joined the committee. I felt that this network of women in our community have a lot to offer others and together can continue to model hard work and commitment to our fields and offer hope to the young women and each other. W2W/De Mujer a Mujer is important to the community because it offers a place for women to uplift, mentor and educate. I am truly dedicated to joining other women in the quest for empowerment and networking. My commitment to the community of Reading-Berks County includes serving on various boards such as the Workforce Development Board of Berks County, Safe Berks Board, the board for the Salvation Army of Reading, and the South of Penn Task Force. Recently I have joined a community initiative to move Reading Forward along with about 30 or more organizations in a quest to produce change for Reading. I am dedicated to being a contributor to the community in which I live.

I’ve been on the R&D Committee since January 2021 but have been attending W2W events faithfully for many years before that. I’m a firm believer in the power of female companionship and mentorship. I’ve learned more about myself as a professional, leader, mother, friend, daughter and so much more just by my engagement with W2W and the women I’ve met through the organization. Empowered women empower women! As the mom of two girls, I am incredibly invested in the growth of women in our community. My “why” is so that I can be the confident, powerful, compassionate, and fearless female role model these girls will need in their lives.

Continued on page 8 berkswomen2women.com 7
AURIA BRADLEY, Associate Vice President of Workforce & Continuing Education at Reading Area Community College, De Mujer TAMMY DAHMS, Director of Corporate Partnerships at Santander Arena/Reading Royals, W2W R&D Committee

I have been involved with W2W for almost 10 years. Most recently I am a participant in the wonderful events, however, for over six years I was an active advisory group member, two years as the chair, and a member of the Governance Committee. Karen Marsdale and Robin Costenbader Jacobson each had a part in convincing me that this was a group that I would enjoy being part of. I must say that they were absolutely correct. As we so often say in W2W, our goal is to meet women where they are. We try to present opportunities and programming that address the many needs of a women across her career. Each stage of our careers can present a different set of challenges. The W2W objective is to provide tools and opportunities across the spectrum. I don’t want to overlook the opportunities that women can have at W2W to meet others, discuss challenges and simply breathe in a judgement-free space. I encourage your readers to give the group a try, attend an event, sign up for the newsletter. I also encourage businesses to support their employees by providing them the opportunity to actively participate. We will all be stronger for it.

I became involved when I started working at the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance (GRCA) in 2017. I also attend W2W events whenever possible. I’ve been on the W2W Magazine Editorial Committee since December 2017. At first it was part of my job responsibilities, but I have stayed on as a committee member even after changing jobs. I very much enjoy the editorial process behind the magazine. The pandemic disproportionately affected women and the plans they had for their lives and careers. Now more than ever, women need all the help and support they can possibly get. One of my greatest friends, Rachael Romig, also started at GRCA around the same time as I did. She grew to lead W2W for a time and was an inspiration. Additionally, we all know it takes a village and we don’t have villages anymore!

I have been involved for about eight years and I served on the committee many years ago. But as far as this go-around, I have been on for about two months. I love networking and people. This provides me with an opportunity to use my voice and help educate many on my culture: the Latino culture. In addition to meeting and sharing ideas with some amazing women in my community, it’s a platform for women like no other. It gives us the opportunity to connect and make each other better. I have been a big supporter for many years. And in return W2W has helped me grow by providing workshops and community events. I am not only proud to be on the board but that we have this amazing resource in our community.

AMY KLATT, Chief Marketing Officer at Herbein + Company, Inc., W2W R&D Committee

I served on the magazine editorial committee for a long time, and rolled off when a colleague expressed interest. Rachael knew my passion for W2W and reached out about the possibility of joining the R&D committee, and I have not looked back! Each committee experience has been engaging and rewarding.

Engaging with W2W was one of my best personal and professional decisions. W2W leverages the power of the Chamber network to help women influencers, entrepreneurs, and business and community leaders support women in the workforce. The W2W experience has helped me grow by expanding my horizons, and I know our Herbein team has benefited from the initiative’s wide-ranging programming, particularly as we recently implemented our women’s initiative.

8 Women2Women | Winter 2023 WOMEN2KNOW
ALNEASA JORDAN, HR Manager at KeHE & owner of Alneasa Jordan Consulting Services, LLC, De Mujer a Mujer Committee


KLEIN, Owner at Fulcrum Information Resources, W2W Magazine Editorial Committee

I am a business researcher, project manager and technical writing consultant. I founded my business Fulcrum Information Resources in 2005. I have served on the W2W Editorial Committee and been a contributing writer since 2016. I was looking for an opportunity to become more connected with local businesswomen. My clients are all around the United States and I felt I wasn’t as familiar as I could be with my own “backyard.” A professional and colleague who was serving on the W2W Editorial Committee planned to step off and asked me if I was interested in joining. Yes! W2W shines a light on women and organizations who otherwise fly under the radar. I love writing features on women from various backgrounds and always find their stories inspiring.

SARAH MCDANIEL, COO at EthoSource Office Furniture, W2W Council

My first event was Evening of Empowerment with Strother Gaines in 2021 and 2022 has been my first year of involvement. As professional women, we need a village. Success is such a subjective term, but we are absolutely able to achieve it more and better with a squad of empowered, passionate women championing for one another and generations to come. There is passion in the mission, and it very much aligns with my own; which is to provide space, support and opportunity for anyone who seeks to break through barriers (real or perceived). Women2Women/De Mujer a Mujer is like the community sorority, where we all exercise our commitment to a common goal. Having a safe and welcoming space to learn, share and connect keeps us all aware of what happens beyond the walls of our own organizations. Imagine an entire community of silos. Women2Women/De Mujer a Mujer breaks them down, one connection at a time. I think we get to a certain point in our careers, maybe our lives, where we begin to get more by giving. I’m learning to do my part on a (community) macro level, and every week I see examples of how it is paying off for our company, our teams and even for me as a person. I’m a better person for having met Rachael, and getting involved.

NOON, Senior Vice President Commercial Banking Relationship Manager at Wells Fargo, W2W R&D Committee

I’ve been involved with W2W since 2011 when my youngest daughter left for college and I officially became an empty nester! As the mother of three professional adult daughters, it seemed like the perfect volunteer opportunity. Over the years I have served on W2W Council and am a past Council President as well as former co-chair of the Programming Committee. Currently I am on the Research & Development Committee and am an enthusiastic supporter of all W2W initiatives. It is an organization which promotes the positive empowerment of women from diverse backgrounds and professions. The organization is committed to supporting and connecting women in a safe environment inspiring them to grow and achieve their individual definition of success. It still amazes me how many people raise their hand at an event showing that it is their very first time attending a W2W program. I feel that this is an affirmation of the relevancy of our mission!

I first heard about W2W in 2017 when I attended Lobster Fest on behalf of a friend who had purchased a ticket but was unable to go. The energy in that room was so uplifting and powerful, and I wanted more of W2W in my life! I was honored to join Council in 2018. From my very first Council meeting, I felt at home and in a place where I could have open and honest conversations around challenges that women face in our workplaces and our communities. But as well, I marvel at how this group of powerful, smart, compassionate women use their knowledge, leadership skills and influence to make the lives of those around them better every day. W2W led by the amazing Rachael Romig works tirelessly to stay abreast of topics and issues that are front of mind and offers programming that opens the door to conversation and change. I leave every meeting and every event with a list of “ah ha” moments and new friends and feel so grateful to be a part of W2W. I’m proud of the focus that W2W has placed on ensuring that all members of our community are represented in the W2W family. We embrace inclusion as a core value and have been intentional at looking for opportunities to partner with folks from the Latinx community; LGBTQ+, those that are differently abled, to name just a few. W2W continues to impact our communities in immeasurable ways, and I look forward to a fantastic year of empowering programming ahead in 2023!

berkswomen2women.com 9 Continued on page 10

I’m the founder & editor of Palo Magazine, Berks County’s bilingual publication for 12 years now. I have been involved off and on for the last 10 years. I have always been inspired to work with anything that deals with the growth of women. We were kept quiet for way too long. I want my female ancestors to be proud of me for continuing this battle to fight to have a voice and to be heard but also to be an inspiration to the future women which includes my 23-year-old daughter Bri. I know she will be a leader and I owe her this continued fight. I think we need organizations that highlight what we have already accomplished but to also remind us that there is work that still needs to be done. Readers should know that I have double duty not only as a woman but also as a Latina. I need to fight harder to be heard but I’m up for the challenge. I think society in general is starting to finally embrace diversity and that allows women like myself that are Latina, & a small business owner, more opportunities to be seen and to grow our companies.

I have been attending W2W events for more than 14 years as a member of GRCA. This is my first year serving on the W2W Council. I feel very honored and grateful to be a part of the W2W Council and serve next to local empowering successful female leaders. My inspiration to serve on the W2W Council comes from the passion I have to aid the younger generation of female entrepreneurs and business leaders in their growth. I want to help them flourish and thrive through positive mentoring and the W2W program. W2W is important to the community as it provides a direct resource for females in the business community to learn and access to tools to prosper both professionally and personally throughout their careers. Mentors play an important role to all professionals and are not only for future leaders. The mentor relationship is one that can take on many different roles during your professional career. W2W is an excellent resource and provides the perfect environment to facilitate connecting with your mentor or finding another mentor.

ALYSSA REDDING, Vice President Middle Market Banking & Specialized Industries at JPMorgan Chase, W2W Council

I have been involved since I moved to Berks County in 2016. I attended as many events as possible to network and meet new people. I attended my first W2W Council meeting in November 2021. A former coworker was rolling off of the Council and asked if I would be open to joining and filling her spot. I agreed for a few reasons: Expanding my network and working with women from different companies and industries; Further supporting an amazing organization focused on a cause I am passionate about – developing women leaders and connecting women from diverse backgrounds to learn, share ideas, and mentor each other; Influencing the choice of speakers, topics and events that may be interesting to all who support women. Personally, W2W was a safe space for me when I moved to Berks County in 2016. I have learned so much from the various speakers and activities over the years, and more importantly, I have made connections and friendships through W2W. It is an incredible organization that makes everyone feel welcome and feel inspired to grow personally and professionally. I also serve on the board of The Junior League of Reading, PA, and Girls on the Run of Berks County –as you can see there is a pattern here of supporting women and girls!

BRENDA ROSADO, Diversity and Inclusion Manager at East Penn Manufacturing, W2W Council, R&D Committee and De Mujer a Mujer

I have been involved since 2015. I have had the privilege to be a committee member for De Mujer a Mujer since 2018 and shortly after that I became the chair of De Mujer a Mujer. I was inspired when attending an event and saw these amazing strong leaders that inspired other women to elevate, open the door for other females; making space and inviting women to the room/table. So, when asked to serve on the committee I was honored; this aligned with what is important to me as an individual: Creating a space where women can come together and share experiences and make amazing connections as well as offering opportunities to women in our community and highlighting their achievements, as well as seeing them succeed is my passion. It offers a safe space for women of diverse backgrounds to come together to be a powerhouse for the community. Readers should know about all the women in our community; the seen and unseen; those are the women that move our community that connect the resources, that power the minds of our young people to do better, to dream big and those women are the steps, and the foundation that our community stands on today. Readers need to look around and recognize the small business owners that strive to grow their businesses by giving opportunity to women in our community, the sponsors that give so these programs are possible for women of diverse backgrounds. Readers need to see that a strong community empowers young leaders for tomorrow. Together we can do this.

WOMEN2KNOW 10 Women2Women | Winter 2023

I have been a member of W2W since the inception of the program.

I actually wrote an article for the first W2W magazine that was published. I have also participated in Lean In Circles and have been a speaker at W2W events. I have been on the W2W programming committee for at least seven years now. One of W2W’s founding members, Paula Barrett, is a mentor of mine and she got me involved in the programming committee. It was a natural fit for me as I really enjoy education and bringing inspiring speakers to our community. W2W is a wonderful networking group of women that continues to grow ever year. Besides providing a networking outlet for women in our community, it also offers educational programming, mentorship and professional development. I want to use this opportunity to encourage everyone to come out to W2W events. It is a safe environment to meet other women and to experience all the great things that are happening in our community. 2

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Volunteer Committees | Overview – 2022

Women2Women was founded by the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance (GRCA) in 2011. Women2Women (W2W) encourages women to create connections, gain knowledge, open doors, build strategic alliances, and much more. The goal of W2W is to develop more women leaders in Berks County by providing a forum where women from diverse backgrounds can learn, share ideas and mentor one another.

A special program of the GRCA, Women2Women operates and is accountable to GRCA and ultimately takes its directive from leadership of the organization. GRCA is very proud to have Women2Women as a valued and highly regarded part of the organization and values the volunteers of W2W as integral to its success.

Women2Women has grown to be the region’s leading women’s network. W2W is not a separate 501(c)3 but operates under the umbrella of GRCA which is a 501(c)6. However, W2W utilizes the Chamber Foundation (501(c)3) for grants and other types of funding when appropriate.

Council / Advisory Board

The Women2Women Council is the advisory body of Women2Women. They take the role of planning the overall high-level scope of the programming initiatives of W2W on an annual basis and planning strategically every two/three years. They assist with driving the mission of Women2Women through the activities and initiatives undertaken by W2W. Alison Snyder - Chair, Rosa Arroyo-Vega, Kelly Beaver, Heather Evans, Carissa Johnson, Sarah McDaniel, Tracy Parmer, Jessica Prutzman, Alyssa Redding, Donna Reed, Regina M. Rinehimer, Brenda Rosado, Ericka Ruelas, Adelle Schade, Trish F. Shermot, Emma Rose Strohl

Governance Committee

The purpose of the Women2Women Governance Committee is to: ensure the vitality and mission of the GRCA’s Women2Women program; support the active engagement of current members; maintain best practices in board governance; provide onboarding to new members; and actively recruit new members who represent Women2Women’s key constituents, strategic goals, and mission.

The Women2Women Governance Committee develops member and committee role descriptions; establishes governance policies and practices; sets and monitors compliance with member term limits; conducts regular assessment of Council members’ skills, competencies, and backgrounds to ensure the ongoing growth and development of Women2Women.

Vicki O. Ebner, Tracy Parmer, Trish F. Shermot

Magazine Editorial Committee

The W2W Magazine Editorial Committee is responsible for broadcasting the mission and work of Women2Women in the quarterly magazine through timely articles, features, columns, interviews, and community outreach.

The committee is tasked with developing content, writing articles and researching topics under the directive of the Women2Women Director/Magazine Editor. Each committee member has a background in writing, editing, and/or the passion to find others in the community who have those skills.

Kirsten Haas (Managing Editor), Emily Wunder Barrett, Jessica Bezler, Jennifer Goldsmith-Cerra, Sara Frassinelli, Kelly Hancock, Katie Johnsen, Karen Klein, Karen Miller, Yoheli Ortiz, Rachael Romig (Editor-in-Chief), Monica Rush

Research & Development Committee

The Women2Women Research & Development Committee develops opportunities for women of various cultural backgrounds in our community to grow, connect, and lead professionally and personally through aid with monthly programming that drives the mission, vision and strategic goals of Women2Women.

The R&D Committee also assists with identifying community partners and reaching new audiences for growth. The Committee also helps to identify speakers, topics and new offerings for W2W signature events including the annual Evening of Empowerment (fall) and the annual Conference + Expo (spring).

Dennie Smith - Chair, Heather Adams, Rosa Arroyo-Vega, Dayana Blandon, Tammy Dahms, AnnMarie Haus, Amy B. Klatt, Susan Kolb, Caitlin Long, Mary Jean Noon, Regina M. Rinehimer, Brenda Rosado, Ruthann Woll

12 Women2Women | Winter 2023 WOMEN2KNOW

De Mujer a Mujer Committee

The De Mujer a Mujer Committee develops opportunities for women of various cultural backgrounds in our community to grow, connect, and lead professionally and personally through aid with monthly De Mujer a Mujer events that drive the mission, vision and strategic goals of Women2Women.

The De Mujer a Mujer Committee also assists with identifying community partners and reaching new audiences for growth. The Committee also helps to identify speakers and topics for De Mujer a Mujer events.

Brenda Rosado - Chair, Rosa Arroyo-Vega, Auria Bradley, Margarita Caicedo, Edna Garcia-Dipini, Alneasa Jordan, Debora Joyce, Michelle Leguisamon, Maria Mitchell, Yoheli Ortiz, Rosa J. Parra

Holiday Gift Card Promotion

Purchase $100 in gift cards and receive a $20 bonus gift card

Bonus gift cards redeemable after 1/3/23

Promotion starts 11/26/22 until 12/24/22

Valentine’s Day Gift Card Promotion

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Promotion starts 1/31/23 to 2/14/23

berkswomen2women.com 13

Creating Space for Acceptance in Berks County

An interview with Danielle Laws

It all started for Danielle Laws in 2008 when a college professor asked the class, “What would you do if you woke up and were a different gender? Or a different color?” Answers from students soon turned mean as the conversation edged towards race when the professor merely meant the color green, or blue. The professor dismissed class early due to the banter, but Danielle sat in her chair upset and not understanding why things went the way they had.

Danielle Laws is the owner of Baronial Designs Photography, a mother of two boys, half Caucasian, half African American, the photographer behind the stunning cover of our magazine, and a woman on a mission to ensure everyone is seen and accepted, no matter their skin shade or color.

Rachael: What was it like growing up being “half and half”?

Danielle: My dad is black and my mom is white but as you can see, my skin is fairly light. Since grade school I have been bullied because I was only 1 of 2 black kids in my class. As I grew up, I realized that I had to live two lives to fit in with different groups of people. I had two different wardrobes and two different hair styles. I had to wear certain clothes and have my hair done a certain way to hang out with my “black friends” to feel accepted and the exact same with my “white friends.” It was my dad who taught me how to be black…but it was the world that taught me how [I was supposed] to be white.

R: That’s such a powerful statement, Danielle, and I’m sorry you went through that growing up. Is that the motivation behind the photo of women with different shades of skin color?

D: Yes, definitely. I wanted to show women of all shades, with all hair textures, and this came out in February 2022 during Black History Month so it was very powerful. Color is a big issue in the black community, and there is prejudice within race [based on your skin tone]. That month after the show I had five more photo shoots with families that wanted to capture their unique differences as well. I am so honored to have this be the cover of the magazine because if you go back five years, you won’t see all skin tones like this anywhere.

14 Women2Women | Winter 2023 FEATURE

A Santa Like Me

In 2021 Danielle began to plan her next venture to ensure that children got to see a Santa the same skin tone as themselves. This stemmed from talking to her friend who was frustrated that she couldn’t find an “Elf on the Shelf” doll that looked like her and her family. In winter 2022 she trademarked A Santa Like Me which offers photo shoots with African American, Caucasian, and Latino Santas. This winter she sold out all timeslots, and ensured that each group came at separate times so as not to diminish each other and what they stood for. “During one of the photo shoots I heard a little boy excitedly say to his mom ‘Look mom, he’s different!’ and I knew that it impacted him.”

R: You’ve done some amazing things over the past two years, but how did you get started?

D: My passion is photography, but I actually have a Bachelors of Science in Biology from East Stroudsburg University and a certification as a cardiac stenographer. During my time at ESU, I took upper level photography classes and my professor gave me different assignments than other students to teach me what I needed [higher level than other students]. In my freshman year I wrote a business plan for a photo studio and crafts/jewelry company because I was making money on the side doing that. When I left college I worked in the corporate world for two years and it was a really toxic environment.

R: That’s the worst but sometimes exactly what is needed to do what you really are passionate about.

D: One weekend I photographed an event and realized that I made a month and a half of my corporate salary in two days. That’s when I decided to leave. It was a leap, but I bet on myself and it was the best decision I could have ever made.

R: So what’s next for Baronial Designs? And what’s next for you?

D: Over the next few years I plan on upgrading my studio and purchasing a larger space where I can do everything I want. And I want A Santa Like Me to grow outside of Pennsylvania. I want people to think of me and what I’m doing and know that is a space and place where everyone is included [and seen]. I have two boys, Brayden (5) and Jaxson (4), who I want to give experiences to so they can learn that they can be great, and the world can’t rip them down. They will be kind and accepting of everyone. 2

Book with Baronial Designs Photography

Baronial Designs Photography was launched full time in 2016. The studio is located in Reading, PA and offers corporate branding, newborn to family milestones, weddings, and real estate photography. Baronial Designs also specializes in boudoir photography for women’s empowerment. In 2022 the business expanded to include an online retail shop selling candles, essential oils, bath bombs, and personalized crafts. https://www.baronialdesigns.com (610) 463-4673

berkswomen2women.com 15 Continued on page 17
16 Women2Women | Winter 2023 Proud to support Brenda Rosado & Vicki Ebner for their contributions Women2Women De Mujer a Mujer. 3049 Pricetown Rd. (Rt.12), Temple, PA • (610) 929-5049 • gardensandgifts.com Shop Houseplants & GIFTS

PATRICIA WRIGHT –Reading School Board Director & Airline Flight Attendant

Growing up in a multicultural household, it was easy to feel a little out of place. Being light skinned, I was constantly questioned about my ethnicity. Doing this shoot, being surrounded by other beautiful women, different shades of royal…I belonged. We all belong.



Logistics, NAVSUP WSS – Vice President, Shar’s Hands, Inc. –Member, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

Danielle’s vision came to life. I am completely honored to be a part of this vision. More importantly, as a woman of color I am honored to be selected as part of this photoshoot. The photo represents women of color from all different backgrounds and careers. Collectively we represent the many faces of powerful, beautiful, and resilient women in our diverse community. Each and every woman in this picture has a story of how Berks County has shaped their lives. Collectively we are stronger and can create an impact in our community.


Registered Nurse, Encompass Home Health & Hospice

It was an honor to be a part of this project. Danielle creatively portrayed to the world a depiction of beauty and unity within our own culture.

CARISSA JOHNSON –Magisterial Judge, Berks County

When Danielle shared her vision I was honored to be a part of something so powerful. Colorism is real amongst all races and this photograph showcases the beauty in ALL shades of brown. I knew this project would be impactful and it truly has been. I felt proud, I felt empowered, and I felt seen! Black women come in all different shades, shapes, and sizes and this photo captured the versatility that is the Black Woman!


Certified Nursing Assistant

The experience that Danielle provided this group of melanated women along with myself was a feeling I’ve never felt before. Being amongst all shades of Brown women within different roles and statuses of life, I wish other women were given this opportunity by this amazing entrepreneur/friend! If I were given this opportunity to do it again I would jump at the chance to be around so many successful African American women and to be able to share stories and backgrounds of our struggles and successes of being a Woman of Color!! Thank you again Danielle you are forever MY SISTER!!

CRYSTAL GILMORE HARRIS –Social Services Administrative Assistant & Cheerleading Coach, Reading School District

It truly was an honor to be a part of a photo that represented all shades of black girl magic. It was nice to be in a room with all shades being represented and just as beautiful as the next. We were just like a melting pot of phenomenal women!! Connecting, showing the world how colorism did NOT EXIST – all that mattered was that we were together having fun and we created a picture that will last for a lifetime. Danielle did an outstanding job placing us in the proper places, showing the world how we all came together to stand against division among our own race. Black Girl Magic with a shot of Black Excellence was represented in this photo. I’m not sure people know the level of powerful women represented…but we do!

berkswomen2women.com 17 FEATURE
SHADES OF COLOR testimonials • Submit your film for FREE thru Monday, April 3rd • Live Award Ceremony Thursday, April 27th • Winning films will be screened during the 2023 ReadingFilmFEST, October 19 - 22 You must be a student or recent graduate (2022) of a Berks County, PA school to submit A ReadingFILM Student Challenge Five -Minute ILMFest A ReadingFILM Student Challenge Five -Minute ILMFest Plus: Crystal Award, ReadingFilmFEST Filmmaker-T-shirt with Swag Bag Plus: Crystal Award Plus: Award Certificate A A A A A 2ndprize 3rdprize $150|gift card $75|gift card ReadingFilmFEST Oct 19-22, 2023 Find us online @ReadingFilmFEST and ReadingFILM.org 1stprize $250|gift card All participating students receive a free StudentFEST pass for the 2023 ReadingFilmFEST A Program of the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance W MEN2WOMEN MEN 2 winter2023 themagazine Baronial PhotographyDesigns pg.14 The Votepg.26 The Adalyn FoundationRose pg.30 Women: Seen, Heard, Leading the Way

Knowing + Doing: The Winning Combo for Goals

This is the time of year when we start with a clean slate. Full of enthusiasm and full of possibilities, we take the time to set goals. Some of us may even be brave enough to put them in writing and create vision boards around them. It’s an exciting time!

As the weeks, then months move on, our enthusiasm wanes. Our good intentions, whether personal or professional, fall by the wayside. We start to tell ourselves: Is where I am really that bad? I should just be satisfied with what I have.

For me, I usually have a health goal every year. Most of the time I measure the success of health by my weight. I’d like to lose about 10 pounds…EVERY YEAR! It’s my one perpetual goal. So, I start the year by doing some research using Google (my trusted source of information) and see what the latest articles have to say about losing weight. Is Atkins still a thing? Should I follow a Mediterranean diet? Or is Keto the best option?

I know I should also exercise. I love to dance (so Zumba has been a fun activity) and I enjoy walking (as long as the weather is nice…and by nice, I mean 60-75 degrees and dry). Yet, most days my Apple watch shows me that my exercise ring is still open.

So, although I know the basics of good health, eat less (and better) and move more, I fall short of my goal every year. I’ve joined gyms, subscribed to different diet plans, all with the intention of being healthy.

I KNOW what to do, but I’m just not DOING it!

Have you found yourself in a similar situation?

Maybe it’s not weight, but possibly something in your career. THIS is the year that you’ll finally find a job you LOVE rather than one you tolerate. THIS is the year that you’ll finally exceed your sales target, rather than fall short. THIS is the year that you’ll put yourself first, rather than allow your friends and family to set your priorities.

18 Women2Women | Winter 2023 FEATURE

We don’t necessarily need to learn new skills or new ideas. We do have to start putting what we know into action. The adage “if you know better, you do better” is true. But the gap between what we KNOW and what we actually DO can be huge.

So how can we start to close that gap? Here are a few suggestions:

Make sure your goal is clear! I catch myself saying things like: I want to be healthier; I want to be more successful, more financially secure. But what do any of those statements really mean? Be specific. Describe in detail how you will measure if you reached your goal. I had a mentor who told me if my goal was to have “more money,” picking up a dime on the sidewalk would actually meet my goal. So, for you to put what you know into action, use specifics to define your goal.

If you’re resisting doing what you believe works, try following the recommendations in the book Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg, Ph.D. Create an action so small and easy to implement, that you’ll have no trouble adding it to your daily routine. Start with doing one push-up or sit-up. Once you’re on the floor, you’ll find yourself doing a few extra. BONUS! Replace your usual beverage with water. Small incremental gains get us closer to that goal.

Know yourself and your strengths! I have a friend who chooses to start running when she is on a health kick. Running is her go-to and she’s gotten me to join her a few times. However, I don’t feel any joy when running, but I do when I stop. So, for me, I have to acknowledge that running is not my strength. I need to identify something I will enjoy and I will do and start there.

Check your beliefs. Your logical mind says something works, but you don’t believe you can do it, or you don’t believe it will work for you. If this comes up, ask yourself whether your belief is a fact or an opinion. If you were told growing up that you weren’t an athlete by someone, it was just an opinion. That doesn’t mean that you have to allow it to determine what you do or don’t do in life. I know I can still hear things in my head that were said to me when I was young and impressionable. Giving credence to these opinions closed off too many doors or shut down ideas of what I could do.

You already KNOW what to DO. Get unstuck and get moving forward. Start doing it and see the success you want! 2

berkswomen2women.com 19
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Work Skills vs Work History: Key to a Second Career

Recognizing your work experience as transferable skills, rather than work history, gives you a deeper appreciation for your breadth of experience. It helped me believe I could start my own business and be successful.

Graduating with a business degree from Shippensburg State College in 1981 was not an ideal time for job hunting. The job market was depressed and so was I from getting very few interviews. Consequently, I was employed by Manpower Temporary Services for one year and I thoroughly enjoyed it!

I worked for numerous large and small businesses, and it was a huge learning experience for several reasons. The biggest lesson I learned was that I could make a bigger impact on a daily basis at a smaller business. Enter Alvernia University (Alvernia College when I started) where I was hired as the Financial Aid Assistant and then the Director of Financial Aid, a position I held for 19 years.

During the time I was in financial aid, I was studying for my M.Ed. at Kutztown University and my leadership course required us to write a resume. I only had one “real” job since graduating from college, so my resume was a tad succinct (insert winking emoji here). I dug deep into my current position and listed all my workplace skills, i.e. I used employment skills as the lead-in instead of work history. For example: organization, management, communication, problem-solving, computer literacy, teaching/training, money management and leadership to name a few.

Before that resume exercise, I felt trapped, quite limited and pessimistic about my next career. After writing my resume from an entirely different perspective, I was pleasantly surprised at the breadth of my experience and skills within that one job, including all the volunteer and elected positions I held in my field. Suddenly, I saw myself as a capable, experienced and marketable woman.

After a brief illness, I realized that my health wouldn’t allow me to continue in the stressful environment of financial aid, so I was rehired as the Director of Policy, Planning, and Accreditation and reported directly to the President of the college. I was fortunate to have a boss who recognized all the transferable skills I possessed rather than that one position I had previously held at the college. He was aware of those skills and experiences because I would “cc” the President each time a parent, student or individual outside the college would acknowledge my work. The college was growing quickly, so he told me there were other positions at Alvernia for which I was well suited. He was an extraordinary boss and I credit him with saving my career. The position lasted for five years at which time a new President was hired and I suspected my position was no longer secure. A big career change was in order.

Fast forward to today.

I’m starting my 17th year in business as the Owner of The Clutter Crew. After reading an article in a Redbook magazine about a professional organizer, I came to the realization that I was starting to formulate my next career. I did some research about what a professional organizer was (who knew it was a thing?) and it was incredibly exciting, scary and not just a little intimidating. But I did my homework and began to think of all the transferable skills I possessed to begin, to grow and to succeed in my new business. I never (I mean never) considered owning a business or leaving an institution with a steady paycheck, but I also never considered that if I was so loyal to an employer and always gave over 100% each day, why not work for myself?

I don’t take my success for granted, because so many people were supporting me. Similarly, a lot of stars aligned, not the least of which were the transferable skills I carried with me to discover a whole new calling of getting up each day to help clients dig through their CRAP (Clutter that Robs Anyone of Pleasure) and encourage them to envision a better life with less stuff. Lastly, my idealistic view of a cleaner environment feeds my desire to continue to be relevant in an unpredictable world.

So, if you feel stuck, bored, unappreciated and ready to scare yourself just a wee bit, see how many transferable skills are in your wheelhouse. You’ll find Transferable Skills Surveys online to begin the exploration process. Consider all the jobs you’ve held (good and bad ones—they all count) and include volunteer and elected positions. Find out what you have to offer your next employer or start that business you’ve been dreaming about. 2

berkswomen2women.com 21 FEATURE

How to Develop Your P-BOD: Personal Board of Directors

When you are a leader or business owner, it can be difficult to receive genuine feedback from those who work for you and alongside you, as they may want to focus on pleasing you or fear facing consequences. This is true not just for executives and entrepreneurs but also for women wishing to climb the ladder. We all have people in our lives that have different roles and responsibilities and who can be integral in our success. When it comes to finding success, strategically developing mentors and supporters who can fill a role on your personal board of directors can help skyrocket your success at work. Developing your personal board of directors, affectionately known as your P-BOD, can help you to unlock opportunities for connection and feedback as well as identify people who can help you become more successful.

What is a Personal Board of Directors (P-BOD)?

Your P-BOD is a group of five to 10 individuals who can help you make good decisions, give you advice and feedback, challenge your assumptions, brainstorm and broaden your professional network. You want to meet with each person on your board on a regular basis. They can help you navigate your blind spots, advocate for you and assist you in being thoughtful about leadership challenges.

Let’s face facts, an annual meeting just won’t meet these needs. While you don’t need to gather your entire personal board of directors together, you want to have regular and meaningful conversations with them to discuss your challenges and opportunities in both your professional and personal life. Making sure that you’re fostering key relationships with the right people can help put you on a path to meaningful development.

22 Women2Women | Winter 2023

What Should I Consider When Choosing My P-BOD?

Your personal board of directors should allow you to:

• Be exposed to diverse perspectives

• Gain wisdom to accelerate your learning curve

• Provide access to key leaders and resources

• Allow you to step out of your shoes and navigate your blind spots

When you consider building your personal board of directors, think of people you know from different places and different times in your life:

• A connector will lead you to ask questions of yourself that may lead to other questions that inspire you toward change.

• A counselor provides invaluable perspective and encourages you to use critical thinking to understand diverse points of view.

• A comptroller will hold you accountable.

• A coach will push you to be your best and be your cheerleader while asking you exploratory questions to help you overcome missteps.

• A challenger helps you to step out of your comfort zone and think boldly to act.

It is helpful to ensure your P-BOD is dynamic and diverse enough to set you up for success.

Create Your P-BOD! Now it’s time to go out there and recruit your P-BOD! Make sure that candidates are supportive and willing to offer you candid and direct feedback. When approaching a potential member for your P-BOD, allow your relationships to happen organically. Consider someone that you trust, or who is trusted by others, within the organization or someone that you would like to learn from. Invite that person for a virtual coffee chat or to “pick their brain” about a certain topic. Identify follow-up questions that can help the flow of your conversation.

By leveraging your P-BOD and communicating with your board members regularly, you can trust you will be able to walk through challenges and celebrate your wins. Give it a try and watch your opportunities expand! 2

berkswomen2women.com 23
PAMELA L. VANFOSSEN PVanfossen@MasanoBradley.com Suite 201, 1100 Berkshire Boulevard ◆ Wyomissing, Pa 19610 610.372.7700 ◆ Fax 610.372.4865 A PA Limited Liability Partnership

The POWER of Public Speaking

For women leaders, the ability to speak fluently and convincingly, in a public or group setting, can dramatically influence your career.


A convincing public speaker is often seen as having good leadership potential – and this frequently opens the door to professional growth. As an effective public speaker, you convey confidence which can have a ripple effect, not only on your career, but on your personal life as well.

While there are many fantastic resources out there to improve your public speaking – organizations like Toastmasters, and classes like Dale Carnegie training – there are also several tips and techniques you can employ on your own to be a better public speaker.

So, before you deliver your next speech in public, consider the following:


If you’re like most people, you dread speaking in front of an audience. Surveys, in fact, show that people often fear public speaking more than death.

It’s easier said than done, but you must confront your anxiety, says Nicole Wells, founder of Communication Gym (www. communicationgym.com) and an adjunct faculty member at New York University. Wells says every speaker gets uncomfortable or nervous. “Usually, you think you’re much worse than you really are,” adds Wells.

And don’t apologize for any nervousness – this just distracts from

your message. The audience probably won’t notice anyway. And if they do, they’re likely to be sympathetic.


Preparation is key to controlling your fear. If you know your material inside and out, and are ready to answer audience questions, you’re well on your way to giving a good speech.

As soon as you know your topic, start work on your speech. Think about what message or information you want to get across. Do your research and write an outline.

Then: practice, practice, practice. Familiarity reduces the fear. Take advantage of opportunities where you can speak in front of an audience:

• When attending a seminar or sitting in an audience yourself, ask questions of the speaker. (Often you must move to a microphone to ask your question.)

• Call in to a radio station to ask a question or voice an opinion.

• Tell stories to your spouse, children and colleagues.

• Volunteer to introduce a speaker.

• Join an organization like your homeowner’s association, a volunteer board or your parent teacher association.


It’s essential to familiarize yourself with the room in which you’ll be speaking.

• Arrive early. Test the microphone and any visual aids, and practice using them.

24 Women2Women | Winter 2023 FEATURE

• Also note where your audience will be sitting. If 100 people are confirmed for a 300-seat room, they’ll be scattered around.

• Do you have a chance to meet your listeners beforehand? Mingling before the presentation allows your audience to get to know you, enhancing your credibility with them.


Don’t begin with a weak “Thank you for that kind introduction.” Or “It’s a pleasure to be here. I’ll begin with a funny joke I heard last night.” Just smile at the emcee, pause, then launch right into your speech.

Your opening statement must be compelling enough to get the audience onboard right away.

You can grab attention with:

• a thoughtful question

• a relevant anecdote or personal story

• a startling statistic

• an appropriate and interesting quote

• a challenging statement

• a pertinent news headline


If you want to keep the attention of your audience your message must be crystal clear and simple. You are looking to convey a few key points, or sow a couple (at most) seeds of inspiration. It can be very helpful to give the audience a roadmap, right from the outset, of what your goals are in your presentation, or what key points you wish to convey, and after you have delivered your message, summarize these points again for clarity.

Keep it simple. Like in writing – less is usually more in effective public speaking.


It is rare to see a professional presentation these days without the use of some form of media, or a PowerPoint. Multimedia and PowerPoint can be a highly effective addition to your speech when used correctly; however, it can also be the death of your presentation.

Do not make slides full of bulleted points with size ten font. It is distracting, and people will stop listening to you. If people are reading and not listening, then your presentation will fail. You want the audience to focus on you. Use simple images and concise statements that cover the essence of what you are talking about, but that also require the audience to listen to you in order to understand your message.


Let the audience feel your passion. Even if your presentation is

technical, there is always an element that interests you in some way, or a story related to the material that uniquely resonates with you. Share your personality. You are in front of the crowd anyway, subject to their judgement, so you own the experience and allow your personality to shine.


An effective speaker touches both the hearts and the minds of the audience. We influence the emotional side of the audience by using stories. Stories are powerful – use them. You become doubly convincing by then using logic, reason, evidence and statistics to validate your point. An effective speaker uses both –logic and emotions, to convey their message.


“The podium is a huge barrier,” says Wells. “Get away from the podium if you’re standing. You’ll score huge points with your audience.” Wear a little clipon microphone so you can move around on the stage. Movement creates interest for the audience and will also help you to release tension.

If you’re seated in a panel, stand up and walk about at the front of the room. Or lean forward onto the table in front and look out at the audience (not the panel). If you’re the moderator of the panel, stand.


To improve your public speaking skills, you need to find out how others perceive you. Ask a friend or trusted colleague for honest but constructive feedback. Should you speak louder? Does your speech move them? (Why or why not?) What three areas could be improved? (How?).

What to avoid?


The fastest way to bore your audience is to read your notes. The best public speakers don’t rely on any notes at all. If you must, use index cards printed with key words or points. Glance at the key word to prompt your next thought. Then look into the eyes of the audience before expounding on that thought.


Most people speak too quickly, especially if they’re nervous. And usually, they think they’re speaking more slowly than they actually are.

Monitor your pace. A general pace of 150 to 180 words a minute is considered comfortable for most audiences.

berkswomen2women.com 25 Continued on page 26


Failing to look at your audience is another common mistake. You want to create a rapport and make a connection with them. Don’t, however, gaze mechanically left to right, scanning the room like a surveillance camera.

Instead, make eye contact with specific individuals in the audience. Talk to one person directly for one thought, then move on to another person for your next thought.


If you don’t segue properly from one point to another, your speech will be muddy and disjointed.

People perk up at transitions, says Wells. “They think, ‘I must listen to this new idea. There’s a new point coming along,’ so they pay extra attention.”

Recap the point you’ve just made, then transition smoothly to the next. Examples of easy transitions include:

• “Consequently…”

• “Because of this…”

• “On a similar note…”

• “My third point is…”

• “Turning now to…”


One of the best ways to improve your public speaking skills is to join Toastmasters International. A non-profit organization, Toastmasters was formed to help people become more competent and comfortable in front of an audience. Toastmasters groups typically comprise 20 or so people, who meet weekly for an hour or two to practice giving prepared speeches and analyze each other’s talks. Check out www.toastmasters.org.


Many colleges and universities offer public speaking classes. You can also organize members of your own network to meet for the purpose of practicing public speaking once a month.


If you have a big speech coming up, consider hiring a personal coach to prepare you. An expert can help ensure that your body language and eye contact are congruent with your message, so you come across as authentic. A coach can also demonstrate points and videotape you, providing feedback on areas that need improvement.

26 Women2Women | Winter 2023
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Who exactly did I think I was? Just because Rachael Romig, Senior Director of Events & Special Programs at Greater Reading Chamber Alliance, called to ask me to speak at the 2022 Women2Women Expo…I said, “YES?”

What was I, nuts?

There was certainly a moment of regret immediately after saying “yes” to Rachael’s request. Seriously, what was I thinking? I’m not a professional speaker. I see these women on YouTube TED talks; I’m certainly not one of them. I’ve been to the Women2Women Expos before and I know the caliber of talent and vetting necessary to give someone the opportunity to address the audience. And…Rachael called me?

Rachael called me because she felt I had a story to tell. Leaving my professional work and making a big change and a decision to retire at “47,” she felt I had a message that would be impactful to the female leaders attending the event. I know Rachael and I had to trust her instincts that I could do this.

First thing I did was think about a message that would impact everyone in the room, no matter their circumstance. I wanted to offer one major, easy to remember take-away for the attendees. I decided that take-away was going to be a question everyone needed to ask themselves, “What do I REALLY want?” From there, years of experience and excerpts from reading hundreds of business books helped to fill in the outline of the speech. I rehearsed and rehearsed. I’ve found that when I’m prepared, I’m not as nervous.

On the day of the event, I was shown the room. Oh my goodness! It wasn’t just a room; it was a concert hall! The room was huge! There wasn’t a thing on the stage except for a microphone and a microphone stand. I scrambled behind the curtain and down a hall where I found a chair and a table to use. I needed some accessories.

Was it an ideal set-up? From the feedback received, probably not. I was going for a comfortable, grounded, talk-show vibe (plus it was comforting to sit). I should have walked around and been more animated. I should have had slides to accommodate the quotes I used. Lessons learned!

But, for my first speaking engagement in front of 300 equals, I’ll give myself some leeway and call it a success.

After all, isn’t that how it’s supposed to work?

Get out of your comfort zone. Try something new. Learn from your failures. Tweak & repeat! 2

berkswomen2women.com 27

THE VOTE Women Taking the Lead

Incredibly, women in the United States did not secure the right to vote until 1920. They achieved this milestone only after a hard-fought suffrage movement and haven’t looked back since. One hundred years later, following a steady increase of women in our political arena, the United States wakes up each day to the reality of the very first woman, and a woman of color, serving the country as Vice President.

In 1916, Jeannette Rankin was the first woman elected to Congress, representing the state of Montana. After her election, she stated, “I may be the first woman member of Congress, but I won’t be the last.” Today, a record number of women are serving in the 117th Congress of the United States. Counting both the House of Representatives and the Senate, women hold 144 seats or 27% of the 539 seats. This is a 50% increase from a decade ago and it is trending upward. The past one hundred plus years has seen the unfolding of women serving in national, state, and local positions, bringing to the table their unique perspective on how things should be done.

Our 2022 mid-term elections were cause for women to celebrate historic victories. All 50 states have now elected women to send to Washington, including the very first from Vermont. There was a record number of women elected as state governors; twelve states chose women for this leadership role, surpassing the nine women governors sent to statehouses in 2004.

Why are so many women finally breaking through in American politics? Director of Research at the Center for American Women and Politics, Kelly Dittmar, notes several factors contributing to this upward trend. “Female governors now have a longer record of showing women can succeed in the role, helping to erode some stereotypes that have hamstrung female candidates. Voters have also begun to reevaluate what they value in a leader. Women have increasingly moved up in the ranks and this has boosted the pool of women well suited to run for positions which used to be dominated by male candidates.”

Women in leadership positions support issues related to women’s rights, climate change, children and families, neighborhoods, education, a sustainable future, cooperation across party lines and a greater responsiveness to citizens’ needs. From the national level to local government, women are taking the lead, pushing these issues through the eyes of the female perspective. Several of our local women holding political office share their views on the reasons and results of more women in positions of government, and how this impacts the races for these offices.

28 Women2Women | Winter 2023 FEATURE

State Senator Judy Schwank: “Many of the barriers to running for office women faced for a long time have really fallen. We are seeing more and more women find a way to balance family obligations with running, and even making that a central part of their campaigns. Another big benefit to women has been the numerous statewide and national groups that provide women with training so they can run for office at all levels. We’ve seen many women who have gone through these programs have success in Washington, Harrisburg, and at the local level.”

How does this change the race?

“The dynamics of races can change when women candidates run because they often bring attention to issues that have been largely overlooked by male candidates. Issues like childcare, paid family leave, maternal health, and reproductive freedom are just a few that come to mind. That fresh perspective is badly needed. Second, it makes sense that women are running more and succeeding because women consistently turn out to vote in higher numbers than men. Naturally, I think many women voters want to vote for candidates they can see themselves in.”

Donna Reed, Reading City Council Vice President: “To some degree, I would say it’s making up for lost time—remember it’s only been a little over 100 years since women in America were granted (by men!) the right to vote. There have always been female pioneers, locally and nationally, who led the way, particularly by initially attaining major influence in the political parties. That occurred— think of the likes of Abigail Adams and Dolly Madison and Alice Roosevelt Longworth and Eleanor Roosevelt—well before women began running for office at all or in the ever-increasing numbers of the past quarter century. I believe the time has passed for gender consideration when a candidate steps up to the plate—and I believe voters no longer count gender as a positive or negative. Rather, they look at the person and the politics. I believe that is an inherent and a quietly jubilant victory for women in the electoral world.”

Donna also comments on women and local politics: “Women have been gaining more and more traction in municipal and school boards in the county. I’m proud to serve on a femalemajority City Council (four women) and our auditor is also a woman. When I joined Council in 2002, I was the only female member. We’ve only had one female mayor and one female county commissioner in the long history of Reading and Berks, so there’s some catching up to do there. With a new female state representative to take office in January joining our long-time female state Senator, and with two Congresswomen representing portions of Berks, girls still in school and young women should be encouraged to see those pathways opening for them to follow their dreams and answer the noble call of public service.”

Marcia Goodman-Hinnershitz, Reading City Councilwoman:

“The upward trend in women becoming involved in politics speaks to the nationwide movement towards diversity and inclusion in all levels of government. This has been a challenging journey with many barriers still hindering full inclusion and equity. However, the increased civic engagement of women in leadership roles opens the possibilities to expand collaboration and inclusivity. With women still underrepresented in elected offices, there has been a growing trend in women experiencing greater success in elections. However, issues, not gender, should define the race; sound governance should be focused on issues and not personalities. It is critical that all candidates clearly speak to the priority issues and define their positions on diversity, equity, and inclusion.” 2

berkswomen2women.com 29
Solutions for the innovative 610.406.5414 | Temple, PA www.eb-designs.com Solutions for the innovative PRINT DESIGN LOGOS & IDENTITY MENUS ADVERTISING SOCIAL MEDIA WEB DESIGN PROMO GRAPHICS INVITATIONS

Home-Grown Artisan & Talent

Franchise salons are a dime a dozen these days. A Google search will return multiple options offering online bookings, points programs and the like. Few, however, offer the experience of an award-winning artist with a local mom-andpop-shop feel.

Dani King Hair Studio, in Blandon, does just that. Dani holds both a One-Shot Hair award as well as the Masters of Balayage – High Contrast Top 50 Award. She recently graduated from a Masters of Balayage1 program earning a certification as an “MOB” (Masters of Balayage).

Dani entered Empire Beauty School after high school graduation and acquired her State Cosmetology License in 2008. Her father supported her pursuits with a purpose: “The only way I’ll pay for beauty school is if you have a goal. I want to know your goals.”

I want to own my own salon.

For him, that was enough. “Let’s do this,” he said. It wasn’t a fast track to success. The road to her own salon was long and winding. She met her husband while in school, worked in a few local salons and married in 2012. Dani and Dylan welcomed their first two children (Dominic and Delaney) while working in a tiny at-home salon, which they sought to expand, but encountered zoning issues. It was a busy life for a young couple who was balancing business growth aspirations and a family.

Word of mouth allowed the business to initially thrive, but then COVID-19 hit the family and the salon hard. Adding to the challenges (in a good way) was the arrival of Daxon… a true COVID baby. Although the salon shut down for four months, the couple came together out of need and really found strength in one another. Dani and Dylan became business partners, operating both Dani King Hair Studio and Dylan’s Tattoo out of the same building on Park Road. Since then, they’ve found familiarity and community in their business. They know their clients and their clients know them. They have even found customer referrals through one another.

Dani is a humble and proud local success story. She’s most proud of the family she’s been able to help create and she gives credit to the strength her partnership played as a part of her journey. She’s eager to share advice to those interested in her industry, or any entrepreneurial pursuit:

Don’t get discouraged! Just keep pushing through the failure. Do the work. I saw myself get better as a person and an artist. I knew to get to where I wanted to be it takes a lot of sacrifice, but to get the recognition of those awards really pushed me to do better for my family and it really is rewarding. This is a passionate and rewarding career path, with money to be made, if you put the time and work into it.

Dani King is incredibly passionate about what she does and why she does it. She’s in it for her family, for the art and for the creativity she gets to express through her work. She’s not about to settle, and she has more goals still. Dani would love to travel and educate other who are as passionate as she is about the industry.

As women with buying power, we get to choose when and how we support local business. In the words of her father, when it comes to Dani King Hair Studio: “Let’s do this!”

Dani King Hair Studio is located at 1052 Park Road, Blandon, PA. She can be reached at danikinghair@gmail.com or by phone at 610-787-0436 2

30 Women2Women | Winter 2023
Dani King Hair
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Inspiration for Your Aspirations!

Most of us can point to something or someone (often a mix of both and often many) that or who inspired us to take that leap, to make that move or to realize that we are capable of doing great things. We credit a sage piece of advice, a meaningful book or an enlightening experience as THE thing that serves as a lodestone we turn to when things aren’t going great and we need a reminder of our amazing accomplishments, no matter where we are on our journeys. W2W Magazine asked members of the W2W Council and Committees whether a book, or piece of advice, who or what inspires them?

My favorite book is Boundaries for Leaders by Dr. Henry Cloud. I have worked with many inspirational women throughout my career and have learned so much from each one of them. Over the past couple of years, one of my supervisors has modeled and inspired me to be all that I can be. She personally has demonstrated how to be a woman in leadership. She took the time to care, showed servant-leadership, and encouraged me through my journey. One of the most influential things she taught me was that to be an effective leader you must be a model of that for which you would like to see or have others do. This has made me a stronger and effective leader. Women uplifting other women has and continues to inspire me.

Auria Bradley, Associate Vice President of Workforce & Continuing Education, Reading Area Community College

You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero (and her subsequent books on the same topic). It’s relatable, like two girlfriends reminding each other to get out of your own way and be great, fearlessly and unapologetically. I’ve recommended and gifted this book more times than I can count.

The best book recommendation I ever received from a woman leader was Leaders Eat Last, by Simon Sinek. Quote from the book: “The will to succeed and desire to do things that advance the interest of the organization aren’t motivated by recognition, they are integral to a culture of sacrifice and service in which protection comes from all levels of the organization.”

I follow SPANX founder Sara Blakely on Instagram and am inspired by her success story, unflinching support of women, messages of encouragement and ability to laugh at herself.

My favorite book is We Should All be Millionaires by Rachel Rodgers. I picked up the book due to its bold title, but I didn’t read it until six months later. I’m glad that I did finally read it as I found it to be full of knowledge and inspiration on so many different levels. You learn about your own money mindset, building wealth, how to have million-dollar ideas and most importantly how to stop yourself from making broke decisions. People don’t like to talk about money, it’s such a taboo, but she is straight forward with it, and I love it. We need to talk about these topics, besides, who doesn’t want to be a millionaire? I think Rachel Rodgers is a leader and boss material and I want some of her good vibes. She teaches you that it’s not a bad thing to desire money, however, it’s a bad thing to feel guilty about it and not embrace what it can do for you and your loved ones.

There are so many amazing books out there but the one that has always stuck with me is The First 90 Days by Michael D. Watkins. The book helps a new leader (normally in a new position) work through setting them up for success and working with new groups of people, in the first 90 days. I gift this book to women all the time and it has helped me time and time again.


I found inspiring is The Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates. I loved the book mostly for the storytelling and relatability to connect, but for the call that We are one. Melinda says, “Everyone wants to be included, so if we help everyone develop their talents and use their gifts for the good of the community. That is what inclusion means – everyone is a contributor.” I love that.


Brown was introduced to me by an equine facilitated therapy clinical social worker who helped me for almost three years. During that time, I spent countless sessions learning about shame and vulnerability, but never made the connection to the business world until reading Daring Greatly and Dare to Lead Brigette Potgieter, and the horses at Manderley Farm, changed my life.

Sarah McDaniel, COO, EthoSource

berkswomen2women.com 31 ASKED&ANSWERED

In preparation for writing this article, I stared long and hard at my initial Google search: “how to honor pregnancy loss.” Sure, there were some links with “ten ways to memorialize a loss,” and a small collection of beautiful blog posts from parents living through such trauma. Each link to every separate story felt so lonely, and some of the more informational websites felt downright cold in their presentation. The reality set in quickly that no one wants to ever have to Google this topic, let alone find the language to use that makes it less numbing. For this reason, I am proud to write about my friends and the ultimate parents: Adam and Chloe Ciferri, co-founders of the Adalyn Rose Foundation (ARF).

Adam and Chloe became my neighbors a few years ago. From the outside looking in, they were a young, fun couple that would likely join my own growing family in the “reinvigoration” of our otherwise predominately-empty-nester cul-de-sac. There would be kid(s) in the future for both of our households, and it was inevitable we’d be crossing stroller paths in the years to come.

All of these ideals came true for both of our families (Adam and Chloe are currently raising three beautiful, vivacious children that have befriended my toddler), though their path to the present day has been very different.

In 2017, Adam and Chloe lost their first daughter, Adalyn “Addie” Rose, 104 days after they’d learned they were pregnant. The decisions that followed immediately after learning of Adalyn’s passing were insurmountable, yet the couple was forced to make choices swiftly, both in the hospital and in the days to follow. Navigating funeral arrangements seemed like an out of body experience, and there was no rulebook to provide relief from the immense grief and shock they were experiencing.

Despite the despair that weighed heavy on their minds, the couple decided to turn their tragedy into an experience

Lightening Loss:

The Adalyn Rose Foundation –Honoring Pregnancy & Infant Loss Loudly!

that would allow for healing, growth and outreach to others also navigating loss through miscarriage, stillbirth or in the infancy stage of life. The Adalyn Rose Foundation (ARF) was created at this time with the mission to serve families grieving the loss of a baby by providing financial support for funeral and memorial costs; to create personalized family care packages and to offer continuous emotional support to grieving families.

Chloe states, “Going through the death of Adalyn and not having a community or a safe space to honor her and celebrate her was really tough. Now, we’ve created a space both physically (events) and also community-wide (virtual meets, support groups, social media, etc.) with many connection points for people to honor their losses in whatever way feels comfortable for them.

“A lot of the resources that were shared with us when we lost Adalyn were a bit outdated… a bit cold. ARF is here to make materials and language that are light, bright and more in-touch with people today. Down to our color choices, everything is intentionally meant to be more celebratory rather than focusing on the somberness of the loss,” Chloe emphasized. “Living after our loss – Adam and I wanted to incorporate fun, allowing the space for the joy and celebration of our daughter. Grief is a huge part of

32 Women2Women | Winter 2023 FEATURE
Chloe and Adam Ciferri

life after loss, but you can feel sadness while also feeling joy.”

For an individual or family that may be hesitant to even share their experience, let alone attend an event, Chloe offers the following advice, “Grief is a journey that you’ll be on forever. There is no rush to engage with or join a support group/event – you will know when you’re ready. If you need a connection prior to jumping all in, ARF staff and board members can provide those resources and offer small steps towards being a part of the bigger community. It is normal to feel vulnerable and intimidated to share, but this is your landing spot whenever the time is right.”

The Foundation’s resources and mindsets can also support siblings of loss. Chloe shares, “For our other young kiddos – this experience has opened up an honest conversation about emotion, death and grief. Adam and I have been very honest about Adalyn’s passing by explaining that Adalyn is their older sister who is no longer here. We continue to celebrate her birthday and find ways to incorporate her into our family’s experiences. Of course, we share with the kids in a way that is age-appropriate. And, having them at events and providing exposure to the loss-community is so great.”

Chloe mentioned that often when she leaves for a meeting or to visit with a family, the kids will say, “Are you going to help someone today, Mommy?” Not only does it make Chloe and Adam proud to be able to answer “yes” to that question, but it further honors the life of their daughter and the legacy that her short time on Earth created.

To learn more about the Adalyn Rose Foundation, visit: https://adalynrose.org.

To reach the Foundation, info@adalynrosefoundation.com.

Follow on social:


above. Books can be purchased from our amazon charity wish list, and the other items can be purchased and donated by emailing info@adalynrosefoundation.com.

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Chloe Ciferri
THE ADALYN ROSE FOUNDATION provides comprehensive support to women and families who have experienced the loss of a child during pregnancy or infancy. Our Remembrance Cart program provides immediate support to families in the hospital setting. Our Remembrance Carts provide gentle guidance to grieving families in the hospital, and are filled with materials for them to make memories with their babies while they are still here, earth side. Items that are on the carts are children’s books, grief books, bears, blankets, candles, small wooden hearts, bracelet making kits, coloring books and crayons for siblings. Our team of loss parents has carefully and specifically picked out all of the items

Tower Health Employees in Ukraine Beyond Berks:

When war began in Ukraine in early 2022, individuals from all over the world, including employees from Tower Health, jumped into action to provide support and relief.

clothing were also sent to provide relief from the upcoming winter cold.

“Before I left, I didn’t know what to expect for my time in Ukraine,” Jean said. “The area I was in, Odessa, was gorgeous with beautiful rose gardens. The Ukrainian people were so grateful and kind. It was such a big morale booster for them to see that others care for them and their country.”

Jean served in many roles including assisting to set up partnerships to help sort, organize and deliver supplies sent to the people of Ukraine from all over the world. One of her proudest accomplishments was to provide Stop the Bleed® training and distributing Stop the Bleed® supplies to Ukrainian police officers. “The officers were coming in on their days off to attend the training because it was so important to them,” she said.

She also helped to provide primary care treatment for residents because so many suffered malnutrition due to lack of access to fresh fruits and vegetables.

FILIP MOSHKOVSKY, DO, a Trauma surgeon at Reading Hospital, was born in Ukraine. He and his family left in 1989, fleeing religious persecution by the Soviet Union. He and his wife still have family in Ukraine, and he wanted to do something to help his native country. Dr. Moshkovsky connected with a physician in Ukraine organizing medical supply donations and delivering them to frontline hospitals. The first shipment of donations in May included 1,400 pounds of supplies collected from the hospital, employees and affiliates.

“It was a true team effort to collect, organize and send these critical items to Ukraine,” said Dr. Moshkovsky. “I’m thankful to be at a hospital and in a community with so many caring individuals.”

A second shipment weighing approximately 2500 pounds was sent to Ukraine at the end of September and included additional medical supplies such as tourniquets, wound care materials and first aid kits. Personal items like sleeping bags and thermal

ASHLEY GIPPRICH, BSN, RN, a nurse in the Emergency Department, has a cousin in western Ukraine who works as an emergency department physician.

“I was watching the news and knew I had to do something,” she said. “I didn’t want to feel helpless.”

She enlisted the help of her daughter, Julia Gipprich, an Emergency Department nurse at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC, and her best friend and longtime colleague, recently retired nurse, Kim Foster. Together, the three women collected items from colleagues, friends and family.

Julia also purchased burn kits, tourniquets, IV supplies and endotracheal tubes.

For the Ukrainian soldiers they collected hard candy and chewing gum. Her cousin also recommended items for children who lost their parents during the war. Ashley, Julia and Kim also put together small bags that included socks, bottled water, toothbrush, toothpaste, protein bars and a special message on each bag such as, “A prayer was said for you today” and “Praying for you in the United States.” Ashley and team have sent more than 100 boxes of supplies distributed by other volunteers in Ukraine.

“I am so proud of the efforts of the team members who organized and donated to the people of Ukraine,” said Charles F. Barbera, MD, Reading Hospital President and CEO. “Our team members are compassionate and dedicated to healing everyone, not just our patients. Together, our team continues to make a difference around the world.” 2

34 Women2Women | Winter 2023
JEAN EBERSOLE, PHRN at TowerDirect, traveled to Ukraine for four weeks to provide care with a group from the Armada Network.
berkswomen2women.com 35 The best reading in Reading Hoffmann Publishing Group is the regional leader in print and digital niche publishing. Our publications deliver targeted marketing opportunities directly to the key decision makers in Berks County’s professional, business and community organizations. Call today for advertising opportunities. HoffmannPublishing.com • 610.685.0914 x201 FALL 2022 Supporting Berks County Agriculture Plus: Restoring Passenger Rail Service to Berks General Elections 2022: What You Need to Know VETERAN SERVICES UPDATES Keeping You Connected Berks County, PA, Government News & Services The best reading in Reading Hoffmann Publishing Group is the regional leader in print and digital niche publishing. Our publications deliver targeted marketing opportunities directly to the key decision makers in Berks County’s professional, business and community organizations. Call today for advertising opportunities. HoffmannPublishing.com • 610.685.0914 x201 FALL 2022 GREATER READING Chamber Alliance Quarterly Supporting Berks County Agriculture Plus: Restoring Passenger Rail Service to Berks General Elections 2022: What You Need to Know VETERAN SERVICES UPDATES Keeping You Connected Berks County, PA, Government News & Services


Are you the kind of person who sends emojis and detailed texts to your friends, or are you the type who just responds: “k”? That’s the question Marissa Orr challenged 200 empowered people in the ballroom of the Abraham Lincoln Hotel on Thursday, October 20.

The night kicked off with champagne and boozy cider drinks, along with a delicious spread laid out by Catering by John Lowe. Several VIPs had the chance to schmooze with our speaker in the Roosevelt Room amidst centerpieces by Saraí Variety Flower Shop. Rachael Romig, Director of Women2Women, invited us

to think about our walk-up song – the song that empowers you – before telling us all about what W2W has accomplished this year. Next, she invited Alison Snyder, Chairwoman of W2W, to the stage, who welcomed our sponsors and shared her 10-year journey as part of W2W before introducing our keynote speaker.

Marissa Orr, author of Lean Out and former executive at Facebook and Google, navigated the workplace with some success – making early, but awkward, introductions to Cheryl Sandberg. When Marissa was up for a promotion that would force her to manage a larger

team, she felt dread. After taking a few personality quizzes, and really asking herself what she wanted, she figured out why that position wasn’t right for her. Just like texting without emojis, that wasn’t where her strengths were. When she first approached her supervisor with this revelation, it was rejected out of hand. This was the way the office worked, and they would not change it for her. She took the promotion, but was miserable.

Eventually, she was able to communicate with a superior that what she really wanted out of work was more money and a genuine compliment, and she got it! The

36 Women2Women | Winter 2023 W2W AROUND TOWN

email she received may have been written by her direct manager and only copy/ pasted into an email from a higher up, but it meant the world to her. And she got a bonus out of it!

Through her candid storytelling and deeply personal experience, Marissa asked us to take a look at what we really wanted out of our work – and our life – and realize that not everyone should define success the same way. Just because our work environment is set up to appeal to one type of worker does not mean it should be the only way.

We all have different ways of communicating. Some of us are emoji people, and some of us are terse. There is nothing wrong with either! Through the lens of Marissa’s experience, she challenged us to really get to know ourselves by asking some deep questions about what we really want out of work and life. 2

berkswomen2women.com 37


Women2Women (W2W) is Greater Reading Chamber Alliance’s catalyst for developing women leaders and connecting women from diverse backgrounds to learn, share ideas, and mentor each other through offering a forum for women to create connections, gain knowledge, and build strategic alliances to foster their personal potential and career advancement. Joining the network is open to all who support women.

De Mujer a Mujer, una iniciativa de W2W, continúa conectando a mujeres de diversos orígenes al ofrecer programación especializada en la noche y destacar a oradores de diversos orígenes.


CoryandNicolVarona,Co-Founders, DNOrganics

Mujer Mujer

A personal brand is many times like a professional brand. Your brand is what people say and think about you when you aren’t around - and of course, you want this to be a positive remembrance! Hear from sister-preneurs Cory Dahlia & Nicol, founders of DN Organics, a natural hair care line made to empower women and their natural beauty, on the brand they have created and how they have branded themselves individually. Take their notes to apply to your day to day and decide what you want YOUR BRAND to say about you.

Una marca personal es muchas veces como una marca profesional. Tu marca es lo que la gente dice y piensa de ti cuando no estás cerca y, por supuesto, ¡quieres que esto sea un recuerdo positivo! Escuche a las hermanas emprendedoras Cory Dahlia & Nicol, fundadoras de DN Organics, una línea natural para el cuidado del cabello hecha para empoderar a las mujeres y su belleza natural, en la marca que han creado y cómo han se marcaron a sí mismos individualmente. Toma sus notas para aplicarlas en tu día a día y decide qué quieres que TU MARCA diga de ti.


Time: 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Venue: Abraham Lincoln Events – Roosevelt Suite

Price: $10/GRCA Member | $15/Future Member

Free to W2W sponsors!



Terri has spent her career reinventing herself and expanding her skills along the way. At the age of 24 she was told that she was “no longer a viable candidate to be a teacher” because she had been out of the classroom for 2 years. With the “teaching” door closed, she test drove many careers including marketing director, advertising sales, financial advisor and real estate agent. What she learned along the way was that constantly chasing for more knowledge didn’t necessarily equate to more success. Most of us know what to do. We just aren’t doing it. Learn how to close the gap between knowing and doing in this session including utilizing a professional personality assessment, so you can make progress towards your goals now, rather than later.


Time: 11:30 a.m.– 1:00 p.m.

Venue: Berkshire Country Club Price: $35/GRCA Member | $45/Future Member

Free to W2W sponsors!

Register to win 1 of 5 StrengthFinders books & assessments!

38 Women2Women | Winter 2023
JANUARY 2023 ON THE CALENDAR To register for events & receive the Women2Women e-newsletter, visit www.berkswomen2women.com.

De Mujer a Mujer


Giannina Reyes - Owner, NewBeginningsCounselingServices

Mujer Mujer

Now more than ever being “healthy” is more than the look and feel of your body. “Healthy” starts with the mind and soul...so why don't we take care of it like our body? The stigma behind therapy is normally negative, and we are working towards normalizing this mental health exercise! Hear from Giannina Reyes on the importance of taking care of YOU and how once you do, your whole life will change for the positive!

Ahora más que nunca estar “saludable” es más que la apariencia de su cuerpo. “Saludable” comienza con la mente y el alma... entonces, ¿por qué no lo cuidamos como nuestro cuerpo? El estigma detrás de la terapia normalmente es negativo, ¡y estamos trabajando para normalizar este ejercicio de salud mental! Escuche a Giannina Reyes sobre la importancia de cuidar de USTED y cómo una vez que lo haga, ¡toda su vida cambiará para bien!


Time: 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Venue: Abraham Lincoln Events – Roosevelt Suite Price: $10/GRCA Member | $15/Future Member Free to W2W sponsors!


Paula Barrett, Retired RKL Partner

Paula’s career as a CPA has taken her from New York City to Philadelphia and finally to Berks County for the last 30 years. During her career, she found her voice to advocate for herself and her career, all while helping others along the way. Establishing boundaries was critical to maintaining effective work-life integration. Paula will share anecdotes from her own life’s journey, the little things she learned along the way, and will leave you with inspiration and takeaways to advocate for YOURself into the future!


Time: 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Venue: Reading Country Club

Price: $35/GRCA Member | $45/Future Member

Free to W2W sponsors!

Stay connected at:

Celebrating Women’s History Month


The words we use have the ability to cause action and change. Our words also gain trust from others, and often empower. Hear from a panel of past Women2Women ATHENA recipients on the most powerful words a leader can use, and how to use them. Recognized for their contributions to women's empowerment and community involvement, the ATHENAs will leave you inspired and ready to lead.

Meet our Panel: 2020 Women2Women ATHENA Recipient – Crystal Gilmore Harris 2013 Women2Women ATHENA Recipient – Paula Barrett 1999 Women2Women ATHENA Recipient – Mary L. “Missy” Orlando 1996 Women2Women ATHENA Recipient – Trish Doll 1994 Women2Women ATHENA Recipient – Sandy Graffius


Time: 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Venue: Alvernia University, Francis Theatre & Atrium Price: $35/GRCA Member | 45/Future Member Free to W2W sponsors!

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Facebook @BerksWomen2Women LinkedIn @Berks Women2Women Group Instagram @berks_W2W
Crystal Gilmore Harris Paula Barrett Mary L. “Missy” Orlando
Continued on page 40
(W2W) is a special program of the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance (GRCA). GRCA’s mission is to be Berks County’s leading resource for building a healthy, competitive business community by assisting companies to retain, expand and grow their operations and employment while also attracting new business to Berks County. Greater Possibilities Start Here. Visit greaterreading.org for resources we can offer your business, or connect with us directly with any questions you may have at info@GreaterReading.org or call 610-376-6766.
Trish Doll Sandy Graffius


MARCH 2023

De Mujer a Mujer



Mujer Mujer

Even if you’re an introvert, speaking in public (or to groups) doesn’t have to be scary! Experience a passionate speaker who wants the best for you – Joelle Terranova! She will share ways to be more confident, how to set yourself up for success before presenting, and how to lead through working in groups. Communication is key when developing yourself, and others.

¡Aunque seas introvertido, hablar en público (o ante grupos) no tiene por qué darte miedo! Experimente a un orador apasionado que quiere lo mejor para usted: ¡Joelle Terranova! Ella compartirá formas de tener más confianza, cómo prepararse para el éxito antes de presentar y cómo liderar a través del trabajo en grupos. La comunicación es clave cuando se desarrolla a sí mismo y a los demás.


Time: 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Venue: Abraham Lincoln Events – Roosevelt Suite Price: $10/GRCA Member | $15/Future Member Free to W2W sponsors!

Networking Experience


Manifesting success is less about wishing and dreaming and more about defining your goals and setting the stage to make them happen. Vision Boarding is a way to manifest your success through visualization and affirmations. No matter what your goals are, your vision board is a visual representation of those goals through images and text. And this practice WORKS! Join us for a goal setting experience with friends and colleagues, and mimosas to get creativity flowing!


Time: 4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Venue: Chamber’s Center for Business Excellence

Price: $20/GRCA Member | $30/Future Member *All supplies will be provided but please feel free to bring your favorite magazines to share!


Join us for our all-day schedule filled with keynote speakers, breakout workshops, and celebrate the 2023 ATHENA recipient. Also enjoy the always anticipated Expo and engage with Women2Women sponsors, women-owned businesses, and local nonprofits. Develop your leadership skills, buy yourself something nice, and learn more about all the community has to offer.


Time: 7:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Venue: Santander Performing Arts Center

Price: $100/All Day Access - GRCA Member $125/All Day Access - Future GRCA Member $40/Breakfast & ATHENA Celebration Only $200/Expo Vendor (includes vendor table & all day access)

NOMINATE THE 2023 ATHENA Women2Women is proud to host the ATHENA® Award Program – an award that celebrates the potential of all women/men as members and leaders of the community and recognizes those who support them. The ATHENA® Leadership Award is presented to a woman/man who is honored for professional excellence, community service and for actively assisting women in their attainment of professional excellence and leadership skills.

Presented to leaders across professional sectors, the ATHENA® Leadership Award’s rich history, international scope and focus on mentorship distinguishes it as one of the most prestigious leadership awards one can receive.

Download the nomination form at berkswomen2women.com.

Nominations due March 10, 2023. The 2023 ATHENA recipient will be honored at the Conference + Expo on 4/20/23.

2022 ATHENA Recipient

40 Women2Women | Winter 2023
Christi Terefenko



Terri Hill is the owner of Two Hills Consulting, which works with women to become “unstuck” in their life and careers. Terri is passionate about being a problem solver and connecting her clients to their dreams.... whether it’s a new home, vacation home or change to their life. She wants to help people live their best lives in the happiest of places.

Her other passion is giving back to the community. She is active in Rotary on both a club level and district level. And one of the most rewarding programs she’s involved with is Camp Neidig. This camp works with high school students going into their senior year to help them build leadership skills and ethics.

She has developed an educational series for separated and divorced women entitled Bridge 2 Better. Women from various professions present sessions that cover everything from Budgeting to Financial Planning; Home Buying; Career Transition; Navigating Divorce, Custody and Alimony; Managing Stress and Communication Skills. She is also the co-creator of the Emerging Entrepreneurs Academy which introduces high school students to the experience of business ownership.

Paula Barrett is recently retired as a Partner in RKL LLP’s Business Consulting Services Group as of the end of 2022.

As a leader in RKL’s Business Consulting Services Group in the Wyomissing Office, she worked with a highly regarded group of business consultants specializing in practice areas including business valuation, litigation support, fraud/ forensic accounting, mergers/acquisitions and operational consulting. During her 33-year tenure, RKL’s Business Consulting Services Group has emerged as the region’s most credentialed and experienced consulting practice. She enjoyed helping her clients transition through various stages of their business ownership, from start-up to emerging growth to exit strategy planning.

She is also an active community leader, serving on the Board of Trustees at Alvernia University, Past Chair of the Finance Committee and a Past Member of the advisory board for Berks Catholic High School, a founding member of the Women2Women Initiative of the Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce & Industry and a past member of the program committee, a past trustee of the University of Scranton and a past chair of Penn State-Berks Advisory Board


Crystal Gilmore Harris is the Social Services Administrative Assistant at the Reading School District, working closely with the Director of Social Services Wynton Butler. She is also Head Coach of the Reading High School Cheerleaders who double up as Girl Scouts troop #1353. This keeps her busy as a mentor for approximately 70 girls in grades 9-12 and has been since 2008. In 2016 she founded the “Finding Me Mentoring Program” which invites various women community leaders to a round table discussion about careers for the cheerleading squad and other sporting teams at Reading High School. Crystal is a member of various civic and service organizations dedicated to the betterment of Reading. The organizations include, but are not limited to, TLC Fore Reading, Kids That Ball, Inc., Blacktop Basketball, Inc., Reading Youth Athletics League, Voice UP and Girl Scouts of Eastern Pennsylvania. Crystal has received the Girl Scout Take the Lead 2013, and Athena Leadership Award 2020.

Mary L. “Missy” Orlando, MBA, PhD Candidate, is a well-known strategist, community development, and marketing leader throughout the financial services and non-profit healthcare industries. Over her career, Orlando has served in key leadership C-suite roles: At Malvern National Bank as its SVP and Chief Operating Officer and EVP and Chief Marketing & Sales Officer; At Sovereign Bancorp, as EVP, Chief Marketing Officer; as President & COO of The Anderson Group; Senior Director of the Penn State Health St. Joseph Foundation/Office of Development; and today serves as Alvernia University’s Executive Director for Business & Partnership Development.

berkswomen2women.com 41
Continued on page 42

Trish Doll is owner of Publicity Works, a 33-yr award-winning, energetic, MarketingPR ad agency representing a diverse local, national, and international roster of clientele. Trish is known for her PR-savvy marketing, positive tenacity, and humanitarian spirit. Honored by Forbes and USA Today and featured in PR Week, her extensive philanthropic commitment and creative initiatives have earned her the allegiance and nationwide reputation of major organizations. A Shining Star active Chamber member since 1992, she served on the Women in Business Committee Task Force launch in 1993, and helped to propose its vision to the Board. A 1996 ATHENA Leadership Award recipient, Trish was sanctioned by Martha Mertz as ATHENA International’s State Ambassador 2010-2016 and now as their Global Ambassador since 2016.

Sandy Graffius was owner of Graffius Burial Vaults from 1981 – 2003. Her husband died suddenly at the age of 44 and she took over as President. At that time a femaleowned manufacturing facility was a rare occurrence. She turned the family business over to her daughter in 2003 when she ran for and was elected Controller for the County of Berks. Moving from a small family-owned business to a huge corporate culture was a learning experience with many humorous memories.


Joelle Terranova

Joelle, CEO - Get House Ready, was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA and is an accomplished speaker, author and motivator. Noted for her career and innovative thinking when it comes to real estate and thinking outside the box, Joelle’s true love can clearly be seen when she is speaking to women entrepreneurs and helping them to be the best version of themselves. Simply put, we are better together!

Joelle has been in the credit and real estate industries combined for the last 15 years. She is an Experienced Realtor that helps bad credit buyers. She assembled the team when she realized people needed a knowledgeable solution for eliminating the obstacles that stand in a client’s way of getting a preapproval. She wants her customers to get the best service and be 100% comfortable throughout the entire process. To do that, she brought the best in the business under one roof! Simply put she is a Realtor for those with bad credit.

Cory Dahlia Varona Corniel and Nicol Varona Cancelmo

When sisters Cory Dahlia Varona Corniel and Nicol Varona Cancelmo were growing up in the Dominican Republic, they were taught that their natural curly hair was considered messy and unprofessional. It wasn’t until they moved to the United States that they learned to truly embrace their natural beauty and curls. Today the sisters are entrepreneurs, or “sister-preneurs,” who have launched DN OrganicsTM, a natural hair care line created to empower women. Their mission is to honor curly women in their real, most raw, authentic self to help them transform their life and claim the confidence in their natural beauty.

Giannina Reyes is a Licensed Professional counselor in the state of PA, mother of 5 and married for almost 12 years. Giannina’s goal is to create a safe space in which mental health can be addressed in a holistic way. Giannina loves to empower other women to follow their dreams and prioritize their mental health.

Giannina is the founder and CEO of New Beginnings Counseling Services. Giannina has been working in the mental health field for 14 years, starting out as a TSS worker and later working at a community agency as an outpatient mental health counselor. Giannina moved to US in 2005 due to financial issues after our father died of cancer. Obtained an associates degree from RACC while doing hard labor at local factories. In 2011 Giannina obtained her bachelors degree from Alvernia University, graduating Summa Cum Laude. In 2016 Giannina Graduated from Messiah College with a Masters Degree in Mental Health Counseling. In 2018 Giannina began to work in private practice and in 2020 Giannina opened her own practice, New Beginnings Counseling Services. As the owner of New Beginnings Counseling services she has worked on increasing awareness about mental health in the community and has helped over 100 individuals and their families address their mental health concerns. Giannina’s specialty is trauma, working with individuals that are dealing with anxiety, depression or relationship concerns. Giannina mainly works with young adults, adolescents, adults and couples.

42 Women2Women | Winter 2023 ON THE CALENDAR
berkswomen2women.com 43 Congratulations AMY KLATT Chief Marketing Officer Grow Your Business in Berks! Restoring Passenger Rail Service to Berks General Elections 2022: What You Need to Know VETERAN SERVICES UPDATES Keeping You Connected Berks County, PA, Government News & Services For Advertising, Contact Tracy@Hoffpubs.com HoffmannPublishing.com • 610.685.0914x201 NEW INAUGURAL ISSUE! Reach 75% of All Berks County Adults… Advertise in Berks 1st Magazine Berks County’s Official Government Services Magazine Sharing news about constituent services, events and timely and trending topics surrounding county services that impact every Berks County resident. Berks 1st will be mailed directly to 87,646 households (60% to 70% of every household within many municipalities), and into another 300+ high-traffic locations.

I will travel more!

Manifesting with Mimosas

Vision Boarding Your Goals!

What are your goals for your future? What are you working towards? What words embody how you feel about your progress and success? Creating a vision board is a great first step to helping you find the answers to these questions. It is a visual way to MANIFEST your goals.

When your vision board is complete, you will be looking at a visual representation of areas and ways you’d like to grow personally and professionally. Your vision board will have photos and keywords that highlight what matters to you, what you want to matter to you in the future, and offer reminders on how you can work towards those goals. Your vision board should AMP YOU UP when you look at it!

Over the last few years, manifestation as self-care has become popular due to books like The Secret and The Law of Attraction Many people claim that just by manifesting their goals, wants or needs, they have achieved it! Naysayers say that manifesting is just a way to wish your worries away. BUT, did you know there is science behind why manifesting is helpful to accomplishing your goals?

Research by Dr. Carol Dweck, psychologist at Stanford University, shows that believing you can do something makes it more likely that you’ll successfully do it. That means that if we

truly believe we can achieve something, we are willing to do the hard work to achieve it.

Research also shows that if we’re already feeling bad, we’re more likely to interpret neutral circumstances in a negative way. Dr. Barbara Fredrickson, professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s, research has shown that positive emotions enable us to think more creatively. Similarly, Dr. Sonja Lyubomirsky, professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of California and author of The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want, has shown that happiness leads to success and not the other way around. People who are generally happy and positive attract more opportunities, have better relationships, and seem to be able to manifest what they set their minds to more easily.

But creating a vision board, and hoping things change, will never work. You have to follow your vision board goals by taking ACTIONS to make them reality. When you’re feeling stuck, or need a reminder about how amazing you are…take a look at that vision board and remember that you can do anything!

Oh yea … and mimosas will be flowing as fast as your creativity. Join us!

44 Women2Women | Winter 2023 FEATURE
I will grow my business!
I will use my voice! I will be more confident! Manifesting with Mimosas –Vision Boarding Your Goals!* DATE: Thursday, March 30, 2023 TIME: 4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. VENUE: Chamber’s Center for Business Excellence PRICE: $20/GRCA Member | $30/Future Member *All supplies will be provided but please feel free to bring your favorite magazines to share! I will teach my kids about community service! 2
Senior Director of Events & Special Programs Greater
Alliance, W2W Magazine
berkswomen2women.com 45
By Rachael Romig,
Reading Chamber
46 Women2Women | Winter 2023 do it  Battery booster cables  Windshield wiper fluid  Ice scraper  Portable shovel  Bag of sand or cat litter  Flashlight and backup batteries for that flashlight  Roadside triangles  Tow rope Winter Weather Car Survival Kit  Fix-a-flat  Basic first-aid kit  Cell phone charger  Necessary medications  Water and long-lasting food like granola or protein bars  Hand warmers  Hat, boots and gloves  Blanket We have all heard horror stories of people stuck on highways or turnpikes for hours, sometimes days, due to winter weather combined with accidents. The road just shuts down and people are left stranded in their cars in frigid temperatures. Nightmare scenario, right? The first thing you can do to ensure you are safe and comfortable if this happens to you is to add some items to your trunk: Additionally, you may need to turn off your car to save gas or to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning if your tailpipe becomes blocked. Turns out if you keep a small metal can, a candle and a lighter in your car, you could be much more likely to stay warm with this candle-powered heater. 2

Family is foundational, and having a perfect home for your family means everything. Having Peter Heim by your side to help you navigate through the multiple steps of buying or selling is key. Born and raised in Berks county, Peter is an award-winning Real Estate Broker with more than 35 years of experience.

A family man, Peter has been married to his wife Michele for more than 30 years. They have seven children and two grandchildren. Pete and his family are involved with many Berks County organizations.

This seasoned professional brings his hardworking yet fun personality to every interaction. Now Peter is proud to welcome his son Christopher onto his real estate team. Chris brings his unbridled enthusiasm, on-line savvy, and banking experience to the team. Let the Heim Team do the best job for you!

Peter specializes in customer service.

Whether listing or selling residential or commercial real estate, Peter is dedicated to helping his clients. His personal attention to every aspect of the business has garnered him more than 200 five-out-of-five Gold Star independent reviews.

“I have personally known Pete for close to two decades, and he is one of most conscientious, caring and outgoing people I know. He truly cares about his clients, and works harder than any other realtor I know. I highly recommend that you work with Pete.” – Dave R

“Pete is attentive to every detail. He made a hard journey of selling my mom’s house easier not just because he is a skilled realtor but in how much he cares about the story and people behind the sale.” – Cathleen P.

“Always a great experience working with Pete and now his son Chris as well.” – Michael S.

Peter K. Heim, CRS, GRI Associate-Broker

office: 610-898-1441 cell: 610-745-3378 email: pheim@kw.com www.peterheimrealtor.com

berkswomen2women.com 47
“Now more than ever HOME is important!”
Peter K. Heim, CRS, GRI Christopher Heim