Southern Maryland Woman magazine - September/October 2019

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September/October 2019


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Life in Southern Maryland

Exploring Empathy and Intersectionality

A Community Publication Proudly Inspiring, Educating & Connecting Southern Maryland Women Since 2007 PHOTO BY BETH GRAEME

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A Community Publication Proudly Inspiring, Educating & Connecting Oda Solms-Baruth Southern Maryland Women Since 2007.

Melissa Solms-Baruth

Copy Editor R.Publisher Caren Bitar Oda Solms


Editorial Assistant Feature Writer Rachel Lytle Jennifer Reginald

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ON THE COVER ber 2019 ber/Octo Septem


all our F Plan Yway ncy Geta t Rege Hyat to the eake Bay Chesap sort, Golf Red Marina an Spa





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un A Commn Proudly tio Publica , Educating Inspiringnnecting & Co Maryland Southernen Since Wom 07 20 O BY PHOT


Photography Photography Irving Beth Harris, Irving Harris Photography Graeme, Steve and Jane Pilkerton, Contributing Writers SOUTHERN MARYLAND WOMAN, LLC Crystal Brandt P.O. Box 1656 • Leonardtown, MD 20650 Rachel Lytle(301) 475-2680 (301) 904-3366 • Fax: Marie Keller Sales & Marketing Megan Vereb,

The Woman’s Journal newspaper is published bimonthly and is available free of charge, by subscription, display stands in approved private and public establishments and authorized distributors only. Trademark laws and U.S. copyright laws protect The Women’s Journal. No part of this paper may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. The Women’s Journal is not responsible for any Distribution editorial comment (other than its own), typographical errors from advertisements submitted as camera ready or any reproductions of Christian advertisements submitted as camera ready. If an advertisement doesSolms not meet our standards of acceptance, we may revise or cancel it Ever wonder what it’s like to at any time, whether or not it has been already acknowledged and/or previously published. The advertiser assumes sole responsibility Carlisa Kent be president of a National for all statements contained in submitted copy and will protect and indemnify The Women’s Journal, its owners, publishers, and employees, against any and all liability, loss or expense arising out of claims for libel, unfair trade names, patents, copyrights and proprietary Public Honors College? We rights, and all violations of the right of privacy or other violations resulting from the publication by this newspaper for its advertising copy. Publisher shall be underEvery no liability failure, for any reason, to insert an advertisement. Publisher shall not be liable by any sat down with local leader issue for produced in loving memory of Melissa Solms-Baruth reason of error, omission and/or failure to insert any part of an advertisement. Publisher will not be liable for delay or failure in perforDr. Tuajuanda Jordan to discuss mance in publication or distribution if all or any portion of an issue is delayed or suspended for any reason. The publisher will exercise SOUTHERN MARYLAND WOMAN and will make adjustments for the MAGAZINE advertiser where and when appropriate. The Women’s her first five years as President reasonable judgement in these instances Journal assumes no responsibility for unsolicited material or reproductionsMD made by advertisers. This newspaper will be published PO Box 1656,Leonardtown, 20650 at St. Mary’s College. Find out by the 5th day of every other month. Representations by The Women’s Journal, copyright 2011. TM Publication of advertising contained artwork from, and 301.904.3366 about the changes she’s made here does not necessarily constitute endorsement. Photos and

while leading forward-thinking programs, improving diversity measures, and what she envisions for the future.


Woman magazine is published bimonthly and is available free of charge, by mail, display stands in approved private and public establishments. Trademark laws and U.S. copyright laws protect Woman magazine. No part of this paper

Page 13: LGBTQ+ Life in Southern Maryland Page 21: Fall Fashion Trends Page 30: Getaway to Hyatt Chesapeake Bay

may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. This publication is published by the 15th day of

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S e p t e m b e r / O c t o b e r 2 0 1 9 |

Southern Maryland Roller Derby Girls Pictured (L-R) Jacki Taylor - Beelzebruise, Tammy DePhillip - Buffy Shovers, Christina Simpson - Princess Sleia, Rachel Harris - Rach Against the Machine, and Letitia Clem-McClanahan - Rhapsody N. Bruise. Page 18

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4/19/2019 3:43:34 PM

health&wellness By Deborah Duley, MSW, LMSW

Who Do You Think You Are? No, Really… Do you have a good sense of who you are as a person? I’m sure you know who you are as a parent, or girlfriend, employee and neighbor. But do you really know yourself in an intimate way? I think one of the intimidating worries about coming to therapy is that your therapist is going to try to change you. Or, you worry that you’ll have to completely change in order to feel better. Yes, some of this is true, but in reality, we’re not here to change you, rather to figure out who you really are and magnify the heck out of that! Our therapeutic approach is really about revealing your true essence, which has been buried by all the years of hurt, negative messages, self-doubt, and self-criticism. To deal with all of that crap you’ve been wading through your whole life, you have probably developed



IS OUR STORY! Empowered Connections is excited to announce their 2nd location, now in Dunkirk to offer more care and support for our community

some pretty negative coping skills and thought patterns. That’s where we come in! I’m curious if you recognize yourself doing some of these thought patterns to deal with the crazy around you: 1. Black or white thinking: You think that either you must be perfect, or you suck. You tend to think that either your life is wonderful or it’s the worst. You’re an either/or gal! 2. Catastrophizing: This is a popular one! Do you automatically go right down the rabbit hole (hey, Alice!) whenever anything bad happens? For example, your boss doesn’t say hi to you in the morning with her usual smile, so you automatically think, “oh dang, I’m so fired, I don’t know why I thought I could

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S e p t e m b e r / O c t o b e r 2 0 1 9 |

do this job, now I’m going to be humiliated and embarrassed and how the hell am I going to be able to pay my car payment next week???” Yeah. You know who you are… 3. Personalization: This is when you think anything that happens around you is directly because of you. The cashier at Giant that was rude to you? That’s because she thinks you’re a selfish jerk because you didn’t bring your bags with you. Or that fight at the holiday dinner at your sisterin-law’s? That’s because you didn’t see it coming and redirect the conversation before it headed south. You’re always comparing yourself to everyone around and looking for evidence that you don’t measure up. 4. Minimization: My personal favorite! This is when you basically minimize anything positive people say to you. Your bestie compliments your dress and you immediately say, “This thing? I look like a potato sack in it.” Or, your partner tells you how great dinner was, and you respond with, “At least I didn’t burn it!” Always deflecting any compliments from others – or worse – talking yourself out of any positive thoughts you have is what this little ditty is and it’s a rotten one. I’ve listed these examples to show you that we all develop these kinds of thought patterns over the years to help us manage what’s happening to us and around us. Figuring out what specific tools, patterns, and habits you’ve taken on is the first step in peeling back the layers to seeing the real YOU – the girl that you remember who loved swinging on the swings, hiking to the creek at your grandma’s, making homemade cards, and taking in the sunsets. Spend five minutes right now and jot down all the things you used to do, used to be, and used to love that you can remember

growing up. This is the woman you are now! You have just fallen out of touch with her, but part of your therapist’s job is to get you reacquainted – reacquainted to the you who used to be open and trusting, who was excited about life, who loved taking chances! Let’s find YOU again! We’re super skilled at seeing YOU, hearing YOU, appreciating YOU, and reminding YOU that you don’t need to change who you really are! We just have to figure out what you’ve been using as a mask and shield for protection. Our therapists can begin rewiring your brain and your habits to settle into the fabulous bad ass person you’ve always been! We got you. Schedule online to begin getting back to YOU at client-portal.

Empowered Connections was founded in 2013 by Deborah Duley, MSW, LMSW, with a rebellious spirit and a big dream of connecting women and girls everywhere through specialized mental health therapy. We believe in connection, in the strength of women, that family (whatever that looks like for you) is our priority, in offering excellent customer service and that having the freedom to live the life we love, is paramount to everything else. We strongly believe that women need connection to heal and that where you have been, so have we. Where your story is our story! We believe that women are the future and that we have the power to change the world! We believe in the ripple effect of this change and are striving every day to help women and girls discover and empower their inner badass! Check us out at or call us at 301-690-0779 ext. 700.

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he Brem Foundation helps women find breast cancer early, when they have the best chance for survival. More than 95% of women diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer survive and thrive! The Brem Foundation educates women about their risk factors and screening options, provides access to diagnostic tests for uninsured women, and funds the only breast-imaging training program that requires community service. This winning approach will beat breast cancer! The Brem Foundation is inspired by Dr. Rachel Brem’s mission and life story. As the Director of the Breast Imaging and Intervention Center and the Program Leader for Breast Cancer at the George Washington Cancer Center, Dr. Brem works everyday to prevent breast cancer from taking more lives. Come and meet Dr. Brem and hear her incredible personal story at the “Brunch & Brem” event on November 3rd. “Brunch and Brem” is an annual event in Southern Maryland hosted by the Brem Foundation. The purpose of the event is to raise awareness, educate the community, and fundraise for this important cause. • Awareness and Education: A major goal of this event is to raise every woman’s expectation for quality care by informing



Join Dr. Brem for brunch and a discussion on the latest technologies for early detection of breast cancer.

Sunday, November 3rd, 2019, 12:30 – 2:30 The Hall at Huntingtown 4030 Old Town Rd Huntingtown, MD 20639 Questions and RSVPs, please contact women of Dr. Brem’s protocols for quality and compassionate care. • Fundraising: The Brem Foundation model for fundraising is unique. The event is FREE because we don’t want to discourage any woman from attending due to finances. The information that Dr. Brem gives us is so important to every woman that awareness and education are what drives the foundation.

• You have the right to have your mammogram read by doctors who spend the majority of their time reading mammograms. • You have the right to additional screenings (including 3-D mammograms) if you have dense breast tissue. • You have the right to see a physician


KNOW? • Breast Cancer is 95% curable when caught early • 3 in 4 women with breast cancer have no family history • The #1 risk factor for breast cancer is being a woman

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within two days after a mass is detected. • You have the right to a non-surgical, needle breast biopsy. • You have the right to fast biopsy results, usually within five days. • You have the right to an MRI or breast-specific gamma imaging (BSGI) if you are a newly diagnosed breast cancer patient. • You have the right to advocate for yourself, because you know yourself better than anyone else.

S e p t e m b e r / O c t o b e r 2 0 1 9 |

• Breast Cancer genes can be passed from either parent (mother or father) • A mammogram is just one of the many screening options, such as ultrasound, MRI, tomosynthesis, and molecular breast imaging The Brem Foundation needs YOU to bring us closer to a world where more moms, sisters, friends, daughters, and wives get to be with their families for long, healthy years.

health&wellness Presented by Karl Smith, DDS, MS

Is Tooth and Gum Health Really THAT Important? Researchers have long identified links between periodontal (gum) infections and other major diseases throughout the body. Current studies have identified the strong link between gum disease and cardiovascular disease along with a host of other body illnesses. Much of today’s research suggests that gum disease may be a more serious risk factor for heart disease than high blood pressure (hypertension), smoking, high cholesterol, high blood sugar, gender, and age. Studies suggest that people who have gingivitis or periodontal (gum) bacteria trapped

underneath their gums seem to be at a higher risk for heart attacks. The evidence is becoming clearer every day that the level of your oral health affects your overall body health in the same way. When bacteria are present underneath the gums, they are typically painless and are of little concern as they cannot be felt but they can often quietly come loose and move throughout the body. These same bacteria irritate your gums and can travel to your arteries, and your body’s organs through the bloodstream. Researchers are unsure exactly what causes the bacteria to become mobile, but it has been

suggested that it can be dislodged during tasks as simple as brushing, flossing or even chewing. Your risk of developing cardiovascular disease varies according to the severity of gum infection. Infected gums bleed to flush out the bacteria, thus making it easier for bacteria to enter your bloodstream. If bacteria reach the arteries, they can irritate them in the same way that they irritate gum tissue. This could cause arterial plaque to accumulate, which can cause hardening of the arteries and decreased or blocked blood flow. Compromised blood flow to your heart can cause a heart attack. Arterial plaque can also come loose and travel to other parts of the body. If a blockage occurs in the brain, it can cause a stroke. New research shows links between periodontal health, diabetic health, and the risk factors for developing diabetes. Diabetic patients should take extra care to ensure that their gums are totally healthy. Gum diseases are infections that should always be taken seriously. Since gum disease often shows few or no symptoms at all, watch for gums that are red and irritated or bleed easily as a first warning sign. There are many new treatments available to control and to help reverse gum disease. Brushing and flossing regularly to remove plaque you

can’t see below the gumline is important, as well as to schedule regular checkups with your periodontist. It is highly suggested that an evaluation by a periodontist should be recommended to anyone over the age of 35. This exam will not only identify periodontal disease but will find factors that put you at risk for future disease and other health related issues. Just like a colonoscopy or mammogram, a periodontal examination should be a part of your preventive health routine. Call today to schedule a visit – you’ll be glad you did.

Dr. Karl Smith has been in dental practice for more than 34 years. He received his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1981 and immediately entered General Practice in the US Air Force Dental Corps. He successfully completed three additional years of advanced education in the specialty of Periodontics with additional training in IV Sedation and Dental Implants in 1992, at the University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio and Wilford Hall USAF Medical Center. He won the John Pritchard Prize for outstanding research which included looking for a vaccine against bacteria that cause periodontal disease. Dr. Smith completed a Master of Business Administration degree with a Certificate in Health Services Management while working full time as a Periodontist.

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Is it a complete lie to say, “Times are good”? In comparison with the past 50 to 100 years of LGBTQ+ life and now, yes – there have definitely been some major, positive changes. This claim might be true for some incredibly lucky people, however, it may make more sense to recognize “times are good” as a twisting of the truth.

Annie, 35, shared her experience as a lesbian woman in an interracial relationship in SOMD, saying, “I live in a small town. The looks we get are somewhat tolerable, but the behavior is not. [I was once] pulled over for a minor speeding ticket and we were forced to exit the vehicle separately. I held our 11-month-old child in my arms on the side of the road while the police questioned us for 20 minutes. The verdict? A ticket for going nine miles over the speed limit.”

First, let’s break down the acronym LGBTQ+. When I write LGBTQ+ life, I’m referring to life as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and/or queer person. The “+” refers to the vast array of other sexual identities. This is the accepted and inclusive way to refer to the queer community, who can be grouped by one common theme: the fact that they don’t identify as straight and/or cisgender. In preparation for this article, I spoke with a range of LGBTQ+ folk, ranging from ages 18 to 58, about their experiences as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, while simultaneously being a member of the Southern Maryland community. Each interview, in some way, connected with the idea that empathy is a necessary and an important topic the Southern Maryland community is lacking.

Similarly, Jennifer Platts, 30, explained a typical interaction when out in the community with her partner. “I still feel uncomfortable in some spaces even holding my partner’s hand. I think this is a very conservative area in a lot of ways and while I haven’t been openly discriminated against, I definitely notice a lot of glares and funny looks from people.”

September/October 2019 |


The Merriam-Webster Dictionary explains the word “empathy” to mean, “the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner.”

Let’s unpack that definition To empathize with someone is different from expressing your condolences or well wishes for them. Instead, empathizing is taking a necessary step to experience their stories from their perspectives. It’s more than just wearing someone else’s shoes – it’s like wearing someone else’s shoes inside of their home, with your mind astral projecting into their brain so you can see out of their eyes.

“We need better communication and understanding of not how our communities are different, but how we are alike and can


to make our communities even better.” Now, you might be asking, why is empathy-building where we need to focus? Shouldn’t we be making personal, political, and social change? Why are we reading dictionary definitions when the answers to all of our problems are out there, in the real world? And you’re right! We should be making personal, political, and social change, but how can we do that when our foundation is uneven? We will not be able to build a sustainable environment for LGBTQ+ folks in any society without a basic understanding of empathy and how our actions affect other people. An important connection to make between LGBTQ+ acceptance and empathy is understanding the intersectionalities every person has within all of their identities. The Oxford English Dictionary defines intersectionality as “the interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, and gender as they apply to a given individual or group, regarded as creating an overlapping and interdependent system of discrimination or disadvantage.” For example: I am white, but not only am I white, I am also a woman, and not only am I a white woman, I’m also queer, and the list goes on. There is not a single, acceptable way of life, but hundreds of thousands of realities and experiences that are valid and deserve recognition. There is still a great amount of fear, pain, and struggle within the younger population of the LGBTQ+ community. “I’ve heard people talk down to LGBTQ+ members while going out. Two people got into a full-on argument, yelling at each other over LGBTQ rights with one side saying they shouldn’t be allowed to stay in this country. That’s when I decided to stay closeted until I was older.” This is a quote from an anonymous individual, aged 18, when asked about their general experience as a young member of the LGBTQ+ community. Another anonymous participator, a nonbinary individual aged 20, explained, “Even though I do view myself not as one stagnant gender, it still sometimes hurts when people assume who I am because it makes me feel very much essentialized. It also is frustrating when I participate in masculine-type behaviors and people think I’m being rude, when really I’m just asserting myself as an individual.”


S e p t e m b e r / O c t o b e r 2 0 1 9 |

Annie, 35, and her family, standing together to celebrate Pride, acceptance, and love.

(continued next page)

(continued) Throughout the interviewing process, I asked each participant what they would like to see change and if they had any ideas for how to implement that change specifically within their own Southern Maryland community. Heidi Samuels, 54, suggested the idea of civic, political, and social groups specifically for LGBTQ+ folks, saying, “We need to create more civic groups like an LGBTQ recreation committee or political involvement groups. It would also be nice to see social groups with scheduled activities every other week like bowling, hiking, or just going to the movies.” Jilly, 20, suggested an open forum for the community to discuss inclusion and create a space for open communication. In addition, a 19-year-old anonymous participator expressed a specific interest between LGBTQ+ and faith-based organizations. “I would like to see more partnerships between local LGBTQ organizations and faith-based organizations, as well as more resources available for queer youth both inside and outside of schools.”

I also gave the space for contributors to address the SOMD community in an open and honest way. I asked them to

SHARE WHAT THEY WISH THEY COULD TELL PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT A PART OF THE LGBTQ+ COMMUNITY OR ARE WARY OR UNSURE OF REACHING OUT TO FOSTER NEW CONNECTIONS. David, 48, responded with the desire for a better partnership. “It sounds odd, but we see it every day – LGBTQ+ folks get treated a different way, discriminated against, and most people don’t know we can be fired simply for being us. We need better communication and understanding of not how our communities are different, but how we are alike and can work together to make our communities even better.” An anonymous participant, aged 58, replied in a similar fashion, saying, “We work, pay taxes, have kids, cook, do laundry, sleep, eat, and worry about the same things you do. The smaller minority of folks you see online or on TV do not represent most of us. And for those who are more flamboyant (which seems to be a turn off for some folks), so what? Let them be fabulous! Diversity is what makes us great.” Steve Tuttle, 42, added that his ideal society is one “where you don’t have to come out anymore, it’s just plain accepted.” This conversation of LGBTQ+ folk feeling accepted within their communities is one we hear about a lot. It is an

“Real change and acceptance come by connecting not only within our communities, but by reaching out with empathy to other communities we may not be a part of.”

important conversation yet can be a confusing one when you’re not sure how you, specifically, are connected to it. This is where our short introductions to empathy and understanding intersectionality come in. It would be so much easier if we all lived the same, cookiecutter lives. We would be able to relate when something went wrong for someone else because that same thing also went wrong for us. Our emotions and reactions would be the same, on the same level, and expressed in the same way. Except, that’s not living. One of the best things about being human is our intersectionalities, our personal experiences, our own, specific communities that we are a part of. But there is a way to make them better. Real change and acceptance come by connecting not only within our communities, but by reaching out with empathy to other communities we may not be a part of. We need to support each other, stand up for one another, and make a constant and continuous effort to put on each other’s shoes and astral project ourselves into each other’s realities.

“It is easy to think that the true north on your moral compass is in the same place as everyone else. However, your experiences are not universal. You cannot blame people for being born differently from you.” - Atlas, 20

“We are not all one thing! We are everything! LGBTQ are as diverse as society itself.” - Dr. Janna Chevon Thomspon, 39

“Our sexuality does not define us, but it is a crucial part of our identity.” - Jilly, 20

September/October 2019 |


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Kind of Blue and Gold SMCM’s President Jordan on her First Five Years at St. Mary’s By Crystal Brandt

There’s something about President Tuajuanda Jordan that makes you believe. It could be her voice: she speaks with the authority of a scientist and the lulling timbre of a poet. Maybe it’s the way she deliberately connects during conversation, listening and pausing before responding with grace and candor. It might be that she is as comfortable in the changing tide of college administration as she is changing lanes to pass slower cars on the highway. Perhaps it’s the smile when she shares her own determined curiosity and optimism about the past, present, and future of St. Mary’s College, The National Public Honors College at St. Mary’s City, MD, where she is at the helm. September/October 2019 |


SMW: Five years ago, you said that you would judge your success at SMCM by the duration of your tenure, enrollment, endowment, diversity, and evolved programming. What are your thoughts now? Jordan: I still believe in all of those things. I’ve made great progress with most of them, but I’m frustrated with the enrollment part. We’ve come a long way in figuring out what the problems are, and now it’s time to really be bold in how we think about the long-term and the stability of this institution. We’re not going to do that by taking baby steps and doing what everybody else is doing. Our Learning through Experiential and Applied Discovery (LEAD) curriculum is just one of the forward-thinking ideas that we are implementing as part of a foundational strategic plan to make us the college of choice. When you look at the national discourse, families are worried about being career-ready and finding jobs after college. With LEAD, we provide the necessary skills for that first job and a career. What sets us apart is that all of our students are on particular tracks related to their discipline. It is amazingly wonderful. When I got here, our accreditation was in jeopardy; we have since received reaffirmation of accreditation and implemented a system of assessment across all disciplines that will help the students — every one of them — and, in the long run, the faculty and staff, too, because it brings more order to the system and reduces stress. I’ve also worked hard to improve the financial stability of the College. Of all the public institutions in Maryland, only two do not belong to the University of Maryland system: St. Mary’s College and Morgan State. Because of our status as an independent public institution, our unique funding formula has sometimes kept us out of streams that everybody else was getting. And although it was initially important for our independence that we establish it this way, in the long term it was starting to hurt us. So, I went to Annapolis and worked to reset the formula, and it took an entire legislative session worth of lobbying to do that, to get them to vote and agree to renew our funding, but we did it. And that has helped with faculty and staff salaries and benefits. Before that, we didn’t get support from the state to cover raises, and we were not part of the conversation regarding tuition buy-down. We’ve also enhanced our development office to make sure that we have a stronger team with experienced leadership helping us identify sources of money to strengthen our endowment. We can’t depend on the state for that; we have to do it ourselves by giving back and engaging the support of philanthropists, alumni, and people who work here. SMW: St. Mary’s College is such an integral part of this community. How is that relationship for you? Jordan: We are public servants, which comes with a whole lot of responsibility that we must be willing to live up to by engaging with the community. That doesn’t mean that the community dictates our every move, but it does mean we must listen, that we have to be collaborative and helpful and that sometimes we take the lead and other times we are the support. We’ve consistently worked to do all of those things. As a cultural hub in Southern Maryland, we’ve also added more diverse cultural offerings, like the From Mozart to Monk concert and the Mulberry Music Festival - Act I. Of course, the River Concert Series has been a mainstay for more than 20 years, and we work hard to make sure there’s funding to support that. But there are other things that people want. I’ve reached out to community members who might not usually come here, to get them to see


S e p t e m b e r / O c t o b e r 2 0 1 9 |

themselves here. This past year we added an Interim Associate Vice President for Inclusive Diversity and Equity who put on programming throughout the spring semester about race relations in the county. We are supposed to be doing those things, and we are going to continue to work to reach out to all members of the Southern Maryland community. My final interview for this job was held in a public forum, and the first question from the audience was, “What is the college’s responsibility to the community?” The very first question! I answered that I couldn’t say exactly what it is that we’re supposed to be doing, but it has to be a partnership. From that question, I realized that the College probably didn’t have a very good relationship with the community, so my first year I had several meetings with area groups to try to get an understanding of their perception of the College. It’s definitely a work in progress, and I have been working to fix those things ever since. If someone asks me to do something around the community, and if I can get it in my schedule, I go. SMW: How do you reconcile the many contrasts in your life? You started your career in higher education as a scientist and professor working in a field dominated by white males. You’re now a biochemist at the helm of a liberal arts college. Your speeches often include references to literature and writers like James Baldwin and Rudyard Kipling. Jordan: I’ve been this way for a very long time. In high school, I was placed on a college-bound track with less than 10 African-Americans total on it. Because of that, people at school thought I was very smart. I learned right away that I had to speak two languages: one with my in-school friends, where I was nerdy, and another with my after-school friends, where I was cool. In graduate school, I had to speak two other languages: one during the day, in a lab with all white males, another at night when I tried not to be in a lab with all white males! That’s the way I figured out how to survive, to be able to speak multiple languages and try to blend into various settings. When I started as an assistant professor, I was the only AfricanAmerican female in the Chemistry Department. My twins were four years old, and a lot of the African-American females there would come to spend time with me and ask how I balanced my life. I told them that there is no such thing as balance, just a constant shifting and quick refocusing and putting your energy where the priority needs to go and be at that particular moment. I’m an introvert, so all of this blending in wears me out, and that’s why when I go home, I listen to jazz and get lost in the improvisations of the music. Listening to it helps to bring me closer to balance.

I am also an adrenaline junkie. I like to jump out of planes, take flying lessons, and drive fast cars fast. I used to like riding motorcycles. The adrenaline clears my head. When you’re driving fast, you can’t think about other stuff. In graduate school, I used to get frustrated in the lab so I would borrow a friend’s car, go out driving, and I’d come back with so much clarity. SMW: When you talk about higher education and what St. Mary’s offers, you often mention connection and problem-solving. What do those things mean to you, and why are they so important? Jordan: I get really frustrated when people say that they can’t do something. Of course you can do it! You may not be able to do it by yourself, but there is a solution to every problem. Maybe that’s why I became a biochemist: you ask questions, and it might seem really complicated initially, but if you really think about it and start to peel away the nonsense, and ask the right questions, you will get an answer. It may not be the answer you want, but it will direct your path. Growing up, we didn’t have books in our house. We had an old set of encyclopedias that my grandfather gave us, but other than that, there was nothing besides Jet and Ebony. A neighbor would take me to the public library, and I’d get a stack of books -biographies and autobiographies, mostly -- and read them in two weeks. Reading those kinds of things woke me up, taught me about differences in the world, and I thought that if a person can do that, then I should be able to do something, I need to do something, I can’t waste my life, even though I didn’t know exactly what it was that I would do. SMW: What makes a great leader? What’s it like being you? Jordan: A leader has to be able to see what no one else can and convince others to do what you think needs to happen. You have to make decisions in the best interest of the institution and for the students. Students always first. You also have to be willing to listen, to let everyone speak, and consider their perspectives. You have to be willing not to be right all the time, to explain your objections and have the hard conversations. You cannot wear your heart on your sleeve, though, because if you find yourself in a sea of sharks and they smell blood, you are dead. I think it’s essential to try to balance logic with humility and compassion and empathy. And you have to keep moving forward. You must believe that it’s okay if somebody else gets credit for the good and you take the bad. I also tell people to buy some Kevlar and have a sense of humor.

THE ST. MARY’S WAY Where people respect the natural environment and the tradition of tolerance which is the heritage of this place Where people cultivate a life-long quest for disciplined learning and creativity Where people take individual responsibility for their work and actions Where people foster relationships based upon mutual respect, honesty, integrity, and trust Where people are engaged in an ongoing dialogue that values differences and the unique contributions of others’ talents, backgrounds, customs, and world views Where people are committed to examining and shaping the functional, ethical values of our changing world Where people contribute to a spirit of caring and an ethic of service

SMW: What do we have to look forward to in the years ahead for St. Mary’s College? Jordan: You’re going to see us taking advantage of our place. Our school is going to become more diverse; we’re going to evolve and offer something that other liberal arts colleges in this state don’t have, and not arbitrarily, but because we are the best at it. We’re going to grow, not only in numbers but in stature, which will help our sustainability. Over the last couple of years, we’ve gotten more and more accolades, and I’m sitting on more and more boards at the national level. We will figure out how to tell our story in the best way and get the word out about this remarkable place that truly prepares students for the future. St. Mary’s can turn this corner, as we have many times over the last 179 years. Hold on, we’re coming, and with big force. We are coming, and you’re going to be surprised by what you see.

Dr. Tuajuanda Jordan, President St. Mary’s College of Maryland 47645 College Drive St. Mary’s City, MD, 20686-3001 Website: Facebook: @stmarysMD Instagram: @stmarysmd Twitter: @Pres_Jordan and @StMarysMD

September/October 2019 |




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Fallfashion trends


COZY KNITS (Casual Wear)

Nothing like being warm and cozy during the fall months. This fall season, switch up the chunky sweaters for a cozy poncho. I love ponchos because they provide the freedom to layer as much as needed. You may synch the waist for a little added glam or don’t if you prefer the extra comfort. Either way, you will be in trend.

Outfit: Poncho (Macy’s), Jeans (Fashion Nova), Floppy Hat and Boots (Forever 21), Purse (DSW), Boots (Forever 21)

5 trends


COLOR (Chic Wear)

Color dominated the 2019 fall fashion runways and I am excited for this trend. It is a great way to stand out, especially when everything usually shifts towards the darker end of the color scale during fall. Colors like, pink, saffron, blue, deep purple and mint green were the favorites. So, don’t be so quick to put those colorful summer favorites away just yet, and challenge yourself to incorporate them in your fall outfit/closet. Outfit: Leather Jacket (Macy’s), Turtleneck & Sunglasses (H&M), Skirt and Hat (Shein), Necklace (Express), Boots (Amazon Fashion)


This year, fun sleeves are in, so bring out those bell sleeves, puffy sleeves, ruffle sleeves and step out in style. Show your fashion personality with this trend and have fun with it. For warmth, add a leather jacket and you are ready for a fun night out. Outfit: Shirt (Shein), Jeans (Fashion Nova), Booties (Express)


Plaid is a classic style and a favorite within the fashion community. It is worth investing in a plaid item, as it will always be a trendy style for years to come. Best of all, plaids are super easy to style, simply add a fancy top, your best heels or boots and you are all set. Outfit: Jacket (Express), Blouse (Shein), Skirt (Forever 21), Shoes (

FALL FLORALS (Night Out) Let the fall florals bloom. How exciting is it that we get to wear florals during the fall months? If going with this trend, go for a darker floral item versus a brighter shade. Add a cozy cardigan and your favorite boots.

Quick and easy to style. Watch the compliments flow when you step out! Outfit: Dress (Boohoo), Cardigan (Forever 21), Boots (Amazon Fashion), Purse (DSW), Sunglasses (H&M)

Find Style By Nia V online at and on Instagram @StyleByNiaV

Women are the decision makers. Women impact



of all consumer purchasing, through their buying power and influence.* More specifically we make 85% of all household purchases and 87% of medical appointments for our families.



Women have a multiplier effect. Because women serve as primary caregivers for our children and our aging parents women make purchasing decisions on behalf of the people who live in their households, as well as for extended family and friends.*











SMW specifically designs and produces our publication for women age 35+. This influential age group is sometimes referred to as the sandwich generation, caring for their children and aging parents.




magazine IS SMART FOR YOUR BUSINESS four SMW distributes 17,000+ copies each issue, reaching 42,500 local women in St. Mary’s, Charles and Calvert Counties.

Over 70% of our full-page advertisers renew their advertising with us. In fact, we have advertisers that have been with us for 10+ years.

We offer multi-media marketing. All of our contributors’ articles are featured in both print and online. Digital presence is through both a dedicated link to each article and within the digital edition of the publication.


SMW features meaningful editorial content in every issue and we offer inspirational stories of local women doing great things in our community.


We are celebrating

12 years in 2019!


SMW hand-delivers copies to over 300 locations throughout SoMd. Our publications are strategically placed in grocery stores, retail shops, salons, spas, cafes, libraries, hospitals and waiting rooms across the region.

nine We encourage our advertisers to write editorials to complement their marketing. Content marketing, or editorials, are known to develop lasting relationships with your audience, improve brand awareness and recognition and create loyalty and trust with current customers and prospects.

Consistent marketing, both in print and online, positions your business as an expert in your industry. Call Megan Vereb, Sales & Marketing Director, today at 551-427-3646 or email to schedule an appointment to learn more. Visit us online at

law&finance By Attorney Victor Lembo, Estate Planning Attorney

How Long Does It Take to Probate an Estate? At some point in your life, you will likely be involved in the probate of an estate. You may be the personal representative for a loved one’s estate, or perhaps you are a legatee under someone’s last will and testament. Regardless of the reason for your involvement, you will undoubtedly have questions about the process and how long it takes. Most people leave behind an estate when they die and depending on how assets are titled determines the administration course. Probate is the legal process by which assets in a decedent’s sole name are identified, valued, and eventually distributed to the legal heirs or legatees of the estate. If the decedent leaves a valid will, the individual named as the personal representative handles overseeing the probate

process and the terms control how the assets are distributed. If the decedent died intestate, meaning without a will, someone typically petitions to become the executor and state intestate succession laws dictate the distribution. Every estate is unique, making the probate process different everywhere. Numerous factors affect the process, but the following are five steps that remain common for most estates: 1. Starting the probate process. The personal representative initiates the probate of the estate by filing a petition and the original last will and testament with the court. 2. Inventorying, securing, and valuing assets. The personal representative must complete an inventory of the decedent’s

assets, including both tangible and intangible. Those assets must also be secured and maintained throughout the process. 3. Notification of creditors and payment of claims. All potential creditors of the estate must be notified that probate is underway. Typically, publication is in a local newspaper of general circulation. 4. Prepare, file, and pay taxes. All estates are potentially subject to federal estate and gift taxes. In addition, some states, including Maryland, impose an estate tax and inheritance tax. All returns must be prepared and filed with both the state and federal government and any taxes paid. 5. Transfer of assets. Finally, assets are transferred to the intended beneficiaries or heirs. Given the many factors that can impact the probate process for a particular estate, it is impossible to know exactly how long it will take ahead of time. In Maryland, probating even a relatively modest and uncomplicated estate will take a minimum of seven to nine months due to creditor filing periods. Only once that window passes, accountings filed, and all

claims addressed can probate be concluded. If the estate included valuable and complex assets, or there is litigation, it can take several years. As there are always unknowns that can occur in the process and as court authority is needed for distribution, many people choose to include probate avoidance tools and strategies in their estate plan. SinclairProsser Law can assist with the estate administration and work through the probate process, regardless of the how long it takes.

Victor Lembo became interested in estates and trusts while helping his grandparents plan for their medical and financial needs. Victor received his Juris Doctor with a Concentration in Estate Planning from the University of Baltimore School of Law. He is admitted to the Court of Appeals of Maryland and the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. Victor was born in Washington, D.C. and is a lifelong Maryland resident. He currently lives in Millersville with his wife, daughter and son.

Estate Planning Seminar Waldorf: Tues, Sept. 10 10:00 – 11:30 a.m. (Continental Breakfast) Hilton Garden Inn Waldorf 10385 O’Donnell Place

Annapolis: Wed, Sept. 11 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. (Refreshments) Double Tree Hilton Annapolis 210 Holiday Court

Crofton: Thurs, Sept. 12 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. (Refreshments) Crofton Country Club 1691 Crofton Parkway

Huntingtown: Fri, Sept. 13 10:00-11:30 a.m. (Continental Breakfast) The Hall at Huntingtown 4030 Old Town Road

Bowie: Sat, Sept. 14 10:00 – 11:30 a.m. (Continental Breakfast) Comfort Inn US 50, US 301 @ MD 3

Visit for upcoming seminar dates and locations.

September/October 2019 |




12 & 10 th





Sep 12th: Community Bank of the Chesapeake Oct 10th: Career and Technology Academy Free for Chamber Members/$10 for Non-Members Relax at the end of your business day and network with other business professionals. Lite fare and beverages provided. Please register on our website.







Holiday Inn Solomons Conference Center & Marina Don’t miss this annual informative breakfast where the Calvert County Commissioners and Sheriff Evans are invited to share information about county issues that are important to Chamber members and the public. No walk-ins accommodated. Please register on our website. Cost: $37.







Rod ‘N’ Reel Resort SAVE THE DATE! Please visit our website for more details and to register. Register for all Chamber events at

“Life starts all over again when things get crisp in the fall.” 410-535-2577 CALVERTCHAMBER@CALVERTCHAMBER.ORG WWW.CALVERTCHAMBER.ORG

– F. Scott Fitzgerald

Thank You

More c Than Just a Wedding Venue c We Host Meetings & Parties Too! PHOTO BY JAX PHOTOGRAPHY






The Hall at Huntingtown is a warm and inviting local event venue conveniently located in Huntingtown, MD. Our professional management gives careful thought to every detail to make hosting your special event effortless. Whether you are planning a corporate retreat, holiday party, or wedding event, you and your guests will benefit from our facility’s personal touch. Schedule an appointment today to visit our beautiful venue! Contact Facilities Manager Carole Fonfara at or 410-535-4439.


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law&finance By Brooke O’Connell

Can I Get a Divorce in Maryland? You would think this is an easy question to answer, but it is not. Did you know that there are two types of divorce in Maryland? There is a limited divorce and an absolute divorce. There are subtle similarities, as well as distinct differences between the two. An absolute divorce terminates the marriage, terminates the right of survivorship for inheritance purposes, and allows the parties to remarry. On the other hand, a limited divorce is more of a legal separation on which the court has put its stamp of approval. A limited divorce cannot determine the division of marital assets, i.e., real and personal property. It can only address the issues of custody, child support, alimony, use and possession of the family home and family use personal property, and attorney’s fees. All other property issues must be resolved in an absolute divorce.

You may be wondering why someone who is looking to get divorced does not just file for an absolute divorce. Unfortunately, the answer is quite complex. In Maryland, to be legally entitled to a divorce, you must prove that you meet one or more statutory grounds for divorce. The grounds for a limited divorce include: • Cruelty of treatment or excessively vicious conduct to the complaining spouse or of a minor child of the complaining party • Desertion or voluntary separation, where the parties are living separately and there is no reasonable expectation of reconciliation. The grounds for an absolute divorce are slightly different. The court may grant an absolute divorce on the following grounds: • Adultery

FAMILY LAW FIRM The Law Office of Robert R. Castro

Smallwood Building 2670 Crain Highway, Suite 411 Waldorf, MD 20603 (301) 870-1200 Office (301) 705-6667 Fax Associates Jeffery M. Groce Brooke A. O’Connell Francis J. Granados Katrine H. Bakhtiary Serving Maryland and Washington, D.C. • Personal Injury • Family Law • Criminal Defense



S e p t e m b e r / O c t o b e r 2 0 1 9 |

• Desertion lasting for 12 months without interruption, it is deliberate, and there is no expectation of reconciliation. • Conviction of a felony or misdemeanor prior to the filing of the application for divorce, where the defendant has served 12 months or been sentenced to at least three years. • A 12-month separation, where the parties have lived separate and apart without cohabitation or without interruption before the filing of the application for divorce. • Insanity, if: the “insane” spouse has been confined in a mental institution, hospital, or other similar institution for at least three years before the filing of the application for divorce; the court determines from the testimony of at least two physicians that the insanity is incurable and there is no hope of recovery; and one of the parties has been a resident of Maryland for at least two years before the filing of the application for divorce. • Cruelty of treatment or excessively vicious conduct toward the complaining party or a minor child of the complaining party. • Mutual consent, if the parties execute and submit to the court a written settlement agreement signed by both parties that resolves all issues relating to alimony, distribution of property, and the care, custody, access and support of minor or dependent children. Notice that there are certain time requirements that must be satisfied in an absolute divorce that are absent from a limited divorce. Thus, to answer the question above, some people may file for a limited divorce rather than filing for an absolute divorce because they cannot meet the statutory time

requirements. But do not worry if the court only grants you a limited divorce—there is still an avenue to get an absolute divorce. Either party can file a supplemental complaint for absolute divorce when grounds for the absolute divorce become available. This means if at the time of the limited divorce you have only been separated for six months, then you must wait another six months before filing based upon the grounds of 12-month separation. Timing is everything. It is important to note that not all grounds for absolute divorce have time requirements. For example, if you can prove your spouse has committed adultery, then you can immediately file for an absolute divorce. Ultimately, getting a divorce in Maryland can be incredibly intricate and complex. If you are contemplating divorce, it is strongly encouraged that you consult with an attorney who can help you understand your options and your rights.

Brooke O’Connell is an associate attorney at The Law Office of Robert Castro and handles family law and personal injury cases. She is a life-long resident of Southern Maryland, and received her Juris Doctor from the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. While in law school Ms. O’Connell competed on the Alternative Dispute Resolution Team, winning first place at the International Academy of Dispute Resolution Northeastern Mediation Tournament in 2014. After graduating, Ms. O’Connell returned home and began a 2-year judicial clerkship with the Honorable Amy J. Bragunier, Administrative Judge for the Circuit Court for Charles County. Ms. O’Connell is a Member of the Maryland State Bar Association (MSBA), is the Charles County Circuit Representative for the Young Lawyers’ Section of the MSBA, is the At-Large Chair of the Charles County Bar Association, and is a Member of the American Inn of Court of Southern Maryland. In addition, she is a Member of the Society for the Restoration of Port Tobacco and donates her time as a Mock Trial Coach for local high school students.

The Best Groom’s Gift, Ever By Moni Jefferson

ridal boudoir is one of the hottest and trendiest gifts for today’s groom. This new trend of bridal portraits showcases images of bridesto-be that are beautiful, artistic and most importantly, super sexy! Bridal boudoir is all the rage because it offers the bride a chance to create images that will forever remind her hubby of the passion surrounding their engagement or wedding. What is Bridal Boudoir? Because it is such a recent trend, it can be difficult to fully understand the purpose of a bridal boudoir session and what all it entails. Each session begins with a consultation, discussion of session details to include props, jewelry, makeup and attire, as well as the session location. Images are shared during your session to ensure happiness and confidence of your results. The entire process usually takes about 4-6 weeks to ensure the best experience and a timely delivery. Bridal Boudoir Experience Attire for boudoir photos varies depending on the personal style of the bride, with a usual range of just a little lingerie to absolutely nothing at all. Bridal lingerie and the wedding veil are the most popular choices for most brides. But don’t get the wrong idea – this is NOT X-rated, it’s more like PG-13. The pros refer to it as ‘implied nudes,’ which means although you’re not wearing anything, you’re not really showing off anything either. Photographs are taken from many angles to both hide and highlight. By the time the session is over, the bride is more confident than ever. What Do I Do With the Photos? After your session and once you have the pictures, it’s time to gift them! Most brides choose a private, leather-bound box that contains a flat-laying album of approximately 20 images, while other options include matted single prints, a photo folio, or private wall art collections. Additional gift ideas include calendars and anniversary presents. All photographs that you love and order, also include a digital copy, so you can use the images for anything you wish. Giving the Gift The best part of the whole experience is actually giving him the gift. Groom reactions are so amazing because he has no idea what to expect, which makes the shock factor absolutely mind-blowing! The guys are always so surprised and happy to receive such a special, intimate gift from the love of their life. Give him a gift he’ll remember forever, captured at one of the best moments of both your lives.

Photo by Beth Graeme


To schedule a session with us in preparation of your special day, visit

Boudoir by Beth is a division of Beth Graeme Photography, LLC.

Groom Photographed by Catalina Devore Photography

ABOUT BETH GRAEME Why am I so passionate about boudoir? Because I saw an immediate transformation in the level of self-worth a woman had for herself after looking at the images on the back of my camera. Women relax, they are at ease, they feel beautiful, they know and trust that I care for them. They exude beauty, sensuality and sexy. It is my job to portray that and show them that which the rest of the world really sees. I get it, I’m a mother and wife. I give every ounce of my energy to everyone else. I want the same as you. To be loved, accepted, cherished, needed and supported. My kids did a number on my body, but my husband is just like your husband. He loves me to the core no matter what. Your husband loves you to the core too. Every once in a while, we need to feel that love for ourselves. I create a safe, nonjudgmental space for women to feel free and pursue their sexy side. Let’s show him your reverence.


Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa and Marina Fewer guests, more colorful nature and plenty to do for the entire family. The Family-Friendly Activities and Amenities. Reconnect with family, friends, and colleagues at the 342-acre waterfront resort near the Chesapeake Bay. Their AAA Four Diamond facilities include an 18-hole golf course, 150-slip marina, full-service spa, and countless ways to play in the sun. Explore Cambridge, Md, for both a rich history and a contemporary vibe. Hotel activities include Camp Hyatt for children, year-round indoor and seasonal outdoor pools with waterslide, water sports, tennis, basketball, beach volleyball, miniature golf, frisbee golf, horseshoes, the captain’s parlor game room and nature trails. Plus, numerous onsite indoor and outdoor dining options including the signature Blue Point Provision Company.


S e p t e m b e r / O c t o b e r 2 0 1 9 |

The Spa. The rise and flow of the tides have long impacted the livelihood of Maryland’s Eastern Shore, and Sago Spa & Salon, situated on the Choptank River, has managed to capture the bounty of this great land and deliver life, vitality, and nourishment to all spa guests. The rich ecosystems of the Eastern Shore region are the inspiration behind Sago Spa & Salon. The spa’s namesake, sago, is a strong underwater grass in the Chesapeake Bay that provides life and nourishment to the surrounding waters and its inhabitants. Treatments are rooted in natural, sea-based products, and they are known for their revitalizing and rejuvenating effects. Features include a steamroom and sauna, and an expanded modern salon complete with hair, make-up, and nail stations. Eco-friendly materials were used in the construction whenever possible, from the limestone reception desk to the salon’s recycled glass tile.

The Golf. The River Marsh Golf Club at Hyatt Chesapeake Bay is Maryland’s leading Eastern Shore golf course with two impressive finishing holes. The 17th is a par 3 that stretches 200 yards from the tips. Awaiting the bold player is a dramatic carry over Shoal Creek to a large putting surface guarded by three artfully crafted bunkers. The green is backdropped by majestic trees and a stunning vista of the broad Choptank River that flows into the Chesapeake Bay. As spectacular as the 17th is, it merely sets the table for the truly beautiful 18th. This classic risk/reward hole is reachable in two by big hitters. The Choptank River runs along the hole’s left side from tee to green, as does a vast coastal bunker that meanders into the wide fairway at the prime second-shot landing area. Stately oak trees sit along the right side of the fairway. With a Sunday pin placement just a few feet from the scenic river and tucked behind the greenside bunker, resort guests will get a chance to experience the thrill of playing one of the finest finishing holes in golf. Book directly at or call to schedule your tee time 410-901-6397.

Plan your trip by visiting the events page at to find many things to do while visiting Cambridge, Md.

Escape with a $200 Resort Credit

Ironman Maryland comes to town on September 28, Crabtoberfest on October 5 and Chesapeake Film Festival on October 5-10.

Through December 30, 2019, book your visit and enjoy a $200 resort credit per night off a two-night minimum stay. From relaxing treatments at the Sago Spa & Salon and fresh plates at the resort’s many dining venues,

Book Your Stay

Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf

to championship golf along the Choptank

Resort, Spa and Marina

River and Camp Hyatt for the kids, you’ll find

100 Heron Blvd. at Route 50

endless ways to enjoy all that the four-star

Cambridge, Md 21613

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410-901-1234 or

September/October 2019 |






so rees


Local events and community happenings for the women of Southern Maryland HVFD Wednesday Night Bingo

Women to Women Monthly Meetings

The Huntingtown Volunteer Fire Department & Rescue Squad (HVFD) presents Wednesday Night Bingo. Come out for some fun and prizes, and support your local fire department. HVFD Auxiliary Kitchen provides food and refreshments. For more information, visit

Women to Women (W2W) strives to educate our members on various business topics and provide opportunities to network in a relaxed professional environment. Our monthly meetings feature guest speakers, business spotlights and networking opportunities to assist all types of businesswomen with growing their business or professional network. We meet the second Wednesday of every month and hope you can join us!

Every Wednesday Huntingtown Volunteer Fire Dept. 4030 Old Town Road Huntingtown, MD Doors Open at 6 p.m. Early Bird Bingo at 7 p.m. Regular Bingo at 7:30 p.m.

Wednesdays September 11 & October 9 Visit for meeting location 12 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

2nd Annual Runner Dan Memorial 5K Run/Walk

25th Annual “When the Hammer Falls” Crab Feast

Daniel McPherson or Runner Dan as he was known to many, lost his battle to cancer in October of 2016. This is your chance to help provide even more vital medical technology for both UM Medical Center and UM Charles Regional Medical Center, as a portion of the proceeds from this event with directly benefit the hospitals’ foundations. To register, please visit waldorf-md/running/distance-running/runner-dan-memorial5k-2019.

Guests will enjoy their choice of platters or all-you-can-eat crabs while taking part in raffles and the infamous cake wheel. Children 5-12 will have their choice of kid’s meals and those under age 5 eat for FREE. As part of UM CRMC’s 80th Anniversary Celebration, community residents turning 80 this year (2019) can receive a complimentary event ticket when they make reservations for their family/friends to participate. A cake cutting at 5pm for all octogenarians will be the highlight of the festivities. Proceeds will support ongoing projects at the Medical Center to meet the growing needs of the community. Visit to purchase tickets.

Saturday September 28 Regency Furniture Stadium 11765 St Linus Drive Waldorf, MD Registration begins at 8 a.m.

Thursday October 17 Captain Billy’s Crab House 11495 Popes Creek Road Newburg, MD 2 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

BEGIN AGAIN Encounter Grace Conference

Brunch & Brem

Getting back to the basics of the faith so you can “begin again.” This conference is an opportunity for women of faith from all seasons of life to come together to make deep connections and create a strong community of faith-filled women who support and nurture one another. Ticket includes breakfast and lunch, keynote, Adoration and confession, two breakout sessions, vendor shopping, book signing opportunities and so much more. For more information, visit

The Brem Foundation helps women find breast cancer early, when they have the best chance for survival. Join Dr. Brem for brunch, and a discussion on the latest technologies for early detection of breast cancer. Genetic counselors will be available to answer personal questions and take swabs for testing. Questions and RSVPs, please contact This is a free event, but you must RSVP.

Saturday October 26 St. Mary’s Ryken High School 22500 Camp Calvert Road Leonardtown, MD 7:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Sunday November 3 The Hall at Huntingtown 4030 Old Town Road Huntingtown, MD 12:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Keep up with local events and community happenings at Looking to promote an upcoming event? Contact





OWNER, MERMAID’S COTTAGE SHARE WITH US THE HISTORY OF MERMAID’S COTTAGE! Maybe in another life I was a Mermaid! I have always loved the beach. I always have a shell in my pocket. My creativity and my quest to save the earth founded “The Mermaid’s Cottage”. Seven years ago, after a career change and seeing what I could do with discarded stuff, I rented a small room in a shop in Lothian, Maryland. Two years later I moved to a bigger location, Gypsy Faire, selling my custommade farmhouse tables, benches, islands, repurposed furniture and home goods. Then an even bigger explosion, Mermaid’s Cottage at The Shops at Ogdens Commons, where I could offer other vendors the same opportunity I had. It’s called destination shopping; being open one weekend a month and having the rest of the month to search, find, salvage, build, create, paint and offer for sale at the next opening.

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO OPEN MERMAID’S COTTAGE? Opportunity! I kept driving by the old Ogden’s store and seeing the “For Sale” sign. I mentioned buying it to Jeff, my partner, and of course he said “No it’s too old, you buy it!” – so I did! I love the old building; it’s unlevel floors, quirky corners, and real bead board walls. I love the fact that for over 100 years people have come and gathered on the front porch. I knew I could put life back into to her rundown appearance.



Longtime resident of Calvert County with a passion for “Saving the Earth”. In high school, my friend Patty Stennitt and I started Earth Day in Calvert County in 1971. I have always loved to create. I got a lot from both my parents; my mom was very creative and my dad taught me how to use the tools. I have been known to climb into a dumpster or stop on the side of the road for a piece of furniture that still had life in it. When I look at a piece of furniture I see the craftsmanship, I think of the memories it holds, and I look for what I can do to breath new life in it.

The community and getting to know our customers! We look forward to seeing everyone from month to month and hearing their stories of what they have created or where they have placed pieces they have purchased from us. I love the questions they bring in or the help they need to complete a project.



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WHAT IS ONE THING YOU WOULD LOVE THE COMMUNITY TO KNOW ABOUT YOU AND YOUR BUSINESS? It’s ever changing! What you see one month, most likely won’t be there next month. Each piece we save is handpicked, and a lot of love and thought goes into it. We can create just about anything. We keep a running list for pieces customers are looking for so when we are out searching, we can look for them. My daughter, Julie, holds paint classes every month and we sell Dixie Belle Paint products.

WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT THUS FAR? The bond that Mermaid’s Cottage has created with my family. I have two creative sisters (Chris and Peggy), a brother (John), and two fantastic daughters (Julie and Laurie) – they all help out in the shop, along with my partner (Jeff) who helps create some of my visions!

In each issue Southern Maryland Woman magazine recognizes a woman doing exceptional work in the community, a leader who is paving the way to changing our attitudes and inspiring confidence in the future. To nominate a champion to be featured in an upcoming issue e-mail:

WiSH Living & Learning Center, formed to support women in STEM, opened in 2006 and is the longest continually run LLC at St. Mary’s College.

Nine women centric or coed varsity sports, plus Ultimate Frisbee, Rugby, and Soccer women centric club sports teams.

Popular academic programs like Educational Studies, Psychology, Environmental Studies; and Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies.

When you choose St. Mary’s College honors-level education, you’re asking for something special: elevated academics, a pathway to a prosperous career, prestige without the pretentiousness, and professors who genuinely care about your success.

Learn more at 35

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