2015 Keynote Luncheon Speaker
Summer Paralympic Wheelchair Racer & Winter Paralympic Nordic Skier
2013 & 2014 Marathon Grand Slam Winner
Winning 11 Paralympic medals, 14 World medals, and 13 major marathons is no easy feat, especially when you are facing such an adversity like Tatyana McFadden. Tatyana was born with spina bifida, a hole in her spine, and spent the first six years of her life in a Russian orphanage. Being paralyzed from the waist down, having no wheelchair access, and learning to walk on her hands would lead her down a path that she could have never dreamed of… and she’s not done yet.
Opening Keynote Speaker
Mary Beall Adler
Mary Beall Adler is the award-winning founder and CEO of Georgetown Bagelry, a retail and wholesale bakery outside of Washington, D.C. that has been crafting artisan bagels “using our hands, head, and hearts” for more than twenty years. She is a wife, mother, philanthropist, truth seeker, and artist at heart, as well as a CCA-certified creativity coach and speaker focusing on communication, the power of community, and exercising creative potential. Aptly dubbed the “woman who walks the talk” by LatitudeNews.com, Mary represents the best leadership and passion her industry offers. In 2013, she was honored by Enterprising Women magazine as part of its effort to recognize North America’s finest female entrepreneurs. She earned her bachelor’s degree in English Literature from the University of Maryland and studied law at Antioch Law School for two years. Her inspirational memoir, Who Scooped My Bagel?: One Woman’s Story of Love, Loss and Success chronicles her struggle to overcome a tumultuous marriage and financial difficulty to establish a powerful small business and a nationally recognized brand.
Closing Keynote Speaker
Tracy Fitzsimmons, Ph.D.
Tracy Fitzsimmons, Ph.D., became Shenandoah University’s 16th president on July 1, 2008. She is the institution’s first female president since its founding in 1875 and one of the youngest university presidents in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As president of Shenandoah University, she leads an institution of 3,700 students, 250 full-time faculty and 475 staff at its 129-acre site in Winchester, Va., and campuses in Leesburg and Ashburn, Va. Her published research on democratization, civil society and gender in new civilian police forces has taken her across the world. Her undergraduate degree in politics is from Princeton University, magna cum laude, and her master’s and doctoral degrees are from Stanford University in, respectively, Latin American studies and political science. Fitzsimmons serves on several for-profit and not-for-profit boards and is the mother of three elementary-school children
Angela Inzerillo is an award-winning sales and marketing executive with more than 20 years of experience working with and for Fortune 500 companies. She and her husband James Lawson are Marketing Strategists and Co-founders of Impact Business Solutions LLC, a results-oriented consulting firm passionate about helping small business owners increase profits by overcoming challenges in sales, marketing, strategy and productivity.
Beth Perl Berman
Beth Berman brings 25+ years of diverse experience in Marketing, Sales, Business Development, Organizational Development, and “Marketing on a Shoestring” –plus a Marketing degree from the George Washington University – to her business Coaching and Consulting clients.
A frequent presenter at Executive Roundtables, Organizations, and Business Conferences, Beth is a Certified Know Your WHY / Compel-li-cations Coach (and she’ll explain what that all means).
In 2011, Beth launched and successfully marketed (INTENTIONALLY sans website to date), her consultancy, BPB Solutions, LLC — which is soon to be relaunched (WITH the website name: Compellications.com).
Beth is going to show you how to Compel the RIGHT people – Meaning the RIGHT Customers & Clients as well as the RIGHT Team Members – to Buy, Buy In, Buy More and REFER!
Bonnie Taylor loves growing businesses and working with people. It’s been her passion for over 20 years in a career that’s including managing international and national marketing departments as an in-house department leader, outside consultant, and business owner. Helping others achieve business growth is what led her to write, I Think I Need Marketing: the Knowledge You Need to Build and Manage a Successful Marketing Program. As the Chief Marketing Strategist and Owner of the Washington D.C. Metropolitan-based marketing firm, CCS Innovations®, she spends each day solving business puzzles and her clients’ challenges, sourcing skills earned throughout her experience-rich marketing career.
Cheryl Wood is an international keynote speaker, transformation coach, and author who empowers and equips women in business to courageously grow to their next level by taking risks and strategically monetizing their unique gifts. Cheryl authentically shares her story of transitioning from her corporate job as a legal secretary to operating a 6-figure business as a full-time entrepreneur in six short years. Her clients have included Verizon, Department of Defense, Federally Employed Women, National Association of Professional Women and Women’s Council of Realtors, to name a few. She has been featured on numerous media outlets including The Dr. Oz Show, Essence, Black Enterprise, Fox 5 News, Fox 45 News, Radio One, The Washington Informer and The Baltimore Times.
Christa owns BREAKAWAY Fitness a private personal training company with locations in Mclean and Fairfax. She is also the owner of BREAKAWAY Sport which is an elite strength and conditioning training facility for athletes ages 8 and up. She is a former Olympian on the Greek Olympic Softball Team and competed in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens Greece. Christa also played professional softball for the Washington Glory.
Prior to MindSpring, Christina Eanes spent over fifteen years in public service with Vacaville Police Department in California and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. During this time, she worked on a variety of programs including the FBI’s Violent Criminal Apprehension Program where she analyzed serial homicide and sexual assault cases in conjunction with state and local law enforcement officials, and the FBI’s Leadership Development Program where she led a team of government and contract facilitators with the mission to improve and shift the management culture in the Bureau. Christina holds a Masters in Criminal Justice and a Masters in Education. She is also certified as a Professional Co-Active Coach. In addition, Christina is President of the DC Chapter of the Association for Talent Development and former President of the Alexandria Chapter of the National Association of Professional Women.
Prior to MindSpring, Denise Minor spent over 28 years in public service as a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. During this time, she worked on a variety of cases involving violent crime, white collar crime, financial institution fraud, and public corruption. She represented the FBI in overseas counterterrorism investigations in Africa, Yemen, and Haiti. She also established and led the FBI’s Legal Attaché office as the LEGAT in Rabat, Morocco, and worked with other various foreign law enforcement agencies in Northern Africa.
Like you, Business owner and Marketing Anthropologist Danielle Renken has seen the word success defined numerous ways over the years. Danielle’s passion to support the potential in each business owner to succeed and develop right-size marketing strategies and techniques led to the emergence of Strategy Revolution. The fusion of her real-life experience, capability to define, identify and target your audience, and her tactical techniques connect with an audience at an intimate, intense and individual level. These real life skills combined with degrees in Social Sciences make her a true expert in target market and business growth.
Darnyelle is an award-winning speaker, author and business strategist. Her company Incredible One Enterprises, LLC grows business, period. Her clients experience 50-600% growth in 12 months or less leveraging her strategies.
Dr. Eileen O’Grady is certified Nurse Practitioner and Wellness Coach who uses an evidence-based approach with people to reverse or entirely prevent disease. She believes deeply that more attention must be paid to getting us unstuck from lifestyles that do not support wellness.
Gwenn Rosener and Ellen Grealish are two of the three co-founders of FlexProfessionals, LLC, a niche staffing and recruiting firm that matches companies looking for seasoned part-time employees to professionals looking for meaningful part-time work. FlexProfessionals launched in 2010 and has become a popular source of talent for start-ups, entrepreneurs and small businesses looking for cost-effective ways to support growth. They have worked with over 300 small businesses in the Washington DC area.
Ellen Grealish and Gwenn Rosener are two of the three co-founders of FlexProfessionals, LLC, a niche staffing and recruiting firm that matches companies looking for seasoned part-time employees to professionals looking for meaningful part-time work. FlexProfessionals launched in 2010 and has become a popular source of talent for start-ups, entrepreneurs and small businesses looking for cost-effective ways to support growth. They have worked with over 300 small businesses in the Washington DC area.
Erika Dickstein loves to break technology down and make it accessible to small business owners. Before starting her company, Erika spent over a decade working for large corporations in marketing and online product management. She started Spring Insight to prove that small businesses could create the same kind of strategic web presence as bigger businesses on a reasonable budget.
Hilary Tarkington Stowers
Hilary Tarkington Stowers is the founder of Holistic Health and Nutrition, a health counseling practice serving Northern Virginia. A member of The American Association of Drugless Practitioners, Hilary offers individual & family health and nutritional counseling. Hilary treats clients and helps them navigate through dietary challenges associated with a variety of diagnoses, her niche being Lyme disease.
If you’d lived in the DC Metro area, you’d recognize our speaker right away – from standing on street corners in the snow, to reporting on crime and politics (aren’t they the same thing?!) to interviewing lots of celebrities – even U.S. Presidents.
She’s a 4-Time Emmy Winner –working for CBS WUSA 9 NEWS for almost 20 years – now helping CEO’s Entrepreneurs and Sales Teams become BOLD Speakers.
Little known fact: She sent something LIVE in a box that snagged the Channel 9 job – be sure to ask.
Jennifer Brown is devoted to helping small business owners implement solutions to prevent Human Resources (HR) problems that can drain them of their time, money, and energy. Small business owners work with Jennifer to help them build stronger employee relationships, understand and comply with employment laws, establish strategies and policies, and set up easy-to-use HR systems to consistently avoid problems. As Founder and CEO of PeopleTactics, Jennifer uses her 25 years of HR experience to provide business owners and their teams with the HR resources and guidance they need to leverage their HR practices for success.
Jen Dalton, CEO of BrandMirror, has over 15 years of experience in strategy, marketing and coaching. In 2012, she made a gutsy move into the entrepreneurship space, launching her branding business and became a certified master personal branding strategist. She specializes in building your digital thought leadership on LinkedIn and other social media. She has spoken to and coached thousands of individuals and entrepreneurs about defining their brands, crafting their stories, and how to stand out. She is an international speaker and has worked with companies like GE, IBM, Capital One, 1776, C-Lever, and more. In addition, Jen joined the Executive Coaching team in 2014 at Georgetown University and works with their Executive MBA candidates. She believes you need to be a noise-breaker, not a noise-maker.
Jennifer Ransaw Smith
Jennifer Ransaw Smith has one purpose: To help executives, entrepreneurs and professionals “get known.” As the CEO and Chief Personal Elevation Strategist of Brand id Strategic Partners, the nation’s first Personal Elevation agency, she and her team specialize in catapulting the visibility of their clients in the marketplace and inside of their organization. She is here to show you how to become a FIERCE Chief Marketing Officer of the Brand called You, Inc.
Jill Spaeth is President and Director of Design at Citizen Creative, a firm she established in 2010 that specializes in experience design: primarily large-scale environmental graphics and signage. In 2014, Jill was the only woman selected of five nominees for the largest professional association for design, AIGA’s National Board of Directors based on nominations from members, chapter leaders and design opinion leaders. She oversees programs and initiates that enhance design as a professional craft and strategic force for the organization’s over 30,000 members nationwide. Jill received an Executive Education in Business at Yale University’s School of Management and has a B.F.A in Graphic Design from Rochester Institute of Technology.
Kathy Cox has two professional passions: teaching and spreading the message of heart-‐based, compassionate leadership and building relationships with amazingly diverse people. As a Crew Chief and one of the three principals of Harmony Crew, she brings strong entrepreneurial spirit and over 20 years of experience building, managing, and developing organizations. She handles leadership program development on all levels, from envisioning, organizing, and executing workshops and training programs to speaking engagements and writing. She is currently writing two books on leadership. Kathy holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind. She is studied in neuroscience, heart intelligence and mindfulness, is certified in Servant Leadership by the Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership in Atlanta, Ga., and in quantum leadership by the Academy of Total Intelligence in Oxford, Eng.
Kim Lysik Di Santi
Kim Lysik Di Santi started her own business after spending 19 years in sales and marketing. From 1980 to 1990, she held various sales and management positions at newspapers around the country. In 1990, Ms. Lysik Di Santi moved to New York, where she served in various management positions at the Newspaper Advertising Bureau (NAB) for four years. In 1994, she relocated to Reston as Director of Membership Services for NAB, now called the Newspaper Association of America (NAA). After more than seven years with NAB/NAA, Ms. Lysik Di Santi joined Zip2 (now part of Alta Vista) as Partner Training Manager. A year later, she became Sales Director for Online Directories at Washington Post-Newsweek Interactive until forming her own company in 1999.
Kristina Bouweiri is president and CEO of Reston Limousine, Washington DC’s premier chauffeured transportation provider and the 12th largest fleet operator in the industry. Starting with only five vehicles in 1990, Bouweiri diversified the business and grew it to a $24 million firm today with more than 200 vehicles. As a woman in an industry traditionally dominated by male executives, Bouweiri has been committed to supporting women entrepreneurs over the years and is the founder of the monthly networking luncheon Sterling Women. Recognized for her business acumen regionally and nationally, Bouweiri is an international speaker on topics ranging from startup success strategies to the use of social media in growing your business.
LaSonya Berry has an exceptional track record of helping businesses and individuals achieve their full potential. As a dynamic human resource professional, she has lent her expertise to the Fortune 500, fast growing small businesses, and nonprofits for over 18 years. She leads her organization in providing leadership development programs, providing HR services to businesses, and assist corporations in developing their suppliers. She has been awarded one of the 25 Most Powerful Minority Women in Business, one of the Charleston Business Journal’s Forty Under 40, and a WBENC Business Star. In 2014, her company made the exclusive HR industry Leadership 500 Excellence Award as an HR service provider.
Lisa Marie Platske
CEO of Upside Thinking, Inc. Lisa Marie Platske creates high-performing leaders, coaching women in business from around the globe.
An award-winning leadership expert and #1 best-selling author, she uses her law enforcement journey to share what exceptional leaders do differently to seize untapped opportunities, why connection is the new currency, and how to position yourself as a stand-out expert in your industry.
The founder of the Design Your Destiny LIVE, she lives in Alexandria, VA with her husband, Jim and their two pet foxes.
Liz Fletcher Brown
In addition to being a keynote speaker, workshop facilitator and professional coach, Liz Fletcher Brown is an award-winning author. Prior to that, her first career as a professional dancer spanned many years and included working with celebrities such as Janet Jackson and Dr John. However one of the highlights for her was being featured as the first full-sized dancing hologram at Madame Tussaud’s (pronounced Too-sods) Waxwork Museum in London, next to Marie Antoinette and Elvis Presley! Today Liz is going to share with us the secrets to Living and Leading with Full Wattage.
Manar is a national expert on women’s leadership, diversity, and workplace flexibility. She serves as President and CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. Manar is a frequent speaker on workplace flexibility, diversity and inclusion, women’s leadership, and individual strategies for success. Prior to founding the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance, Manar served as the Executive Director of the Project for Attorney Retention (PAR).
Marissa Levin is a 20-year entrepreneur and best-selling author committed to helping leaders create the most productive, positive, and profitable work environments possible. As Founder/CEO of Successful Culture, she provides transformational CEO & executive coaching & strategic guidance under the TransformU Growth Program. Marissa is an expert at moving leaders through difficulty to reach their greatest personal and organizational potential.
She helps them adapt a growth mindset, and equips them with the tools & strategies they need to retain top talent & build scalable organizations.
Dr. Martha Calihan, a Board Certified Family Physician, has practiced Family Medicine for more than 30 years, during which time she has transformed her patient care focus and philosophy into a holistic, integrative approach tailored to each patient as the central participant in his/her own health and wellness. Dr. Calihan studied acupuncture at the UCLA School of Medicine, trained at the Center for Mind-Body Medicine in Washington, D.C., and became Board Certified in Holistic Medicine in 2000. In 2013, she received certification in Functional Medicine through the institute of Functional medicine. When she is not seeing patients, she enjoys gardening, reading, writing, and spending time with her dogs.
Mary Grate-Pyos is the President of Financially Focused, Inc. and author of Wealthy Woman – Wise Choices. She also serves as Chief PearlPreneur™ of My Pearl Power™ focusing on encouraging possibility, positivity and prosperity in the lives of women. She is also a Partner with Capitol Financial Partners in Vienna, Virginia.
Melinda Wittstock is a social media maven. Every day she advises companies and causes how to use social networks to grow their businesses, whether building brand buzz, becoming a thought leader or finding, converting and delighting customers. She’s a serial entrepreneur, and the founder-CEO of the social intelligence company Verifeed. Verifeed algorithms and analysts parse millions of social conversations on Twitter and elsewhere to predict trends, understand consumer behavior and provide valuable business and market intelligence. She’s also a former journalist – her work spanning the Times of London, ABC News, The BBC, Financial Times and CNBC. She’s hard at work on a book on female entrepreneurship, and she’s an expert juggler: No seriously, she balances all this as a single mom with two great kids and her trusted golden retriever.
Rebecca Geller is President/CEO of The Geller Law Group. As illustrated in the May 2015 New York Times profile story about The Geller Law Group, Rebecca is a seasoned lawyer committed to providing affordable, high-quality legal services to businesses and families. In April 2015, The Washingtonian Magazine selected Rebecca as a “person we would like to have dinner with.” She has been in numerous TV interviews such as MSNBC Your Small Business and the Washington Business Report program to offer legal advice to entrepreneurs. Well known for her legal experience and activism, Rebecca was selected as a 2015 Rising Star Super Lawyer and was recognized by the Washington Post magazine for this award.
Renee Lewis has more than 30 years experience helping emerging companies succeed. She has specific expertise with high-tech, telecommunications, elearning, pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. Today, Ms. Lewis is the COO of a high-growth technology firm, Day1 Solutions, firm pioneering secured-cloud solutions to markets that benefit from elastic computing power and lowering the total cost of ownership for IT, although she has also served as CEO, COO, CTO, CIO in 11 different startups. She thrives on building high-performance teams and loves to share her “survival” techniques with others who can use them to their advantage to get to the end objective sooner. Her passion is realizing the economic impact of viable, small business.
Robin Finnell has been dressing women for more than 20 years. With a degree in Fashion Merchandising and Psychology, she began her career in retail management. After moving to the metro DC area 21 years ago, she became a volunteer with Suited for Change, a non-profit that provides low income women with clothing for their interviews and jobs, and realized she found her passion. Robin became a professional wardrobe stylist and image consultant more than 13 years ago and has never looked back.
Sherrell T Martin is an award winning financial consultant and the founder and CEO of Nitram Financial Solutions, a division of Empower 2 Thrive, LLC. She supports business owners with managing the financial health of their businesses so they can find the money leaks, increase cash flow and maximize profits. With her Financially Thriving Business Building Blueprint™, she works clients to review, revise and renew their financial management system and develop the strategies that will move the needle in their business. This proprietary system was designed to help prevent business owners from making the everyday financial mistakes that ultimately causes businesses to fail.
Sherron Washington is a CEO, author, public speaker, and professor. For more than a decade, she has imparted her wisdom and expertise in marketing, communications, branding, and design. As CEO of the P3 Solution, a marcomm company, Sherron has an outstanding record of achievement in creating innovative marketing and communication solutions for non-profit organizations, associations, small businesses, and entrepreneurs. She is also a business and communication professor at two local universities and is the author of Market Simple: The Blueprint I Wish I Had Before I Started A Business. As a public speaker and facilitator, Sherron shares expert insight into the marcomm industry as well as interact with participants – often including participants in her presentations to enhance the learning experience.
Shondra Jones is a native from Rochester, New York where she trained at the University of Rochester as a Cardiac Specialist and has lived in Loudoun County for last fifteen years. Since 2005, Shondra has worked as the Clinical Coordinator at Inova Loudoun Hospital Heart and Vascular center. She has twenty five years experience as a Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist working primarily in interventional cardiology.
After a successful career in business, Susan was a new mother in 2002 and given the devastating news that her husband was killed in a car accident. Dealing with profound grief, she learned how vital therapy was to her healing—so much so, it inspired a career change into counseling. Years later, her son was diagnosed with ADHD and sensory processing disorder. To help her son thrive, she educated herself on techniques that integrated the mind and body, and her son started to show tremendous progress. This sparked Susan’s dream to create The Wellness Connection—a “one-stop-shop” that would bring clients together with their providers in a collaborative partnership to optimize overall health and well-being. Susan McCormick’s business acumen, personal tragedy, perseverance and creativity have all contributed to an effectively designed wellness center that will serve as a model for healing centers of the future.
Dr. Suzanne Nixon is Founder and CEO of the Northern Virginia Integrative Therapy Center and Co-Founder and Director of Inspirational Journeys, LLC, a lifestyle-wellness-travel company. She is a licensed professional counselor, licensed marriage and family therapist and Integrative Health Coach from Duke University’s Integrative Medicine Center. She has expert training in mind-body therapies including energy medicine, meditation, mindfulness and body-focused psychotherapies, as well as holistic health and wellness. In private practice for over 20 years in Virginia, she specializes in an Integrative Approach to Behavioral Medicine, Health and Lifestyle Wellness.
Is it time to rethink your path to the executive suite? Corporate Communications Writer and Branding Consultant Tareaz Pegues has helped hundreds of professional women on the move position themselves for leadership. During the 2015 Virginia Women’s Business Conference, Tareaz Pegues will guide participants on a journey of self-discovery, arming them with the tools they need to confidently communicate their value, while building an army of ambassadors committed to their career success.