Author Archives: Lisa

Wed, Dec 5: AWC-SB Annual Holiday Party

If you haven't experienced Crush Tasting Room & Kitchen yet, the AWC-SB Holiday Party on Wednesday, December 5 gives you a good excuse. Please join us to celebrate the holiday season and raise a glass to honor a couple of award-winners. This year's AWC-SB Member of the Year Award goes to Hilary Molina who served as co-chair of the 2018 Women of Achievement committee and worked tirelessly to raise the bar on our signature event. The Lois Phillips Founders Award goes to Jen Baron, Executive Director of Girls Rock. AWC-SB will adopt Girls Rock as our 2019 Nonprofit of the Year and collaborate with leaders of the organization to see how we can help them further their mission of empowering girls and women through music education, creative expression, and performance. Several Girls Rock students will perform at the party.

Annual Holiday Party
Wednesday, December 5
6-8 pm
Crush Tasting Room & Kitchen
432 E Haley St

Downtown Santa Barbara
AWC-SB Members $25; Nonmembers $35
includes appetizers and $12 wine credit

This year Lois Phillips will present the Founders Award to Jen Baron, Founder and Executive Director of Girls Rock. Jen had to pitch her ideas to create a board, receive foundation funding, find musicians to teach in the program, and parents to entrust her with their kids. She communicated across media platforms and in person in order to realize her vision for Girls Rock.

Jen Baron is a Santa Barbara High School and Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate who wrote songs and played music most of her life. Although her professional background was in marketing and public relations, she decided at her father’s suggestion to get herself out there as a musician. Baron took her dad’s advice at a time when he received a diagnoses of an advanced stage of cancer. She went to work in a studio and eventually recorded her own music with the help of Robinson Eikenberry. She sold two of her songs for a Sharon Stone film.

Zeroing in on her true calling, Jen decided, without knowing much about the nonprofit world, to create a program to help instill self-confidence through music in girls aged 7-17. In 2011, the seed for Girls Rock Santa Barbara was planted.

After a year spent researching everything about how to start a nonprofit, the now-37-year-old Baron launched the first summer program in 2012. It attracted 100 girls.
Since then, the organization has grown to a community of more than 4,000 students, and now boasts an after-school program running five days a week, a 7-week summer sleep-away camp, and day camp.

Girls Rock Santa Barbara differentiates itself from other community arts programs by using music to deliver its messages of self-empowerment and mentoring. Jen’s research led her to realize that most girls tend to underestimate themselves academically, and are prone to eating disorders, cutting, bullying, smoking, drinking and early sexual activity. Any and all of these conditions can negatively affect their future endeavors. To address these issues, Girls Rock organizes bands of girls from diverse backgrounds. The girls use teamwork to collectively write songs that represent their common experiences as children and teens.

Hilary Molina is the Alumni Relations Director for Fielding Graduate University, which specializes in clinical and media psychology, human and organizational development, and educational leadership and change. In this role she serves as the direct contact for over 5,000 alumni across the world, and is responsible for strengthening programming university-wide which provide tangible benefits to alumni, students, faculty, board members, and donors.

Before joining Fielding Graduate University, Hilary worked as an account executive for the Fortune 500 company, Fidelity National Title, which is the nation's largest provider of commercial and residential mortgage and diversified services in the top-grossing region in the southern California territory of Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, and Irvine.

Hilary feels passionate about the quality of her work and is eager to connect with other business executives in a variety of industries. While she enjoys all aspects of her job, she thinks her favorite part is strategic planning and producing a program that meets and exceeds expectations.

She's a proud Cal Poly SLO Mustang with a masters of science. She's also a former personal trainer, spin, and yoga instructor, whose health and fitness passions still run deep. Her current interest includes road cycling and supporting her family run junior development team Galaxy Cycling.

How to Recognize and Respond to Burnout

The 805 experienced a tough year in 2018. In addition to the usual pulls of balancing our personal and professional lives, we’ve dealt with the undertow of a stormy political climate and the lingering trauma from the Thomas Fire and debris flow. Even the strongest among us might need help recognizing our own limits. How do you determine when you—or someone close to you—has reached that breaking point? From stress management to suicide prevention, our panel of experts will answer some dark questions while shedding light and providing guidance about how to find help and relief when it’s needed.

Panelists:

  • Simon Fox, Founder Adventures in Caring
  • Dr. Deborah Smilovitz Foster, PhD and NeuroPsychologist
  • Dr. Meridith Merchant, PhD and Psychologist UCSB
  • Mariana Harms, Manager of Clinical Training at CALM

Simon Fox has led Adventures in Caring for 32 years. He and his wife Karen, who founded the nonprofit, are internationally respected leaders in teaching compassion as a practice that supports the healing of the whole person. Their award-winning programs are used in hundreds of hospitals, hospices, and nursing schools. Simon is the primary caregiver for Karen, who has suffered from life-threatening illnesses her whole life. Simon is co-author of the book, What Can I Say? A Guide To Visiting Friends and Family Who Are Ill and co-producer of five video-based training programs on compassion, including The Medicine of Compassion which won the 2004 International Health & Medical Media Award for the best video in patient care. Simon has served on the National Advisory Committee for the American Trauma Society and produced its Second Trauma train-the-trainer program.

Dr. Deborah Smilovitz Foster, specializes in neuropsychology with a sub-specialty in children, trauma and balance. These specialties have provided a strong foundation about how physiological, neurological, and psychological processes interact. Deborah has studied and worked with children for over 20 years, first as an elementary school teacher and then as a nurse. Her clinical training includes working with gang members and teenage mothers, domestic violence and anger management groups, domestic violence shelters, County Mental Health as a certified member of the crisis team (certified to 5150)/assessment team and working with children and families. Her research at the internationally acclaimed Reiss-Davis Child Study Center in Los Angeles is part of a group of child study centers that include the Yale and Harvard Child Study Centers.

Dr. Meridith Merchant is a licensed psychologist, advocate, consultant and speaker. She serves as a full-time psychologist at UC Santa Barbara Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). She also serves as a faculty advisor and Community Health Advocate with iDREAM for Racial Health Equity, focused on improving health outcomes for mothers and babies throughout the course of their lives. As a member of the California Department of Public Health's Maternal, Child and Adolescent Division's CA Community Birth Plan Task Force, Dr. Meridith gives voice to health disparities among Black women. Through her community commitments, personal and professional endeavors, and her role as a psychologist at CAPS, Dr. Meridith continues to use her personal maternal trauma as inspiration and fuel for her passion to increase awareness and activism toward equity, empowered health and wholeness for all.

Mariana Harms is a Spanish/English bilingual Marriage and Family Therapist at CALM, where she serves as the Manager of Clinical Training. A graduate of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Mariana has over 6 years experience working with children and families who have experienced trauma. Professional burnout and compassion fatigue are topics regularly addressed at CALM, as the trauma-focused clinicians are at high risk for both.

Women of Achievement Poems 2018

Wonder Woman

for Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson

Since Hannah-Beth landed on this planet,
it’s never been the same. Already by age ten
she spoke out for women’s rights. Ask the boys
of Boston’s Little League. She fought to join them
and they backed her: “best guy on the team.”
She’s still batting homeruns for fair play.

Early on, she took down any bully.
Ask her sister Reyna. When their older brother,
visually impaired, was picked on, you can almost
hear her backfire, “You gotta problem?”
New England tennis champ in her teens,
she also played the lead in school musicals,
getting all the laughs. Show biz is “good practice
for politics,” she jokes. “Keep them engaged.”

Out front and center wherever there’s cause
or crisis, lucky for California she moved here
as a young attorney. Of the 80 bills she’s crafted,
her proudest is Equal Pay for Women,
described as her “35 year instant success.”
Famous for how she sticks out her neck,
it’s no wonder she received the Giraffe Award
adding to a scroll of others. Named Legislator
of the World by many organizations, she insists

The Time is Now to end NRA’s control, to save
our children, our future, from murder in the classroom.
A passionate Chair of the State Judiciary Committee,
she addressed the break-down of our democracy,
reciting words engraved on the Statue of Liberty:
“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses
yearning to breathe free.” Hannah-Beth, Wonder Woman,
thank you for all the ways you hold the light,
and speak truth to power reminding that women
“hold up more than half the sky.”

by Perie Longo
Santa Barbara Poet Laureate Emerita
AWC-SB Women of Achievement Awards, June 2018


The Surprising Dr. Carrie Hutchison

Visit with Carrie awhile and presto! the key
to communication is yours for keeps: Listening.
And she knows, with a PhD, Chair of the SBCC
Communication Department. Listen close
like you’d listen to the slither of a lizard
or water swishing along the shore of a lake,
her favorite place to be. Listen with integrity,
objectively, no thought to what you’ll say
before the other is finished. Listen to the spaces
between words to understand beliefs, concerns.
Listen with a wide lens, like their life depends on it,
and yours. Together, you will leave uplifted,
more clear in this confusing world. Listening

is the impact she tries to make each day,
more important than her books and lectures.
Listening to those far different than yourself
matters. Courageously, she resists the status quo,
travels with her students to far flung countries
without our “amenities” to teach how others live.
Learn need, how to initiate change. And listen
to how they laugh, no matter how grim
their circumstance. She’s serious about that
and social justice, co-founder of SURJ,
Showing Up for Racial Justice. To resist injustice

takes action, her medicine to cope at this time
when lack of communication is at an all time high.
As is misunderstanding. To lighten her load,
ten years ago, brokenhearted, she checked out
Craig’s list, answered an ad for a rock band singer.
Here before you, is a professor who walks
her walk and rocks her talk, favors Bob Marley’s song
Redemption, back tickles with her two kids, and
admits she is definitely like the nocturnal hedgehog,
a vocal communicator, who knows exactly how
to make a difference in an unpredictable world.

by Perie Longo
Santa Barbara Poet Laureate Emerita
AWC-SB Women of Achievement Awards, June 2018

Wed, Nov 7: How to Recognize and Respond to Burnout

The 805 experienced a tough year in 2018. In addition to the usual pulls of balancing our personal and professional lives, we’ve dealt with the undertow of a stormy political climate and the lingering trauma from the Thomas Fire and debris flow. Even the strongest among us might need help recognizing our own limits. How do you determine when you—or someone close to you—has reached that breaking point? From stress management to suicide prevention, our panel of experts will answer some dark questions while shedding light and providing guidance about how to find help and relief when it’s needed.

Wednesday, November 7, 5:30-7:30 pm
workzones
Paseo Nuevo
351 Paseo Nuevo 2nd floor
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
AWC-SB Members Free; Nonmembers $20
Wine & Refreshments included

REGISTER NOW

Panelists:

  • Simon Fox, Founder Adventures in Caring
  • Dr. Deborah Smilovitz Foster, PhD and NeuroPsychologist
  • Dr. Meridith Merchant, PhD and Psychologist UCSB
  • Mariana Harms, Manager of Clinical Training at CALM

Simon Fox has led Adventures in Caring for 32 years. He and his wife Karen, who founded the nonprofit, are internationally respected leaders in teaching compassion as a practice that supports the healing of the whole person. Their award-winning programs are used in hundreds of hospitals, hospices, and nursing schools. Simon is the primary caregiver for Karen, who has suffered from life-threatening illnesses her whole life. Simon is co-author of the book, What Can I Say? A Guide To Visiting Friends and Family Who Are Ill and co-producer of five video-based training programs on compassion, including The Medicine of Compassion which won the 2004 International Health & Medical Media Award for the best video in patient care. Simon has served on the National Advisory Committee for the American Trauma Society and produced its Second Trauma train-the-trainer program.

Dr. Deborah Smilovitz Foster, specializes in neuropsychology with a sub-specialty in children, trauma and balance. These specialties have provided a strong foundation about how physiological, neurological, and psychological processes interact. Deborah has studied and worked with children for over 20 years, first as an elementary school teacher and then as a nurse. Her clinical training includes working with gang members and teenage mothers, domestic violence and anger management groups, domestic violence shelters, County Mental Health as a certified member of the crisis team (certified to 5150)/assessment team and working with children and families. Her research at the internationally acclaimed Reiss-Davis Child Study Center in Los Angeles is part of a group of child study centers that include the Yale and Harvard Child Study Centers.

Dr. Meridith Merchant is a licensed psychologist, advocate, consultant and speaker. She serves as a full-time psychologist at UC Santa Barbara Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). She also serves as a faculty advisor and Community Health Advocate with iDREAM for Racial Health Equity, focused on improving health outcomes for mothers and babies throughout the course of their lives. As a member of the California Department of Public Health's Maternal, Child and Adolescent Division's CA Community Birth Plan Task Force, Dr. Meridith gives voice to health disparities among Black women. Through her community commitments, personal and professional endeavors, and her role as a psychologist at CAPS, Dr. Meridith continues to use her personal maternal trauma as inspiration and fuel for her passion to increase awareness and activism toward equity, empowered health and wholeness for all.

Mariana Harms is a Spanish/English bilingual Marriage and Family Therapist at CALM, where she serves as the Manager of Clinical Training. A graduate of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Mariana has over 6 years experience working with children and families who have experienced trauma. Professional burnout and compassion fatigue are topics regularly addressed at CALM, as the trauma-focused clinicians are at high risk for both.

Wed, Oct 3: Strategic Social Media

Local leaders Share Inside Secrets on Staying on Point and Keeping it Fresh

Aimless social media, without strategic thinking, results in awkward posts that damage your reputation. Used skillfully, social media becomes a powerful tool that draws attention to your brand. On Wednesday, October 3 AWC-SB will present a panel of local women who will discuss their success at using Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and other platforms on behalf of themselves and their clients. These pros will share insights for creating authentic, engaging and--most important--effective social media communications. Bring a friend, bring your phone, and get ready to bring home a new set of tips and tricks for posting with purpose!

Leela Cyd is a food, lifestyle and travel photographer and storyteller. She’s authored and photographed her own books, Food With Friends: The Art of Small Gatherings, Tasting Hygge, Cooking Up Trouble and Styling for Instagram.

Carly Mask is an Instagram Strategist, Hearst Award-Winning Photographer and Managing Partner at Camp Digital, a boutique content studio that powers the creative needs of founders, small businesses, and growing brands.

Siouxsie Jennett is the CEO and founder of Mambo Media, a digital marketing firm that works with companies to maximize marketing strategies to drive revenue through digital marketing.

Samantha Wennerstrom is the creator of the fashion and lifestyle blog Could I Have That? Created in 2009, CIHT? provides readers with original content on living a stylish life and has grown into an established online publisher working with brands such as Barneys New York, Ralph Lauren, Stella McCartney, Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, and many more. Samantha is also an ambassador for Who What Wear and is a member of Heymama Co.

Leela Cyd

Carly Mask

Siouxsie Jennett

Samantha Wennerstrom

Wed, Sept 5: AWC Connects – Building a Network that Works for You

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THIS EVENT

Does your work involve communication? Do you have something important you want to do this fall? Could you use help clarifying your dreams and solidifying your goals? Then you'll want to attend the fall networking meeting of the Association for Women in Communication, Santa Barbara chapter on Wednesday, September 5, 5:30-7:30 pm at workzones in Paseo Nuevo.

Executive Coach and AWC-SB member Patricia Rachel Schwartz, MA, PCC, will lead a highly engaging, participatory mini-workshop on Achievement Acceleration. You’ll connect with other exceptional women in small groups using a proven, mutually supportive process that encourages reflection, discussion and accountability.

Wednesday, September 5, 5:30-7:30 pm
workzones
Paseo Nuevo
351 Paseo Nuevo 2nd floor
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
AWC-SB Members Free; Nonmembers $20
Wine & Refreshments included

You’ll walk away with new ideas about how to approach your professional goals and challenges, plus action steps that will move you closer toward what you want to achieve in the year ahead. As a bonus, you’ll be in the company of some of Santa Barbara’s most creative communicators.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THIS EVENT

Patricia Rachel Schwartz MA, PCC, BCC
Executive Coach and Facilitator

Maximize Positive Engagement and Thrive!

Her coaching approach is strengths-based and informed by the latest research in positive psychology. She specialize in stakeholder engagement to support strategic visioning and plan implementation, change leadership, and for nonprofits-major gifts coaching and training. Stakeholder engagement includes the engagement of employees, teams, funders, investors, boards, public officials and communities, among others.

Background:

  • 40 years experience in leadership development, business development and management - locally, nationally and internationally
  • Executive Coach for 20 years
  • M.A., International Administration/Intercultural Management, SIT
  • Worked with over 3,500 leaders across sectors and industries
  • Background in executive leadership in the business and nonprofit sectors
  • Created appreciative inquiry/positive psychology based Relationship Building for Prosperity℠ Stakeholder Engagement Model and Tools
  • Professional Certified Coach, Certified Mentor Coach, Board Certified Coach
  • Senior Faculty member of the College of Executive Coaching for twelve years
  • Faculty of the Cal Lutheran University’s Center for Nonprofit Leadership for twelve years
  • Raised over 12 million dollars for nonprofits

Patricia has worked with leaders from (partial listing): Alpha Resource Center, Anthem, Antioch University, Coca Cola, DreamWorks Animation, Fielding Graduate University, Foodbank, Jr. Blind of America/Wayfinder Family Services, Mayo Clinic, PepsiCo, Reiter Affiliated Companies, Santa Barbara Foundation, Treebones Resort, US Navy, United Way, UC Santa Barbara, University of Chicago Booth School of Management, Ventura College Foundation, Ventura County Community Foundation, Verizon, and Women’s Economic Ventures.CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THIS EVENT

Women of Achievement Poems 2017

Chimps and Koalas and Patty, Oh My!

for Patty DeDominic

Chinese proverb: Only he that has traveled
the road knows where holes are deep...

What if he turns out to be Patty?
A modern Renaissance woman, she's proved
there's no business like women's business.
Chronic befriender, sunny smile, she'll hug you
first meeting, this lover of everything living,
loving especially animals, indeed every soul met
along roads traveled that made all the difference...

In photos, she’s seen hugging a chimp
in an Ugandan sanctuary, both looking
like they've found heaven, same as in Australia
holding a Koala, another of husband Gene cloaked
with little chimps. Icon Jane Goodall become friend,
Patty joins the Institute's Board. In admiration
of Elizabeth Dole, signs on to the Red Cross Board.

Out on a limb, building and selling companies,
she’s a guide with Midas touch, keen eye
spotting holes in the road that can sink you. Raising
the bar for women worldwide, she dreams up festivals
for them to unite, embrace their power. Full hearted,
Patty advises multitudes how to set goals,
meet them and before you can say what now?
she humbly watches her clients take their bows.

Others saw. The National Women Business Owners
bestowed the Susan Hager Award. Recognized
by President Obama with the Lifetime Achievement Award
for Economic Development, what could be left?
Always traveling, but best is family, coming home
right here to her and Gene’s Santa Ynez Valley nest—
fish splash in the front pond, ducks skedaddle,
hawks call. In the business of life, Patty and her dog
take to mountain trails, keeping on with the show...

by Perie Longo
SB Poet Laureate, 2007-09
June 2017, AWC-SB Women of Achievement Award

How to Become a Mayor

for Helene Schneider,
Mayor of Santa Barbara 2009-17

Join the chorus at New York's International High School,
star as Frenchie in Grease, Mme. Dubonnet in Boyfriend,
and Fabian in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. Take to heart
the Bard's All the world's a stage, we're merely players
with our entrances and exits. Improvise—be quick
to cover forgotten lines. Named "Head Girl," fulfill
vow to keep the Senior Lounge clean. Preside

over Network for Women's Rights at Skidmore College.
Fundraise. Fundraise. Organize a march to DC
for Reproductive Rights. "A big deal," she says,
and keeps marching—for social justice, for diversity.
With a winning smile, politics her passion, be fearless
on stage, always present in the lights, the news,
right words at the right time ring out true as a bell.

Empowered to speak Truth to Power like idols
Margaret Sanger and Amelia Earhart, their dreams
became reality, refuse "No" for an answer. Construct
a legacy of a fiscally sound city, clean environment,
space open and free. Honor the varied arts.
Those paintings in her office? Local artists. Poets
don laureate wreaths, dole phrases for City Council.
From the nation’s mayors, be the first California mayor
to receive the Leadership in Arts Award.

Write haiku: Cut red ribbons. Mend what’s torn.
Accept an honorary key for her role in opening doors
to the MOXIE museum. Hail the awaited Desal plant.
And in moxie style, chart the coming course: improvise,
explore the new—crest Machu Picchu, see Egypt
from the back of a camel. Just returned from Dingle,
our Irish sister city, plan a tour for the literary
next year. Wind at your back, a beacon in our midst,
you’re a “big deal” in our history, marching forward
and we women roar—Here, Hear Helene!

by Perie Longo
SB Poet Laureate, 2007-09
June 2017, AWC-SB Women of Achievement Award

Wed, April 11: Comment/No Comment: Local Journalists Discuss Closing Online Forums vs. Keeping the Conversation Open

Please join us April 11 for “Comment or No Comment.” Media outlets such as Noozhawk and the Santa Barbara Independent recently eliminated reader comments online. Are such comments tiresome noise, providing little information or accuracy? Or are they an important part of the conversation? Local journalists weigh in.

Wednesday, April 11, 5:30-7:30 pm
workzones
Paseo Nuevo
351 Paseo Nuevo 2nd floor
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
AWC-SB Members Free; Nonmembers $20
Wine & Refreshments included

Starshine Roshell, award-winning columnist for the Santa Barbara Independent, moderates this panel of journalists including:
Lauren Bray, managing editor Ed Hat
Matt Kettmann, senior editor The Independent
Jim Lemon, news director KEYT News Channel 3
Tom Bolton, Executive Editor Noozhawk