Author Archives: Lisa

Wed, July 19: Books for Breakfast – Feminist Fight Club

AWC-SB’s popular summer reading program continues on Wednesday, July 19 at Eladio’s by the beach. For July our discussion will revolve around Feminist Fight Club: A Survival Manual for a Sexist Workplace by Jessica Bennett. Please join us and support this lovely venue by treating yourself to breakfast (Please bring cash).

Wednesday, July 19, 7:30-9 am
28 W. Cabrillo Blvd
90-minute free street parking kicks in at 9 am

NAMED A BEST BOOK OF 2016 BY: Chicago Tribune, Refinery 29, Forbes, Bust, CEO Reads

It was a fight club—but without the fighting and without the men. Every month, the women would huddle in a friend’s apartment to share sexist job frustrations and trade tips on how best to tackle them. Once upon a time, you might have called it a consciousness-raising group. But the problems of today’s working world are more subtle, less pronounced, harder to identify—and harder to prove—than those of our foremothers. These women weren’t just there to vent. They needed battle tactics. And so the Feminist Fight Club was born.

In Feminist Fight Club, acclaimed journalist Jessica Bennett blends the personal stories of her real-life fight club with research, statistics, and no-bullsh*t advice for how to combat today’s sexism (and come out the other side). Part manual, part manifesto, Bennett offers a new vocabulary for the sexist archetypes women encounter every day—such as the Manterrupter, who talks over female colleagues in meetings; or the Bropropriator, who appropriates their ideas—as well as the self-sabotaging behavior women sometimes exhibit themselves. With original illustrations and fascinating historical research as well as a straightforward assessment of the gender gap that continues to plague the American workforce, Feminist Fight Club offers practical strategies, stealthy hacks, and much-needed camaraderie for women battling their way through the modern workplace.

Wed, Aug 16: Books for Breakfast – How to Be a Bawse

AWC-SB’s popular summer reading program continues on Wednesday, August 16 at Eladio’s by the beach. For July our discussion will revolve around How to Be a Bawse: A Guide to Conquering Life by Lilly Singh . Please join us and support this lovely venue by treating yourself to breakfast (Please bring cash).

Wednesday, August 16, 7:30-9 am
28 W. Cabrillo Blvd
90-minute free street parking kicks in at 9 am

From actress, comedian and YouTube sensation Lilly Singh (aka Superwoman) comes the definitive guide to being a BAWSE - a person who exudes confidence, reaches goals, gets hurt efficiently, and smiles genuinely because they've fought through it all and made it out the other side. Told in her hilarious, bold voice that's inspired over 9 million fans, and using stories from her own life to illustrate her message, Lilly proves that there are no shortcuts to success. Warning: This book does NOT include hopeful thoughts, lucky charms, and cute quotes. That's because success, happiness and everything else you want in life needs to be fought for - not wished for. In Lilly's world, there are no escalators. Only stairs.

AWC-SB March Event: Communicating Effectively in a Polarized Environment

By: Lilly Erickson, AWC-SB Intern

Today’s recent political environment has generated feelings of uneasiness among many Americas. Regardless of our political affiliation, many of us feel uncertain about when to speak up to defend our beliefs, and how to communicate effectively to avoid offending others.

In a panel discussion held on Wednesday, March 1, a diverse group of panelists shared their insights on how to effectively communicate, without letting politics sabotage the conversation. Led by Carolyn Jabs, AWC-SB president-elect, AWC-SB welcomed panelists Judy Guillermo Newton, Senior Vice‐President and Director of Organizational Development and Human Resources at Montecito Bank & Trust, Kelly Scott, Chief Deputy DA at Santa Barbara District Attorney, and Anna Everett, Professor of Film, Television and New Media Studies at UCSB.

Changed political climate

“Many people who’d never talked about politics now want to talk about politics, and with it comes a lot of personalization—the words are harsher,” Newton said.

Since the most recent presidential election, people have seen a dramatic increases in political conversations at work. This upsurge in opinions lends itself to the potential to offend others. The panelists remarked on the difficult task of continuing to remain nonpartisan with co-workers as a team, despite the emotional unrest that appears ever-present.

Knowing when to speak up

“It’s important to weigh what battles you’re going to take,” Newton said.

Deciding when and if you should make yourself heard is not an easy task. Sometimes an issue feels so important to your own personal morals that you feel obligated to speak up. However, it’s crucial to keep in mind the costs associated.If losing your job, family, or friends is more important to you, you may want to remain silent on the subject.

Three ways to bring contentious talk into a more civil space

  1. Active Listening: “Silence is a pause that can minimize a charged environment,” Everett said. By taking time to listen to others, you show respect for their opinion, even if their views are different from your own. Everett suggested to first remain silent while listening to the other person’s beliefs, then repeat back what they said in order to make sure you heard them correctly.
  2. Self-awareness: “It’s crucial for us to be aware of what the signals are in our own bodies that make us behave in ways that might be uncivil,” Newton said. Stay aware of the way you respond to a situation, particularly if it puts you on-edge. This enables you to step back, take a moment to compose yourself, and react in a manner that facilitates constructive discussion.
  3. Working Towards a Common Goal: “When there are divisive political discussions, I try to make everyone find what the common goal is,” Scott said. Working towards a common goal allows team members to learn from one another and focus on the task at hand, despite their different political views.

As all three of the panelists touched upon, the key to communicating effectively in a polarized environment is taking time to listen before responding. Seeing the other’s perspective, despite their political differences, enables compassion and understanding. By following this advice, we can work with others as a team and come to mutually beneficial solutions.



Wed, May 3: Free Networking

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Join AWC-SB for networking on Wednesday, May 3, 5-7:30 pm at Mulligans Cafe & Bar. Bring your business cards. Prepare your thirty second elevator pitch. Connect with leading women in local communications positions such as marketers, designers, writers, journalists etc.. This event is FREE so if you've never attended an AWC-SB meeting, or haven't in a while, this gives you an excellent opportunity to meet some of our local chapter members and learn what the organization is all about. Bring your friends and enjoy food and drinks at Happy Hour prices, not to mention free parking.

Wednesday, May 4, 5-7:30 pm
Mulligans Cafe & Bar
3500 McCaw Ave
Santa Barbara, CA 93105

No Host Bar
FREE to attend

Wed, April 5: AWC-SB After Dark

Join AWC-SB for a LIVE storytelling experience on Wednesday, April 5, 5:30-7:30 pm. Sit back while you’re entertained by people sharing personal stories and enjoy wine and cheese at workzones, transformed into a cozy coffeehouse.

Wednesday, April 5, 5:30-7:30 pm
Paseo Nuevo
351 Paseo Nuevo 2nd floor
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
AWC-SB Members Free; Nonmembers $20; Full-time Students $10
Appetizers and wine provided

Storytellers include:

Carolyn Butcher - "To Whom it May Concern"
Carolyn, who wrote her PhD dissertation on James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake, teaches critical thinking through literature at Santa Barbara City College. She has published numerous memoir pieces in print and online journals, in addition to performing personal stories three times with Speaking of Stories at Center Stage. "To Whom it May Concern" was sparked after President Trump’s “Pussy” comments, when women of all generations began sharing their own experiences of past sexual harassment or abuse.


Adele Menichella - "Naked Eye"
Adele is an independent writer-editor whose work has appeared in print, radio, television and film. She has been a diarist since the age of seven.



Natalie D-Napolean - "I Used to Believe in Magic"
Natalie  is a writer, singer-songwriter, and educator from Fremantle, Australia who now lives in California. She is currently working as a Laboratory Teaching Assistant at the SBCC Writing Center while also working on songs for a new album of original material.



Elaine Gale - "Red Cabbage Rising"
Elaine Gale is a California-based writer, performer, humorist, professor and journalist who loves art, artists, building community, giving back, healing, border collies, Hendry's, fish tacos and pedicures. She will perform her one-woman show, ONE GOOD EGG, directed by Rod Lathim, at Center Stage Theater May 5-7.For more info and tickets:


Valerie Burns -  "Organic Warrior"
Valerie, a style consultant for home and wardrobe, and graduate of the Hollywood school of hard knocks, is a recent breast cancer survivor. She’s currently writing a book, Caution: Mermaid Crossing, about her warrior ride, and blogging about this and much more.



Maggie Mixsell, Artistic Director of Speaking of Stories, provided performance coaching for our five storytellers. We look forward to hearing your story.

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