BPW/St. Petersburg-Pinellas July 11, 2014 Newsletter
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Business and Professional Women (BPW) /
St. Petersburg-Pinellas

Achieving equity for all women in the workplace through education, advocacy and information

New look. Same stride.

Welcome to the third issue of Step Into Our Shoes, a newsletter focused on the people, programs and activities of BPW/St. Petersburg-Pinellas! (Click here to read past issues)

While summer sinks in with its afternoon storms and its lazier rhythms, BPW has done everything but slow down. In the past two months, we:
  • Launched this brand-new newsletter;
  • Surveyed the membership about its preferences;
  • Created the "I Am BPW" testimonial video; 
  • Earned 10 honors at BPW/FL's State Conference, including being named Local Organization of the Year;
  • Debuted a revamped that matches the breadth and depth of who we are and what we offer (click on the image below).

Planning is underway for our annual Equality Day Tea on Aug. 23 and the Working Women's Forum on Oct. 23. And, efforts to ramp up our signature professional development programs (Individual Development and Young Careerist) are in motion.

While we have a new look, our stride remains strong. Continued thanks to the members who are instrumental in elevating our approach to BPW programs and events! 

In solidarity,
Alizza Punzalan-Randle headshot
Alizza Punzalan-Randle
2014-15 President
BPW/St. Petersburg-Pinellas
Member since  2002

Contact me

Community Engagement Manager
All Children's Hospital Johns Hopkins Medicine


Upcoming Speakers

Our general membership luncheon meetings feature topical speakers and programs that meet the personal, professional and political pillars of BPW. Reservations are required. Cost: Members, $16; Guests, $21. A $5 fee will be added to reservations received after Noon on Tuesday prior to meeting. 

PACE Center for Girls Pinellas
Thursday, July 17, 2014

11:30 a.m., Networking;
12-1 p.m., Meeting & Lunch

Lynn Mattiace,  Executive Director, and Carla Mattern, Development Director
Register for this meeting

Since 1997, the goal of PACE Pinellas has been to increase personal and educational development by encouraging girls, ages 12-18, to remain in school and graduate. How can you help? Bring a single subject notebook for a girl at PACE Center for Girls – it could be the key to inspiring a future writer, artist, historian or math whiz to believe in herself. Read more.

If a proposed 1% sales tax referendum passes in November 2014, PSTA (Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority) will implement the Greenlight Pinellas Plan. The Plan, which includes "transformational bus improvements and future passenger rail that will significantly enhance public transportation in Pinellas County," has its champions and critics. Mark your calendar for these August meetings to hear both sides of the story:

Barbara Haselden of No Tax for Tracks
Thursday, August 7, 2014

11:30 a.m., Networking; 12-1 p.m., Meeting & Lunch
Register for this meeting

Darden Rice, City of St. Petersburg Councilwoman
Thursday, August 21, 2014
11:30 a.m., Networking; 12-1 p.m., Meeting & Lunch

Register for this meeting

BPW/FL Conference News

"I Am BPW" Video Wins Statewide Contest, BPW/St. Petersburg-Pinellas Named LO of the Year

BPW/St. Petersburg-Pinellas raked in 10 honors at this year's annual state conference. Not only did our "I Am BPW" entry earn Best BPW Video recognition, but we were named Local Organization (LO) of the Year for the second year in a row. Thank you to the members and friends of BPW who lent their time and voices to the "I Am BPW" video - it won the inaugural statewide contest! (Attention, Members: We will be adding more faces to the video over the next few months for the 2.0 version.)

BPW/SPP Presidents at BPW/FL's 2014 State Conference: Sheila Barry-Oliver ('09-'10), Kristin Smith ('04-'05), Gretta Paige Bellas ('13-'14), Tami Simms ('99-'00, '11-'12), Alizza Punzalan-Randle ('14-'15), Cynthia Gramberg ('12-'13), Cynthia Jenkins ('10-'11)

Congratulations to 2013-14 President Gretta Paige Bellas and her leadership team for their hard work in making this possible! Here's our list of 2013-14 BPW/FL State Awards:
  • Local Organization (LO) of the Year
  • Best Overall Public Relations
  • Eagle Award – consistent advocacy, education and information of BPW/FL's legislative platform 
  • Hortense K. Wells Trophy – best legislation / government program 
  • Sacajawea Award – best Women's History Month event
  • Barnie Shuhi Education Award – best program for personal / professional development
  • Honorable Mention for Budget Submission
  • Plus 5 Recognition for members Gretta Paige Bellas and Cory Adler-Leidersdorff for recruiting five or more new members

In the Community

BPW SPP Red Tent Sale
Standing: Ashley Adams, Amy Dinovo, Gretta Paige Bellas and Deb Johnston. Seated: Edna Bloom and Alizza Punzalan-Randle

Supporting the Red Tent Women's Initiative 

On June 8, members gathered at Necessories Gallery and Boutique and Central Oddities on Central Avenue for a special sale that benefited the Red Tent Women's Initiative. Founded by marriage and family therapist Barbara Rhode, Red Tent works with nonviolent female offenders at the Pinellas County Jail in the creation of marketable handmade items using donated sewing supplies and recycled fabric / clothing. Participants also complete a series of support groups focused on the resolution of trauma, financial literacy, anger management and mindfulness training.

Kristin Smith, Catie Matthey and Jane Byers

Go Rays!

More than 20 BPW members, friends and family came out in full force on June 23 to support the Tampa Bay Rays as they took on the Pittsburgh Pirates after the annual Tampa Bay Rays Professional Women's Night. Attendees interacted with top female leaders in the Rays organization, networked with women from across Tampa Bay, and cheered on the home team.

The Downtown Business Association's annual Sunrise Sale is set for July 17 - the same day as our next membership meeting. Come down early or stay later to take advantage of some deep discount pricing at more than 50 downtown businesses!

Be Relevant in 2014-15

Authenticity – We will strengthen what we do best. Mastery – We will be mission driven in all that we do. Empathy – We will diversify our reach, way of thinking, audiences and partnerships. Action – We will communicate, collaborate and connect to further our influence.

2014-15 Executive Committee
President Alizza Punzalan-Randle 
President-Elect Amy Dinovo
1st VP/Programs Jerri Evans 
2nd VP/Membership Kristin Smith
Secretary Audrey Wood 
Treasurer Joan Ghassemi
Parliamentarian Tami Simms

In This Issue
July 11, 2014

BPW/FL Conference News
Calendar of Events
Get Involved
Giving Back
In the Community

Legislative Sidebar
Member Kudos
Save the Dates
Upcoming Speakers


Save the Dates


Save the 23rd of August and October for these signature BPW events:

Diversi-Tea: Writing Women Back Into History
Sat., Aug. 23, 1-4 p.m.
The Manhattan Casino

(642 22nd St S, St. Pete)
Members, $20; Guests, $25.
Join us for a twist on our annual Equality Day Tea that marks the anniversary of a woman's right to vote (August 26, 1920).

From Grasshopper to Queen Bee: Mentoring Relationships That Buzz
Thur., Oct. 23, 5:30-8 p.m.
The Studio@620

(620 1st Ave S, St. Pete)
Members, $20; Guests, $25.
We observe National Business Women's Week with an annual working women's forum. This year's panel discussion focuses on mentoring, something that works at any age.

Legislative Sidebar

With political awareness as one of BPW's pillars, we are avid proponents of women accepting city and county appointments. We applaud the following BPW members for bettering our community by serving on these City of St. Petersburg committees.

Pier Cultural Resources Committee
Tami Simms, Real Estate Advisor at Coastal Properties Group International, LLC

Southside St. Petersburg Community Redevelopment Area (CRA) Ad Hoc Planning Committee
Alizza Punzalan-Randle, Community Engagement Manger at All Children's Hospital John Hopkins Medicine

Urban Affairs Advisory Group
Cory Adler-Leidersdorff, Donor and Community Relations Manager at Morean Arts Center
Lenice Emanuel, President/CEO at YWCA Tampa Bay

Giving Back

Connie Passmore Scholarships

Named after a longtime member and past president, the Connie Passmore Scholarship fund has awarded more than $40,000 to women pursuing a post-secondary education in the Tampa Bay area. Cuvette Robinson (above), one of this year's five recipients, expressed her appreciation at our June 19 meeting. A single mother of two children, Cuvette works two jobs while attending St. Petersburg College. After receiving an A.S. this month, she plans to earn her B.A. in Human Services.

Member Kudos

Celebration photo / Getty Images

June/July Membership Anniversaries

Happy anniversary to those who renew their membership in BPW year after year! We also welcome our newest members since April.

Joined in April 2014
Elena Dolskaya
Catie Matthey
Judithanne McLauchlan

Joined in May 2014
Brenda Pryor
Samantha Tallyn

Joined in June 2014
Aimee Bennett (returning)
Terry Christopher
Barbara Daire
Judy Wood

Joined in June of...
1979, Sheila Barry-Oliver
1991, Elizabeth Knowles
1999, Kristin Smith
2006, Joan Ghassemi
2006, Audrey Wood
2013, Jessica Hooper
2013, Debra Johnston

Joined in July of...
1997, Tami Simms
1998, Cory Adler-Leidersdorff
2002, Alizza Punzalan-Randle

Support the Girls

At State Conference, we submitted five themed bras to the 4th annual "Support the Girls" fundraiser which provides scholarships to breast cancer survivors around the state.  Not only did we help raise more than $4,000, but a creation by our own Cynthia Gramberg (above) won in the "Prettiest Bra" category!

Thanks to Gretta Paige Bellas, Diane Dewey, Amy Dinovo and Catie Matthey for decorating our entries!

Calendar of Events

7/12, Joint Committee Meeting for Individual Development and Young Careerist Programs
9-11 a.m., Offices of Janssen and Igar, CPA's, PA, 1626 38th Ave N, St. Pete. More info
7/17, General Membership Meeting -  PACE Center for Girls - Lynn Mattiace and Carla Mattern
11:30 a.m. Networking; Noon Lunch, 400 Beach Seafood and Tap House, 400 Beach Dr NE, St. Pete. More info
7/22, Equality Day Tea Committee Meeting
5:45 p.m., Sylvia's Restaurant, 642 22nd St S, St. Pete. More info
7/23, Executive Committee Meeting
5:45-7:15 p.m., Offices of Janssen and Igar, CPA's, PA, 1626 38th Ave N, St. Pete. 
8/7, General Membership Meeting - Barbara Haselden of No Tax for Tracks
11:30 a.m. Networking; Noon Lunch, 400 Beach Seafood and Tap House, 400 Beach Dr NE, St. Pete. 
8/21, General Membership Meeting - City Councilwoman Darden Rice on Greenlight Pinellas Plan
11:30 a.m. Networking; Noon Lunch, 400 Beach Seafood and Tap House, 400 Beach Dr NE, St. Pete. 

Get Involved

Candid from Working Women's Forum

Committees Make BPW Go Round

BPW is only as good as the membership makes it. You can help shape our activities by serving on a committee. Contact the following chairwomen to learn about each committee's functions and planning efforts.
Cory Adler, Diversity and Inclusion
Kristin Smith, Equal Pay Day Unhappy Hour
Cory Adler & Jerri Evans, Equality Day Tea
Kristin Smith, Finance
Sheila Barry Oliver, Individual Development
Jerri Evans, Legislative
Kristin Smith, Membership
Gretta Paige Bellas, Philanthropy
Amy Dinovo, Public Relations / Technology
Elizabeth Knowles, Scholarship
Amy Dinovo & Wendy Wesley, Working Women's Forum
Sheila Barry-Oliver, Young Careerist

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Business and Professional Women (BPW)/St. Petersburg-Pinellas
PO Box 1063
St. Petersburg, Florida 33731

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