One of the things I am most grateful for in my career has been my involvement with WICT NY.  I served on the board (2008 – 2015), the Executive Women’s Luncheon (EWL) and Prime Access Committees, and volunteered for many of our chapter’s events as well as the WICT Leadership Conference and the Wonder Women Luncheon.

In fact, this was my first year attending the Wonder Women Luncheon not as a volunteer, but as a guest of the board and the recipient of this year’s WICT NY Career Catalyst Award.  What a thrill and honor to be recognized for mentorship by an amazing organization that seeks to advance women in our industry!

To be honest, after many years volunteering at the event, it was a little strange to be a guest and surreal to be on stage to receive the award. Funnier yet, after an incredible introduction (thank you, Mary Schilling!) tribute video (thank you, Kari Ickert for producing it; Ingrid Simunic, Gloria Lee and Ingrid Laub, for your kind words) and a photo op holding the award, I didn’t get a chance to say ‘thank you’ or share what WICT NY has meant to me, so I’d like to take this opportunity to show a little love and gratitude.

The WICT NY Career Catalyst Award holds a very special place in my heart.  So much of what I am doing today through my company, iSTANDtv, and the FUTURE NOW Media Foundation…mentoring, training and building up the next generation of future leaders and content creators in media…is inspired by and made possible because of what I learned while serving as a board member, volunteer and participant in WICT NY’s programs and events.

Some highlights:

Mentoring – I joined the Prime Access Committee and learned how to run a topnotch mentoring program from the amazing Marie Svet (Founder) and Sara Clarke (2018 WICT NY Career Catalyst Award recipient).  I have also benefited greatly from my peer mentors from WICT NY.

Live event production – As a committee member for many years and later as Event Chair of the Executive Women’s Luncheon, I learned how to produce and organize major live events.  Running EWL gave me the experience and confidence to organize the FUTURE NOW Media & Entertainment Conference, which is now in its third year.

Board service and management – WICT NY is the first board I ever served on, and it laid a solid foundation of knowledge and experience for other board opportunities.  Today, I serve as a trustee of a university as well as a global missions and humanitarian nonprofit organization.  And, of course, I’m building my own board for the FUTURE NOW Media Foundation, which include members of WICT.

Leadership and management skills – WICT NY’s programs have helped me to grow and hone my executive leadership and management skills, and has been the main source of my professional training in a ‘formal’ setting.  I wish I had actually joined WICT at the beginning of my career.  It would have helped me navigate my journey with more knowledge and confidence.

Community and support – I have been involved with WICT for more than 10 years, and I have made lifelong friends through the organization.  My tribe.  The FUTURE NOW Media & Entertainment Conference is a direct outcome of these relationships.  Friends and colleagues from WICT NY have joined as speakers, mentors, and volunteers to give back and help build future leaders coming into the business.

Above all, WICT NY is great because of the people and the leadership who serves the members of the organization and sets the tone and atmosphere to fulfill its mission.  I am a better leader, manager, negotiator, connector, speaker, and mentor because of the amazing women and men of WICT NY.  My heartfelt thanks to all who serve on the board, the committees and volunteers, who make this organization what it is.  You are the best.