Article orginally published by InBusiness Phoenix
It was a day filled with anticipation as super heroes came together from all areas of the Valley and covered the room with strength, laughter and excitement. More than 100 members of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), Phoenix Chapter, and their guests recently celebrated the success of the past year and recognized the “super hero” contributions of its members.
Local media personality Heidi Fogelsong served as emcee and kept the excitement going for the recent NAWBO 2016 Desert Diamonds Awards Gala.
“All of our members are ‘super heroes’ in my eyes for all they do throughout the year to support our chapter and other women in business,” says Nancy Sanders, 2015-16 NAWBO Phoenix President. “The anticipation turned into special moments of celebration as companies and individuals were honored with the 2016 Desert Diamonds Awards.”
Corporate Partner of the Year: Splash Printing & Marketing.
Fostering economic growth and the stability of women-owned businesses on a local or higher level is a priority for Splash Printing & Marketing. Splash supports the Phoenix NAWBO Chapter through financial contributions, advisory functions, and in-kind services.
Bridge Builder: Jackie Wszalek, Splash Printing & Marketing.
Wszalek is a past president of the Phoenix Chapter and served as Chair of the Women Entrepreneur’s Small Business Boot Camp this year. When attending any event outside of NAWBO, her “superhero antenna” is always on the lookout for potential Corporate Partners and new members. Wszalek is involved in community outreach activities, identifies and creates new alliances or partnerships that promote NAWBO’s mission, and works in a spirit of collaboration.
Unsung Hero: Connie Zimmerlich, Click Chick Photography.
Zimmerlich most recently served as the Chair of Neighborhood NAWBO. She has been involved with the Mentoring Program for the last five years, served on the Membership Committee and the Board of Directors, assisted with registration and membership tables at luncheons and events this year, regularly attends NAWBO events, participates as a raffle donor, and is a trusted advisor.
Spirit of NAWBO Sisterhood: Clarisse Ringwald, Clarisse Color Creations, LLC.
Ringwald was involved on the Boot Camp, Membership and Special Events committees. She served as Co-Chair for Scottsdale Neighborhood NAWBO, was a presenter for NAWBO University, and she provides her time and talents to her NAWBO sisters regarding their personal branding and styling.
Member of the Year: Kristin Slice, Empowered Lab Communications.
Slice served on the NAWBO Phoenix Board and Chaired the Programs Committee and Sustainability Committee; she serves on the NAWBO National Presidents Assembly Steering Committee; and she represents NAWBO Phoenix in collaborating with community partners and other organizations in the Valley. Slice regularly attends NAWBO Phoenix luncheon programs and is a super hero for the organization.
Business Owner of the Year: Paula Wittekind, CDQ Learning for Results, LLC.
CDQ Learning has been in business for more than 15 years. The biggest challenges for Wittekind have been surviving two economic downturns, overcoming the trap of working in the business rather than on the business, managing a growing staff, and building a more extensive client base. She believes the core values, training development process, overall client experience, and project results differentiate CDQ Learning from others in the industry. For the Phoenix NAWBO Chapter, Wittekind has been instrumental in further developing and refining the Mentoring Program and she served as Board Secretary this year.
Companies and individuals were nominated by members and then members voted to determine the top finalists in each category. Finalists were judged by representatives from other NAWBO Chapters.
Three other super heroes were recognized for outstanding service. “In addition to the Desert Diamonds Awards, I presented Presidential Awards to three members who provided extra help and support to me as their president and to our organization,” Sanders says. “These three are super heroes in their own right: Phaedra Earhart of Farmers Insurance, Kristin Slice of Empowered Lab Communications and Jody Owen, Business Transformation Catalyst. Each gave above and beyond in their service to our organization and deserved every bit of this recognition.
“With gratitude, the Phoenix Metro Chapter would like to thank our major sponsors of this year’s Desert Diamonds Awards for their contribution for an incredible event– CopperPoint Mutual Insurance Company and Arizona Fire & Water Restoration,” Sanders adds.
NAWBO is an organization that works to: strengthen the wealth-creating capacity of its members and promote economic development; create innovative and effective changes in the business culture; build strategic alliances, coalitions, and affiliations; and transform public policy and influence opinion makers. For more information about the Phoenix Metro Chapter, founded in 1985, visit www.nawbophx.org .