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Lunching with the ladies got me thinking

I looked across at one of the head tables Friday afternoon at the Salvation Army’s Shoe Strut event in East Pennsboro Township. Half of the women there had been featured in our monthly Women in Leadership newsletter.

They’ve shared their stories: Helping to empower women, giving back to the community, facing the challenge of running a business, offering advice on mentorship and leadership.

They represent what is working with women leaders in the midstate. They were in good company at the fundraiser. Hundreds of women leaders attended.

Shoes and shopping

The annual fundraiser benefits the Salvation Army Harrisburg. It combined women’s favorites: fundraising, shopping and shoes: Areas that women are very familiar with. But mostly, it was fun.

We cheered those walking the cat walk.

We saw some pretty amazing shoes.

And, yes, we laughed at some god-awful ones too. Seriously, one pair had actual lips on them. (BTW, those shoes won the “What Was I Thinking” category.)

At my own table, I sat with women I have never met before. Between bites of salad and risotto, we were sharing stories about what we do for a living and what brought us to shoe strut. All of us were newbies to the event. Claudia Williams introduced us to probably one of the best September afternoons we are going to see in a long time.

The event represented all that was good about women leaders. They give. They care and they are willing to help. They also like to laugh.

Many thanks

The event also got me thinking. Women tend to naturally want to share their experiences, and good leaders want to lift one another along in their journey.

It reminds me why the Women in Leadership newsletter has been such a success for the midstate.

Women who have been profiled in our newsletter are honest and open about their life stories. And those life stories help others along the way – real experiences with the filters removed.

So this column is a thank you to those who have shared their stories, helping others along the way.

In this issue

Young leaders for the Duck Donuts franchise share what it’s like to be young and in charge. I was impressed with the poise shown by Marissa DiGilio and Allie Wagner during our many interviews. We are in good hands with this crew.

Marcia Dale Weary is an icon in the ballet world and she grows ballet leaders in our backyard. It’s been 60 years since she opened her Carlisle ballet studio, and she still teaches dozens of students each week.

Ever hear about Nuts About Granola? A York millennial has helped to grow that company. Homework and research are key to her success.

Have a Women in Leadership story to share? I would love to hear from you. You can reach me via email: cathyh@cpbj.com. 

Cathy Hirko
Cathy Hirko is Associate Publisher/Editorial Director for the Central Penn Business Journal and Lehigh Valley Business. Email her at chirko@bridgetowermedia.com.

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