Who We Are
With impressive background work and roughly 15 years in nonprofit work, Alison Martin-Books has a passion for doing work that makes a difference in the lives of others.
After serving as Executive Director at two different national nonprofit organizations, her commitment to her passion for developing female talent led her launch Mentoring Women’s Network and the Mentoring Women’s Network Foundation. She is also the author of the book, “Landing on My Feet: Learning to Lead Through Mentoring” and speaks regularly on behalf of the organization. Contact Alison today!
After years of working closely with powerful leaders, Nic realized how instrumental their inspiration and guidance had been in her own professional journey. Nic has been able to take her passion for women in leadership and empowering others, to her role as VP of Partnerships and Member Relations.
Nic is your go-to for learning more about how to make the most of your mentoring program. Don’t be fooled by Nic’s British accent, while she enjoys relaxing with a good cup of hot tea in hand, she is a go getter with the energy that is required to lead women to programs that will change the trajectory of the professional path.
A native of the United Kingdom, has lived in the United States for 18 years. When she is not working for the Mentoring Women’s Network Foundation, she is managing two up and coming Women future leaders at home, age 10 and 6. Contact Nic today!
As a founder of a non-profit, author, and motivational speaker, Samantha harbors deep passion for giving back to the world through inspiration and motivation. Her journey, thus far, has led her to the wonderful opportunity of working for Mentoring Women’s Network as the Program Facilitator for the collegiate market. Samantha values the notion of leveraging opportunity for women in the workplace and hopes to make a difference by helping women live their full potential through mentoring relationships.
With a high-energy and persistent personality, Samantha will be developing the collegiate market in order to utilize the resources that Mentoring Women’s Network has to offer women of all ages. While harboring and maintaining relationships are at the top of her agenda, Samantha is up to the challenge of wearing different hats and trying new things- perhaps even skydiving one day! Contact Samantha today!
Dr. Elcira Villarreal was born in Colon, Republic of Panama. She received her B.S. and M.S. degrees from the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas and received a Ph.D. in Microbiology from Oregon State University. She spent more than 25 years in advanced roles in the pharmaceutical industry and has a passion for sharing her knowledge and experience to help advance other women leaders. In her role, she consults with organizations to align strategies to support this. Contact Elcira today!
Meet Kendra Wilburn, Cincinnati Market Director. Kendra Wilburn, MBA, CEC – is a leadership and organizational development specialist with an extensive background in Employee Engagement, Corporate Training, Adult Learning Theory, i.e. active learning, recruiting, and one – on- one coaching. In addition she is a Certified Executive Coach, through Miami University, who works with individuals in helping them reach their personal and professional goals as well as with organizations to make the most of their human capital. Kendra is passionate that people should be the best that they can be, in whatever career field or life path they choose.
Kendra has over 16 years of training and leadership development experience and has spent the last 7 years as an entrepreneur. As a Consultant, Kendra is skilled at Recruiting and Retention, Employee Engagement, Corporate Training (Research, Development, Design and Delivery) Team Development and One-on-One Coaching. Contact Kendra today!
Meet Dottie Gandy, Dallas Market Director. Dottie is the founder of The Up to Something Group in Dallas, TX, whose members choose to be intentional about designing the lives they want – and create extraordinary results in the process. She was the regional director for the Franklin Covey Company in Dallas, and continued her relationship with that organization for more than 20 years.
An avid supporter of women in business, Dottie was a co-founder of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO). She was also a corporate executive for 10 years with Giant Food, Inc. in Washington, D.C., a Fortune 500 food retailer, where she administered 16 of the company’s labor contracts.
Dottie is a native Texan, with a B.A. in Communications from Baylor University. She currently resides in Fairview, Texas. Although much of her adult life was spent in Washington, D. C., she returned to Texas in 1991 to marry her college sweetheart, Tom Gandy. Dottie has two daughters, one stepson, and four extraordinary grandchildren.
Toni Widman is the CEO of Women’s Executive Search Group. An industry expert with more than 20 years of successful experience in full life cycle Recruiting and Business Development, Toni Widman has a proven ability to foster relationships with C-Suite and senior executives in the Financial, Healthcare, Manufacturing, Non Profit and Retail Industries.
Toni co-founded Women’s Executive Search, an Executive search firm specializing in placement of Executives (including Presidents, CFOs, CEOs, COO’s Division Presidents, VPs of Operations, and Director level positions) in a variety of Industries. She has successfully completed hundreds of successful searches, helping professionals grow and advance in their careers.
Toni offers both clients and candidates exceptional professional service, absolute confidentiality, and the most ethical values in executive search. For almost 20 years, Toni has guided the careers of many candidates; helping them with their career transitions. Toni has developed an exceptional background in people and project management and a professional style based on excellent interpersonal communications and has an ability to make the best use of her personal network.
An accomplished professional with more than 30 years of experience, Leigh has a varied background working for Fortune 100s, non-profit organizations and the public sector. Leigh is a ‘connector’ with the proven ability to develop relationships with all types of people of all ages in diverse professions and all walks of life. Leigh’s excellent listening and communication skills help her create structure out of chaos, ultimately achieving buy-in and creating success for everyone. Leigh received her BBA in Marketing Management from the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) and her MEd in Human Resource Development from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University. She has stayed very active in civic and professional organizations on the local, district and national levels. Leigh has served as a keynote speaker, session leader, and facilitator for workshops and seminars in many cities and more than 70 college and university campuses in North America, including numerous state and national conferences. Her topics have included team building, effectively utilizing personality profiles, incorporating change, managing volunteers and annual giving. Contact Leigh today!
Marietta began her career 23 years ago in pharmaceutical sales. She grew into leadership positions in clinical trial operations and medical affairs, and along the way earned her MBA from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business.
She works with hi-potential professionals who want to design powerful career experiences and close the gap between where they are today and where they want to be in the future. She helps you think differently about your communication, leadership and career opportunities. Clients describe her as passionate, energetic, highly motivating, authentic and makes you think.
A teacher and coach at heart, she serves as Adjunct Faculty at Butler University where she teaches Leadership in the MPA program, and Kelley School of Business EMBA program where she teaches Strategic Career Management to evening MBA students. Contact Marietta today!
As a speaker, coach and author, Lin teaches a thinking technology that changes perspectives and increases results. For over 10 years, Lin has worked with individuals, groups, spiritual communities, business owners and sales people, helping them build their dreams, accelerate their results, and create richer, more fulfilling lives.
Named to internationally acclaimed Moody’s 50 Favorite People of 2012, Lin is the author of two upcoming books and a contributor to the groundbreaking collaborative work 50 Seeds of Greatness.
In addition to being a certified coach, Lin is a certified conflict resolution trainer and Healthy Congregations facilitator, has a B.A. in Religion, an MBA, and has had a successful career in sales, non-profit management and coaching. Lin is a recognized speaker on topics from sales and networking success to creating lives of balance and prosperity.
As a sought after life and sales coach, Lin offers inspiring workshops to sold-out audiences as well as transformational in-depth coaching programs that help clients achieve the perspective of possibility and new levels of success.
Christine has nearly 30 years of business experience, including coaching, training, recruiting, and sales. Working in Corporate America for both public and private organizations, she has a deep understanding of the value of and need for mentoring of women who are navigating the corporate waters from individual contributor to leader. Christine brings thousands of hours of mentoring, coaching, training, and relationship building experience, as well as life experience wherein she values authenticity, self-expression, learning, and growth.
As co-owner of FocalPoint Business Coaching and Nast Partners, she coaches business owners, executives, and employees who want to reach the next level of their professional lives and grow their businesses. She also facilitates workshops on topics like Improving Team Communication and Efficiency using DiSC, Emotional Intelligence (EQi), Workplace Motivators (PIAV), and Strengths Essentials. Additionally, she provides sales training to teams and individuals applying the Sales Skill Index (SSI).
Christine holds a BA in Literature and Writing Studies from California State University – San Marcos and is a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC) through the ICF accredited Coaches Training Institute (CTI). A newlywed, Christine enjoys spending time with her new husband, playing tennis, going to the theatre, and cooking. Contact Christine today!
Carol McHuron of Pacific Resources Education Programs, Inc. (PREP) is nationally recognized for her work in the fields of Organizational Development, Diversity and Inclusion and Execution Management For more than 20 years Carol has worked with organizations to promote and sustain cultures that support full utilization of their workforce, and to address the needs of their diverse clients and customers. Carol’s work experience includes nationwide consultation with Fortune 500 and 100 companies, and non-profits. Some of her clients include: Wells Fargo, McKesson, Sara Lee, Amgen, TVA, Buick Motor Division, Lockheed Martin, East Bay Mud, and Spirit Rock Meditation Center. She works with organizations to develop an overall plan, and collaborates with leadership to establish execution management as an organizational competency. She then designs and facilitates workshops, coaches leaders, managers, and employees to help achieve specific goals and fulfill educational or training needs. Some examples include workshops and coaching on diversity and inclusion, team building, effective communication, and conflict resolution. Carol is a clear and empathetic communicator with the ability to get people to see other perspectives for the benefit of the team. She carefully creates the space for transformational shifts in her clients. Contact Carol today!
Marla’s extensive experience as a senior executive has fed her passion in developing and furthering the careers of women. Her career as a Regional Vice President at Giant Food Inc., a Fortune 500 food retailer, has given her the tools and expertise in coaching, mentoring, and guiding women in the advancement of their own careers.
Her diverse business background coupled with her passion for helping others has given her a depth of understanding about the development of women in the workforce as well as their personal development.
Marla’s innovative leadership and communication affords a unique approach in helping others actualize their potential and success. Through her experience as a corporate consultant at the Partnering Group as well as her role as a motivational speaker in career development, Marla has developed an expansive skill set as an educator and mentor.
Marla is a graduate from the University of Maryland with a BS in Education and also a graduate from Cornell University’s business executive program. She currently resides in Washington D.C. with her husband and three daughters.
Madelyn spent the majority of her career as a Quality Assurance professional working for major retailers such as Lane Bryant, Sears, Montgomery Ward and Brylane where she developed and ran their quality control programs. After spending over 30 years in this field she switched to the non-profit world using her successful organizational skills in an administrative capacity. Madelyn is on the board of the Carmel Green Initiative and spends much of her time on her passion for helping the environment through educational programs in the community. Madelyn and her husband, John are avid cyclists. Contact Madelyn today!
Janie is the owner and principle business consultant for JR Waldron Consulting, LLC. She is a results driven, dedicated professional with more than 11 years of experience in corporate business. Janie has also recently taken on a new role as the Director for People and Culture Development for Ambassador Enterprises in Fort Wayne, IN.
Janie began her career in the retail industry working both in the field as an assistant store manager, store manager and as a corporate representative in the capacity of district market director for big box retailer Kohl’s Department Stores.
Janie is an active part of the Fort Wayne Chapter for Mentoring Women’s Network Foundation as Chairman of the Board and a board member for Goodwill Industries of Northeast Indiana, Inc. She is a certified mentor and focuses on mentoring women within the business community to support their growth both personally and professionally.
Janie earned a B.S. in Apparel, Merchandising and Business Management with a concentration in Marketing from Indiana State University.
Janie and Josh, her husband, reside in Fort Wayne, Indiana with their four children:
8 year old Isabelle and 4 year old triplets, Nolan, Nathan & Chloe.
Jillian Dahm helps bold leaders and entrepreneurs catapult their effectiveness to positively impact our world. With a call to employee engagement, she facilitates workshops working with teams to improve organizational cultures and strategies. As a certified professional coach with a background in managing an executive coaching firm and working in higher education, Jillian is sought out for her ability to get to the essence of an issue, enabling her clients and teams to develop their talents and uncover their best paths to success.
Jillian is the Chief People Officer (CPO) of Pure Ambition Consulting headquartered in Berkeley, CA. She currently lives and works with her organization to create more mindfulness in the workplace—bringing heart and passion forward in business. She is a trained Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC) through the esteemed Coaches Training Institute (CTI) and a certified practitioner of the MBTI instrument. Currently, Jillian is an adjunct faculty member for Purdue University at Indiana University—Purdue University Fort Wayne and serves on the Board of Mentoring Women’s Network for the nonprofit’s Fort Wayne chapter. Through her work and volunteer efforts, Jillian strives to empower others to achieve their dreams!