The 2013 Empowerment Grant recipients were:
Rachel Bowie, associate editor of digital editions for Good Housekeeping, will use the grant to participate in the BlogShop Bootcamp, an intensive Photoshop course designed to improve graphic design skills and enhance editorial content. "Having a visual eye in communications is more and more important," says Rachel, "as sites like Pinterest and Instagram continue to expand."
Erica A. Martell, principal of EAM Marketing, is a direct marketer who helps clients tell their stories in a powerful and succinct way. As NYWICI Director of Membership, she helped create greater awareness of member benefits and led initiatives to meet membership goals. Erica applied her Member Empowerment Grant funds to Landmark Worldwide's Communication Program in order to refine her management and communications skills with staff. She was inspired to apply for the grant when reading Brene Brown's "Daring Greatly," which empowered Erica to step out of her comfort zone and make a difference in her career ambitions.
Daylle Deanna Schwartz is a speaker, author and founder of the trademarked Self-Love Movement. Her grant will go toward coaching from Rory Kelly Connor. Rory's guidance will help Daylle create a plan to secure sponsorship and support for a video using the hit song "The Reason" by the rock band Hoobastank, promote self-love, initiate bigger sponsorship for her movement and expand its brand, and further develop the speaking side of Daylle's career.
Stephanie Scott, CEO of the PR and digital-marketing firm First and Last PR, plans to pursue a "mini-MBA" in social media marketing at Rutgers University using the grant. The certificate program, which has nine modules taught by industry experts, aims to connect business objectives with social media strategy, platforms and tactics.
Tammy Tibbetts used her grant to attend several sessions with a public speaking consultant whose coaching has been "absolutely transformational," according to Tammy. "She helped me with presentations to corporate sponsors, through which I've hit several home runs. She also left me with key lessons on how to win friends and influence people." Tammy is putting those lessons to good use to build the funding and support network for She's the First, a non-profit she started to sponsor girls' education in developing countries.
Deirdre Wyeth, principal of website company WyethMedia, has won nearly every award given by NYWICI and been a member of both the Operating and Foundation Boards. The funds from the latest acknowledgement from her colleagues will go toward securing a project management certificate from New York University and a PMP (Project Management Professional) designation from the Project Management Institute. "Having the certificate helps me explain what I do. Project management is an important part of creating websites-and allows me to charge more," says Deirdre. "Talk about empowerment!"
As told to Michelle Lodge