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July 2012 Newsletter
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In This Issue
President's Corner

EWTG July Mini Course Announcement

EWTG July Luncheon Announcement
EWTG... Educating, Enlightening, and Empowering Women!
Nominate the 2012 Woman of the Year
Austin Tidbits for Summer 2012
June Mini-Course Recap
June Luncheon Recap
May Luncheon Recap
New and Renewing Members
Quick Links
Quarterly Scholarships
EWTG scholarships are awarded on a quarterly basis to those wanting an opportunity for professional advancement or personal growth. All interested members are encouraged to apply; financial need is not a factor. Take a moment to treat yourself to a course you have been putting off or a conference you would love to attend.
Guidelines for qualifying for a scholarship and applications are available on the EWTG website at The Scholarship Committee will accept applications for this quarter until 5:00 p.m. on September 30, 2012. 
EWTG Board Meetings
The EWTG Board holds its monthly meetings at the Carver Library in Austin on the third Wednesday of each month from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The agenda for each meeting will be posted on EWTG's website by noon on the Monday before the meeting.
A summary of the board meeting minutes is also posted on the website.

Kathryn Harris, Editor
Communications Director

Committee Volunteers Needed 
Please look over the Committee Descriptions on the EWTG website and consider becoming more active in the organization.
Participating on a committee is a great way to support EWTG, learn new skills and to meet other interesting executive women. As with so many things, "the more you give, the more you get."
Follow EWTG on Twitter
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Twitter is a free service that lets you keep in touch with people or organizations through the exchange of quick, short messages. Go to to sign up and start receiving EWTG's updates.
July 2012
President's Corner - July 2012 
Carolyn J. Fry, President 

Carolyn J. Fry

"Invest in Yourself" ... Three little words that can have a big impact! 

These three little words can be so encouraging and empowering, but it’s what you do with them that will make a difference! Have you stopped multi-tasking long enough to think about what you are doing on a daily basis for yourself? If you have, I bet you realize that when you devote time to improving yourself or even allowing yourself a break… it affects you, those around you, your quality of life and your career.
Invest in your health… so that you feel better physically! Eat the right foods, exercise, get enough sleep, and take a few moments just to “chill,” or do what ‘grounds’ you and rejuvenates you.
Invest in your finances… invest the time to understand your finances! Then you can give to others, and yes, give to yourself! Consider setting aside monthly funds for a long term investment or maybe even a short term investment.
Invest in your career… pursue continuing education! Think about what tools you have in your toolbox and how you can learn more, develop new or existing skills to advance your career, and always build your personal and professional network!
I am not saying to become “self centered” in an arrogant way, but become “self centric” so that you feel good about yourself. When you feel good about yourself, you feel and look better and exude confidence in your actions and decisions. Often this will allow you to be proactive rather than reactive to situations, which is key in the changing economy and today’s workplace. You will find those moments of “peacefulness” to simply be still, reflect and relax. Why is this important? So that you can be happier!
So, you may be wondering, “This is an EWTG newsletter and where is she going with this?” EWTG provides its members with professional development opportunities all year ‘round to give everyone the chance to “Invest in Yourself.” After all, having a career that you enjoy is an awesome goal to attain and wonderful place to be!
If you are receiving this EWTG newsletter, CONGRATULATIONS, you’ve already taken the first step towards investing in yourself simply by joining EWTG! Let’s take a look at what EWTG offers to help you invest in yourself even more:
You really can’t beat our membership dues: $50 annual dues for state employees and employees of higher education, $100 dues for public (governmental entities)/private members and $25 dues for retirees.
EWTG hosts monthly professional development luncheons held at the Austin Woman’s Club with a luncheon keynote to members at $20 (non-members $25).
EWTG hosts monthly informal training Mini-Courses at the Carver Library at no cost but you can opt to purchase pizza, salad, and bottled water for $10.
EWTG throughout the year offers the following opportunities for FREE or with a minimal charge to members: 
  • Mentoring and peer support through Executive Success Team (EST) membership;
  • Polishing your leadership skills by participating on a volunteer committee;
  • Joining other members and friends for educational events;
  • Volunteering for a Community Service activity;
  • Connecting with other members at membership socials; and,
  • The opportunity to apply for scholarships which provide financial support for formal education and training courses.
And the benefits of membership don’t stop there!  Each November, EWTG offers our Annual Professional Development Conference with a discounted rate for early registration and an additional discounted rate for EWTG members. (See Tanya’s article in this newsletter for more conference details!)
EWTG provides endless opportunities for you to invest in yourself; you can’t refute the Return on Investment you can achieve with EWTG on your side!

July 11th Mini-Course: Investment Basics Featuring
Grenata Vessel, Education Counselor, Texa$aver Program and Great-West Retirement Services

By: Connie Williams, Mini-Course Director
Would you like to increase your knowledge of the investment options in the Texa$aver Program? Then attend the upcoming Investment Basics program to learn about the primary building blocks of investing and the tools available in your plan to help you invest for your future. Join us to learn the advantages of creating a diversified portfolio.
EWTG is pleased to have Great-West Retirement Services, one of our conference sponsors, to present our members with informative investment and financial options.
A native of Jasper, Texas, Grenata Vessel is known for her charismatic approach of relaying financial information to her clients. After completing her undergraduate degree at Sam Houston State University in General Business, she transitioned to Houston, Texas to begin her career in finance at JPMorgan Chase Bank. On the week of her one-year wedding anniversary, Grenata found herself moving away with her husband to a place that she had never even visited before: Denver, Colorado. Five years later, they found their way back to Texas through a career opportunity for her husband.
Grenata has ten years of financial services experience and is an Education Counselor for the Texa$aver Program, a position she has held for three years. She also holds an M.B.A. in Finance from Columbia Southern University. She is currently pursuing her CFP® (Certified Financial Planner) certification, is a board member of her home owners association, and participates in the local Junior Achievement chapter. Grenata has three children, who are all under age 5, and she enjoys using her spare time to rest or sing. She dreams of someday owning a nonprofit organization geared toward financial literacy.
The Mini-Course begins at 11:30 AM and the program begins at noon, ending promptly at 1:00 PM. The Mini-Course will be held at the Carver Branch Library, 1161 Angelina, eight blocks east of I-35 just off East 11th Street. EWTG will provide terrific pizza, loads of fresh green salad, dessert, and drinks for $10, or you can bring your own lunch. RSVP here to ensure you get both a chair and lunch. Cancellations for the pizza must be received 24 hours prior to the event to receive a refund for pizza orders.
Make a commitment to increase your executive skills by attending every EWTG mini-course! They are held on the second Wednesday of each month through October. The mini-courses provide benefits to your organization including better trained leaders, teams, and a commitment to organizational excellence. EWTG mini-courses and luncheons may also count toward state employees’ annual training hours. When you register, click the specified box to receive a certificate of attendance. You will enjoy a catered meal with friends and colleagues while building a new portfolio of enhanced skills.

July 25th Luncheon Speaker:  Karen Kennard, City Attorney for the City of Austin

By: Denice Bettencourt, Program Director
EWTG welcomes Karen Kennard, City Attorney for the City of Austin, as the July 25th Luncheon Keynote Speaker. Karen received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Southern Methodist University and a law degree from Texas Tech University.
Karen was appointed to the position of City Attorney for the City of Austin in March 2011. She previously held the position of First Assistant City Attorney since 2004. Prior to working for the City of Austin Law Department, Karen had a distinguished career with the Texas Municipal League (TML), where she established herself as a leader in the organization. While at TML, she served in a number of positions providing legal guidance and analysis on issues impacting municipalities, developing legislative policy goals, and serving as a liaison to organizations, legislators, and the press. Before her career at TML, she served as assistant attorney for the City of Midland, Texas.
Karen is highly active in the Austin community and participates in promoting a range of issues. She is a strong believer in the power of education to improve lives and create a better community.
Register here to join EWTG member and friends for this insightful and dynamic program. The luncheon is held at the Austin Woman’s Club at 708 San Antonio Street (ample, free parking is available off of Nueces). Networking begins at 11:30 a.m. and lunch – a delicious entrée, salad, vegetables, rolls, dessert, tea, and coffee - will be served at 11:45 a.m. The program starts at noon and concludes at 1:00 p.m. The cost is $20 for EWTG members and $25 for guests.

EWTG... Educating, Enlightening, and Empowering Women! 

By: Tanya Skaarup, Vice-President
As you already know, Embassy Suites - Hotel, Spa and Conference Center in San Marcos is the host facility for our 2012 EWTG Professional Development Conference. We are pleased to announce more details related to this exciting annual leadership conference.
This year’s conference theme is “EWTG... Educating, Enlightening, and Empowering Women!” In today’s economy and market, these are more than just words – they are the key to realizing your goals, personal or professional – or both! If and when implemented, the skills and tools shared at the conference breakout workshop sessions can be essential to opening doors and reaching your full potential.
Now for some specifics regarding the Conference and what your 2012 Conference Committee Chairs have been working on in preparation for November 4th & 5th!
We are proud to announce the 2012 Annual Conference website went ‘live’ in late June. If you haven’t seen all the details, check out the 2012 Annual Conference website. You will find updated information about the new conference facility and the 2012 Sponsor Levels, the Call for Presenters, information about exhibiting at the conference, and details on the Silent Auction.
Be sure to note all of the timelines if you (or someone you know) are interested in Donating, Exhibiting, and/or Presenting at this year’s conference. Since the conference is two weeks earlier this year than in previous years, the deadlines have changed, too.
With the change in the location, you will notice EWTG has negotiated some concessions for our conference attendees, such as:
• No increase to the Conference Registration Fees
- Early–Bird Registration begins 8/1
- Conference Registration ends 10/26
• Negotiated Room Block available 11/3-11/6
• Rates from $109/single occupancy - $129/four-person occupancy – reservation deadline 10/13
• 15% off Spa Services at Embassy Suites
• Complimentary Shuttle Service to/from Tanger Outlet Malls (Saturday & Sunday as needed)
• Free surface lot parking for conference attendees
• Considering chartered shuttle bus for carpoolers
2012 Conference Committee Chairs Contact Information: 
Conference Evaluation Committee - Alta Alexander, Chair
Conference Exhibits Committee - Laure McLaughlin, Chair
Conference Facilities Committee - Jennifer Buaas, Chair
Conference Programs Committee - Karen Howard, Chair
Conference Registration Committee - Mercie Zapata, Chair
Conference Resolutions Committee - Jennifer Dormer, Chair
Conference Silent Auction Committee - Katrina Burch, Chair
Vice-President and Conference Chair - Tanya Skaarup


Nominate the 2012 Woman of the Year

By: Liza Chen Wilmore, Public Relations Director
The EWTG Woman of the Year Award is open for nominations, which are due by September 1, 2012. Nomination forms can be found at under the ABOUT US tab.
Please consider nominating one of your EWTG colleagues for Woman of the Year. She is a woman who has always done an above-the-bar job and always lends a hand to those around her. You may know her personally or professionally; either way, she is a symbol of leadership, empowerment, and friendship.
(Carol Lauder, 2011 Woman of the Year)
These are the areas in which she will be evaluated:
I. EWTG Participation
II. Career Accomplishments
III. Community Involvement
IV. Educational Accomplishments
V. Overall Leadership Characteristics
For a full description of these criteria, please look online and then nominate an EWTG woman you'd like to honor! Questions can be sent to the EWTG Public Relations Director at
Austin Tidbits for Summer 2012
By: Kathryn Harris, Communications Director
Austin does a great job of keeping its residents busy during the hot summer months. From the Fourth of July fireworks display over the downtown skyline to the various Greenbelt locations boasting water this year, summertime in Austin brings a smile and a sense of nostalgia to this native Austinite. Some summertime recommendations to keep you cool and active…
Zilker Theatre Productions is an Austin tradition that dates back to 1959. Broadway musicals are performed under the stars on the Sheffield Hillside Theatre, with families and friends sharing picnics while sprawled on blankets. This summer brings my mom’s favorite musical to town – The Sound of Music! Stop by Whole Foods or Kentucky Fried Chicken for your meal and get to the park in time to nab a good spot on the hillside. You can put your blanket down as early as 6:30 pm, then head over for a swim in Barton Springs before the show begins at 8:30 pm. Showings run from July 6 – August 12, Thursdays – Saturdays. For more information, visit

The Paramount Theatre offers an air-conditioned alternative with the 37th Annual Summer Classic Film Series. From “Martinis and Manicures and Breakfast at Tiffany’s” to “Bond Week,” there is something for everyone during this year’s Paramount Film Series. For showtimes and information, check out their website.
Shady Grove restaurant and 93.3 KGSR radio station host “Unplugged at the Grove” every Thursday night through September at Shady Grove. Musicians perform on a stage as listeners pull up chairs on the patio or blankets on the lawn. The talent ranges from up-and-coming to established, and is always on key. Additional details can be found here.
Stay hydrated, and enjoy!


June 13th Mini-Course Recap:  Leadership Jeopardy!

Presenter:  Audrey Selden, J.D.
By: Connie Williams, Mini-Course Director
The audience was highly inspired and empowered with the intelligence, wisdom, wit, and warm-heartedness of Audrey Selden. She is on a mission to encourage others to access their potential so they can grow in their personal and professional lives.
Audrey began by sharing her following ingenious leadership philosophy, as symbolized by M&Ms® candy:
1st M - Master your Work: Audrey learned about this “M” in her Leadership Texas experience. She shared that it’s important to be engaged, to study, to research, and to seek new opportunities. Expose yourself to new opportunities by volunteering for new projects or by seeking project management training.
2nd M - Model the Behavior: You have to be about who you say you are. When a person is in a leadership position, others mimic what they see. If they see the leader being compassionate or helpful, they will most likely be that way too.
3rd M - Mind your Matters: It’s important to say the following: “Please,” “Thank you,” “No Sir,” “No Ma’am,” “Yes,” “No,”, and “Please help me.” If you remember this, it will resonate with people.
4th M - Mentor Others: Leadership Texas, like EWTG, is really about helping women develop. We continue to see Leadership Texas (LT) and EWTG helping one another. Audrey shared that we can “mentor-up” with peers as well as mentor down; leaders need help, too. Her LT experiences taught her that she could be mentored by someone in another city and another discipline and still have an enriching experience.
5th M - Moments for Me: It’s important to slow down. If we keep giving…giving…and giving, we are going to get spent.
Audrey also shared information about Leadership Texas, which is a five-city, year-long program. She explained that it’s about spending time on you by becoming more educated, having more experiences, and learning about five Texas cities and their communities. The program is in its 30th year and will have an Anniversary Celebration in Dallas on November 17, 2012. For detailed information about the 2013 Leadership Texas class program and other Women Resources’ programs, please visit the website at:
The application deadline for the 2013 Leadership Texas class is November 2, 2012. There are scholarship opportunities for applicants, including the EWTG Scholarship. The EWTG Scholarship deadline for the 3rd Quarter is September 30, 2012. Please visit the EWTG website at for Scholarship information.
Toward the end of her presentation, Audrey delighted the audience in a game of “Leadership Jeopardy!” We formulated our responses in the form of questions about EWTG, Leadership Texas, and the Five M&M’s.
As always, thank you for attending and supporting the EWTG Mini-Courses!

June 27th Luncheon Recap: 
Wilhelmina Delco - Leader, Legislator, Educator


By: Denice Bettencourt, Program Director
Wilhelmina Delco joined EWTG for the Monthly Luncheon on June 27th, and began her presentation by pointing out that women need to be aware of what’s going on. Women must earn a living and each day is a challenge. Mrs. Delco has a husband, four children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, and she, too, has had many challenges. She discussed the fact that women face many pressures which come from those around us including parents, peers, children, spouses, and significant others. Women are survivors! Women can be successful if they are confident and comfortable with themselves. Mrs. Delco stresses the important of presence because you can’t talk about your issues from a distance. Having your voice heard gives you an opportunity to make a difference. 
Education has been Delco’s life-long passion and one that has driven her political career. While fundraising with other parents to benefit their children’s education, the parents were asked to pay a fee for the use of the school building. This motivated Delco to enter politics. She ran for and was elected to the Austin School Board. She was not the first African American to run for school board but she was the first elected. Mrs. Delco recalls that the election was two days after Martin Luther King’s assassination, which may have helped her victory. She launched a campaign for the Texas House in District 50 because she felt that Austin needed presence at the state legislative level. She was the first African American to be elected to the state legislature from Travis County and served from 1974 to 1995, chairing the House Higher Education Committee until she was appointed Speaker Pro Tempore in 1991.
Mrs. Delco remains a strong voice for education. As a founding member of the Austin Community College Board, she helped develop a community college in Austin because she feels that community colleges provide students with flexibility and affordability which benefit everyone. Delco also chaired the Board of Trustees at Huston-Tillotson University and serves as an adjunct professor in the Community College Leadership Program at the University of Texas. 
Delco told the audience, “All of you have something to offer and the state government needs you.” It is up to you to be all that you can be. You don’t have to explain or apologize for who you are - you are the role models for the younger adults. Speaking of role models, Mrs. Delco now swims at the YMCA’s East Community Pool for an hour every day. She swam 29 laps before making her luncheon presentation to the EWTG members and friends at the Luncheon. You may recall her swimsuit photo on the cover of Austin Woman Magazine in 2009.
How do you be the best of you? Mrs. Delco’s guidelines are the five “Bs”:
(1) Bible. The Bible is a moral compass and a guide for you to know what is right and wrong. 
(2) Books. Books provide access to information that you need. You need to be prepared and know how to access knowledge. 
(3) Ballot.  Women need to respect those who fought for the right to vote. You need to research issues and be an informed voter. Your vote can make a difference!
(4) Bucks. Everything costs something. Prioritize your spending and invest financially on issues important to you.
(5) Brotherhood. We are all one family. She cautioned against stereotyping. It can be an enriching opportunity to know somebody different than yourself.
Mrs. Delco ended with these words of wisdom: have faith in yourself.

May 23rd Luncheon Recap: Anne Pritchard Grady, President of Acclivity Performance - "Leading Without Authority: Success Strategies that get Results"       

By: Denice Bettencourt, Program Director
Anne Pritchard Grady is the president of Acclivity Performance. For more than fifteen years, she has helped lead organizations and leverage the strengths of individuals and teams. She holds a master’s degree in organizational communication. She is a nationally recognized speaker and consultant who helps guide organizations toward changes that build teamwork, increase productivity, and reduce stress. Through her work with a diverse array of companies, not-for-profits, government agencies, and individuals, she has developed a unique ability to implement solutions for the real issues we face today. It is the candor with which she draws from her personal experiences combined with her humor and wit that set Ms. Grady apart from the rest. Her role as a mother to a special needs child has fundamentally shaped her perspectives, her outlook, and her professional message.
At the May EWTG Luncheon, Ms. Grady pointed out that the greatest difference between leadership and management is that while management is denoted by title, leadership is an art and may be demonstrated at any level in the organization. Over 90 percent of leadership occurs from the middle, not the top, of the organization. The difference between successful and REALLY successful people is the ability to influence others to action. While there is no magic formula for success, Ms. Grady provided helpful strategies that get results. 
       Exhibit leadership skills regardless of management level.
       Lead people through change rather than push them through change.
       Set, track, and measure goals and success.
       Focus on strengths, not weaknesses.
       Stay motivated and energized.
       Develop strategies versus just being reactive.
       Be aware of different perspectives.
       Understand communication styles of self and others.
       Develop communication strategies.
       Identify team dynamics and how to provide most value to team.
       Focus on high payoff activities.
       Eat that frog! (from Brian Tracy - avoid procrastinating)
       Spend more time on things that make a difference.
       Develop lifelong habit of tackling major tasks first.
       We find what we are looking for.
       Decide what you want.
       Regain control and focus.
       Stop before you react.
       Assume that people have the best of intentions.
       Have a slight edge.
       Make subtle change and do the new behavior repeatedly.
Click here for Anne Pritchard Grady’s accompanying PowerPoint presentation. Subscribe to a weekly motivational email, check out Ms. Grady’s blog, or sign up for a training and development session at If you want to contact Anne Pritchard Grady, you can reach her at, 512.821.1111, P. O. Box 5815, Round Rock TX 78683. 
New and Renewing Members 
June 2012
New Members
Lauren Allen, Texas Department of Public Safety
Susan Holman, Texas Department of State Health Services
Caryn Kirk, Texas Department of State Health Services
Cynthia Olivier, Travis County
L'Tanya Richardson, Texas Department of State Health Services
Renewing Members
Deborah Arellano, Texas Workforce Commission
Vivian Brandt, Texas Department of State Health Services
Katrina Burch, State Comptroller's Office
Donna Clay, Texas Department of Information Resources
Sherri Conner, Texas Department of State Health Services
Sandra L. Crow, Texas Department of State Health Services
Regina Durden, Office of the Attorney General
Betty Flores, Texas Department of State Health Services
Sylvia Hood, Texas Department of State Health Services
Veronica Inchauste, University of Texas at Austin
Krista Julian, Texas Workforce Commission
Rosa Lehman, Texas Department of State Health Services
Jebron McCue, Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services-Retired
Stephanie Nestlerode, Omega Point Int. Inc.
Brenda Parnell, State Comptroller's Office
Erin Prather Stafford, UT Southwestern Medical Center
Taya Retterer, Texas Department of Transportation
Liz Richardson, Texas Department of State Health Services
Lisa Routon, Texas Department of State Health Services
Ashley Schweickart, Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs
Gerda Sessions, Texas Department of Information Resources
Susan K. Steeg, Texas Department of Health
Cheryl Taylor, Texas Department of State Health Services
Raquel Vogt, State Comptroller's Office
Velvet Webb, Texas Department of State Health Services
Lynn Whitten, Department of Information Resources
Mercie Zapata, Texas Department of Information Resources




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