Print Page   |   Contact Us   |   Report Abuse   |   Sign In   |   Register
September 2014 Newsletter
Share |


September 2014

In This Issue

1. President's Corner
2. Board of Director Nominations 
3. Mini- Course
4. Annual Conference
5. Speed Networking
6. Executive Success Team
7. Ronald McDonald House
8. New and Renewing Members


Quick Links

EWTG Web Site

Board of Directors

Thank you 2013 Sponsors!

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 the 2014 third quarter until 5:00 p.m. on September 30, 2014.

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.

Tanya Skaarup, 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

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.


President's Corner

Fall into Action!

September marks a new year for most of us in state government.  New fiscal year, new ideas, and new activities!  Thank you to all the committee chairs who have worked tireless hours to provide the opportunities we will have for this Fall. 

When you see any of the following chairs, please give them a big thanks. This high speed and hard hitting Fall Season could not be possible without their ideas and time. 

This Fall starts out with a round of exciting events and news.

  1. Celebrate 30 years of EWTG at the 28th Annual Professional Development Conference. Registration is open, and we are headlining a top-leading lineup for this year with acclaimed keynote speakers and 36 skills development workshops. This year’s conference, “Building Careers and Developing Leaders,” will be captured by two dynamic keynotes.

    Ambassador Karen Hughes, Worldwide Vice Chair of Burson Marsteller
    one of the world’s foremost communications strategists 

    As a leader in several levels of government, Ambassador Hughes is an ideal mentor to provide personal insights on leadership and women’s empowerment garnered from her experiences in Texas, Washington, D.C. and around the world. 

    Amy Henry, the “last woman standing” on NBC’s first season of “The Apprentice” and author of What it Takes: Speak Up, Stand Up and Move Up.

    A formidable businesswoman who has spent more than 10 years working for leading technology companies shares her take on the modern day workplace and advice for moving ahead. Amy Henry's book has now been translated in six languages and is making an impact on young professionals across the world. 

  2. EST Fall Reception
    Make plans to reconnect with your mentors or bring in new ideas to the fold and join us at Symphony square on September 18.

  3. Speed Networking at the Capitol – October 7
    EWTG is hosting a private event for members at the Texas Capitol for those looking to learn about current government leaders' career paths and the advice and doors which have led them to their C-level positions. For more details, log in to with your membership ID and the location will be revealed!

As you see, it is a packed Fall for the next two months; I look forward to seeing you all! 

Liza C. Willmore
2014 EWTG President


EWTG 2015 Board of Director Nominations

Liza C. Willmore, President

It is that time of year when EWTG selects its new leadership to serve as members of next year’s board.  Connie Williams, 2007 EWTG President and 2013 EWTG Woman of the Year, is chairing the Nominating Committee for the 2015 EWTG Board of Directors.

If you are suggesting someone other than yourself, please get that person’s approval first.  Please remember that nominees must be full members in good standing.  Simply email your suggestion(s) by September 19, 2014 to

Formal Nominations:
If you would like to make a formal nomination to be included on the ballot, please submit a petition for the nomination signed by 15 members in good standing, due by mail on October 1, 2014 to EWTG at the following address: EWTG, P.O. Box 28413, Austin, TX 78755.

Corporate Bylaws Process

  • The corporate bylaws provide that the Nominating Committee present a recommended slate of candidates to the Board at its October meeting.
  • The list will indicate which candidates are recommended by the Nominating Committee and which candidates are recommended by petition.
  • If no candidates are recommended by petition, the slate is elected by acclamation.
  • If there are petition-recommended candidates, voting instructions and eligibility information for members will be published in the November 2014 newsletter.

You can find a description of the board officers’ duties on our website at the following link:  Serving on the Board is a great way to share your skills, talents, and knowledge to help our members while enhancing you personally and professionally!

Mini-Course Annoucement
September 10, 2014

The Other Side of Leadership
Power of Words - to inspire, to heal, to lead


Brain Francis
Deputy Executive Director
Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation
Poet & Coach of Neo Soul Slam Poetry Team of Austin, Texas

Brian Francis, Deputy Executive Director by day, poet by night; a man of many talents. Mr. Francis will guide the group in a session on how leaders use words to heal, lift, inspire, create, and release. As leaders, words carry the capacity to encourage growth or the ability to diminish the negative. Find out how you can use the power of words to motivate others and bring strength to your leadership. 

If you have ever drawn a blank when you pick up a pen, or would simply like to enhance your own art of speaking, don't miss Brian’s workshop! This will be an educational, enlightening and fun event!

About the Speaker Brian Francis:
Brian Francis joined the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation as the Deputy Executive Director on October 18, 1999, resuming a long working relationship with Bill Kuntz.

Prior to his appointment, Mr. Francis served as the Assistant Administrator of the Texas Real Estate Commission and as a Senior Securities Analyst at the State Securities Board. He started his public service at the Texas Savings and Loan Department.

He earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from Southwest Texas State University with a major in General Business and his Master of Business Administration from Saint Edward’s University with a concentration in Financial Management.

Brian Francis is the Deputy Executive Director of the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation by day and by night he is a poet with the Neo Soul Slam Poetry Team of Austin, TX.  He was a member of the 2006, 2008 and 2010 teams which went to the finals in the National Poetry Slam. He has been a coach of the Neo Soul Team for the past 3 years and has taken his team to the finals at the National Poetry Slam each year.  Brian holds writing workshops and has published several books of poetry and has two CD's of Spoken Word Poetry.  Brian’s most recently authored a book titled Write Now!!! It encourages future writers through journal prompts, writing exercises and word building practices.  

Cancellations must be received 24 hours prior to the event to receive a refund. 


EWTG 28th Annual Professional Development Conference

Early Bird Registration is Now Open!

Denise Pittard, Vice President & Conference Chair

Early-Bird Registration is now open for the 28th Annual EWTG Professional Development Conference.  If you did not receive the e-mail broadcast, please visit or click the link above to register for the annual conference.  

The EWTG Annual Conference is set for Sunday November 23 through Monday, November 24, 2014, at the Embassy Suites Hotel, Spa and Conference Center in San Marcos, Texas.  Arrive Sunday afternoon for early check-in and relax with a discounted spa treatment, reserved especially for our group.  Then, join fellow EWTG Members and presenters for the networking reception that evening to prepare you for the conference activities on Monday, November 24. 

Early-Bird Conference Registration (now through October 31, 2014)
Member - $199
Non-Member - $249

Regular Conference Registration (November 1, 2014 – November 14, 2014)
Member - $249
Non-Member - $299

On-Site Conference Registration
Member - $299
Non-Member - $349

Discounted Rooms and Spa Services for EWTG Conference Attendees

Reserved Hotel Room Rate
Available Saturday, November 22, 2014 – Tuesday, November 25, 2014
$109/single occupancy - $134/four-person occupancy

Reserve by November 2, 2014

15% discount in Spa Botanica

Complimentary self-parking

The 28th Annual Professional Development Conference, “Building Careers and Developing Leaders,” boasts a robust lineup of 36 workshop sessions offering training on leadership development, program management, organizational change, and much more.  Attendees gain practical, hands on practice in the sessions and gain the opportunity to network and experience the view through two globally known keynote speakers, Ambassador Karen Hughes, Worldwide Vice Chair of Burson Marsteller and Amy Henry, author of What it Takes: Speak Up, Step Up, Move Up and finalist in the first season of “The Apprentice.”

The EWTG Professional Development Conference is the premier educational forum for those in government service interested in innovation, organizational development, and professional growth.
At the September EWTG monthly luncheon, EWTG will be giving away ONE FREE CONFERENCE REGISTRATION.  Make plans to attend the luncheon and enter for a chance to win.  Encourage your friends and co-workers to attend the luncheon, so that they can also have a chance to win.  Non-members are welcome to join in the luncheon series or the Annual Conference.

The 2014 Conference Committee has been hard at work all year long planning a great annual conference.  We hope you make plans to attend.

If you would like additional information or are interested in being part of one of the Conference Committees, please email me directly at

Open your path to new opportunities!
Join us Nov. 23 – Nov. 24


October 7, 2014 - 6 PM

Image by StuckinCustoms

Brittany Eck, Membership Event Committee

Join us at the Texas Capitol for our first MEMBERS ONLY EWTG Speed Networking event in the Legislative Conference Center of the Capitol Extension!  Register by clicking here.

What is Speed Networking?

Speed networking is for professionals what speed dating is for those in the dating scene - an opportunity to meet a lot of people in a short amount of time. This fun event will accelerate introductions, facilitate conversation, and help you expand your network of professional contacts.

This event is not just for job-seekers, it is for anyone who would like to expand their network and make new friends. This low-key, enjoyable event is for EWTG members only, so be sure to sign up! Only 70 slots are available.

Map of the Capitol Complex

Map of E2 level of the Capitol Extension

What do I bring?
You do not need to bring anything with you except plenty of business cards, your smile, and an attitude of excitement! We will have nametags and a list of questions to get the conversation rolling. Light snacks, wine, and iced tea will be provided.

Learning from History, Shaping the Present, and Framing the Future

 Thank you, EST!


Liza C. Willmore, President

Thank you, EWTG, for thirty years of education, mentoring, and support. Thirty years ago, EWTG started with the idea of forming a network where professional women like you could find the path to opening doors to the C-Suite. As an extension of building that network, came the program, Executive Success Teams (EST).  Join us in our EST Fall Celebration with an evening reception and honor those who are current ESTs or learn about an EST can do for you.

Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014
5:30PM to 7:30 PM
Serrano’s – Symphony Square
1111 Red River
Austin, TX 78701

Executive Success Teams (ESTs) are one of our organization’s initiatives to group EWTG members, whether new or well-seasoned, into small mentoring groups that meet regularly and discuss professional and personal growth ideas, in confidence, and build a career development cohort.  

Being part of an Executive Success Team is an excellent way to form mentoring relationships, make EWTG friends and develop leadership skills. EWTG Affiliate members are welcome to form their own ESTs, too.

Caring for the Families Caring for the Kids
Ronald McDonald House
October 2014

Shawana Ellison & Liza C. Willmore

When a child is diagnosed with a serious illness, families are faced with financial burdens, emotional toll, and other challenges. Many struggle to keep their daily routines of work, finances, and caring for other family members consistent.  At Ronald McDonald House of Central Texas, they help alleviate some of those challenges by offering the support these families need. 

The Ronald McDonald House has long been known for their mission to provide a safe and comforting place for children and their families during their times of healing.  The house is all over the United States, and our very own is in the Mueller District, a short walk from the Dell Children’s Hospital.  The location of the house makes it convenient for the parents and families caring for the children at the hospital. Their children are just a few yards away from their clean bed and a clean meal, at the end of the day. Sometimes, some of the most basic things bring the greatest relief.

Kitchen Facility for Residing Families

Groups often volunteer their time at the house cleaning the home, helping out in the garden, or preparing a home cooked meal for the many families staying at the Ronald McDonald House. There is nothing better enjoying the simple comforts of a clean house and warm meal, while they manage through a difficult time in their lives.  

Cleaning the home is one way of making places feel wide and spacious.  We will be able to give a clean and healthy environment for the children and make the accommodations for the parents better to relax.  Let’s help them make the RMHC a home away from home: healthy, clean, orderly, and positive. People tend to feel relaxed and refreshed if the area is well polished and well cleaned. EWTG can be available to provide assistance with cleaning and providing a sanitary environment for the children and their families in the facility. 

More details of how EWTG can help in the October newsletter.

See you at the house!


Women in Search of Excellence (W.I.S.E.)
Executive Success Team

Tanya Skaarup, Communications Director

One of EWTG’s dynamic Executive Success Teams (ESTs) affectionately known as the WISE Sisters, planned a gathering at Café Monet in the Triangle to tap into their creative juices.  This particular experience was a departure from the WISE Sisters customary dinners at Chez Zee, complimented with the latest professional development book series’ discussions.

While one of our Sisters (Diane Mazuca, TCEQ) was unable to attend, four of the five, brought a delightful spread of fresh fruit, crackers, cheeses, and wines to enjoy while getting inspired!

Below are photos taken by Rose Wheeler (DARS) of Connie Williams (HHSC, Retired; Consultant) and Deborah Shaw-Boatner (CPA, Retired; Consultant) using teamwork at its best to create a beautiful soup bowl.  I, personally, also received personal input from my team to create my very first fused glass piece.

While the main topic for the group during this get together was laughter, some of the books WISE has read and recommend include:

  • Inside Every Woman by Vickie L. Milazzo
  • Daring Greatly by Brene Brown

 Caragh of Cafe Monet giving artists advice

 Connie & Deborah painting their Soup Bowl

The Finished Soup Bowl!

 Fused Glass in Progress

Complete Fused Glass


New and Renewing Members August 2014

Shanika Cornelius, Comptroller
Kim Geller, Texas Department of Aging & Disability Services
Vickie Gonzales, National Center for Therapeutics Manufacturing
Terese Shade, Texas Dept of Information Resources
Margaret Heather Shiels, DARS
Sharon Leary, UT Southwestern Medical Center

Lynda Baker, Texas Department of Information Resources
Crystal Dennstedt, DSHS
Margaret Earnest, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Elizabeth (Betsy) Ford, RETIRED State of Texas
Kathy Fraser, TEEX-TAMUS
Alison Gilliam, Legislative Budget Board
Linda Johnson, Health and Human Services
Jamie McClanahan, Texas Parks and Wildlife Dept.
Penny Mudgett, Texas State University System
Elizabeth Patrolia, Department of Aging and Disability Services
Tanya Skaarup, Texas Department of Information Resources
Glenda Wall, TX Dept. of Aging & Disability Services
Pam Wiley, Pam Wiley Enterprises
Mary Winston, TX Dept of Licensing and Regulation


PO Box 1635, Leander, TX 78646
| 512-220-4298
| 512-692-2651 (fax)

We Thank Our 2019 Sponsors

Association Management Software Powered by YourMembership  ::  Legal