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EWTG Star January 2019
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In This Issue

President's Corner Making the Most of your EWTG Experience Membership News
Mini-Course Professional Development Luncheon Conference Update
Get Involved! Sponsor Appreciation Events & Announcements
President's Corner

Karen Howard - pic

Happy New Year to the EWTG Membership!

It is a privilege and honor to be your 2019 EWTG President. I am truly blessed to see another year and to have a great grandson added to our family on January 4, 2019. What a way to start the year! I want to encourage each of you to attend our Minicourses on the 2nd Wednesday of each month; they will be held at the Carver Branch Public Library. The Developmental Luncheons are held on the 4th Wednesday of the month. In addition, please check our website for the Brazos Valley and Houston Affiliate meetings.

Our first speaker for the Developmental Luncheon is Martin H. Zelinsky, J.D. Martin is currently General Counsel for Texas Department of Information Resources and he will prepare EWTG members and guests for the 86th legislative session with tips on communicating in public. The luncheon will be held at the Austin Women’s Club on January 23, 2019.

The 2019 Executive Women in Texas Government Annual Conference will be held in November and we are looking for volunteers that want to explore new concepts and ideas, cultivate new processes, as they develop bold leadership skills.

Finally, to my Austin, Brazos Valley and Houston membership, I look forward to working with you in the upcoming year. Current leaders please continue to increase your membership, develop strong leaders, inspire growth in the community, and mentor women for future leadership roles in our Great State of Texas!

Karen Howard
EWTG President, 2019

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Volunteer with EWTG in 2019!

We are looking for volunteers for the coming year. Are you looking to meet new people, give back to your community, stretch your skills in new ways, be more creative, or do you have EWTG FOMO? The best way to get the most out of your EWTG membership is to get involved by joining or leading a committee. There are several committees to choose from, and a number of opportunities to use your expertise to help EWTG! Visit the EWTG Website or review the committees below.

President’s Committees

Legislative Issues Committee – (active in odd years) The Legislative Issues Committee researches legislation and legislative activity that would be of interest to the general membership of EWTG. Members, determine which bills should be highlighted for the membership, track the progress of these bills, and write articles for the monthly newsletter. Members also follow committee hearings and meetings to update the membership throughout the year.

Nominating Committee – The Nominating Committee creates a list, of candidates to the Board of Directors for the next year. Every effort must be made to achieve diversity of ethnicity, age, job titles and agency representation. The Committee presents the recommendations to board for approval.

Advisory Committee - This committee operates under the direction of the President. It is composed of persons recruited by the President to act as a sounding board and provide input on past organization activities that may have a bearing on current or future actions.

Scholarship Committee - The Scholarship Committee administers the EWTG Scholarship program for general scholarships, Leadership Texas scholarships and Leadership America scholarships. The Committee designs and revises the scholarship application, announces application deadlines, reviews the applications and recommends scholarship awards to the Board. The Committee presents recommendations to board for approval before any action is taken.

Community Service Committee - The Community Service Committee recommends community service projects to the Board, manages several annual projects, coordinates member participation, collects requested items, distributes donations to receiving organizations, and tracks the value of money and donations. Members write articles for the newsletter and the Committee presents recommendations to the Board for approval before any action is taken.

Development Committee - The Development Committee identifies and pursues funding, sponsorships and other sources of support for the annual conference and/or other aspects of the organization's programs. The committee chair or a designated member also serves on the Conference Committee to coordinate activities. Committee Chair keeps board informed of sponsor activities and challenges.

Educational Events Committee - The Educational Events Committee holds a minimum of one educational seminar or program during the year to benefit and be accessible to the majority of the membership. The Committee presents recommendations to board for approval before any action is taken.

President-Elect’s Committees

Strategic Planning Committee - The Strategic Planning Committee operates under the direction of the President-Elect. It reviews the Strategic Plan annually and proposes additions and deletions to the Board as appropriate. It gathers data on goal attainment and to assist the President with creating the Annual Report detailing the organization's status.

Mentorship Committee - The Mentorship Committee operates under the direction of the President-Elect. It solicits Executive Success Team membership applications, assigns members to teams, creates a roster of teams, plans the annual kickoff event each year and follows up on the teams during the year.

Vice President’s Committees

Conference Evaluation Committee - The Conference Evaluation Committee designs the conference evaluation form, establishes procedures for collection of the forms at the conference, analyzes the data obtained, shares data with speakers and workshop presenters, and provides a written report to the Board. The Committee is directed by the Vice President.

Conference Exhibits Committee - The Conference Exhibits Committee identifies and books exhibitors for the conference. The Committee completes mailings to potential exhibitors, maintains frequent contact with those interested, plans layout of exhibits and writes follow-up thank you letters. The Committee is directed by the Vice President.

Conference Facilities Committee - The Conference Facilities Committee coordinates all logistical arrangements for the conference, plans the meals, provides final counts, reserves necessary sleeping rooms as needed, works closely with the Program Committee to assign workshop rooms and arranges for conference audio/visual needs. The Committee also works closely with the President and Public Relations Director to determine the logistical needs of the Board, keynote speakers and Woman of the Year presentation. The Committee is directed by the Vice President.

Conference Program Committee - The Conference Program Committee develops the conference theme and workshop subjects, secures the workshop presenters, determines presenter audio/visual needs, secures and trains moderators, works with the Facilities Committee to assign workshop rooms, works with the Registration Committee to develop the workshop presenter bios in the conference program and sends thankyou letters to workshop presenters. The Committee is directed by the Vice President.

Conference Registration Committee - The Conference Registration Committee coordinates with the conference committees and Board of Directors to develop the conference program, purchases the participant gift, supplies the final copy to the printer, prepares the participant bags for the conference participants and works registration the day of the conference. The Committee is directed by the Vice President.

Conference Silent Auction Committee - The Conference Silent Auction Committee identifies potential donors and obtains items for the silent auction. The group prepares the bidding sheets, staffs the silent auction tables on the day of the conference, awards the items to the high bidders and sends thank you letters to donors. The Committee is directed by the Vice President.

Networking Reception Committee – The Networking Reception Committee develops the theme and obtains the speaker/band for the Sunday night reception. They work closely with the Facilities committee to arrange the audio/visual needs, reception food/drinks and possible speaker/band needs. The Committee is directed by the Vice President.

Financial Committee - The Financial Committee consists of the President, President-Elect, Financial Officer, Secretary-Treasurer and three other members. The Committee is responsible for the preparation of the annual budget and submission of a draft budget to the Board within the first 30 days of the year. The Committee reviews the allocation of and depositories for the organization’s funds, and the Committee also ensures that the organization’s books are audited/reviewed annually.

Public Relations Director’s Media Committee - The Public Relations Director’s Media Committee operates under the direction of the Public Relations Director. The Committee seeks out opportunities to highlight EWTG in print, in online media outlets, and in social media by developing a list of media outlets and submitting information and press releases. The Committee works to increase the organization's visibility among state agencies and institutions of higher education, and coordinates and maintains the look of collateral materials.

Communications Director’s Committees

Website Committee - The Website Committee operates under the direction of the Communications Director. It works with the management company for website content management and manages EWTG’s social media presence.

Newsletter Committee - The Newsletter Committee operates under the direction of the Communications Director. The Committee plans, assigns, compiles and edits the monthly e-newsletter, manages advertising, and oversees distribution.

Social Media Committee - The Social Media Committee operates under the direction of the Communications Director. The Committee plans, solicits and writes content, and monitors interactions for all social media outlets. It works closely with the Website Committee and Newsletter Committee.

Membership Director’s Committees

Member Services Committee - The Member Services Committee operates under the direction of the Membership Director. The Committee recruits and works to retain members and provide services to the membership. The Committee’s activities include welcoming new members, developing membership drives, encouraging active participation in EWTG, conducting member surveys to determine the needs and interests of the membership, contacting members during the renewal cycle, researching reasons for non-renewal of membership and making recommendations, and determining services to provide as a benefit of membership.

Retiree Committee - The Retiree committee operates under the direction of the Membership Director. The Committee researches and communicates the needs of retired members, encourages their continued active participation on committees and makes recommendations for the Membership Director to bring to the Board.

Program Director’s Committee - The Program Director’s Committee identifies, contacts and confirms speakers for the luncheons for each month; February through October, and January of the following year. The Committee provides information about EWTG to the speakers/presenters, coordinates any special speaker requests, introduces the speaker/presenter at the monthly luncheon, writes introductory speaker articles and follow-up articles for the monthly newsletter, writes thank you letters and provides a gift to each of the speakers/presenters.

Mini-Course Director’s Committee - The Mini-Course Director’s Committee identifies, contacts and confirms speakers for the mini-courses for each month February through October. The Committee provides information about EWTG to the speakers/presenters, coordinates any special speaker requests, introduces the speaker/presenter at the monthly mini-course, writes introductory speaker articles and follow-up articles for the monthly newsletter, writes thank you letters and provides a gift to each of the speakers/presenters.

Affiliates Director’s Committee - The Affiliates Director’s Committee operates under the direction of the Affiliates Director. It is responsible for working with the EWTG affiliate chapters (Brazos Valley and Houston) to help strengthen the membership and increase the visibility of their organizations among state agencies and institutions of higher education, and to ensure that their needs as members of EWTG are met.

Submitted by Marie Cohan
EWTG Communications Director, 2019

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4th Quarter Scholarship Recipients Announced

The EWTG scholarship committee congratulates Marie Cohan for her scholarship this quarter. She will be taking a class on Systems Thinking at the LBJ School at the University of Texas and will be using knowledge gained from this course to further her career and interests in business transformation and organizational agility. Congratulations, Marie!

My apologies to Mary Sampson for getting her name incorrect in the November EWTG newsletter. She was awarded a scholarship to attend Leadership Pipeline this past summer, and she wrote about her experience in the November newsletter.

The first quarter scholarship deadline is March 30, 2019.

Finally, to my wonderful committee: You are the best! I appreciate everyone’s input to the scholarship redesign process and for making it a success in addition to completing our regular work of evaluating scholarship applications. Thanks for a wonderful year!

Submitted by Deana Sanders
EWTG Scholarship Committee Chair, 2018 & EWTG Treasurer, 2019

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Connect with EWTG Online!

On Facebook, get connected by joining our EWTG Members Group. This group is for all EWTG members statewide — Austin and affiliate chapters — and it's private, so only group members will see what you post there. It's great for posting photos of EWTG events, sharing job postings, or asking questions of fellow EWTG members. Request access to the group by emailing: Feel free to follow the EWTG Page and the EWTG Houston page.

Social Media icons - graphicOn LinkedIn, get connected by joining our group page. As a professional networking site, this is an even better place to share job postings and articles on professional development or women in government. Any member of the group can post, but keep in mind that these posts are public, so please do not post personal information there. Log into your LinkedIn account, type "Executive Women in Texas Government" in the search box (or go to and click "Ask to Join" in the upper right corner.

On Twitter, get connected by following @EWTG. This is the easiest one of all! Log into your Twitter account, type "EWTG" in the search box, and click "Follow" on the right under the photo.

If you have news to share, we'd love to hear from you!
Send your news to

See who joined & renewed membership last month!

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Mini-Course Luncheon - Wednesday, February 13th

As is tradition, we do not schedule a Mini-Course in January. EWTG will kick-off the Mini-Course in February under the leadership of Mary Sampson, Mini-Course Director. Mini-Courses are held the second Wednesday of each month, and are located at the Carver Library, 1161 Angelina St., Austin, Texas. Ample parking is available, doors open at 11:30 a.m., and the presentation is from noon to 1 p.m. A pizza buffet lunch is available for $10/person.

Look forward to some exciting speakers and learning opportunities in 2019. If you have any recommendations, you can share at See you in February!

Submitted by Marie Cohan
EWTG Communications Director, 2019

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Professional Development Luncheon - Wednesday, January 23rd

Martin Zelinksy - picCommunication Tips for the 86th Legislative Session


Martin Zelinsky, General Counsel

Texas Department of Information Resources


Martin H. Zelinsky, J.D is currently General Counsel for Texas Department of Information Resources, and he will prepare EWTG members and guests for the 86th legislative session with tips on communicating in public. Mr. Zelinsky is responsible for providing legal services to all operational and administrative divisions in the agency. His experience spans technology procurement, information security-related matters, and he has substantial corporate in-house and state government legal experience. His specialties are general legal services, government administration and government procurement. As General Counsel for DIR, Mr. Zelinsky focuses on agency administration, contract drafting and negotiation, IT project management, contract administration, information security, privacy and procurement. In addition to his position for the Texas Department of Information Resources, he has also served as Assistant General Counsel for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. Mr. Zelinsky is a graduate of Rice University with a B.A. in History. He received his law degree from South Texas College of Law.

Free parking for the Austin Woman’s Club is located between 7th and 8th Streets on Nueces (view map). The cost of the luncheon is $20 per member and $25 per guest. Remember to register early for the luncheon in anticipation of a full house.

Submitted by Mary Castleberry & Emma Merlo
EWTG Programs Director, 2018 & EWTG Events Associate

Register Today!
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Do It Scared


Kathryn Childers

Former U.S. Secret Service Agent


When you say the word strong, I can’t help but think of Kathryn Childers. She is not only physically strong, but emotionally strong. Like many women in the 1960’s, Kathryn received her degree in elementary education, and was expected to marry and settle down. Having always been a natural athlete, her father had raised her to be a skilled shooter. While working in Washington D.C., she heard that the U.S. Secret Service wanted to recruit female agents.

Next thing she knew, she was among the first five female “civilians” ever hired into the service. Kathryn speaks to organizations of all sizes throughout the country sharing her personal mantra of "Do It Scared" crafted after years of embracing - and seizing - opportunities - while helping others along the way.

Thursday, January 31, 2019, Room 4A-E
12:00, Bring Your Lunch

Elias Ramirez State Office Building
5425 Polk Street
Houston, Texas 77023

Please RSVP to or 713-851-5616.

In Case You Missed It; Luncheon Recaps…

EWTG 2018 Holiday Luncheon

We celebrated the close of an outstanding year of accomplishments at EWTG during our annual Holiday Luncheon on December 11, 2018, at 11:30 a.m. at the Austin Women’s Club. President Deborah Shaw-Boatner shared highlights from the year and recognized the work of the 2018 Board and committees. The 2019 Board of Directors was officially sworn in by Connie Williams, and we welcomed incoming president, Karen Howard. Ms. Howard graciously accepted her new role and shared some motivational quotes to inspire us going into 2019.

“Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice & most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do.” – Pele

“Believe in yourself. You are braver than you think, more talented than you know, and capable of more than you imagine.”– Roy T. Bennett

“I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.” – Stephen Covey

Denise Stewart Bates, one of Austin’s finest pianist and vocalist, led us in music and song while we enjoyed a delicious luncheon at the beautifully decorated Austin Women’s Club. We held a holiday sweater contest where awards were given for tackiest sweater (Terri Peirce), most elegant sweater (Carol Lautner & Shawana Abrams), and most festive sweater (Anne). Our guests brought donations of toiletries and stuffed animals to share with the children and women of SAFE Alliance.

Submitted by Marie Cohan
EWTG Communications Director, 2019

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conference Update
EWTG Conference: Attendee Recap

My main takeaway from this year’s conference was the session with Denise Hamilton of Her quote of “Givers need to set limits because takers never do” has become my new mantra. In general, as women we are taught to be nurturing and to go out of our way to help others. However, in business this can sometimes be seen as a weakness and could make a woman to be an easy target. Setting limits in the workplace can provide less stress and a space to enjoy work more.

I also in enjoyed the session “Introverts Can Network Too,” with Marie Cohan of DIR. It was refreshing to hear a person so accomplished share her personal and professional life as an introvert. As a closet introvert, the act of being “on” for networking is stressful and exhausting. During the session Marie shared that genuine interest in people and following up with them is the key. Her steps are actually doable without being completely exhausted at the end of the event. I put her steps into action during the rest of the conference. Thus far one connection has continued with the goal of more come.

Submitted by Kara Kelly
EWTG Member & Scholarship Recipient, 2018 Annual Conference

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get involved!
Called to Serve

Be on the lookout for service opportunities during the year. EWTG has served the following organizations over the years: Red Cross, Safe Place Alliance, Central Texas Food Bank, Susan G. Komen, Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders, Ronald McDonald House, and many other organizations helping women and children.

If you have any questions or want to join the Community Service Committee, please contact

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EWTG Birthday Club

graphic - happy birthdayEWTG has a Birthday Club! As a member, if you opt in to the Birthday Club, you will receive a $5 discount on the monthly Professional Development Luncheon registration fees. Also, the member will get a shout out in the newsletter recognizing her birthday that month.

Opting In…

You must “opt-in” by completing the consent form indicating you wish to participate. The consent form will request the following information: First and last name, email address, and birthday month.

  • Once you complete the form, only your birthday month is added to your membership profile. Only CMP (our management company) essential staff and the EWTG Membership Director will have access to the information.
  • You are eligible to receive a $5 discount off your Professional Development luncheon registration fees by using the discount code, BIRTHDAY19. NOTE: Only one $5 discount will be granted per month and cannot be combined with other luncheon discounts.
  • Since we do not have professional development luncheons in November or December, those members who have birthdays in those months will be recognized with the October birthdays.

Be on the lookout for an email asking you to opt in or opt out of the birthday club. Please respond to the email so we can recognize you during your birthday month. We look forward to seeing you at the Professional Development luncheon. The speakers have been fabulous this year!

Submitted by the EWTG Membership Development Committee

It's easy to get plugged in with EWTG committees — just fill out
this quick, online form and let us know what committees interest you!

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Sponsor Appreciation
EWTG Loves Its Sponsors

EWTG is very fortunate to have the support of its sponsors! These are businesses that believe in women's leadership and are willing to invest in EWTG's professional development programs and especially in our annual conference, which draws together almost 1,000 attendees from across the state and from all levels of public service. When you sponsor EWTG, you are not only supporting a valuable organization, but you are providing scholarships that allow members to participate in Leadership Texas and Leadership America, you are helping members complete their education and certification programs, and you are helping members attend our annual conference and other professional development programs.

If you would like to become a 2019 sponsor or know of a business that believes in the power of women and wants to support leadership development, please contact us at and please provide the business name, a contact person, and a phone number or email address. THANK YOU for supporting EWTG!

Submitted by Marie Cohan
EWTG Communications Director, 2019

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Events & Announcements

If you have an announcement to share, please send it to

Calendar - graphic January Announcements:
Texas loses a great statesman...EWTG is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Texas Workforce Commission Executive Director, Larry Temple. We extend our deepest sympathies to his family and to the state employees mourning his loss. Funeral Services for Mr. Temple were on January 19. In lieu of flowers, Mr. Temple requested donations be made to the National Federation for the Blind of Texas: NFBTX.ORG

Congratulations to Karen Howard and her family on the birth of her great-grandson, Zion who was born on Jan. 4 weighing 7lbs. 2oz and 19.5 inches long.

January Birthdays: Wishing you all a wonderful celebration!
Theresa McShan, Deana Sanders, Shawana Abrams, Ruby Ockletree, Ilyanna Kadich, Elizabeth Yang, Amy Settemeyer

January 19, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. — EWTG Board Retreat – The 2019 board met for an all-day session to plan the 2019 development year.

Jan. 23, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Professional Development Luncheon at the Austin Women’s Club in Austin, TX. See details above about this event.

Jan. 31, 12:00 p.m. to 1 p.m. – Houston Affiliate Monthly Meeting at the Elias Ramirez State Office Building in Houston, TX. See details above about this event.

Feb. 13, Noon – 1:30 p.m. – Mini-Course Luncheon at the Carver Library in Austin, TX. See details above about this event.

Board of Directors

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