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We continued the momentum of our Women to Watch program with our Summer Speaker Series entitled PIVOT: Conversations to Spark Change. It consisted of five sessions of panel discussions.

The video to the right is of the last of the panel discussions held at the Avalon in Easton.

Kent County

Thursday, June 22 - The Bank, Chestertown

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Imani Black, CEO and Founder at Minorities in Aquaculture

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Meghan Efland, Director of Supply Chain at PRS Guitars and councilwoman

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Tracey Williams, Supervisor of Student Services/Secondary Education at Kent County Public Schools

Imani Black was born and raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland in Chestertown. She has always had a passion for restoration and conservation since she was a young girl and found great interest in the rapidly growing shellfish aquaculture industry, after completing an aquaculture training program at Virginia Institute of Marine Science in 2016. Since then, Imani has worked on oyster farms, nurseries and hatcheries along the Eastern Shore of Virginia and Maryland. From 2018 to 2020, she was the Assistant Hatchery Manager for Hoopers Island Oyster Company, having the opportunity to work in all aspects of shellfish growout. Through her love for her career, Imani founded Minorities In Aquaculture, a nonprofit organization that strives to empower and support the underrepresented demographics (i.e women of color, women in general, men of color, etc) in the aquaculture industry by providing opportunities such as paid internships, technical skills training and career development resources. Over the last two years, MIA has focused its efforts and resources toward supporting women of color in their aquaculture careers, starting with Imani’s demographic which is also least engaged in this space. Overall, Minorities In Aquaculture is recognized as an impactful network focused on sustainable seafood education, aquaculture workforce development, and active engagement approaches not only for the minorities in aquaculture, but the industry as a whole in its effort towards a more diverse aquaculture field. In addition to developing the nonprofit, Imani is also pursuing a Master’s degree at the University of Maryland’s Center for Environmental Science researching the historical coastal communities of color in commercial fisheries in the Chesapeake Bay, while highlighting the approaches and methods toward active minority engagement and participation in coastal regions.

Meghan Efland grew up outside of Church Hill, Maryland and attended Queen Anne's County Public Schools. She went to St. Mary's College of Maryland and majored in Sociology and Anthropology. While in school she worked as an archaeologist for the State of Maryland. 19 years ago Meghan started working for Paul Reed Smith Guitars, an electric guitar manufacturer located on Kent Island. When she started there were around 100 employees, and now PRS is the largest private employer in Queen Anne's County, with close to 450 employees. She has grown with the company and is currently the Director of Supply Chain, and with her team is responsible for purchasing, sourcing, logistics, inventory control, warehousing, production scheduling and trade compliance. Meghan is on the Board of Chestertown RiverArts and the planning committee for the Chestertown Tea Party Festival. Trying to have more of an impact in her local community, Meghan decided to run for Chestertown Town Council and began her term in 2020, just months before the pandemic. Meghan loves living in Chestertown with her husband Marc and two rescue kitties Olive and Noodle.

Tracey Williams is a native of Kent County and a 1986 graduate of Kent County High School. She received her BA from Washington College in 1990, her MA from Loyola University in 1997, and her certification in Administration in 2002 from Western Maryland College. Tracey Williams serves as the Student Services Supervisor for Kent County Public Schools. She has held this position since 2018 and is responsible for implementing programs and initiatives to facilitate the social-emotional, mental health, and physical health needs of all students in the district. In addition, she works with school-based administrators to provide the support needed to create a safe and nurturing environment conducive to learning. Tracey started her teaching career at Elkton Middle School in 1991. After one year, she transferred to Queen Anne's County High School, where she was a Special Education teacher for the next seven years, and finally made her way to Kent County in 1999, where she has served for the remainder of her career. However, her goal was always to return home to Kent County, where she grew up. While at Kent County High School, she served as a Social Studies teacher, Coordinator of Career and Technology (CTE) programs, Assistant Principal, Instructional Specialist, and Principal from 2010-2017. While working for Kent County Public Schools, she has represented the school system on several local and regional boards/councils, such as the MSDE Principal Advisory Council, Upper Shore Business and Manufacturing Council, Maryland Career and Technology Administrators Association, Professional Development Schools with Washington College, the Kent County Economic Development and Tourism Commission, the Kent County Department of Social Services Board, Local Drug and Alcohol Abuse Council (LDAAC) and the YMCA Leadership Council. Tracey lives in Kent County with her husband Bryan, owner of Red Acres Hydroponics and two children. Her daughter Rachel is a dentist at Hickman Family Dentistry and her son is a PE teacher at Henry Highland Garnet Elementary School.

Moderator: Sarah King, Executive Director, Kent County Chamber

Panelists:

Sponsored by:

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Dorchester County

Thursday, July 13 - Phillips Packing House, Cambridge

Breakfast by Garden & Garnish

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Sponsored by:

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Amanda Kidd, Owner of Beat the Rush Delivery and Owner of 411Kitchen

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Ashley Davis, CEO of A Competitive Edge (ACE) Consulting Agency

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Susan Banks, Director of Dorchester County Economic Development

Amanda M. Kidd, wife, mom of five God-sent children, Queenie to one very special grandson, business owner, nonprofit founder, 2x bestselling author, community connector, food and hospitality innovator and legacy builder. Born and raised in the DMV, now resident of Cambridge, MD. Amanda's heart is postured towards ministry, business, family, and food; which each of her initiatives reflects. Amanda is on a mission to cultivate mindsets break barriers and elevate the communities she serves. Currently, Amanda is working diligently on a 3-year in the making project. With the help of Amanda's late father who passed away in July of 2022. Amanda has been preparing to launch the first of its kind, barrier-breaking commercial shared use kitchen in Cambridge, Maryland; Four Eleven Kitchen, Inc. This facility will provide food entrepreneurs and enthusiasts access to a licensed commercial kitchen to start or scale their food business. Additionally providing opportunities to local organizations in the areas of culinary arts, food and agriculture education and nutrition programming. In honor of her late mother, father, and grandparents. While all of these efforts bring Amanda great pleasure, what really brings her the most joy is knowing that in all she does and builds, she does it God's way.

Ashley Davis is the Founder and CEO of A Competitive Edge (ACE) Consulting Agency, which serves as a one stop consulting firm for professional and business development services! A public health powerhouse, Ashley’s passion for health and social advocacy has deemed her a sought-after speaker for her expertise in leadership development, health equity, consumer engagement and successful business strategy services. Mrs. Davis is an accomplished public health professional with over 12 years of distinguished performance in the public health field. She has as served as a Federal Grant reviewer for Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) and the Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (CDC) for over six years, Rural Health Manager for the state of Virginia, where she wrote and secured funding the HRSA inaugural million-dollar opioid grant series Rural Communities Opioid Response Grant (RCORP Grant). Ashley Davis created and launched the first State Office of Rural Health All Grantee meeting, which doubled in size from 2018 to 2019. She served as the legislative bill reviewer for all health equity proposed House and Senate bills in the state of Virginia for the Office of Health Equity. While working on HB171-Henrietta Lacks Commission; which was later passed in the establishment of the first and only commission supported by the Lacks family in 2018, Ashley served on the commissions board in developing a research cancer center in Halifax, Virginia in honor of Mrs. Henriette Lacks before moving to Maryland. Ashley’s career in public health started in working with grassroot organizations and most recently, serving as the first women and minority Executive Director for the Eastern Shore Area Health Education Center (ESAHEC). While serving as the Executive Director, Ashley led the organization forward in creating diversity in the organization, hiring qualified staff, expanding employee benefits, securing nearly half a million dollars of additional funding within her first few months in the role. Mrs. Davis previous experiences also included working for the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, Inc. where she served in various roles during her tenure with the agency such as the Chief Operations Manager, Director of Programs and Special Initiatives and Project Director for the HRSA SCD Newborn Screening Following Up Program. Mrs. Davis has received several recognition awards for development curriculum, program implementation, budgeting and evaluation of adolescent youth enhancement program in the City of Petersburg and the state of Virginia by launching the Danville YHELI (Youth Health Equity Leadership Institute) Program under the Office of Health Equity with the Virginia Department of Health in Danville, VA. She has also been named a 2023 Women to Watch on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She is an Alumni of the Johns Hopkins Academy for Women & Leadership and is a member of the Delta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, where she has served as Second Vice President and currently serves as the Scholarship Chair. Ashley is a member of the Health and Wellness Committee of the National Alumnae Association of Spelman College and as a President Elect for the Metro Richmond Chapter. Ms. Davis received her Bachelors in Science from Spelman College; Master of Public Health and Master of Human Services from Liberty University. In her pursuit to provide equitable services for individuals, Ashley is currently, working towards her PhD in Public Policy to better advocate for better social policies for those in underserved and under resourced areas.

Susan Banks is the Director of Dorchester County Economic Development. She oversees the county’s Economic Development and the day-to-day operations of the Eastern Shore Innovation Center Business Incubator. Prior to this role she served as the Business Development Manager for the Economic Development office for 5 years where she focused on attraction and retention strategies for the county. She sits on several boards including, Board of Directors for the Business Finance Group, Maryland Economic Development Foundation Board, and Crossroads Community Inc. Susan earned a bachelor's degree in Political Science from Salisbury University and a master's degree in Environmental Policy and Management from American Public University. She also served a year with Americorps through Salisbury University's SHORECORPS: PALS in Dorchester county with a focus on preventing and reducing negative behaviors in at-risk children and youth. Cambridge is her hometown where she resides with her husband and two sons.

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Alisha Saulsbury, Forensic Mental Health Program Manager :
Mid Shore Behavioral Health, Inc. and Trainer/ Consultant :
National Center for Trauma - Informed Care

Alisha is a 1993 graduate of University of Maryland where she received her Masters in Social Work Degree. She has been a mental health clinician on the mid-shore for 32 years. She has dedicated over twenty five years working with the forensic population. In 1998 the University of Maryland Department of Psychiatry joined with SAMHSA, and the Behavioral Health Administration’s Division of Special Populations to do a research study on gender specific recidivism in Maryland. She was part of the initiation and launch of the trauma program, TAMAR (Trauma, Addiction, Mental Health and Recovery) for over twenty-two years. She continues to train clinicians around the country on trauma-specific practices and how to implement this program. As a trauma certified clinician, her passion is teaching others and bringing awareness to the prevalence of trauma with the behavioral health community. She has worked as a national consultant and trainer with the National Center for Trauma Informed Care for eighteen years. Locally, she is the Forensic Mental Health Program Manager for Mid Shore Behavioral Health, Inc. where she serves five counties doing forensic mental health evaluations and makes treatment recommendations/considerations for the specialty courts.

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Moderator:

Lesa Lee, Chief Clinical Officer of For All Seasons, Inc.

Lesa Lee, LCSW-C, is a seasoned clinician and a dynamic executive leader with over two decades of comprehensive experience in the mental health care field. As the Chief Clinical Officer at For All Seasons since 2008, she leads a robust team of more than 40 clinicians, instilling a culture of excellence and resilience within the organization. Lee holds numerous professional certifications, including a Licensed Clinical Social Worker-Certified (LCSW-C) and Level I and II trauma certifications through The University of Maryland and Ferentz Institute. She is a Certified Sensorimotor Psychotherapist, is Theraplay trained, and is a Certified First Responder Counselor, evidencing her commitment to continual learning and mastery in her field. Her expertise in trauma and reactive attachment disorders guides her work with clients, marking her as a leading professional in these fields. Throughout her tenure at For All Seasons, Lee has been instrumental in the agency's evolution. Her leadership was instrumental in the implementation of an Open Access model of care, a pioneering initiative that ensures same-day, walk-in services to community members in need, eradicating the waitlist for critical mental health services. Lee was also a critical player in the rapid deployment of a fully functioning telehealth program in response to the COVID-19 emergency, ensuring continuity of care during an unprecedented time of need. Alongside her executive role, Lee is an influential educator in the field of mental health. As a presenter for the University of Maryland School of Social Work and Jenerations HealthCare, and as co-leader of For All Seasons Center for Learning, she has delivered numerous presentations and trainings. Her commitment to disseminating knowledge extends to her work as a Certified Dare to Lead© facilitator, where she shares the principles of Courageous Leadership with businesses, organizations, and community groups. Lesa Lee's leadership, clinical prowess, and unwavering dedication to service are fundamental to the growth and impact of For All Seasons. Her relentless pursuit of improving mental health care accessibility and quality continue to drive the organization forward, leaving a profound impact on the community.

Caroline County
Thursday, July 27- 
Wharves of Choptank Visitor & Heritage Center, Denton

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Sponsored by:

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Danielle Forrest, Assistant Branch Manager of Shore United Bank

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Kate Bliele,

Vice President of Junior Achievement of the Eastern Shore

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Amy Horne, Executive Director of Caroline CASA

Danielle Forrest is a Branch Operations Manager for Shore United Bank, where Danielle leads a vibrant team in customer service, financial and business solutions, and lending needs. Danielle has worked in community banking for seven years, and in customer service for over twenty five years. Danielle currently resides in Federalsburg. Danielle enjoys spending time with her husband, Bryan, and their five children. Her hobbies include community service, true crime shows, and watching their son, Greyson, play soccer. Danielle is currently a member of the Denton Rotary Club, where she sits as the Program Coordinator. She is also on the His Hope Ministries Board and their finance committee. Danielle likes to help others and make a positive impact in all that she does. She makes friends wherever she goes and treats everyone she meets like they’re family.

Kate has been with Junior Achievement since 2016, starting as program coordinator, then community outreach coordinator, now settling into her role as Vice President. Kate has a career in the non-profit industry. After spending eight years as the program director at the local YMCA, Kate was searching for a way to strengthen our community through youth programs. When she heard about Junior Achievement, and its impact on the community, she knew she had found the perfect fit. With a passion for giving back, Kate helps connect businesses and volunteers with JA. She believes every student should be given the tools to be successful, see their own potential and learn about the opportunities that surround them. Outside of JA, she serves on the board of directors for Wyatt's Warriors Foundation. Originally from Baltimore County, MD, she currently resides in Salisbury, MD with her husband, Mike, and their son & daughter.

Amy Horne, a native of Easton and graduate of both the Country School and Easton High School, earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science with a minor in French from Bates College in Lewiston, ME. Upon graduating, she ran environmental campaign offices throughout the Northeast before embarking on a successful career in natural product and vitamin sales. During that time she began volunteering for non-profits in the Greater New Haven area of Connecticut. Over the course of 10 years she chaired more than 30 galas and auctions for organizations such as Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital, New Haven Symphony Orchestra and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, but ultimately returned to her native Eastern Shore. She joined CASA of Caroline in January of 2019 as the Outreach Coordinator and is now serving as its Executive Director. Ms. Horne earned her Master of Social Work degree from Salisbury University in 2023. She is the Immediate-Past President of Rotary Club of Denton and is currently the club's President-Elect for 2024-2025. She also serves as the Secretary of the Shireton Condominium Association and is on the board of the Caroline Tennis Association. In her spare time, she enjoys playing and coaching tennis, traveling, paddle boarding and crabbing.

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Doncella Wilson, Founder and Executive Director of Minary’s Dream Alliance, Inc.

Doncella Wilson, LMSW As an Eastern Shore of Maryland native, Doncella completed her primary education in Queen Anne’s County and holds an Associate degree in Human Services from Chesapeake College, and a Bachelor of Arts and a master’s degree in Social Work from Salisbury University. Ms. Wilson is a state of Maryland Board Approved and Licensed Master Social Worker with more than twenty years’ experience in the Human Services profession. She is currently the Co-Founder of Minary’s Dream Alliance, Inc. (MDA) where she serves as the Executive Director. The mission of MDA is “to transform the lives of youth, families and communities through education, resource development and community engagement”. Ms. Wilson was elected in 2017 to serve as a Council Member on the Town Council in Denton, Maryland to serve a five-year term, which concluded December 2022. She volunteers her time on various local and state boards that address homelessness, behavioral health and preserving history. Ms. Wilson was appointed by Governor Hogan to serve on the Uninsured Employers Fund Board in 2019 and in 2021 she was appointed to the Commission on Trauma Informed Care. Doncella seeks to live her life as the Maya Angelou quote states, “When you learn teach, when you get give”.

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Moderator:

Laura Reeder

AVP/Branch Manager

Shore United Bank

Laura Reeder is an Assistant Vice President and Branch Manager for Shore United Bank, where Laura leads a dynamic team in customer service, financial and business solutions, and lending needs. Laura has worked in community banking for twenty-two years, and currently resides in Denton. Laura is currently the Chair of the Culture Committee at Shore United Bank. Laura enjoys spending time with her wife, Nicole, and their two children, Everett, and Sutton. Her hobbies include community service, kayaking, and visiting wineries. Laura is currently on the Executive Board for Caroline County Chamber of Commerce serving as Vice President, and she also serves on the Women in Business committee. Laura likes to be involved, to be challenged, and to lend a helping hand to her community.

Queen Anne’s County
Wednesday, August 9
 - Kent Island Resort

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Shaun Bevins, Physical Therapist, Nutritionist and Author

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Carol Ibex Kettenring, Owner of Foundations Yoga on Kent Island and Centreville

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Kendra Eichler, Owner of Workout Like a Girl

Shaun Taylor Bevins graduated from the University of Delaware with a Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Science and a Professional Master in Physical Therapy. Over the past 30 years, she has worked in outpatient orthopedics, taught group fitness in a variety of settings, lectured as an adjunct faculty member for both a personal training certification program and a 200 and 300 hour yoga teacher training program, served as advisory board member for the Academy of Massage and Bodywork, written online articles for LIVESTRONG, founded the international No Excuses Exercise, Diet, and Wellness Community on Facebook with over 180,000 members, and organized dozens of community-based wellness programs among other things. She released her first book No Excuses Building Better Bodies One Habit at a Time Feb 2023.

Carol Ibex Kettenring, owner of Foundations Yoga Studio in Kent Island and Centreville has been involved in the fitness industry since the age of 16. A personal trainer, in pursuit of helping people with their fitness goals, she went to school for integrative nutrition and exercise science. In her younger years she was a self-described adrenaline junkie, had countless injuries and concussions before finding her way to a hot yoga class. Her experience opened her eyes to the power of self-healing. As she attended more classes and became a yoga teacher herself, she continued to tend bar and spoke about her excitement of yoga to her customers. One of them lended her the money to start Foundations Yoga Studio. Her friends and coworkers helped her build her first yoga studio on Kent Island in 2018, with a second in Centreville in 2023. Even with an array of certifications, Carol’s secret to helping the people is building people up. She describes her method as one of a motivational speaker that happens to teach fitness. She understands that incorporating an emotion and feeling into the lessons that are taught can make a student really feel valued and loved.

Kendra Eichler is the Co-Owner/Operator of Eastern Shore Performance Center and Head Coach of the award winning Workout Like A Girl Fit Camps. Kendra has found her passion for motivating and inspiring others to improve themselves and their lifestyles. In doing so she has become one of the Eastern Shore’s leading health and wellness experts. Kendra launched her own company, Workout Like A Girl in 2011 with the goal of creating a fun and extremely challenging environment all the while educating her athletes on a balanced lifestyle, healthy eating, mobility, flexibility and form. Every week she motivates hundreds athletes through social media as well as in the Eastern Shore Performance Center by creating a perfect hybrid of functional training with athlete education. To date Kendra has worked with over 1000+ athletes. Kendra currently holds her ACE (American Council on Exercise), CrossFit Level I Trainer, Precision Nutrition Certification, and is currently in the RP Nutrition Certification process. Kendra had the pleasure of assisting with Combine360/Ignite Performance Training Symposiums at IMG Academies and gained valuable experience working with the Nations top experts in the fitness industry, as well as numerous appearances on Fox45 providing nutrition and fitness tips for general health, during pregnancy, injury prevention and beyond. For over 12 years, Kendra has been a motivator in her local community by creating a positive and welcoming environment for all athletes to find their inner drive. Kendra has a unique connection with her athletes that stems from her own personal journey towards a fit and active lifestyle. As a busy mother to 5 and wife to her husband, Evan, she has found a balance of family, work, play, and advocacy. In 2022, she founded a non-profit Rowan's Dream Big Fund to raise scholarships to help young adults pursue higher education. To date she has motivated her local community to donate close to $100,000 over the last 5 years. With no plans of slowing down, she is excited about what the future has in store for Eastern Shore Performance Center as it embarks on its journey of athlete education and performance.

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Carrie-Ann Barrow, Founder, Leadership Coach, Speaker and Best-Selling Author

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Kathy Higginbotham, Realtor and Team Lead with Keller Williams Flagship

Carrie-Ann Barrow is an Executive Coach, a successful serial entrepreneur and dynamic force helping women build their dreams with unshakable confidence. She founded her first company in 2000, a staffing company with a three-year sales growth of 444.7%. She was featured in the Washingtonian Magazine as a ‘Woman to Watch,” and since then, she has built and sold two other businesses and is now focused on her passion for helping others achieve their desired success. She empowers her clients to reimagine what’s possible and make their boldest visions real, achieving record success in both work and life! She shares her story and those of women she’s coached in her book, The Queen’s Decree, which became an Amazon #1 seller in Women and Business. Carrie-Ann has a Bachelor’s in Psychology and a Master's in Employee Relations. She is an ICF Professional Certified Coach (PCC), Certified DiSC Practitioner, and a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC). Carrie-Ann is a proud mother of three and lives in Queenstown, MD.

Kathy Higginbotham graduated Magna Cum Laude with her Bachelor of Science degree in Business and Marketing and has over 20 years of sales and business development experience, including in the wedding industry. This combined experience allows her to look at each property as a business, create a customized marketing plan, handle negotiations, ensure clean contracts and successful settlements while providing top level service to her clients. Kathy started the Shore Home Team in 2021 with the mission of delivering a first class real estate experience to their clients that makes them feel educated, empowered and most importantly cared for while creating a positive impact in the community. The Shore Home Team donates portions of their commissions to local charities, hosts coats and food drives, prepares meals for our local front line workers and volunteers time with local organizations. Kathy is also the founder of ILoveKentIsland.com, a website dedicated to how to live and love like a Kent Island local. There you can find a directory or local businesses and blogs spotlighting events and fun things to do!

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Moderator:
Doncella Wilson, Founder and Executive Director of Minary’s Dream Alliance, Inc.

Doncella Wilson, LMSW As an Eastern Shore of Maryland native, Doncella completed her primary education in Queen Anne’s County and holds an Associate degree in Human Services from Chesapeake College, and a Bachelor of Arts and a master’s degree in Social Work from Salisbury University. Ms. Wilson is a state of Maryland Board Approved and Licensed Master Social Worker with more than twenty years’ experience in the Human Services profession. She is currently the Co-Founder of Minary’s Dream Alliance, Inc. (MDA) where she serves as the Executive Director. The mission of MDA is “to transform the lives of youth, families and communities through education, resource development and community engagement”. Ms. Wilson was elected in 2017 to serve as a Council Member on the Town Council in Denton, Maryland to serve a five-year term, which concluded December 2022. She volunteers her time on various local and state boards that address homelessness, behavioral health and preserving history. Ms. Wilson was appointed by Governor Hogan to serve on the Uninsured Employers Fund Board in 2019 and in 2021 she was appointed to the Commission on Trauma Informed Care. Doncella seeks to live her life as the Maya Angelou quote states, “When you learn teach, when you get give”.

Talbot County
Wednesday, August 23

Avalon Theatre

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Sponsored by:

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Megan Cook, 

Mayor of the town

of Easton

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Sarah Kilmon, Communications Manager of Talbot County Government

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Jaime Windon, CEO and Founder of Lyon Rum

Megan J. MacLennan Cook was born and raised in Massena, New York, the youngest of four girls. After graduating from high school she attended the University of Rochester where she graduated with a degree in Biology. After college she worked in the department of Pediatric Cardiology studying embryonic cardiac development, and co-wrote many abstracts and papers on her research. Once her husband Landy completed medical school they moved to Burlington, Vermont to continue their education. Megan received her Master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Vermont, while her husband completed his Pediatric residency. The couple then moved to Taos, New Mexico (for the adventure and to ski) where she worked at the Taos Orthopedic Institute assisting the sports medicine fellows in their research. In the fall of 2003 the family moved to Easton to be closer to family. Since arriving in Easton their family has grown and Megan has devoted her time to her family and the community. She’s served on numerous boards including the East End Neighborhood Association, Historic Easton, the Avalon Foundation, Junior Achievement of Talbot County, and the Parent's Associations at both Easton Elementary and The Country School. She co-chaired the community built playground project at Idlewild Park known as Project Idlewild, was the Project Manager for Play in Color, and is the co-founder of CarePacks of Talbot County, Currently, she is the Finance Chair for the Neighborhood Service Center Board, Secretary for The Gunston School Board of Trustees, Assistant Coach of the The Gunston School's Boys and Girls Tennis teams and Co-Coordinator for Meals on Wheels and Director of Personal Services for the Easton Rotary Club. She also works at the Y on Washington as the Tennis League Director. In 2009 Megan was elected to represent the 4th Ward on the Easton Town Council, a position she proudly held for 11 years before running to fill the Council President position in 2020 vacated upon the death of the honorable John Ford. Megan was elected Mayor in May of 2023.

Sarah Kilmon is no stranger to career pivots. At the end of 2020, she made a big choice – she quit her comfy software job in Richmond, Virginia to focus on her own company, Kilmon Creative and travel the country. In June 2021, she was featured on the Wall Street Journal’s podcast episode titled “Why is Everyone Quitting”. Later that year, she moved back to the Eastern Shore – her next pivot. She began to serve in the Office of Senator Mautz (MD District 37) through the 2022 and 2023 Maryland General Assembly Legislative Sessions, handling constituent relations and communications. In April 2023, she became Talbot County’s first Communications Manager, leading media and public relations, marketing, and digital media strategy for the County. Sarah lives in downtown Easton with her sister and their two dogs. She is active in the community, serving on the steering committee for the Talbot Chamber Young Professionals. She is also a participant in performances with Perfect Storm Productions and the local non-profit performing arts collective, The Factory.

Jaime Windon is the president & founder of LYON RUM, the flagship spirit of Windon Distilling Company, located on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Jaime believes that there is a rum for all occasions, and loves sharing remarkable and innovative American rum with everyone she meets. LYON RUM is proud to be a small-scale manufacturer, committed to producing 100% cane-to-glass spirits, distilled from American sugarcane in classic pot stills. Since 2012, her focus has been on developing and growing the distillery, as well as promoting the industry across the state and advocating for distillers nationwide. Jaime is a founding member of the Maryland Distillers Guild, served as the inaugural president, and is also a former two-term Saint Michaels town commissioner. She continues to chair the distillers guild’s Government Affairs Committee and is an active member of her local arts community — prior to a life in alcohol production and legislation she traveled extensively and lived abroad, working as a photographer and journalist. She believes in striving to make the world a better (and more beautiful) place to live, work, play and drink!

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Dr. Sharon M. Pepukayi
Superintendent of Talbot County Public Schools

Kate Richards
Client Consultant, Marketing & Brand Lead of Hill's Drug Store, Inc. and CoFounder of Eastern Shore SUP (on-the-water paddling) Community Group

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Moderator: Beth Anne Dorman, President and CEO of For All Seasons, Inc

Dr. Sharon M. Pepukayi currently serves as the superintendent of Talbot County Public Schools (TCPS). Prior to moving back home to Talbot County, she served as the assistant superintendent of Appoquinimink School District in Middletown, Delaware. She has over 30 years of experience in public school education. Dr. Pepukayi’s prior experiences in education include elementary teacher, assistant principal, and principal in Delaware and Ohio. Because of her passion for teaching and educating, she has facilitated an Aspiring Administrator’s Program, mentors school-aged youth, served on various state committees around principal pipelines and evaluations, and speaks at national conferences. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Bennett College (NC); Master of Arts in Early and Middle Childhood Education from The Ohio State University, and Doctor of Education in Innovation and Leadership from Wilmington University (DE). Some of her notable awards include being featured in the New Castle County Women’s Journal, honored as Administrator of the Year by the Delaware Association of Office Professionals, and received the Educator of the Year award by the National Sorority of Phi Delta Kappa, Inc. Dr. Pepukayi holds memberships with the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD), American Association of School Administrators (AASA), National Association of Black School Educators, and is a charter member of the Middletown (DE) Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta, Sorority, Inc. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and traveling with her friends.

Kate Richards is a lifelong student who leads with thoughtfulness, trust-building, sensitivity, and a healthy dose of passion. She is a marketing professional with a focus on connecting people to enriching lifestyle choices and concepts for result-producing collaboration, mediation and education. Kate has been a driving force and resource across many fields and add to them as her interests grow and expand–from organic and biodynamic food production, to holistic wellness and preventive health to the history and ecology of the Chesapeake Bay to the wide world of Stand Up Paddling. Her widely diverse professional and recreational experiences as well as her endless curiosity about fellow human beings, have given her an innate ability to connect with people of various interests, races, ages, and backgrounds.

Beth Anne Dorman is a seasoned executive with demonstrated expertise in person-first leadership, nonprofit standards of excellence, organizational sustainability and agility, and mental health administration. Dorman is also a highly sought-after trainer certified to train audiences in topics related to mental health and wellness, sexual assault, community resilience, and leadership skills. Beth Anne's current role is President & CEO of For All Seasons, a behavioral health agency and rape crisis center that is a critical lifeline for over 200,000 rural Marylanders. As the chief executive since 2014, Dorman has been instrumental in ensuring the For All Seasons' sustainability, including growing the agency's operating budget from $1.4M annually to $9.3M in just nine years. During her tenure, she has also established For All Seasons as one of the region's largest employers, growing from 24 to nearly 100 employees. Beth Anne has led strategic, mission-oriented growth as President & CEO of For All Seasons, including: •Establishing For All Seasons as a trauma center of excellence with 100% of clinical staff maintaining current trauma certification; •Expanding operations throughout a broad geographic region, including expanding services to a new office on remote Tilghman Island and adding a satellite office in Easton, MD; •Investing in the accessibility'. of mental healthcare for y'.Outh through launching and growing school-based programs across five Maryland counties; •Leading innovatively'., as demonstrated by launching telehealth agency-wide within five days of the COVID state of emergency in Maryland; and •Launching the agency'.'s Center for Learning to complement For All Seasons' clinical care with preventative mental health education to the community. Beth Anne is also a leader shaping the administration and funding of mental health and victim services throughout Maryland. Dorman provides leadership on multiple statewide Boards and commissions, including the Maryland Commission for Women, the Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MCASA), and the Maryland Legislative Agenda for Women. In 2016, Beth Anne Dorman and Maryland Delegate Jeff Ghrist co-authored a bill to decrease barriers to mental health care signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan. Education Beth Anne holds a Master's degree in Counseling and Human Services from Syracuse University, a BA in Media and Communication Studies from SUNY Oneonta, and an AS in Business Administration and Management from Monroe Community College. Awards and Recognition Most recently, Beth Anne was named the 2022 Woman of Achievement by the Business and Professional Women of Maryland as a part of National Business Women's Week. She was also recognized as Maryland's 2022 Community Star, a national award that recognizes one leader in each state who works tirelessly and innovatively to improve lives. Prior to these awards, Beth Anne was named a 2021 Woman to Watch by APG Media and the 2020 Champion by the Women & Girls Fund. Dorman has also received recognition for outstanding service from local United Ways, the American Association of University Women, Soroptimist International, Mid­Shore Council on Family Violence, and the Maryland College Personnel Association.

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A portion of the proceeds benefited Mid-Shore Council on Family Violence

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Check out photos from the event above!

On April 12th, 2023 community leaders gathered for the first annual Women to Watch REveal Event.

The event celebrated our 2023 Eastern Shore Women to Watch, allowed guests to enjoy ‘mock’tails, engage with the featured women and network with our up-and-coming leaders.

Our speakers brought to you by Easton Utilities

'Mock'tails brought to you by Easton Economic Development Corporation

Tickets Sponsored by Powell Realtors

Heavy hors d'oeuvres brought to you by The Ivy

Dessert brought to you by Josef's Sweets

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Imani Black, CEO & Founder of Minorities in Aquaculture

Imani Black was born and raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland in Chestertown. She has always had a passion for restoration and conservation since she was a young girl and found great interest in the rapidly growing shellfish aquaculture industry, after completing an aquaculture training program at Virginia Institute of Marine Science in 2016. Since then, Imani has worked on oyster farms, nurseries and hatcheries along the Eastern Shore of Virginia and Maryland. From 2018 to 2020, she was the Assistant Hatchery Manager for Hoopers Island Oyster Company, having the opportunity to work in all aspects of shellfish growout. Through her love for her career, Imani founded Minorities In Aquaculture, a nonprofit organization that strives to empower and support the underrepresented demographics (i.e women of color, women in general, men of color, etc) in the aquaculture industry by providing opportunities such as paid internship, technical skills training and career development resources. Over the last 2 years, MIA has focused its efforts and resources toward supporting women of color in their aquaculture careers, starting with Imani’s demographic which is also least engaged in this space. Overall, Minorities In Aquaculture is recognized as an impactful network focused on sustainable seafood education, aquaculture workforce development, and active engagement approaches not only for the minorities in aquaculture, but the industry as a whole in its effort towards a more diverse aquaculture field. In addition to developing the nonprofit, Imani is also pursuing a Master’s degree at the University of Maryland’s Center for Environmental Science researching the historical coastal communities of color in commercial fisheries in the Chesapeake Bay, while highlighting the approaches and methods toward active minority engagement and participation in coastal regions. Through her love for her career, Imani founded Minorities In Aquaculture, a nonprofit organization that strives to empower and support the underrepresented demographics (i.e women of color, women in general, men of color, etc) in the aquaculture industry by providing opportunities such as paid internship, technical skills training and career development resources. Over the last 2 years, MIA has focused its efforts and resources toward supporting women of color in their aquaculture careers, starting with Imani’s demographic which is also least engaged in this space. Overall, Minorities In Aquaculture is recognized as an impactful network focused on sustainable seafood education, aquaculture workforce development, and active engagement approaches not only for the minorities in aquaculture, but the industry as a whole in its effort towards a more diverse aquaculture field. In addition to developing the nonprofit, Imani is also pursuing a Master’s degree at the University of Maryland’s Center for Environmental Science researching the historical coastal communities of color in commercial fisheries in the Chesapeake Bay, while highlighting the approaches and methods toward active minority engagement and participation in coastal regions.

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Wendy Palmer, Executive Director, Y of the Chesapeake

Wendy Palmer is an Eastern Shore native who lives in Trappe with her husband, Dan, of 29 years. Together they have two adult daughters, Madeline and Carly. Formerly the owner of restaurants Latitude 38 and the Masthead at Pier Street in Oxford, she is now the Easton YMCA Executive Director. Wendy’s involvement with the YMCA began when she was a fitness instructor. She then became the Director of Operations of the Easton Family YMCA at Washington and most recently served as the Easton Associate Executive Director before she was appointed Executive Director this past year. As a lover of health and fitness, Wendy is actively involved with the YMCA’s chronic disease programs such as LiveSTRONG, Enhance Fitness, and Rock Steady Boxing for Parkinson’s. She is also dedicated to the YMCA’s mission of strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. In her spare time, Wendy enjoys being with her family and friends, going on beach trips, and playing tennis at the YMCA.

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Ashley Davis,
Executive Director, ESAHEC

Mrs. Ashley Davis is the Executive Director for the Eastern Shore Area Health Education Center located in Cambridge, MD. Throughout her career in public health Mrs. Davis has been lauded for achievements in program development, administration, and operations. Ashley is skilled at working with rural stakeholders and has provided consultation, technical assistance, and training about model programs, best practices, and emerging promising approaches in rural health and primary care to rural stakeholders such as local health departments, rural health clinics, community health centers, community-based organizations and other healthcare providers. She is an Alumni of the Johns Hopkins Academy for Women & Leadership and is a member of the Delta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, where she serves as the current Scholarship Chair and former 2nd Vice President. Ashley also serves on the Health and Wellness Committee of the National Alumnae Association of Spelman College. Ashley has a bachelor’s degree in Biology from Spelman College and a Master of Arts in Human Services Counseling, as well as a Master of Public Health Degree from Liberty University. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Social and Public Policy at Liberty University.

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