Considering Doing Business with the Federal Government?

Here is an opportunity for advice from Joyce Cofield, Ex-ecutive Director of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency’s Office of Minority and Women Inclusion.

Joyce, what is the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency?

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency [OCC] is the federal agency that charters, regulates, and supervises national banks and federal savings associations. The OCC’s mission is to ensure that these institutions operate in a safe and sound manner, provide fair access to financial services, treat customers fairly, and comply with applicable laws and regulations.

And what’s the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion?

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Even When an Obese Person Loses Weight, Health Problems Could Persist Due to Epigenetics

When an obese person loses weight, he or she immediately starts to feel better. Blood pressure improves, cholesterol levels diminish and energy levels rise. Because that person is no longer obese, the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, as well as liver, colon and breast cancers and other diseases linked to obesity, diminishes, right?

That might not be the case.

A new study by City of Hope researchers found that even after a low-fat diet is consumed, long-term disease risks could persist.

The reason could be epigenetics, which refers to changes to genes caused by external factors, such as pesticides or nutrients, that don’t change the DNA sequence. However, these changes can be passed to the next generation, according to Dustin Schones, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the Department of Diabetes Complications and Metabolism within the Diabetes & Metabolism Research Institute at City of Hope.
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Women and Minorities Stalled on Fortune 500 Boards


A new study from the Alliance for Board Diversity and Deloitte, Missing Pieces Report: The 2016 Board Diversity Census of Women and Minorities on Fortune 500 Boards, reveals that women and minorities hold 31 percent of board seats at Fortune 500 companies, representing a mere increase over the past four years.

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Maintaining a Personal Connection With Your Clients

One lesson I’ve encountered in my tenure as a realtor is that learning to stay away from the shiny object syndrome is a big challenge. I’ve always admired technology and what it has done for my business and industry. I admit I am the agent who downloads every new application I can find and I love finding ways I can apply it to my business. Technology has made my life simpler in many ways, but I believe it has also taken some of the true essence of real estate away from us. We can communicate faster; we don’t have to drive documents around or even worse, fax them; we can instantly have all the information we need about a property at our fingertips; and we have numerous platforms to connect with the people we serve. However, everything comes with a cost. The cost is the threat of losing that personal, face to face connection with our clients.

Something on which I advise my team, and the agents I mentor and train, has always been preventing yourself from being replaced by technology. At the end of the day our clients need us for many things that technology cannot provide. My personal experience has taught me that clients, especially millennials, love using technology; they love being able to sign things digitally on their phone, look up schools in the area, browse homes in a neighborhood by using GPS and even utilize email and text to communicate while they are at work and can’t talk. What I have also learned is more than ever, people are longing for human connection, guidance and support. Believe it or not, millennials are craving this the most.
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SheCenter(FOLD): Marcia Davies

NAWRB: What is your favorite characteristic of Washington, D.C.? What sets the nation’s capital apart from other cities in which you’ve lived?

Marcia Davies: Washington is a beautiful city, with all of its historic landmarks and rich culture. We who live there sometimes don’t stop and really appreciate when we see a monument or the cherry blossoms in bloom, that it is unique and beautiful.

I think what really separates it is you definitely feel the political energy when you work in Washington. Sometimes it’s subtle and other times, like most recently with the inauguration, you feel it in everything, whether it’s your commute or how hard it is to get into a restaurant or make reservation. There is a real political vibe and energy. We know when Congress is in and when it’s going out. I really think that it makes it a dynamic place to live and work.

I have been privileged on several occasions to be in the White House, and not just see it during the holidays when the beautiful Christmas decorations are up. I’ve attended meetings in the Roosevelt Room and as I’m leaving I always stop before I get on the other side of the gate to take it in for a moment, thinking, “Wow, I was just in the White House.” Then in 10 minutes you’re back in your office. For a lot of people, that’s not a normal day. I’ve been lucky enough that I’ve been able to do that on more than one occasion.

I can honestly say that when I was growing up I never thought I would be in a meeting, let alone more than one meeting, in the White House. And it happened.
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The Glass Ceiling

by Vanessa Montañez

Does the Glass Ceiling exist in today’s world of equality? What do you think? I think the facts speak for themselves.

We all know women earn less than men. Women who worked full-time, year-round in 2014 earned, on average, 79 percent of men’s median annual earnings, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Over the years the gender wage gap has lessened but we are still too slow in our progress.

This past presidential election showed that we are still not ready for the first female President of the United States of America. Of the 195 independent countries in the world, only 17 are led by women, according to the U.S. State Department. “I can’t believe we just put the biggest crack in the glass ceiling yet,” stated Hillary Clinton at the 2016 Democratic National Convention (DNC). Are we one step closer?

The National Association of Women in Real Estate Business (NAWRB) Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Council (NDLIC) brings women’s diversity and inclusion to the forefront of the housing ecosystem with accountability and results by raising the number of women in the housing finance industry. The numbers look promising for women looking for a career in real estate, as 62 percent of all Realtors® are female, according to the 2016 National Association of Realtors® Member Profile.

On the C-suite level the numbers are inadequate. The 2015 Catalyst Census reveals that men held 80.1 percent of S&P 500 board seats, while women only held 19.9 percent and men held 73.1 percent of S&P 500 new directorships, while women only held 26.9 percent. The Census also found that: 2.8 percent of S&P 500 companies had zero women directors; 24.6 percent had one woman; and only 14.2 percent of companies had 30 percent or more women on their boards. Within S&P 500 companies, women held: 4.2 percent of CEO positions, 9.5 percent of top earner positions, 25.1 percent of executive/senior-level officials and managers positions, 36.4 percent of first/mid-level officials and managers positions; additionally, 44.3 percent of total employees were women.

Women need to achieve higher educational attainment with advanced degrees in their respective fields. The more education once receives the more income one earns. Women also need to study fields where men have predominantly dominated. Examples would start with STEMF, a term I altered to include science, technology, engineering, mathematics and finance.

Take risks in your career. Apply for the position you want but may not feel qualified for because you do not meet every qualification of the job. Women need to break the glass ceiling at every level. Whether you are starting your career or making a change in your career. It all starts with you.

Introducing Women’s Homeownership Series: Rachel

Rachel, a single mother living in Hayward, California, enjoys spending time with her son, seeing friends, going to the movies and imagining her dream home. Her weekday morning routine consists of waking up at 6:30 a.m. to pack lunches, dropping Sam off at preschool by 7:30 a.m. and driving 15 minutes north to her job at the local high school.

Rachel loves her job, and she’s great at it; helping her students thrive in a daunting subject matter is incredibly rewarding. Her talent and dedication as an educator recently earned Rachel a job offer from a private San Francisco school. It’s a dream job, head of the mathematics department with the opportunity to create her own programs and curriculums.

During the interview, Rachel fell in love with the school and felt welcomed by the staff. Whether she wants the job isn’t the issue, it’s whether she can make it work.

Commuting to San Francisco from her home is out of the question. A two-hour commute would mean having to leave home before 5:00 a.m. and moving closer, perhaps to Oakland, still results in a commute exceeding an hour.

Despite earning more than the median weekly income of $1,049 for women with a bachelor’s degree or higher, Rachel’s salary doesn’t go very far in the City by the Bay. In fact, after rent, Sam’s preschool tuition is more than all her other bills combined.

Rent for a two-bedroom apartment in San Francisco would run Rachel about $4,550 a month. Neighboring Oakland’s rent is much more affordable, but still averages a whopping $2,500 a month in addition to the commute. With rents averaging $3,330, Rachel wouldn’t even be able to afford downsizing to a one-bedroom in San Francisco.The difficulty in affording a move for her job is an unusual challenge for Rachel, a successful, independent person who has always earned her keep by the sweat on her brow. Her life has developed in line with her achievements. Now, though, Rachel’s efforts have landed her a dream job, but they cannot sustain the living expenses. The scale is tipped, the conditions imbalanced. She is qualified to teach students in San Francisco, but not capable of living in their city.

Rachel’s new salary—an attractive $60,071 a year—is a great increase from her current earnings; but still leaves her with less than $4,000 a month and makes a minimal dent in her projected living expenses. What does she do? What needs to change? What can change?

Let’s keep in mind that for a person seeking a move, Rachel is equipped well. She has a steady job, good credit, is a responsible mother and even has a job secured in her desired city. And yet, the obstacles facing her are powerful and pervasive. What would be the case for a person hoping to move without a good job or a great job offer? Would this feat be impossible and keep them perpetually stuck in their current location?

Being priced out of certain neighborhoods has been a reality for Americans. This is a difficult situation, but could she make it work if she really wanted to? There’s options. Possible options range from having a roommate, maybe two, asking someone to borrow money, even just making do and enduring a long commute to the city.

What if a person doesn’t have somebody to grant them the huge favor of lending money? Consider the impact commuting would have on Rachel’s quality of life. Spending hours driving every day to accommodate her job and rent. Having just a few moments to relax with Sam after her long commute rejuvenates the essence of being a working mother.

Rachel has put in the work, what does the future hold for her options?