Life of a Female Veteran: U.S. Army Combat Veteran Erica Courtney (Part 4 of 6)

With my EMBA close to completion, I was offered a senior level job at a logistics company in Miami. They needed me to lead and grow the government market. Even though I kicked and screamed about being pigeon-holed in logistics and contracting, it sure was a marketable skill. I used to buy everything, from BBQs and sunglasses to furniture and aircraft armor. I worked with the contracting officers and comptrollers who handle the big budgets routinely when I had to equip my units in the U.S. or abroad. Now companies wanted to know how to get to the person I used to be.

It was obvious people had no clue how to deal with federal buyers. I could build a section and plan out their approach. Sure, sign me up. I will take the job. For the first time, I had to think about what I was going to wear. It had been uniforms day in and day out forever. Not a big shopper, I found outfits on mannequins that looked good and showed up early, because if you are not early in the Army you are late. 

No one was there when I got there. The boss pulled up, happy to see me and said I was looking sharp. I thought nothing of it. I had to be very guarded; you never give off signals in the Army. My boundaries were disciplined. In Miami, flirtatiousness abounded. I wanted to be taken seriously and flirting would have destroyed that. I worked hard and the boss loved me, but I was in my own bubble. No one knew what I was doing or had any idea about government. I was not connecting with the workers. It was not a good fit. 

I left after a year. Corporate America was not my thing. However, during this time, Oprah and The White House Project named me, along with 50 other women around the country, a woman with the background and drive to change the world. We were all sponsored and flown to New York to collaborate with community, government and private leaders who inspired me to continue to serve. 

Degree in hand, I decided to go it alone. My family was now moving to Jacksonville, Florida. The need for government business development was there. I researched the market and found many unqualified people charging a fortune to break into this space. People just don’t know what they don’t know. You can’t just jump in. You have to understand the buyer’s language. I knew within 30 seconds if I would work with a vendor or not while serving. Why not prepare people correctly, especially if they were willing to pay for my expertise?
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Current Impact of the Government Shutdown: How Have You Been Affected?

Today marks the 17th day of the partial government shutdown that started on December 22nd, 2018, which is now the third longest government shutdown in U.S. history. Many, but not all, government agencies have been affected, causing federal employees to either be furloughed or to work without pay, national parks to close and affordable housing funding to come to a halt, among other effects.

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SB 826 Women On Boards Passes. What Happens Next?

SB 826, known as the women on boards bill, narrowly cleared the California State Assembly with the minimum amount of votes required and then went on to clear the state Senate. The measure requiring corporate boards to include at least one woman by the end of 2019 and depending on the size of the company, up to three by the end of 2021 now sits on Governor Jerry Brown’s desk waiting to be approved or vetoed. Continue reading

Women Graduates Earn More at These Three Universities

Closing the gender pay gap is a battle with many fronts. One of those fronts, a recent study discovered, is at top U.S. universities. The study, conducted by BusinessStudent.com, a website for prospective business students, did not take into account cost of living by area, or field of study. Instead, it simply focused on graduates of 117 leading universities based on the U.S. News & World Report College Rankings for 2018 and data from the U.S. Department of Education.

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SHETalks: Douglas Elliman CEO Dottie Herman Shares Secrets to Business Success

Dottie Herman, CEO of Douglas Elliman Real Estate and winner of the 2018 NAWRB Roaring Thirty The Influencer Award, gave the closing SHETalk of the first day by telling the engaging and heartfelt story of her success, from the risk she took buying Merrill Lynch from Prudential and having the tenacity to ask angel investors to invest in her dreams, to the steps she has taken to build what is now the third-largest company in America with a revenue of over $27 billion.

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Stories of Character and Courage-NDILC Luncheon Panel

After a jam-packed morning of information and new industry developments, our conference attendees were treated to an informal panel session led by NDILC (NAWRB Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Council) Chairwoman, President & CEO of NAWRB Desirée Patno, Co-chair Vanessa Montañez, and Council Members Sarah Goldfrank, Dr. Chitra Dorai, Stacey M. Walker, and Teresa Palacios Smith.

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2018 Live Conference Updates: OMWI/Procuring Contracts

Procuring contracts may not sound the most glamorous of topics, however, this panel was not only information-packed but all of our speakers from government and local agencies made themselves incredibly accessible to our attendees. Continue reading

NAWRB Hits the Ground Running in Chicago

 

Less than twenty-four hours after landing in Chicago our team hits the ground running putting all the pieces in place ahead of our 2018 Year of Women Conference.

In short order, we set up our command center in the historic Standard Club in downtown Chicago—the only private club to survive the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.  Continue reading

John Yen Wong, Founding Chairman of AREAA, & Betsy Berkhemer-Credaire, CEO 2020 Women on Boards on NAWRB Conference, Year of Women

We are thrilled to have the support of John Yen Wong, Founding Chairman of the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA) and Betsy Berkhemer-Credaire, CEO and L.A. Chapter Co-chair of 2020 Women on Boards ahead of our 5th Annual Conference in Chicago!

John keeps it simple:: “NAWRB: Great Content, Great Speakers, Great Conferences, Great People, Great Organization.”

While Betsy sums up her strategic alliance with NAWRB this way “ “Congratulations to NAWRB, on your big national conference in Chicago! As CEO of 2020 Women on Boards, I am pleased we have a strategic alliance with NAWRB, as we both dedicate efforts to advance women in their careers, and to be part of the massive campaign to increase the numbers of women directors on corporate boards to at least 20% by the year 2020. We applaud your success as women business leaders in real estate!”

With John and Betsy behind us, we continue to rock our initiatives of advancing women on boards and pushing for diversity and inclusion at every turn.

See you in Chicago!

 

 

 

 

Real Estate Agent, Or Treasure Hunter?

Uncovering a home’s story is the best part of the job

A recent story making the headlines sparked our imaginations. While not directly relating to real estate and housing, its premise is familiar to anyone who has discovered long-lost memories within an older home.

A Georgia woman walked into her local Goodwill and noticed a vintage slide projector. She opens it up upon purchasing, and in the course of doing so, is taken back in time; pulled into the world of a family from another era.

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