The meeting of the Arizona Sister Society of the Global Women's Leadership Network, World Council of Credit Unions on May 29 offered another tremendous opportunity for learning and networking, as well as contributing to the community. Participants enjoyed a great opening from Jaquetta Ward, Association Support Manager at the Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA), who hosted the event with her organization. Thanks to Brandi Stankovic from Mitchell Stankovic for her update on the growth of the organization. She reported that we now have more than 600 members in 15 chapters across the globe - including our partner group that started in Colorado on May 28. Brandi's presentation featured a discussion of issues from Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg. The topics spurred thoughtful discussions about the nature of leadership and how we can promote our own success and that of other women in credit unions.
Florida Global Women's Leadership Network Sister Society Session was a success!
The importance of professional women working together to develop the potential of women around the world cannot be overstated. Guest speakers included Linda Darling, SVP/COO Suncoast Schools Credit Union and Dr. Brandi Stankovic, Mitchell Stankovic & Associates.
Recognizing that a global initiative was inspiring but meeting once a year was not enough, key leaders of GWLN developed the concept of Sister Societies which allow more intimate exchange of ideas and networking within a regional or local area. There are three areas of focus: Personal Development, Professional Development, and Credit Union Community Development. Personal Development may include mentoring, networking, life balance, and issues that prevent moving up within the organization. Professional Development may include access, influence, sponsorship, being advocates, and exchange programs. Promoting women’s causes within each local community development is part of the CU brand and social mission.
Dynamic women leaders are recruited or volunteer to become local Sister Society champions. They work tirelessly to create programs and network opportunities for women within their areas. Group leaders and their progress to date has been documented in the update section of this recap. Meetings are held three times a year, rotating between member credit unions and offered free of charge including lunch sponsored by local credit union. Attendance is open to all potential members and “friends” who are encouraged to get involved. Letters of introduction are sent to CEOs in the area to provide information regarding GWLN and the Sister Society requesting they send women leaders within their organization to participate in the networking and program.
The Nevada members of the Global Women's Leadership Network of the World Council of Credit Unions mentored college students on Effective Resumes, Interviewing Skills, and Professional Behavior. The session included round table discussions, one-on-one coaching and interactive activities. The business students at the College of Southern Nevada were inspired to change their own behaviors and take control of their futures. They raved about the tips and techniques that were shared in the meeting. They loved having one-on-one time with the mentors. They also loved the sample resumes, interview techniques and professional behaviors shared. We truly made a difference in the lives of young people in Southern Nevada! Thank you again for your contribution!
The New York/New Jersey Sister Society hosted a very successful meeting with over 37 women in the credit union industry! Laurie Benjamin and Robin Meyers from Melrose Credit Union presented an update of the Global Women's Leadership Network followed by a discussion of the book, "Lean In" facilitated by Brandi Stankovic, MSA. The group was very engaged in the dialogue about advancing women in business and in life. After the session, the attendees enjoyed a beautiful view of Manhattan and a Halloween themed wine and cheese reception hosted by United Nations Federal Credit Union. Visit cuwomen.org for more information.
In 2012, Michigan became a leader in the development of World Council Global Women's Leadership Network's Sister Society with our inaugural meetings at Frankenmuth Credit Union and then Lake Trust Credit Union. We hit the ground running with 25+ participants. The group expressed a strong interest in developing projects and contributing to our communities, in addition to having opportunities to network and nurture leadership skills.
We celebrated our next meeting in Grand Rapids, MI at CU Answers. Brandi Stankovic, Partner of MSA, led an educational and networking session on the book, Lean In, by Sheryl Sandberg. Copies of the book were given to participants. The book has caused quite the stir worldwide, and our Sisters across the globe have been benefiting from this presentation and discussion.