Olivia Benson is community engagement director for the Women and Girls Foundation. She oversees the organization's communications, membership program, volunteer projects, and external community engagement activities. Her experience includes leading communications for political campaigns, working as the director of youth policy for the city of Pittsburgh. She holds a bachelor's degree in public policy and management from Carnegie Mellon University, an MBA from Point Park University, and a master's in social policy from the University of Pennsylvania.
Olivia spoke with Kim and Natalie about the WGF's GirlGov program, the importance of getting young girls involved in the political process and the challenges ahead for protecting Roe v. Wade.
Felicia Savage Friedman is owner of YogaRoots on Location, which provides anti-racism professional development, integrative group and individual yoga classes, and yoga teacher training in and around the city of Pittsburgh. She teaches yoga-based techniques for people to manage the trauma and stress of their daily lives.
Felicia holds a bachelor's in natural sciences: mathematics, geology and biology, a master's degree in elementary education and teaching certification, all from the University of Pittsburgh.
Kim and Natalie talked to Felicia about how she approaches her yoga practice, and how she fine-tunes her instruction to suit her audience.
Abigail Gardner is the founder of Scottie Public Affairs, a strategic communications consulting firm in Pittsburgh that serves corporate, non-profit, and political clients locally and nationally. She has worked with campaigns since 2004 and is founding board member of Emerge Pennsylvania, a group that recruits and trains Democratic women to run for office.
Kim spoke with Abby about what Democrats can learn from the midterms as they prep for the presidential election in 2020, and how women candidates are affecting politics and political strategy.
Pittsburgh native Andrea Robinson is the founder and CEO of the new restaurant Sugar and Smoke in the city's Bloomfield neighborhood. Her goal was to recreate a feeling of southern hospitality. Andrea is passionate about people, food, and serving others. With over a decade of experience in Chemical Manufacturing, Andrea knows a thing or two about ingredients. She talked with Kim and Natalie about starting a restaurant on her own, and how her daughter inspires her.
Julia Poepping is Principal Consultant with Copasec LLC. She's a Pittsburgh-based independent IT consultant with 30 years of experience in the field.
Julia has a BA in Management Information Systems from University of Wisconsin-Madison and an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh-Katz Graduate School of Business. She is actively engaged in the community, serving on volunteer boards with Pitt’s MBA business simulation program, 412 Food Rescue, Red Chair Pittsburgh and Robert Morris University’s Center for Cyber Research and Training. She is an adjunct teaching professor for Carnegie Mellon University’s IS project course and guest lectures for Pitt’s Risk Management program in the business school.
Julia spoke with Kim and Natalie about the ongoing challenges for women in the IT field (including one stat that really blew our minds), and how companies can be more inclusive to emerging and mid-career women in tech.
Shaunda McDill joined The Heinz Endowments in October 2017 as the program officer for arts and culture, following more than a decade of nonprofit executive and arts management experience.
Shaunda has worked for theater companies across the country, including The Goodman Theatre of Chicago, Second Stage Theatre, Yale Repertory Theatre, Pasadena Playhouse and Cornerstone Theater Company. She also founded demaskus, a nonprofit, service-oriented collective of artists and administrators who produce theatrical projects sharing stories of the marginalized.
In Pittsburgh, Shaunda served as vice president of programming and cultivation at the August Wilson Center for African American Culture, where she managed all artistic and educational programs. As the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s director of public relations, she headed both national and local public relations campaigns, including the North American premiere of Florentijn Hofman’s Rubber Duck Project.
Shaunda spoke with Natalie and Kim about the depth of culture in Pittsburgh, and her work connecting artists with resources.
Jessica Lewis is the director of operations for two of Pittsburgh's hottest new restaurants, or, the Whale and Merchant Oyster Co. The former contestant on Hell's Kitchen and alumna of the Smallman Galley's incubator program, Lewis came to Pittsburgh from the NYC restaurant scene to run the Steelers' catering program, and opened the Hotel Monaco's Commoner and Biergarten restaurants.
Her latest project is the upcoming Raw Vegan Dinner Series, held at Heirloom Superfood Market. Jessica talked to Kim and Natalie about her philosophy behind cooking (or not cooking) and her approach to food.
Lara Dalton is a wealth advisor at Waldron Private Wealth. In this role, she’s responsible for providing comprehensive wealth planning for clients through customized and integrated trust, estate and multigenerational strategies. In addition, Lara guides the development and implementation of Waldron’s concierge service vision.
A Pittsburgh native, and Gateway High graduate, Lara has a B.S.
in International Business from Florida International University and a certificate in Financial Planning from Kaplan University and is a Certified Financial Planner
She talked to us about what women need to consider when it comes to saving and investing, and what it's like being a woman in the (still) male-heavy financial planning industry.
Shenay Jeffrey is the Outreach Coordinator at the office of PittServes at the University of Pittsburgh. In this role, she is responsible for establishing and maintaining relationships with community partners who are interested in providing service opportunities to students.
Shenay was born in Georgetown, Guyana and attended secondary school in Nassau, Bahamas. She's active in community organizations including The Urban League Young Professionals of Greater Pittsburgh, PUMP and New Voices for Reproductive Justice. Shenay is a 2016 One Young World US Ambassador, an alumna of the Jewish Healthcare Foundation 2015 Health Innovator’s Fellowship and the Fast Track Social Justice Fellow with Get Involved Inc!
We talked to Shenay about the challenges of being an activist in the current political climate, and what issues she views as the most urgent.
Samantha Story-Camp is the Owner, Operator, and Goddess of Soap for Pip & Lola’s Everything Homemade, a Munhall-based vegan and vegetarian soap company. Her company makes over 150 different varieties of handmade hand and body, shave, facial, and shampoo soaps. She's also an actor and foster parent, and a believer in doing good/paying it forward/being an all-around awesome human.
PublicSource executive director Mila Sanina (and friend of Kim and Natalie) talked about the challenges of leading an independent newsroom in a time when journalists and journalism are frequently under attack. A very timely conversation with a fascinating Pittsburgher.
Yu-Ling Cheng Behr is an entrepreneur, marketer and business strategist. She currently serves as CEO for handbag and jewelry company Sandra Cadavid, and is active in Remake Learning and Kidsburgh. We talked to her about Sandra Cadavid and the challenges of educating kids in the digital age.
Jennifer March is Executive Director of Family House. She has a history of working with nonprofits, including the Children's Home of Pittsburgh, the Lemieux Family Center, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and other arts and nonprofit entities in the region. A native of Berkeley, California, March came to Pittsburgh from Washington D.C., and was immediately enamored with the region's nonprofit sector.
She talked with us about her work with Family House and why she felt drawn to working in Pittsburgh's nonprofit sector.
Lisa Lurie is a survivor and the co-founder of Cancer Be Glammed, a company aimed at empowering women facing all forms of cancer ro recover with dignity, positive self-esteem and personal style. She co-founded the company following her own battle with breast cancer, during which she underwent a double mastectomy, an oophorectomy and chemotherapy.
Lisa has just launched a cancer guidebook Cancer Be Glammed: Recover in Style. Designed like a fashion magazine, it tackles the most common recovery concerns women face and provides practical-yet-fashionable solutions to empower them to “take charge” of their own recovery.
Pam Eichenbaum is business development associate at Innovation Works. She supports fundraising activities from foundations, government entities and corporations — all set on spurring growth of the region’s economy. In addition to her role with Innovation Works, she serves as part of the Repair the World Advisory Committee, Social Venture Partners Pittsburgh, Adele’s Circle of Women at the University of Maryland, and Gateway Committee of the Squirrel Hill Urban Coalition. We talked to Pam about Pittsburgh's startup ecosystem and what makes it special to her.
Evelyn Castillo is the owner and creative director of Sterling Events (even though she has a degree in biology!). She's on the board of the Pittsburgh chapter of ILEA, and is a trustee for Awesome Pittsburgh, which awards microgrants to "forward the interest of awesome in the universe." She talked to us about planning events for nonprofits and what's on the horizon for Awesome Pittsburgh.
For our first anniversary episode, we've invited back one of our first and most entertaining guests, the one and only sarah huny young. We got the latest on her American Woman photo project, which has taken her to New Orleans, Atlanta and Chicago.
Thanks for listening to the podcast over the past 12 months. We've got more to come, so stay tuned!
Raji Sankar is the co-founder of Choolaah, a new Indian restaurant in Pittsburgh's East Liberty neighborhood.
She co-founded restaurant development company Wholesome International in 2004, co-founded and sold a technology company, co-founded a media company, and held leadership positions in technology and media companies in Pittsburgh. She has an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University
We talked to Raji about Choolaah, what Indian fast-casual food looks like, and how the restaurant industry has evolved.
The inventor of the Pittsburgh Fish Fry Map, Hollen Barmer is a bit of a local celebrity in Pittsburgh. She talked with us about the tradition of fish frys and her work in STEAM at Carnegie Mellon University.
A longtime presence on Pittsburgh’s social media scene, Ginny decided recently to step away from Twitter. We had a really thoughtful discussion with her about social media's good and bad sides to close out our podcast's first year.