Schedule of Events

For January, February and March 2015, our events will be held at:
Westside Cultural Arts Center, 760 10th St. NW, Atlanta 30318 -

Map To Location

Unless otherwise indicated, all events are free to members or $20 to non-members


2015 Calendar of Events

January 13


Prompt start: 6:15

End: 8:15


Speed Networking

*** Note our temporary new meeting location! Westside Cultural Arts Center, 760 10th St. NW, Atlanta 30318

Speed Networking is an AIWN favorite! We start our year getting acquainted and connected. In the spirit of "speed dating," we will have tables of 4 people each set up to share our version of "speed networking!"

Everyone will move from table to table where you will get a chance to introduce yourself and your company, then move on to the next table to meet more accomplished women. Who says networking has to be hard?

  • Bring a stack of at least 50 business cards.
  • Check-in begins early, and we'll begin promptly at 6:15.
  • Arrive on time, because "speed networking" is organized based on the number of participants. 


February 17

6:30 - 8:00 pm


Veronica Brown - "Gamification: How To Play"

What’s gamification? And how can you use it in your small business, organization, or personal life? Loyalty points, badges, and contests using Facebook and mobile apps are all examples of gamification. You can use it to motivate your customers, employees, teammates, and even yourself. In this gamified session, we’ll look at the ways that gaming principles are changing our behavior, and how we can use it to influence others. And we’ll have fun doing it.

Veronica Brown is a writer and instructional designer specializing in designing games for adult learning. She creates engaging training activities that simulate real-world experiences. Veronica recently presented one of her games at the conference of the North American Simulation and Gaming Association (NASAGA). She also enjoys learning new games for fun.


Sponsored by Mari Fridenmaker, Blue Iron Coaching:



Veronica Brown




Blue Iron Coaching

March 31

Anita R. Paul - “Get Off Your ASSets! Write Your Book”

Women entrepreneurs fail miserably at using their assets - knowledge, intellectual property, and experience - to further their business. Becoming a published author is one of the best ways to position your platform, enhance your expertise, and build your brand. This presentation will encourage women entrepreneurs to tell their stories, and to leverage those stories for success. Attendees will learn why they should become a published author and how publishing can help their business.

They will learn:

  • 3 reasons a book is critical to business success
  • 3 strategies to write a book quickly, easily
  • 17 assets to leverage as a published author 

Anita Paul is known as The Author’s Midwife. Through her Write Your Life program, she helps professionals and entrepreneurs write, publish, and leverage their book. Anita is the author and co-author of several books including: Building a Business, Building a Life: Incredible Stories of Women Entrepreneurs; and Publishing as a Marketing Strategy. She owns The Write Image, a publishing services company, and she is host of “Book Your Success,” on BizLynks TV.


Sponsored by Lynda Idleman, PhD, Idleman & Associates:


Anita Paul










May 12

Carmen Westbrook - “Defining Your Personal Style & Brand”

Your ‘personal brand’ is the total experience of the relationship that others have with you. One component of your brand is your personal style.

With Carmen Westbrook’s informative, light-hearted approach to helping women look and feel their best, she’ll help you:

  • Identify which of the seven style personalities fits you best;
  • Determine how to incorporate your unique style into your personal brand and professional look;
  • And, understand how your body language impacts your image.

Carmen formed Naked – Fashion Help in 2009 out of a desire to do creative, meaningful work and to help people feel comfy in their own skin. After training at The London Image Institute, she now works with women, helping them transform their appearance into one that truly represents their unique personality and style.


Carmen Westbrook

June 16

Neca C. Smith , Ed/S., LPC, CAMS -
“Cool, Calm & Collected: Minimizing Conflict to Maximize Your Business”

Running your own business can be filled with daily hassles and stress, and the constant hustle and bustle often leads to frustration. Leaders and entrepreneurs are dealing with the effects of the economy on their businesses as well as demands and pressures from their home life. All of this can lead to a perfect storm of anger and an inability to adequately handle difficult situations. In this program, you will:

  1. Discover the DNA that Entrepreneurs need to effectively manage difficult situations.
  2. Understand the 5 Principles for handling conflict and difficult situations in your business.
  3. Learn the 5 Triggers and how to deal with them effectively. 

Neca C. Smith, Ed.S., CAMS, LPC, Principal of AidevO People Consulting, LLC, will give you tips on handling minor inconveniences as well as major disruptions with staff and clients so that you can get down to business.



July 12

Charla Mahon -
“The Backend Steers the Frontend to Financial Success: Quick Strategies For Running Your Small Business More Effectively on the Backend”

It’s not easy to run a business, especially when you're constantly overwhelmed, overworked and often just frustrated. In the beginning, it's not so hard. As the business takes off, though, the old way -- those processes you threw together to get by at first -- begins to feel like a ball and chain, and you’re sinking under the pressure. Nothing short of an army of assistants could relieve that stress. Charla will share some strategies for running a smooth business on the backend which will enable you to focus on growing your business to the financial success you desire.

Charla is a virtual operations manager and implementation expert who works with small businesses on the path to growth to build out the business structure (tools/processes) and virtual team needed to sustain that growth. What Charla gives her clients is freedom to focus on growing their businesses and serving clients, while she orchestrates the backend of their businesses. Charla is a business owner herself, and understands the challenges of starting and growing a small business.


Carla Mahon

September 8

Donna Grindle - “Online Security Tips Against Identity Theft”

In order to function in business today you probably need to be online. You need an online presence for yourself and your business in most cases. Putting yourself out there is great but do your really know how important it is to protect yourself and your online reputation? There a many reasons you should worry about the information you send out and make accessible online. One simple mistake could lead you into a terrifying world where your name, your credit, and your life is run through the mud. Join Donna for this session to learn what to be worried about and how to reduce your exposure to the World Wide Web of Criminals.

Donna Grindle is the Owner of Kardon Technology and Kardon Compliance. Her background includes an extensive amount of technology experience across a broad spectrum of the field. She gets excited about teach technical topics but presents the information in a fun and relatable manner. So come along for the ride!


Donna Grindle

October 13

Margo Geller MSW, LCSW - “Getting Paid What You Are Worth”

Not getting paid what you are worth? Are you afraid to raise your rates or ask for a raise? Margo Geller's presentation and discussion will provide a fresh perspective on money, emotions and finding the confidence to raise your rates or re-set your salary goals. You will leave with useful tips and an outline for helping you create your personal money action plan. Margo Geller, LCSW is a distinguished Business Development Consultant, Coach, Counselor and Entrepreneur and the owner of Margo Geller & Associates. Margo works at the intersection of psychology and business. Over the past 35 years, she has helped hundreds of professionals, business owners and entrepreneurs become master networkers and get paid what they are worth. Margo is the author of “The Love Club: A New Approach To Business Networking.”


Margo Geller

December 1

Members-Only Holiday Event





2014 Past Events

Dec. 2

Members-Only Holiday Event



Oct. 14

6:30pm - 8:15pm


Bring for Dress for Success Atlanta:
NEW full-figure bras and toiletries.

Dr. Margaret Thompson, Clayton State University, Professor of Management

Personality: What’s gender got to do with it?

How are men and women different in terms of their approaches to managing people, dealing with work and personal relationships, and career development? What can the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) tell you about your strengths in business situations, and how to interact with others? Join us to learn more about the MBTI, the real impact of gender in the workplace, and how to assess yourself and others to maximize your business results.

Dr. Margaret Thompson, Professor of Management at Clayton State University, is a Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) Certified Facilitator with a comprehensive background in organizational behavior, career assessment and development, and organizational theory and practice. She teaches courses such as Women in Leadership, Building Successful Teams, Communication for Leaders, Presentation Skills, and Intercultural Communication.


Donna Grindle, Kardon Technology,











Kardon Technology


Sept. 9

6:30pm - 8:15pm


Allison Phillips,

"4-Part Formula to Close More Sales…On the Spot"

Ever wish you had the recipe for closing more sales on the spot without needing scripts and other “sales-closing” tactics that feel inauthentic? Are you often puzzled as to why prospects are not buying even though you know they need your services? If these are your challenges, join us to discover:

  • One small change to make immediately that can dramatically increase sales in your business.
  • The #1 mistake entrepreneurs make in telling others about their services (and it significantly reduces sales).
  • A rarely-used process that instantly inspires hunger/desire for your services (and it’s the key to closing more sales with little effort).
  • A sure-fire way to completely eliminate the fear, awkwardness, and discomfort around selling (you may just begin to love selling after this).

Winner of the Business Coach of the Year award, Allison Babb Phillips is the founder of After over 20 years in the corporate world, Allison put her talents to work as an entrepreneur, author, and speaker to teach business owners how to create client-magnetic businesses.


Emory Aesthetic Center,










Emory Aesthetic Center

July 22

6:30 - 8pm



Bonnie Buol Ruszczyk, BBR Marketing

"Yes, You CAN Market Your Small Business"

No matter what the nature of your business is, it is important to let your customers know you are out there! In this interactive session, we’ll review the importance of a marketing plan and discuss some tactics that we’ve seen succeed. Whether you are just getting started, hitting a plateau or looking to expand, you will leave with some new ideas to help you reach your goals.

Bonnie Buol Ruszczyk is president of bbr marketing which provides marketing services and strategy for professional services firms. Bonnie has been named one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in accounting by AccountingToday for two years in a row. Bonnie is a dynamic speaker and empathic leader whose audiences leave feeling entertained, understood and empowered with actionable information. 


Amanda Thomas, PNC Bank,


Bonnie Ruszczyk






June 17




Pam Brooks-Crump, Ellen Sichel, Katharine Pike, Elizabeth Malone, Laura Biering


5 Wise Women: Secrets to Polishing Your Shine

YOU are the most important person you will ever nurture. Even though you know this to be true, as women we often put others' needs ahead of our own. The good stuff (health, happiness, success, abundance) often lives on the back burner in our busy lives.

Isn't it time to get back in touch with yourself? To light the fire on all the burners? To polish up your shine? It may be easier than you think!

You are invited to join an interactive chat with our panel of self-care experts. Contributing their wisdom will be:

  • Moderator: Laura Biering, a 15-year veteran life and leadership coach and founder of True Voices. Laura delights in sharing How to Be You Out Loud!
  • Panelist: Elizabeth Malone, CEO and Chief Vixen of Moxie
  • Panelist: Katharine Pike, Queen of Permanent Weight Loss
  • Panelist: Pam Brooks Crump, author, WeCan business coach/networking expert
  • Panelist: Ellen Sichel, founder of CustomCalm, teacher and author on dealing with chronic stress, pain, and illness

These wise women will be sharing their best secrets for boosting self-confidence, energy and power. Hear how managing stress and calming our thoughts can help attract more abundance, health and shine to our lives.

In addition to the panel, there will be a question and answer session, and a chance to personally connect with our panel of experts.

We look forward to seeing you there.

Come shine with us!


Teri Eastin, Atlanta Acne Specialists,



























Atlanta Acne Specialists

May 13

6:30 - 8pm



Anne Keeton, Grief to Relief

"Grief & Recovery: A Personal & Professional Necessity"

While grief is the most universal and profound of all human experiences, it is the least understood and most neglected. Yet no matter how smart or rich or good we are, we will experience it. We must take grief out of the closet. Anne Keeton will explain the six myths of grief, the impact of grief, and the skill set we can develop for healthy recovery. Anne brings humor and high energy to a topic that is difficult, but essential for independent women to face.


Elston Collins, Fresh n Fit Cuisine,



Anne Keeton



Fresh N Fit Cuisine

April 1

6:30 - 8pm

Jody Cole, Wild Rainbow African Safaries, LLC

Ever considered "taking a leap" in your business, or personal life? Jody Cole's unusual leap from Southern Belle to South African Bush Guide will inspire you. Jody will tell us how she created a business to support her dream--which is almost as scary as facing a charging elephant--and how our strengths and weaknesses can guide us towards our dreams, if we only let them.

Jody Cole is one of the only American women certified as a field guide with the South African Field Guides Association. She has spent the past 20 years focusing on human rights and animal welfare, with an active role in animal research projects including South Africa's brown hyaenas. She founded Wild Rainbow Africa Safaris in 2004.


Sponsored by Mari Fridenmaker, Blue Iron Coaching,


Jody Cole



Blue Iron Coaching

Feb. 18

6:30 - 8pm


Nancy Chorpenning, Founder and Managing Partner of C-Suite Advisors.

"PLAN is NOT a 4-Letter Word!"

Nancy Chorpenning is the Managing Director of Atlanta-based C-Suite Advisors, a business advisory practice supporting small business owners, especially women entrepreneurs who are growing their firms into profitable, professionally-managed businesses.

Nancy brings to C-Suite Advisors 30 years executive management experience with Fortune 500 corporations from Time Warner to start-ups like WebMD. Her exceptional skills include the ability to diagnose performance gaps, analyze root causes and develop plans for change.

Nancy will share her wisdom to help us all create plans for our work and for our futures.Nancy will share her wisdom to help us understand how to use an Operating Business Plan to be more successful:

  • 1) Why do I need an Operating Business Plan?
  • 2) What components are important to a useful Business Plan?
  • 3) How can I use my Operating Plan to be more successful in my day-to-day business?

Sponsored by:  Kelly Lucas, BBR Marketing

Special Guest:  Sandy Johnson of Dress for Success Atlanta


Nancy Chorpenning






BBR Marketing

Jan. 14

5:45 - 8pm

Speed Networking: Kick off 2014 with new energy and new contacts

An AIWN favorite! So much fun we're starting our year getting acquainted and connected. In the spirit of "speed dating," we will have tables of 4 people each set up to share our version of "speed networking!"

Everyone will move from table to table where you will get a chance to introduce yourself and your company, then move on to the next table to meet more accomplished women. Who says networking has to be hard?

  • Bring a stack of at least 50 business cards.
  • Check-in begins early, and we'll begin the meeting at 6:15.
  • Arrive on time, because "speed networking" is organized based on the number of participants.
  • Cash bar will be available.

We'll also talk about our new partnership with Dress for Success Atlanta.