The newly formed council is an outgrowth of survey results following two successful Women in Business luncheons. Survey respondents indicated an interest in quarterly education and networking opportunities.
“A steering committee comprised of local businesswomen began meeting last September to discuss goals for the council and brainstorm about programming,” according to Bernadette Douglas, the Chamber’s executive vice president.
Steering committee members include Ann Marie Brewer, SkyRidge Medical Center; Margaret Schneck, United Knitting; Hazel Key, Key Advertising Inc.; Lisa Childers, SkyRidge Medical Center; Nancy Casson, The Red Ribbon; and Douglas.
Projected programs for 2012 include “Financial Skills” on Jan. 23, “Legal Rights” on April 23, “A History of Women’s Right to Vote” on July 23, and “Dressing for Success” on Oct. 22.
Three local experts will address topics of concern to women business owners, managers and administrative personnel during the inaugural session of the Women’s Council. Offering insight based on their experience in the financial arena are Veronica Fox, RPA, vice president and trust officer for Wealth Management Group; Laura Coleman, certified workplace money coach, LFE Institute; and Suzanne Burrell, CFP candidate, HHM Wealth Advisors LLC.
Fox will address retirement planning shortfalls for women. She has 29 years of experience in the trust and financial services industry with a special emphasis in the design and administration of qualified and nonqualified employee benefit plans. Her employee benefit experience began with First Tennessee Bank in Knoxville where she was directly responsible for the daily administration of several large defined benefit plans.
She was a founding member of the CEBS Advisory Council at the University of Tennessee (noncredit program) in 1988 and recently served as president of the Knoxville Chapter of ISCEBS. She joined the de novo Bank of Nashville where she was a member of the Trust Investment Committee and secondary officer to two large public sector defined benefit plans. She was also a member of the Middle Tennessee Employee Benefits Council.
Fox is required to keep updated in the retirement plan arena and attends webinars, ABA trust conferences and Acensus/CEBS forums annually. She currently holds the Retirement Plan Associates (RPA) designation and is working on the Certified Employee Benefit Specialist (CEBS) designation. The RPA and CEBS are joint programs between the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
She also holds the designation of Certified Trust Operations Specialist from the Cannon Financial Institute jointly with the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, and a general banking diploma from the American Institute of Banking.
Coleman, a certified workplace money coach, LFE Institute, will speak on how to ease family conflicts over money. Coleman graduated from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, in April 1999 with a degree in family and consumer science. After working in a mortgage broker office and a bank, she landed a job with a credit union based in Peoria, Ill., as a home loan originator.
More than seven years of experience of working with clients and providing lending helped influence Coleman to pursue a career educating others about money. She has completed certification to become a certified workplace money coach, personal financial educator and instructor with LFE Institute.
Coleman is passionate about helping others live a life free of financial bondage. The techniques that she teaches help families ease family conflicts, find extra money to save and invest, and stretch their paychecks in an uncertain economy.
Burrell, a CFP candidate, HHM Wealth Advisors LLC, will speak on using tax-advantaged strategies to build wealth. In her position, she works to understand her clients’ goals and guides them in reaching them. Her focus as a financial advocate puts their best interests first.
Burrell joined the HHM Wealth Advisors team in 2010. She started her investment career in 2007 with Edward Jones Investments. Prior to becoming licensed in the securities environment, she owned her own business, providing accounting and other business solutions to her clients, as well as being a financial manager for a regional construction company.
Burrell is currently a Certified Financial Planner™ candidate and holds the Series 7 and 66 licenses, along with Tennessee and Georgia insurance licenses.
Cost of the “Financial Skills for Women” session is $10 for Chamber members and $15 for nonmembers, and includes a buffet luncheon. To register, call 423-472-6587 by noon on Friday, Jan. 20. Chamber members also may register online at http://clevelandbradleychamber.chambermaster.com/events/details/women-s-council-program-financial-skills-for-women.