More than 100 members of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), Phoenix Chapter, and their guests recently celebrated the success of the past year and recognized the contributions of its members and corporate partners.
“All of our members deserve thanks and recognition for all they do throughout the year to support our chapter and other women in business,” says Phaedra Earhart, 2016-17 NAWBO Phoenix president. “The anticipation turned into special moments of celebration as companies and individuals were honored with the sparkling 2017 Desert Diamonds Awards in six categories.”
Corporate Partner of the Year: SRP
SRP’s Supplier Diversity Department constantly strives to advocate for woman-owned businesses in its supply chain. Currently, the organization spends almost $19 million with more than 130 woman-owned businesses. Patti Pyle and SRP’s Supplier Diversity department are committed to expanding awareness of NAWBO as a growing and important community organization and providing professional development for women business owners through mentoring and other opportunities.
Bridge Builder: Lynda Bishop of Relationship Insurance
As a member of the National NAWBO team, Bishop strives to connect the local Chapter with national programs, benefits, initiatives and educational development pieces to make sure the local members are getting the full benefit of their membership. She works closely with the Arizona Hispanic Chamber, Girls Rule Foundation and Young Entrepreneurs Academy. Bishop also leads the national NAWBO Circle to amplify the voice of women business owners in our community and our nation’s Capital.
Spirit of NAWBO Sisterhood: Jackie Wszalek, Splash Printing & Marketing
Wszalek’s business and her personal development have both shown marked improvements by being involved with NAWBO. Since becoming a member more than seven years ago, she has been “all in” as a volunteer, board member, officer and Corporate Partner.
Unsung Hero: Clarisse Ringwald of Clarisse Color Creations
Ringwald has served as the first point of contact for numerous collaborative events and has staffed the NAWBO exhibit table at numerous events. She currently serves on the NAWBO Board as the membership director. Ringwald has written membership campaign blogs, donated Essential Colors Analysis and Styling Package gift certificates for NAWBO and for the Women’s Enterprise Foundation, facilitated the fall and spring membership drives and Happy Hour events, and has actively promoted membership throughout the year.
Member of the Year and Business Owner of the Year: Connie Zimmerlich of Clickchick Photography
As the Neighborhood NAWBO chair for the last seven years, Zimmerlich has created a streamlined process for the co-chairs. She personally trains each co-chair to make sure communication with members is consistent. This year, Zimmerlich participated on the membership committee and the programs committee, and served as a mentor in the mentoring program. She assists with registration at luncheons, provides encouragement to members, offers advice to board members, and is always th first one to say YES when asked to volunteer or donate. She has been a member of NAWBO since 2008.
Beginning with a home-based business in 2006, Zimmerlich and her husband/partner took a leap of faith and opened a retail studio location in 2013. They brought on a new employee, and, through challenges and triumphs, they increased revenue by 400 percent over the last three years and are projecting revenue to grow 200 percent this year. And they give back to the community. Over the last year, the business owners have donated more than $100,000 in services and product to nonprofits within the community, including NAWBO and WEF.
Companies and individuals were nominated by members, and then members voted to determine the top finalists in each category. Finalists were judged by a past president and Corporate Partner of the Phoenix Chapter; a Corporate Partner of the Phoenix Chapter; two women business owners in the community; and NAWBO Phoenix members. For more information, visit nawbophx.org.
Three other members were recognized for outstanding service. “In addition to the Desert Diamonds Awards, I presented Presidential Awards to three members who provided extra help and support to me as their president and to our organization,” Earhart says. “Cindy Gordon of Business Rescue Coaching, Julie Cook of Idea Three Creative and Laine Seaton of Child and Family Resources, Inc. each gave above and beyond in their service to our organization and deserved every bit of this recognition.
“With gratitude, the Phoenix Metro Chapter would like to thank our major sponsors of this year’s Desert Diamonds Awards for their contribution for an incredible event — CopperPoint Mutual Insurance Company and SRP,” Earhart adds.
For more information, please contact Laurie W. Anderson, of Cactus Creative, at (303) 758-1118.