Tempe Chamber Names Jodi Polanski Business Woman of the Year

by Meghan Dorn


Jodi Polanski

The Tempe Chamber of Commerce has named Jodi Polanski as its 2015 Business Woman of the Year. She was honored at the 20th Annual Women in Business Conference on May 20 at the PERA Club in Tempe.

Polanski is the founder and executive director for Lost Our Home, an animal rescue organization founded in 2008 as a grassroots response to the thousands of pets in need as a result of the economic downturn.

Her experience brings a business-oriented structure to the management of Lost Our Home while her lifelong love and dedication for animals keeps the compassionate side always in the forefront.

She received a scholarship from the Arizona State University Lodestar Nonprofit Management Institute and received her Professional Certificate in Nonprofit Management in May 2011.

“The Business Woman of the Year award recognizes the valuable contributions that the candidates have made to the business community and to the Tempe Chamber of Commerce. Their hard work and dedication have made an admirable and positive impact that we are proud to recognize,” said Mary Ann Miller, president and CEO of the Tempe Chamber.

The two other finalists were Denise Hart, vice president of marketing at Vestar and the Tempe Marketplace, and Dawn Hocking, director of development at TCH.

“The best way to succeed and make a difference is to do something you are passionate about,” said Polanski when offering advice to other businesswomen. “Without passion, you will not push forward with the intense dedication you need when things get tough or life gets busy.”

Polanski has recently partnered with the Sojourner Center to develop the Sojourner Pet Companion Shelter, allowing victims of domestic violence to bring their pets with them, so that no one is left in an abusive home. This joint venture is the first of its kind in the Greater Phoenix area.

Hart offered this advice to other businesswomen: “Work in a field that you are truly passionate about, go above and beyond what is expected of you, and always be the one who volunteers for anything asked, even if it’s outside of your job description. It’s important to feel confident about your work, give more than you receive, understand and embrace change, and become a team player and role model to your peers. Always strive to maintain a work/life balance and sustain a positive, happy and fulfilling life.”

On being successful, Hocking says, “Your passion is something in your life that never loses that feeling of exhilaration no matter how many years you spend doing it. Find a way of bringing that passion into your daily tasks, even if your passion and your work seem to be opposites. When you are doing what you love, your talents and resources are most effective and you will make an even bigger difference in the lives of those around you. Then become involved in your chamber of commerce. Opportunities and possibilities multiply when you network with others who share similar goals.”

Congratulations to these amazing women! They truly make a difference in Tempe.

Speak Your Mind

In Business Dailies

Sign up for a complimentary year of In Business Dailies with a bonus Digital Subscription of In Business Magazine delivered to your inbox each month!

  • Get the day’s Top Stories
  • Relevant In-depth Articles
  • Daily Offers
  • Coming Events