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 September Dinner
 President's Letter
 Member of the Month
 Featured Committee
 Community Outreach
 Public Policy
 Legal Action Update
 New Members
 Corporate Sponsor Feature
 Events and Happenings
 How You Can Get Involved
 Quote of the Month
 Subscription Info / The Fine Print

Bobbi Becker

  Join Bobbi on
  September 11

  The Real
  (New) Deal
  on Doing
  Business with
  Big Business

Grow Thrive Lead

Welcome! to NAWBO-SF's first e-newsletter of the 2003-2004 year. You now have the option to either read the e-news in your email, or read it online at:


Join us on September 11 for:


- or -

How can a utility company from Southern California help me get contracts from public agencies and large corporations?

For small- and medium-sized businesses, getting contracts with big companies and public sector agencies can be a mysterious and cumbersome undertaking - and necessary certifications can be complicated and confusing.

Come join us on Thursday, September 11, and find out how to get contracts with public agencies and large corporations, and get certified at the meeting!

SPEAKER: Bobbi Becker is the Business Outreach Program Manager for the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. Under her leadership, Metropolitan is pioneering a new, simplified process for certifying and contracting with small business.

WHEN: Thursday, September 11

TIME: 6:00 PM 9:00 PM

WHERE: The City Club, 155 Sansome Street, 10th Floor, San Francisco

COST: $40 NAWBO members, $50 guests

RSVP: Rhoda Singer, Chapter Administrator, 415.333.2130,
email: [email protected]

Find out more:

Or download our special flyer for this event.

Visit Metropolitan Water District's website:


by Sharon GadberrySharon Gadberry
of Transitions Management Group/Power Marketing (

As the summer ends, we turn back to focus on our businesses. This year the officers and committee chairs of your NAWBO-San Francisco chapter are creating dozens of activities and programs designed to help our members and all of their businesses to grow, thrive, and lead.

Before our Strategic Planning Committee in August, many of you kindly answered our Internet survey. You indicated two top benefits provided by NAWBO are: one, meeting and networking with other successful women business owners, and, two, Marketing your businesses to potential clients.

To better provide these benefits, Liz Vasile-Galin ( and Susan Grant (, who co-chair the Program Committee, will be increasing the networking activities at our dinner events. They will also be offering smaller programs and activities which encourage working together to achieve our business and professional goals. Now is your chance to join their committee if you want to contribute your ideas and energy, and meet some terrific women.

As you may know, your NAWBO board is a "working board". Each member has responsibility for achieving measurable goals in her area. This year, each of the committee chairs is increasing membership in order to better achieve these ambitious goals.


Denise Brouillette (, this year's Membership Chair, is forming a committee which will not only increase our overall membership by 50 per cent, but will also diversify our group by age, ethnicity, type, and size of business. Members have said they want more outreach and follow-up, and Denise's committee will be meeting that need.

May Pon has been chapter Treasurer for three years. She is pleased to report that we are in a positive cash position and poised for growth. May is also succeeding me as Public Policy Chair. That committee plans to continue informing members and serving as the voice of women business owners to legislators and public officials, who need to be educated as to what woman-owned businesses want and need. Join May's committee for an exciting and eye-opening experience! (See article about Public Policy below.)

The Marketing Communications Committee, led by Kathleen Sachs, selected new vendors, Leslie Waltzer of Crowfoot Design ( and Anastasia Fuller of Juxtaprose ( In addition to putting out the newsletter, Leslie and Anastasia will integrate the website, newsletter, and all the activities of our chapter so that you will have a user-friendly and enriching experience reading our publications and using our website. They courageously invited our entire board to submit "wish list" desires for the website, and have pledged to achieve these goals without ever having a website that is unavailable because it is "under construction."

Corporate Partners make it possible to fund many of NAWBO-SF's multi-faceted programs and services. Diana Kimbrell ( and Claudia Viek ([email protected]) are working together this year to expand corporate participation in our chapter and also to work with membership to create and produce more programs that meet the needs of both members and corporate partners. In addition to the Women's Entrepreneurial Breakfast (WEB) held in May 2004, two other programs are being developed: NAWBO University and President's Circle.

NAWBO University is a business school experience which would offer in a one-day program geared for experienced business owners.

President's Circle will serve the $1 to $2 million business owner who is poised toward the next stage of growth.

Donna Bletzinger ( serves as Secretary. She also chairs a new committee, the Community Outreach committee, which will create, expand and deliver new programs to members. One goal of her committee is to actually use NAWBO's clout and contacts to help YOU win business awards and reach new business clients.

We look forward to a successful new year!


Marketing Communications for Businesses Large and Small

We would like to congratulate Jennifer Donahue, NAWBO-SF's Member of the Month for September!

Jennifer DonahueJennifer Donahue joined NAWBO's board shortly after she launched her design and writing business in 1999. She quickly became involved in the kinds of hands-on tasks she most enjoys, such as designing a business card sized recruitment piece for NAWBO, redesigning the organization's trade show booth and helping the group make the leap from print to online communication via e-mailed newsletters and meeting announcements. During three consecutive years as the chapter's Marketing Chair, she gained valuable knowledge about working on a non-profit board.

"My experience on NAWBO's board was rewarding, educational and fun," says Jennifer, "Especially as a new business owner, it was great for me to get a chance to work alongside many different types of women business-owners, all in varying stages of their business development and their lives. I found great inspiration and motivation, as well as several new clients who I still work with today, during my service on the board."

Jennifer's core client base is small business owners with 1-20 employees. Her services are attractive to small business owners because she offers a "one-stop" source for creative needs: design, writing, production and planning are all part of the package. She produces newsletters, brochures, collateral, direct mail, websites and identity pieces, sometimes "just" designing, sometimes "just" writing, and often doing both.

She also researches the best printing methods for every job and acts as her clients' advocate with all production vendors. Some of Jennifer's smallest clients also rely on her for developing marketing and promotion plans. Being able to rely on one person for all their marketing needs offers great relief to small business owners, who can then focus on other aspects of their businesses.

For her part, Jennifer enjoys the experience of working directly with entrepreneurs, rather than with layers of corporate marketing departments. Each new client is an inspiration and a model for Jennifer as she continues to learn how to develop and expand her own business.

NAWBO clients, both current and former members of the organization, include Sheila Lewis of Flyin' West Strategic Marketing Resource Group, Holly Suzara of Ascribe Business Services, Inc., Janet Petrik and Sophie O'Neal of Synergy Business Solutions, Inc., NaNoshka Johnson of Nosh Productions, Inc. and, Helga Grayson of Thinknicity, Julie McKillop of McKillop Accountancy, Diana Kimbrell of Kimbrell & Co., Danielle Bauter of CheckYourself Bookkeeping and Pragito Dove of The Dove Institute. She has also received valuable referrals from NAWBO members that have led to additional business.

Jennifer truly appreciates the many clients she has garnered from her work with NAWBO, and also the many friends she has made in the process. "I think that participation in a non-profit, networking group like NAWBO is like most parts of life. You get out of it what you put in to it," says Jennifer, "I really appreciate NAWBO recognizing my contributions to the chapter. All I can say is that all the work has been well worth it. I hope our chapter continues to grow, thrive and lead, and I look forward to continuing to be a part of it."

Jennifer can be reached at:
768 8th Avenue, No. 6
San Francisco, CA 94118
phone/fax 415.831.5861
[email protected]


by Elizabeth Vasile GalinElizabeth Vasile Galin

Help design and implement NAWBO programs that will be valuable to our members, increase our visibility, and enhance the power of our organization to make a difference for women business owners in California and the San Francisco Bay Area.

The program committee is responsible for the content of NAWBO-SF events. We develop event topics and set the program schedule, identify and recruit presenters, coordinate with catering, moderate panels, and handle introductions, agendas, and acknowledgements. We work closely with other NAWBO committees to get the word out beforehand and get feedback afterwards.

This year is an especially exciting one for Programs. We are in the midst of restructuring the formats, venues, and contents of our events to better serve the diverse interests, schedules, and geography of our membership.

In the early planning stages is a new mix of programs, ranging from small monthly local breakfast gatherings to major quarterly meetings with nationally recognized business leaders and pioneers. Plus trade shows, a gift bazaar, and a holiday party. But we can't do it without your participation.

If you enjoy sharing or wish to develop skills in program design, meeting facilitation, public speaking, or event planning, the program committee is the place to be. We get to teach and learn from other great women business owners, make friends, and have fun!

The committee also affords an opportunity to interact directly with presenters and their organizations, and to develop leadership within NAWBO. The committee's present leadership, which has been in place since July 2002, is especially interested in grooming a new leader to take the committee chair at the end of the current term of office (July 2004).

There is much to do, however, and there is room and need for participants with diverse interests, skills, and levels of commitment.

The full committee meets face to face once a month, in a BART-accessible downtown location, to strategize around new and upcoming events and deal with issues as they arise. The next meeting will be on September 18 at the City Club, from 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The nitty-gritty logistics of planning and implementation are managed in between, by conference call and e-mail.

Contact Elizabeth Vasile Galin, NAWBO-SF Vice President and Program Co-Chair, by phone at 415.362.7770, or by e-mail at [email protected] for further information or to discuss how you would like to participate.

Find out the full programs schedule for the year online:


by Donna Bletzinger

This is a new column featuring a NAWBO member who is a successful businesswoman, a contributor to the community, and a proven leader in her industry.

Travel to Turlock and vicinity in the Central Valley and it feels like everyone knows Margo Souza. You can't walk into a deli, a government office or even the California State Fair in Sacramento without running into someone who knows Margo.

Margo SouzaA dairy farmer in Turlock, Margo owns a 340-acre farm, supervises 15 employees and oversees 1000 cows that produce up to 7,300 gallons of milk a day. As if that isn't enough, she serves on numerous industry boards including the California Milk Advisory Board, the Western United Dairymen and the Stanislaus County Agriculture Board. In recognition of her work, the Stanislaus County Commission on Women honored her as one of the Outstanding Women in Stanislaus County.

Margo recently applied for and won a $100,000 grant from the State Department of Agriculture's "Buy California" initiative. The grant provides funds for milk vending machines in California high schools. On August 14, she was on hand to congratulate the 16 high schools that will pilot the project with a vending machine at their school. Money raised from the milk sales will benefit local chapters of the Future Farmers of America (FFA).

"I'm confident that by making milk more enticing, we'll begin to turn the tide to improve our children's health and nutrition," Margo says.

A successful business owner, community activist, and just entertaining to listen to, Margo still gets a kick out of hearing about other successful businesswomen which is why she maintains her NAWBO-San Francisco chapter membership.

What words of wisdom does she have for others? When interviewed in August 2000 by the Bay Area Businesswoman News, she offered this advice to other women business owners:

It's still good advice three years later. Here's looking at you, kid.


by May PonMay Pon

If you would have asked me a few years ago what public policy means to me I would not have been able to answer you very well.

Like most working women-owned small businesses, I have concentrated on growing our tax professional practice. I was aware of the average small business person becoming frustrated in trying to comply with the many rules and regulations imposed by government, just for being in business. I told clients that if they did not like the new rules, that they should talk to their Congressional representatives, who write the new rules.

However, I have come to realize that it will take many to "transform public policy and influence opinion makers." Talking to legislators is one thing, but the ability to influence legislation is powerful.

NAWBO-SF has become advocates on small business issues before local and state governments. We have allied with other organizations to bring strength in numbers, visibility and clout as we discuss current legislation, political initiatives and future policy trends.

Locally we are connected with the San Francisco Small Business Network and the Women's Leadership Alliance creating a concentric circle in the community linking small business advocacy with women's access to healthcare, economic security, and pay equity.

Here is what you can do:

NAWBO-SF wants more good thinkers, people with a futuristic view of the world, and people who are interested and are proactive about making a positive change.

Come join us: The Public Policy committee's first meeting is scheduled for September 30. We would love to have you involved. If you are interested, please contact May Pon via email at: [email protected].



by Sharon Gadberry, NAWBO-SF President

On August 9, the Board of NAWBO California passed a resolution to oppose the "Connerly Amendment," which will be appearing on the ballot to recall the Governor in October. Earlier, the NAWBO San Francisco Board unanimously agreed to oppose. If Prop 54 win, it would become a state constitutional amendment which would make it illegal for the government, including schools and colleges, from compiling ethnic data on workers, students, contractors, and others.

We urge all of our members to vote "NO" on the Amendment because:

Want to know more about the bill? Even though the recall vote is the focus of the news, you can read more at many websites, including the following:

Other resources include:


We would like to welcome our new members:

Joanne Black - No More Cold Calling
Renowned sales training strategist offers dynamic referral selling. No More Cold Calling workshops, teleclasses, and keynote speeches. Her consulting clients double their pipeline and increase their revenues by an average of thirty percent.

Cynthia Fassler - TSS Personnel
TSS Personnel places candidates in accounting, administrative, clerical, human resources, office management, reception, secretarial and word processing positions on both temporary and full time basis.

Nancy Jong

Denise Qualls - Paymentech
Paymentech is a full service electronic payment solution provider. They provide credit and debit authorization services and bankcard settlement processing for direct merchant customers, financial institutions, and sales agents.

Maria Simone - Signature Accents, LLC
Caral Newman City Scarves and Caral Newman City Ties are unique, 100% silk accessories featuring colorful artist renderings of famous city landmarks.

We look forward to getting to know you.



Recognizing that women are starting and growing their own businesses faster than any other private sector today, ChevronTexaco, NAWBO's Corporate Partner, created a special program for NAWBO members who use automobiles in their businesses, and hosted a special reception to launch the program on June 17, 2003, at the SBA offices in San Francisco.

ChevronTexaco Event

Audrey Goins-Brichi, Manager of Procurement's Supplier Diversity-Small Business Programs, and Karen Chandra, Sr. Marketing Assistant of Credit Card Enterprises, created a unique opportunity for NAWBO members to take advantage of the Chevron "no-fee" Business Card. The Business Card, which offers special fleet features and customized record keeping, is an ideal business tool for entrepreneurs who use automobiles as part of their business. In addition to the special features of the "no-fee" Business Card, Audrey and Karen were able to secure a special one-time offer of a 10-cents-per-gallon rebate for three months to the NAWBO members that signed up.

ChevronTexaco Event"This is a 'first-of-its kind' program for ChevronTexaco," stated Goins Brichi. "We value the relationship we have with women business owners, and we are consistently looking for ways to enhance the capacity of diverse suppliers, enabling them to be more competitive in today's tough business. We thank the NAWBO members for attending and taking advantage of this special offer, and we hope to be able to duplicate this offer to other NAWBO chapters and organizations in the future."



Come hear Bay Area women entrepreneurs discuss their journeys to success in a fun, informal setting. A diverse panel of women business owners - each at different stages in their careers - will discuss start-up issues, funding, growth, exit strategies, and pitfalls.

Come hear them tell their personal stories of their paths to success!

Moderated by Mary Huss, Publisher, San Francisco Business Time. Panelists include: Lori Shannon, of See Jane Run Sports; Margot Fraser, of Birkenstock Footprint Sandals, Inc.; Holly Suzara, of Ascribe Business Services, Inc.; and Ingrid Merriwether, of Merriwether & Williams Insurance Services.

DATE: Wednesday, September 10

TIME: 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

LOCATION: Wells Fargo Penthouse, 420 Montgomery St., San Francisco

COST: $25

SPECIAL DEAL FOR NAWBO MEMBERS! Sign up for the September 11 NAWBO dinner, and receive FREE!! admission to this event. Contact Rhoda Singer to register: 415.333.2130, email: [email protected].

To register for this event only go to:

Download the special flyer for this event to find out more.

If you have questions or need more information contact Janet Lees: 415.541.8580 x 237 or Diana Kimbrell at 415.331.1334.


from the San Francisco Business Times

Please join us as we congratulate the outstanding women who appear on the San Francisco Business Times' list of the top 100 Bay Area women-owned businesses. Don't miss this exciting, high-level networking event.

DATE: Thursday, September 18

TIME: 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

LOCATION: Fairmont Hotel, Grand Ballroom, 950 Mason St., San Francisco

COST: $65 per person; $600 group of ten

Register online at:

For more information, download the special flyer for this event (includes mail-in registration form) or call Felicia Brown at 415.288.4936.



Help us create a permanent Small Business Commission in San Francisco by attending a special fund-raising event to learn all about the Charter Small Business Commission Ballot Measure, Proposition D!

DATE: Thursday, September 18, 2003

TIME: 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

LOCATION: Burr, Pilger & Mayer, 600 California Street, 13th Floor, San Francisco

Contributions of $50 or more is requested. All contributions will be matched by the San Francisco Small Business Network and San Francisco Small Business Advocates.

For reservations and questions contact: Lynn MacKenzie at 415.680.2110, or email: [email protected].


Presented by NAWBO-SV and the Silicon Valley Business Journal

A luncheon and marketplace honoring the top women-owned businesses in Silicon Valley and featuring the top NAWBO women of the year with keynote speaker Donna Dubinsky, Co-creator of the Palm Pilot and Co-Founder of Handspring, and special emcee Kathleen Ronald of Speaktacular.

DATE: Thursday, September 25, 2003

TIME: 11:00 a.m.

LOCATION: San Jose Hyatt

For more information and to register online, go to:



Tsuneko GravesOn July 25, 2003, Tsuneko Graves, Union Bank's VP for Business Relationships looked at her desk for the last time as she walked out the door and into a new chapter of her life. Tsuneko began her retirement after 20 years of loyal service to Union Bank. Tsuneko also has been a long-time supporter of NAWBO over the years as a corporate partner, and rarely missed a monthly dinner meeting.

As a gesture of appreciation, the NAWBO Board sent Tsuneko a lovely flower arrangement in an engraved crystal vase inscribed from the women of NAWBO-SF. She was very touched that NAWBO would remember her and said to thank every one in NAWBO from the bottom of her heart. We will miss her at our meetings, but wish her well in the future.

If you would like to contact Tsuneko, you may do so at: [email protected].


"Use what talent you possess: The woods would be very silent if no birds sang except those that sang best."


If you would like to submit stories, news, events, or happenings for the next issue of NAWBO-SF's e-news, please send to: Anastasia Fuller - [email protected] ( Deadline is the 22nd of the current month for the next month's newsletter (e-mailed out the first week of the month).

We invite anyone who is not already, to become a member of NAWBO-SF. We offer a growing package of member benefits and activities you can take advantage of. To find out more, visit our website: