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View from the E-Suite: An Event Recap 

When was the last time you scheduled an entire day to invest in yourself? If the answer escapes your mind, I encourage you to do what over one hundred professionals did last week. They cleared an entire day, cashed in on their mounting reserve of unused leave, and prioritized themselves by attending the Women’s Professional Empowerment Symposium at the Silver Spring Civic Center. I was proud to be among the group (patting myself on the back) as it was a valuable investment! 

Nonprofit HR had the opportunity to partner with Erica M. Roberts, Founder and President of X Is Possible, LLC, and Immediate Past President of the DC Chapter of the National Black MBA Association, to sponsor a day of women’s empowerment and action. Dozens of professional women from diverse backgrounds, sectors and industries convened for a full day of inspiring discourse and interactive workshops to push ourselves to our own next level.  

What stood out to me, besides the impeccable coordination, beautiful venue, and phenomenal facilitators and panel speakers, was the intensity of engagement. It is powerful to be a part of a group of women who want nothing more than to become better so they can do more and give more.  

During the afternoon breakout session, “The Art of the Career Pivot”, I had the pleasure of participating on a panel answering questions ranging from knowing when it’s time to make your next move and leaving gracefully to creating your career road map even when you are unsure of your destination. Leaning on my experience as an executive search consultant, plus my own career journey, the discussion was spirited, heartfelt, and very transparent. 

Dethra U. Giles, Founder & CEO of ExecuPrep, facilitated the Career Path sessions and offered that women must stop pleading for a seat at the table and become carpenters. “It’s time to build your own table and invite others to come have a seat!” Giles and other panelists led us through the importance of becoming an “employee-preneur”, salary negotiation and self-promotion, and continuous learning and networking.  

After a day of pouring into myself, and while looking through my conference swag bag and at all the business cards I collected, I knew that I needed to begin building deeper connections with the dynamic women I met. We must continue creating and engaging in these much-needed intimate spaces for professionals to recharge, connect, and pour into each other. 

by Danisha Martin
Executive Search Consultant
Nonprofit HR


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