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The National Federation of Business and Professional Women's Clubs (NFBPWC/USA) develops the professional, business and leadership potential of women at all levels. The objectives of the National Federation are to develop the professional, business and leadership potential for women at all levels, to advocate and to strive toward equal participation of women and men in power and decision-making roles.

In order for NFBPWC/USA to achieve its mission our focus issue for 2020-2022 is on diversity and inclusion. Diversity is not the end goal, but a means to a more inclusive workplace for all women. And, without also making equity a part of this effort (fair pay, equitable leadership, advancement opportunities), D&I efforts can not be sustainable. Diverse groups must be respected, appreciated and able to thrive at work and in their communities.

This includes the NFBWPC/USA too! With a diverse group of members and leaders within our organization, we know that we will have better ideas, a multitude of viewpoints, and do a better job of advancing our thought-leadership into the next 100 years of BPW.

    

NFBPWC/USA is an affiliate of the International Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW International). BPW International has a mission to develop the business, professional and leadership potential of women on all levels through education, advocacy, networking, mentoring, skill-building and economic empowerment programs and projects.

  


    

The Executive Committee

  

President: Megan Shellman-Rickard



Megan Shellman-Rickard earned a Master of Science, organizational leadership major, from Colorado State University and a Bachelor of Arts, communication major, from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Megan has more than 25 years of experience in a wide variety of disciplines. She brings her former experience in the entertainment industry, strategic and green event planning, advertising sales, print and digital marketing, retail sales, publication and book production, nonprofit leadership, business development, and operations management to bear as the owner of her own company: Simple Synergy Consulting. She offers concierge business consulting services to nonprofits, small businesses, and entrepreneurs. Megan is an accomplished change agent with a skill for connecting people in the face of adversity.

Finding that volunteering in leadership positions can help expand your viewpoints and skills, Megan also believes that volunteering can allow you to gain experience in roles that might not otherwise be available to you.

Megan finished her second term as the 1st Vice President of Membership for NFBPWC and continues to serve as a member of committees at the national, state, and local level. She has served in leadership positions for the National Federation of Business and Professional Women and the Business and Professional Women of Colorado (BPW/Colorado) since 2008. As she grew with BPW, Megan served as the BPW/Boulder President for 2 years, the BPW/Colorado President for 2 years, the BPW/International Sub-Regional Coordinator for Canada and the United States for the N. American and Caribbean Region, the BPW/Colorado Vice President of Membership for 1 year, and a Delegate to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) representing BPW/International.

She also brings her experience to bear as a member of several committees at her children’s school as a Member at Large for the Parent Council (PTA at a charter school). Megan also serves as a member for the Diversity and Inclusivity Committee and the Sustainability Committee.

Megan lives in Arvada, Colorado with a packed household: husband, two children, two cats, one dog, many houseplants and an organic vegetable garden. She was born and raised in Southern Colorado, but has found homes in Boulder, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, France and Sanborn Western Camps.

     

1st VP of Membership: Larisa Miller



Larisa Miller studied Political Science with a minor in Hungarian at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey, and Organizational Leadership at Penn State University. She worked for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Agriculture, and later for the Pennsylvania Governor, Tom Ridge, in the office of public policy. Larisa spent several years working as a personal advisor and head of business development for a member of the Royal Family in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, with focus on sustainable development, technology, energy and agriculture.  Additionally, Larisa served as head of the Royal Family’s large non-profit foundation, which focused on women, youth, literacy and education.  Through her work with this UAE-based foundation, Larisa spent considerable time working with women and children in refugee camps in the Middle East and Africa. 

Larisa serves as Managing Partner of Akon Global, developing and facilitating Smart Cities, affordable housing, technology investments, etc., with Akon, multi-Grammy award nominated recording star, businessman, philanthropist and changemaker.  Larisa is also CEO of Phoenix Global LLC, a global boutique consulting firm headquartered in Miami, Florida; Executive Vice President of STP Capital Partners; Ambassador to the African Union’s State of the African Diaspora, and Executive Director of the Global Chamber of Business Leaders.  Larisa sits on several executive and non-profit boards around the world, including Visual Farms (USA), People to People International, Ansari Group Dubai (UAE), Geneva Global Initiative (Geneva, Switzerland), Union of Businesswomen (Tbilisi, Georgia), and others. 

Larisa is a member of BPW/South Florida, BPW/Triangle (Raleigh, NC), and BPW/Central Montgomery County (Pennsylvania), as well as president of the newly forming BPW/Miami.  An award-winning keynote speaker, Larisa has spoken to BPW sisters at BPW events on 5 continents, and is a member of the BPW Women, Peace and Security project.

Larisa has been named one of the Top 100 People in Finance (Top 100 Magazine); 100 Global Women of Excellence (Sovereign Magazine); 100 Most Influential Business Leaders of 2020 (Exeleon Magazine); 10 Most Influential Friends of Africa (For Business In Africa Magazine). 

   

2nd VP for Advocacy: Daneene Monroe Rusnak



Daneene Monroe Rusnak began her association with BPW when she joined the Berea local chapter in Ohio in 2010. She immediately agreed to fill a recently vacated chair as the Historian. In 2011 she was the BPW/Ohio Individual Development Speak-Off winner and continued her passion for the ID course by serving as a moderator for Berea BPW's Individual Development classes.

Throughout her tenure with the Berea local, Daneene has held a variety of positions which included three terms as local President, PR/Social Media Chair, 2nd VP/Membership Chair and Region 2 President. In 2014, Daneene was selected as the Berea BPW Woman of the Year and one of the honorees at the Berea BPW National Business Women’s Week event.

At the state level, Daneene has served as Legislation Chair, Corresponding Secretary and Social Media Chair for BPW/Ohio. Currently, Daneene continues to serve BPW/Ohio as the Co-Chair of Website Management, the Social Media Chair, and is in her third term as the BPW/OH PAC Chair.

Daneene has been a member of the NFBPWC/USA Virtual Chapter since 2015.  She is the current President of that chapter and has served as the Social Media/Technology Chair or Co-Chair throughout her time as a member. In 2017 she joined the NFBPWC/USA PR/Social Media Committee and led the team as PR Chair from 2018-2020. Most recently, Daneene has participated in the Lifelong Leadership and Learning Facilitator Program.

Daneene is a Business Solutions Specialist/Benefits Advisor with Consultative Business Solutions and lives in Parma, OH with her husband, Jeff, her daughter, Maya and her son Jerrod.

   

Secretary: Barbara Bozeman



Barbara Bozeman is a photographer.  After retiring from the US Air Force and earning double majors (Business and Human Resources) from the University of Mount Olive, Barbara opened her business “Sights & Hounds Photography.”  A Past State President for BPW/North Carolina, Barbara has held a number of positions on the local, state and national level with BPW.

Barbara has had the fortune of a truly diverse work life.  These experiences have allowed Barbara the opportunity to live around the country and in a number of different countries around the world. Her more interesting endeavors have included cruise ship stewardess, vocational instructor, aircraft accident investigator, and now photographer, to name only a few.  She has even been an Easter Bunny. 

Born in Upstate New York and raised in Rhode Island, Barbara now calls Goldsboro, North Carolina home. Supporting her local community, she is an ambassador for the Wayne County Chamber of Commerce, and an active member of the Goldsboro Area Photography Club. 

Barbara still travels for her business and for pleasure.  With her 1974 Shasta Compact Camper named “Lil”, she enjoys travelling for business and as part of a group called Sisters on The Fly – an organization dedicated to offering empowerment and sisterhood through exceptional outdoor adventures.  Barbara is Sister #8523.

   

Treasurer: Deborah Shuster Fischer



Deborah Shuster Fischer (Deb) serves as the NFBPWC Treasurer for 2020-2022 and Trustee and Treasurer for the Colorado Women’s Education Foundation (CWEF) which was founded by BPW/Colorado members in 1976. CWEF awards annual scholarships to women aged 25 plus who are transforming their lives through education. Deb has been serving this foundation since 2015.

Graduating from Eastern Michigan University in 1980 with a BS in Construction Management, Deb retired as a Program Controls Specialist working in the areas of aerospace, Antarctica, and power plants. She raised 3 kids, a son who is an Engineer, a daughter who is a Doctor serving in the Air Force, and a daughter who is a Marine Drill Instructor.

Deb joined BPW/Colorado in the Northwest Metro Chapter in February of 2001 and held all positions in this chapter for many years. In 2015 she moved to Denver and began work to restart the Denver chapter which had been dissolved in 1999. She served as BPW/Denver Chapter President. Deb has also served as BPW/Colorado President in June 2011 through May 2012 and again in June 2017 through May 2019.

Deb maintains membership in three BPW/Colorado chapters: Northwest Metro, Denver, and CO Virtual.

   

Young BPW Chair: Ashley Maria



Ashley Maria is a DGA award-winning film director specializing in the comedy and horror genres. She first became a member of BPW in high school when her mother was the president of a club in the capital city of North Carolina. Since then, Ashley has moved across the country to Los Angeles, joining the BPW/Hollywood club and rising in the ranks of the organization as a Young BPW member. Ashley also represented BPW as a North American delegate to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in 2019 & 2020.

She is a proud advocate for women, with her most recent feature documentary, Pioneers in Skirts. The film raises awareness to cultural gender biases and offers action for change we all can take now. It is available to screen in schools, communities and companies who want to push this conversation forward.

As Ashley volunteers her time to BPW, she continues to create visual content -- even during a pandemic. She recently directed an entirely ‘made-in-quarantine’ music video, Lights in the Forest V.

You can learn more about Ashley by visiting her website here: www.ashley-maria.com. Do you have a question about Young BPW? Please email Ashley directly here: youngbpw@nfbpwc.org.

   

Immediate Past President: Sandra Thompson



Sandra Thompson (Sandy) is a native Californian and still resides in her family home with her cat  Lily.  She has been a member of the BPW/Burbank club for 38 years and has held every position on the E.C.  She is a Past State President of the California Federation. Sandy has also served on International Committees.

Sandy graduated from San Diego State University with a BA in Social Science and a MA in Special Education and has a Lifetime Teaching Credential. She was employed by Amtrak for 35 years where she held a variety of positions, including being a Train Manager responsible for the on board services of three trains, Manager of Union Station in Los Angeles, and Director of Operations Management dealing with finances.

Since her retirement she has been volunteering at the Library bookstore, assisted in writing the history of her church, and serves as the Chair of the Church Council.  She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Burbank Coordinating Council as Treasurer. She is active with Family Promise of the Verdugos where she was one of the founding members and was recognized with their Hands On Hearts In Award in 2019. Sandy is also a member of the National Association of Parliamentarians.

Equal Participation of Women and Men in Power and Decision-Making Roles

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NFBPWC is a national organization with membership across the United States acting locally, nationally and globally. NFBPWC is not affiliated with BPW/USA Foundation.

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