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Be A Sponge. Be A Mentor. Be Determined.

Advice from the 2012 Million Dollar Women Symposium

SALEM, Mass., Nov. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- These words of wisdom, based on personal experience, are at the heart of why the Million Dollar Women Symposium always packs the ballroom of the Hawthorne Hotel in Salem. Given the number of women who work in corporate environments, the advice of this year's panel, comprising women who have broken through the glass ceiling to become the CEOs of million-dollar corporations, was particularly meaningful. And a high-powered panel it was, attracting some of the region's most successful women CEOs. Their willingness to share their personal life stories, the challenges they've faced, and the lessons they've learned was as inspirational as it was educational. 

The event, organized by the Enterprise Center at Salem State University, and sponsored since its inception eight years ago by Beverly Cooperative Bank, began with a keynote address by Salem News Publisher, Karen Andreas, followed by a panel discussion featuring Karen Bressler, Chairman,  Reinhart Agar Boston Advisory Board; Julie Livingston, President and CEO, Marblehead Bank; Linda Moulton, CEO, Ceralta Technologies, Inc.; Mary Puma, Chairman and CEO, Axcelis Technologies, Inc.; and Carole Wedge, President, Shepley Bulfinch.  Additional information on the participants is available at

The up-close-and personal format has always differentiated this annual event and contributed to its popularity, but this year the advice seemed particularly cogent and heartfelt. Several themes emerged, as panelists echoed one another in key areas: Be a sponge, listen, learn from every experience and every job—even the ones that aren't right for you. Be determined but flexible, resilient but true to yourself.  Manage people with respect and sensitivity. There is no doubt the audience heard what the panelists had to say; many of words of advice found their way into the Enterprise center's Twitter feed (@EnterpriseCtr).

Ms. Andreas's keynote address spoke specifically to mentoring, encouraging women to make it a point to advise and mentor others. "I was especially aware of the importance that all of the panelists placed on mentors," commented Enterprise Center COO Laura Swanson. "This is increasingly being recognized as a key to success, and our own new mentoring program validates that." 

The Million Dollar Women Symposium is also an excellent opportunity for both networking and getting a sense of how people are feeling about the business in the year ahead.  Table discussions, roving microphones and active question–and-answer sessions created an atmosphere of warmth and collegiality.  What do these people think lies ahead?  As Enterprise Center CEO Christine Sullivan commented, after a round-the-room survey of the biggest business challenges people face, "This is the first time in years, that the lagging economy didn't dominate the discussion!"

The Enterprise Center at Salem State University arms business owners and leaders at every stage of development with the knowledge and skills to start their business, grow and succeed.  The Enterprise Center is located at 121 Loring Avenue, Salem, MA  01970.  Phone 978-542-7528.

SOURCE Enterprise Center at Salem State University

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